What starts off as upbeat scene of happy mothers dancing in their denim takes a dark turn in a new PSA titled "Mom Genes."
A troupe of stylish moms dressed in identical blue outfits twirl about with strollers in choreographed synchronicity, singing about how much they love their babies. However, one of them falls out of line as she starts to question whether she loves her baby ("Probably," she thinks). Slowly the music fades as she confesses that her brain's a "ticking bomb" and starts to believe her baby deserves a better mom. It ends with the statement that one in seven mothers suffers from postpartum depression and states "a mom's genes could unlock the cure."
The film, created pro bono by agency Wongdoody, promotes a research study that University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) is doing into postpartum depression. The goal is to identify a genetic marker that may explain why some women get PPD and others don’t. UNC is looking to attract 100,000 participants so Wongdoody created a consumer-facing PSA to drive recruitment.
"We knew they needed something catchy, since social media sharing is the biggest driver for participation," said Wongodoody founder and Chief Creative Officer Tracy Wong in a statement. "So we played off the well-known trend of mom jeans.”
Pam Thomas at Community Films directed the spot, which is part of a wider campaign that will also include a denim pop-up.
Potential participants can visit www.MomGenesFightPPD.org to download an app to see if they are eligible by taking a clinical assessment.