A large Triple Decker from Debonairs Pizza is the star of the new television campaign by FCB Joburg that taps into a South African idiosyncrasy: we can be ‘happy’ during the 11 months from January to November but, when we hit December and the start of the festive season, the livelier, more exuberant phrase ‘happiiii’ comes to the fore.
Debza, Debonairs Pizza’s animated spokesman, kicks off the running joke, or colloquialism, in the advert devised by creative director Mbeu ‘Snooze’ Kambuwa, copywriter Marvin Mpanda and art directors Naledi Manama and Kabelo Mabaso.
He surprises everyone around the sunny lunchtime table, and wakes the snoozing grandmother with his hearty rendition of the phrase before summing up what every South African is feeling: ‘Because we could all use some happy this year.’
‘Debza and Debonairs Pizza are bringing back the joy and helping South Africans end 2020 on a high,’ said Debonairs Pizza’s Marketing Executive, Toni Joubert. ‘Time with family and friends has never been as important as it is now, and Debonairs Pizza wants to be part of it.’
‘We didn’t want to make an advert that directly referenced lockdown or Covid-19,’ added Kambuwa. ‘Instead, we set out to show our resilience as a nation; that in some way or form, we will still salvage a part of our year, and we will laugh. We will be happy.’
The campaign comprises a 30-second, 20-second and 10-second TVCs, a 6-second roll for YouTube, a squeeze back for Soccer Zone and 5 bumpers for inclusion in select programmes on Mzansi Magic. Shot by Morgan Dingle from Your Girlfriend, it features post-production by Fuelcontent and Produce, and an original track composed by Myles McDonald at Hey Papa legend. The campaign flights until we stop being ‘happiiii’ and revert to simply being ‘happy’.