KFC's "Celebrity Colonel Sanders" joke has been going on a while now, so how to make it fresh? Rather than revealing yet another famous face in the guise of the Colonel (or, like last time, unveiling a robot) the brand's latest surprise is to "bring back" the original Colonel Sanders.
The latest ads by Wieden & Kennedy Portland mingle footage from the '60s and '70s of the original Colonel Harland Sanders with new footage. In one nostalgically-lit film we see him picknicking with a bunch of kids, as we hear how only he's the real thing (whereas Norm McDonald's Colonel, who peeks out from behind a tree, is "just wearing makeup to look like the Colonel"). Another ad (above) brings the "original" Colonel together with a couple of Goth teens, who change their emo stares to lame grins like kids from a '70s ad. Ulf Johansson of Smith & Jones Films directed the spots.
"We've had some amazing celebrity Colonels over the past two years, and each of them has put their own twist on our original Colonel Harland Sanders," said George Felix, KFC U.S. director of advertising, in a statement. "But no one can play the Colonel like the Colonel can play the Colonel."
The latest ads celebrate Original Recipe and the 60th anniversary of the KFC bucket, at the same time promoting modern-day offers like the $5 Fill Up and $10 Chicken Share. The brand is also introducing a redesigned version of the original KFC bucket to celebrate the anniversary.