Watch out, brands are about!
The latest trend in advertising has its roots in the hoary old world of Candid Camera style practical jokes, or to use a UK equivalent, Beadle’s About.
Although the extended televised prank has long fallen out of fashion in the UK (though Dom Joly is inexplicably back on TV) the USA has seen a huge and seemingly never-ending revival of extreme stunts and japes thanks to Jackass and Punk’d.
Although Punk’d just had Ashton Kutcher’s celebrity mates having their Mercedes Benz’s fake-bumped into, the current crop of prankvertisements are aiming for real shock value to achieve notoriety and therefore virality.
Here are six of the most recent examples: