An evil, rapping sugar cube warns of hidden sugars in this creepy music video

Run DMC’s Darryl McDaniels voices sinister character for Hip Hop Public Health

Published On
Oct 05, 2021

Editor's Pick

An evil, rapping sugar cube warns of sugar’s hidden dangers in new musical PSA from non-profit Hip Hop Public Health.

The sugar cube, voiced by Run DMC hip-hop singer Darryl McDaniels, appears in a full-length video from Interpublic agency Area 23, rapping about how sugar can disguise itself in an array of different names and can be found hidden in different foods. This is illustrated by the sugar cube (who sports one rotten tooth) appearing in a range of different costumes and guises; in fact, when we first encounter him, he's trying to put on a sugar-sweet voice to mask his true evil rasp, a book on acting spotted behind him.

The original song also contains plenty of lyrics explaining how sugar lurks in your food, making you crave it and leading to diabetes and obesity. The animation is by Zombie Studios.

As well as rapping in the music video, this super-creepy character (who reminds us somewhat of Ryan Reynolds' Sugar Panda in his ads for High Key) is part of a wider campaign, which includes an accompanying website, an interactive app, and a children’s book, "Lil Sugar Master of Disguise." The book features a foreword by Dr. Olajide Williams, founder of Hip Hop Public Health, who is associate dean of community research and engagement and tenured professor of neurology at Columbia University, and chief of staff of the department of neurology at NewYork Presbyterian/Columbia University Irving Medical Center.

“Childhood obesity continues to be one of the most pressing health issues facing young people and COVID-19 has magnified it,” said Dr. Williams in a statement. “The goal of Lil Sugar is to arm parents, children, educators and the general public with the tools they need to be aware of and take action against the harmful consequences of consuming too much sugar."

The new character was designed to "resonate with both parents and children,” added Tim Hawkey, chief creative officer of Area 23. “Working with a legend like DMC enables the campaign to reach key audiences, particularly those in communities that have been economically/socially marginalized, and to do so in a fun and engaging way.”



Oct 05, 2021
Client :
Hip Hop Public Health
Agency :
Area 23
Chief Creative Officer :
Tim Hawkey
Executive Creative Director :
Elliot Langerman
Creative Team :
Thiago Fernandes
Creative Team :
Fabio Rodrigues
Creative Team :
Eduardo Tavares
Creative Team :
Arthur Daraujo
Creative Team :
Widerson Souza
Creative Team :
Connor Reilly
Creative Team :
John Roberts
Creative Team :
Angela Williams
EVP Director Integrated Production :
Jennifer Ma
SVP Director Technology :
Bill Hanff
SVP Group Director Broadcast Production :
Chinkara Singh
VP Director Technology :
Joel Herold
VP Director Print Production :
Frank Laport
Associate Director Technology :
Aaron Stack
Senior Developer :
Daniel Englert
Developer :
Kary Huang
Senior UX Architect :
Matt Piwowarsky
UX Architect :
Peter Mylonas
Broadcast Producer :
Michael Glennon
Executive Producer Broadcast :
Anna Lopez
EVP Medical Director :
Wolf Gallwitz PhD
Medical Research :
Aldacilene Souza da Silva PhD
SVP Editorial Director :
Fritznel Loriston
Editor :
Jason Marin
Editor :
Pete Res
Editor :
Cait Gallagher
Editor :
Will Randick
Editor :
Madeleine Disner
Editor :
Aja Horowitz
Editor :
Elisabeth Fetterman
Editor :
Joanna Chlebus
Director Corporate Communications :
Chido Tsemunhu
VP Global Corporate Communications :
Jessica Spano
Founder & Board Chair :
Dr Olajide Williams
Executive Director & CEO :
Lori Rose Benson
Advisory Board Member/Music Performed by :
Darryl DMC McDaniels
Board Member :
Eric Pliner
Chief Strategy Engagement Officer :
Patrice Webb
Chief Programs Operation Officer :
Lindsay Harr
Marketing Strategist :
Mariam Bekele
Chief Growth Advisor :
Melinda Gould
Health Education Content Reviewer :
Andrew Milne
Health Education Content Reviewer :
Vanessa Sawyer
Composer Lyricist Producer :
Q. Worthy
Composer Lyricist Producer :
Blurred Vision
Lyricist :
BJ Gray
Advisory Board Member :
Tony Drootin
Sound :
Sound Studios
Special Thanks :
Erik Blamoville
Special Thanks :
Jonathan Bloom
Production :
Zombie Studios
Director :
Paulo Garcia
Creative Director :
Daniel Salles
Executive Producer :
Nathalia Gouveia
Lead Art Director/Concept Art :
Marcelo Garcia
Animation Producer :
André Carvalho
CGI Lead :
Claudio Junior
CGI Lead/Technical Director :
Wallan Oliveira
CGI Lead/Technical Director :
Isaac Buzzola
Storyboard & Animatic :
Saulo Brito
Storyboard & Animatic :
Gabriel São Marcos
Animation Director :
Jonathan Souza
Concept Art :
Feppa Rodriguez
Account :
Stefanie Dias
Account :
Stephanie Wang
Audio :
Canja Audio Culture
Audio Director :
Lucas Sfair
Audio Director :
Eduardo Karas
Audio Director :
Filipe Resende
Audio Director :
Bruno Veira
Audio Producer :
Pedro Souza
Audio Producer :
Guilherme Moreno
Audio Producer :
Levy Mynssen
Studio Coordinator :
Ana Flor
Voice Talent :
Odwa Gulwa
Production :
Rodrigo Cassino
Head of Development :
Renato Caetano
UX Designer & Motion Graphics :
Samuel Callegari
UX Designer & Motion Graphics :
Thayná Shimoda
Product Manager :
Danielle Medeiros
Product Manager :
Jessica Pacino
Production :
Asteroide Films
Executive & Creative Director :
Guilherme Biglia
Creative & post Director :
Giuliano Biondi
Producer :
Amanda Ricciardi
Producer :
Giulia Povezan
Editor :
André Albuquerque
Art Director :
Carlos Karan
Sid Fernandes
Global Chief Diversity Officer :
Helen Shelton

Need a credit fix? Contact the Creativity Editors

Project Type