Ayzenberg creative director Gary Goodman explores his top picks for the most resonant campaigns he’s seen in the wild. This week, Gary is turning his attention to creative campaigns that draw knowingly and unknowingly from the fact that the rules we were living, operating and communicating by pre-pandemic no longer apply.

I’ve got quite a fun range to share this week: there’s cinematic video game badassery, a mythical journey into the world of haute couture and a comedic look at something we are all way too familiar with: WFH chaos. Watch our snapshot above or the full versions of my picks below.

“The Whole Working-From-Home-Thing”  –  Apple

Let’s get going with the latest comedic romp from Apple.

Why it matters: Apple reintroduces us to the “Creative Team” that we first met in April from the 3-minute spot “The Underdogs.” Now they’re back in this nearly 7-minute sequel, but the tone of the film has evolved into more of a comedic romp. Back in April (pre-quarantine for those that remember April), Apple used a more inspirational storyline to show how their fictional team collaborated to pull off a seemingly impossible assignment using its products.

Three months deep into the surreal WFH landscape and there’s way more to have fun with. Content-wise, every cliche in the book is on display—but that’s the fun of it—almost like watching a Zucker Brothers film where there’s a joke every twenty seconds. They don’t all have to land but the sheer volume keeps you hooked. I even learned a few things about how to use their products that I hadn’t even considered.

The details:  The aspect that resonates with me is the underlying message that we may all be doing some of the best work of our careers right now. It might be messy and uncomfortable. Maybe none of the rules of yesterday apply today (but who knows about tomorrow?). Maybe it’s because of this that we’re exiting our safety zones, rethinking our approach to almost everything. I’d like to think that fundamental change at this level makes us all rise to new heights. It certainly has for me and my team.

Far Cry 6 Opening Cinematic – Ubisoft / Antibody

At first blush, what appears as the opening for the next Bond film or a new streaming binge-a-thon is actually for the next installment in Ubisoft’s Far Cry franchise.

Why it matters: As games continue to rival Hollywood franchises in their scope and scale, it’s no surprise that for this year’s entry of the Far Cry series, Ubisoft turned to Emmy Award-winning director Patrick Clair to sum up the themes of the new installment, this time set in Cuba. If the work looks familiar, it’s probably because Patrick was the creative force behind opening title sequences for shows like True Detective, Westworld, The Man In The High Castle, American Gods and Halt And Catch Fire. He’s an expert at using simple iconography, beautifully filmed, to land the tone of a franchise and layer in the unexpected. It hooks you instantly.

The details: According to Clair, “the creative team behind Far Cry 6 wanted to introduce the game in a way reminiscent of television main titles. The world they’ve created is rich with history, culture, and imagery. It’s a land of cyclical violence and bloody revolutions.”  He goes on to say, “we wanted to evoke a time of conquistadors with the uprisings of the 20th century…the fascinating world of circular history translated into a poetic string of symbols centered around the icon of a circle.” Sign me up!

Dior Autumn-Winter 2020-2021 Haute Couture

For anyone that knows me, this last one will probably surprise you. Let’s enter into the world of haute couture

Why it matters: It’s generally expected that in fashion, the season’s newest lines are launched alongside glitzy fashion shows and parties filled with tastemakers and celebrities. But these are not normal times. Expectations are being flouted, so no place better to do that than in high fashion. Introducing Christian Dior’s short film for Winter 20-21, an evocative dreamscape filled with fairies and dryads. And the real magic of it is that this film not only captures the beauty and story behind each meticulously constructed piece of Dior’s newest line; it also weaves itself into the very fabric of our collective myths and fairytales and elevates these images through the power of shared storytelling and sheer imagination. Designer Maria Grazia adds: “Surrealist images manage to make visible what is in itself invisible. I’m interested in mystery and magic, which are also a way of exorcising uncertainty about the future.”

The details: Dior brought on the talented Italian filmmaker Matteo Garrone who had explored similar dreamlike territory in his filmTale of Tales’ starring Salma Hayek and John C. Reilly. The stunning Garden of Ninfa located just outside of Rome is where all of the outdoor magic happens. The miniatures and the trunk being carted through the forest by bellhops is a nod to the ‘Théâtre de la Mode’ of the 1940s: a traveling exhibit of miniature mannequins placed in realistic sets wearing the latest designs, all done in an effort to help revitalize the fashion sector after the war in Europe.