You might not know German supermarket Edeka, but you may remember the retailer’s ads.
From its 2015 Christmas commercial depicting an old man faking his own death in order to get his family together, to last year’s festive effort that reminded parents that the best gift for their children is simply their love and attention, Edeka has got emotional advertising down to a fine art.
Edeka’s latest ad continues the cinematic theme. It tells the story of a boy who lives in a town where everyone is overweight, including the dog.
As he sits around the family dinner table, eating his grey mush, the boy absent-mindedly stares out the window where a bird catches his eye.
From there, the boy begins hatching an escape plan from his depressing-looking town. His plans to use balloons, a kite, and glider wings to imitate the bird and fly away are all foiled because of his weight.
But then he notices his bird friend eating berries from a tree. From there on in, the boy switches his grey gruel diet for fruit.
And as the emotional music stirs, the boy is shown having lost enough weight for his plan to pay off. He fashions himself a big pair of wings and takes to the sky, as his townsfolk look on in disgust.
The tagline reads: “Iss wie der, der du sein willst,” which roughly translates to English as: “Eat like the person you want to be.”
Edeka has coupled the ad with a microsite that includes healthy recipes and nutrition information.
As can often happen with ads that touch on this kind of topic, the campaign has drawn criticism from some social media users accusing the brand of fat-shaming, MailOnline reported.
However, the criticism appears to have been drowned out by the volume of praise for the ad.
For example, YouTube user “Lenniac” wrote (loosely translated from German): “The first advertising I’ve seen fully without wanting to skip after five seconds! Great advertisement, great message, great video, hats off!”
At the time of writing, the YouTube video has been watched more than 2.6 million times and has received 12,000 thumbs up, versus 1,000 thumbs down. On Facebook, the video has been viewed 36 million times and has been liked 252,000 times.
Edeka did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but reportedly told MailOnline in a statement: “With a certain exaggeration, we wanted to shake off the daily routine of fast food and the movie’s unidentified grey mash, regardless of the size of an individual. We are aware that some people suffer from obesity because of illness, which cannot be solved with a simple diet change.”
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