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Ad of the Day: Netflix Shows You the Consequences of Being the Worst Kind of Rat


You've seen this kind of torture scene before. A man sits bound to a chair, preparing to feel unimaginable pain after crossing a line with his tough-guy boss. He seems to have leaked some sensitive information—or even informed on the guy. Whatever his particular transgressions, he's about to see what it's like to be shoved into a pit of rats while doused in honey.

That's the setup of this new Netflix ad from TBWA\Chiat\Day in Los Angeles. And it's one of those spots that's better to enjoy spoiler-free, before someone, like a dirty rat, tells you the ending. Check it out here first:

The mini-film is nicely done—cinematic (befitting a service that streams movies and top-quality TV shows), amusingly silly and based off an insight which, at first blush, might not seem like a positive one for Netflix. The spot essentially urges people not to talk about Netflix shows—or at least, not until they've asked the person which season and episode (the "S.E.") they're on.

That's a bit of a peculiar request. You'd think Netflix would sidestep focusing on the noncommunal aspect of its watching experience. Instead, it embraces it. And it does so because it's rich creative territory—there's conflict and drama (on a small scale) in trying not to have your favorite show spoiled if you're not totally caught up. This spot takes that notion to a comical extreme, with just the right amount of goofiness—turning what could be seen as a product liability into something entertainingly relatable.

There's also the interactive bit at the end, which is also seamless and pretty smart. Netflix, after all, is about empowering its users to make their own scheduling decisions. Thus, having them decide the outcome of an ad is a small but notable extension of the brand, too.

Client: Netflix

Agency: TBWA\Chiat\Day
Fabio Costa: Executive Creative Director
Matthew Woodhams-Roberts, Dave Horton: Creative Directors
Peter Bassett: Director of Production
Stephanie Dziczek: Senior Producer
Kristin McCarron: Digital Producer
Peter Ravailhe: Managing Director
Tyra Hillsten: Brand Leader
Sarah Lamberson: Brand Director
Steve Smith: Associate Brand Manager
Rohit Thawani: Director of Digital and Social Strategy
Gary Klugman: Planning Director
Emilie Arrive: Senior Digital Strategist
Lauren Maddox: Digital Strategist
Mimi Hirsch: Senior Business Affairs Manager 
Anders Svensson: Design Director
Robbie Reynolds: Designer
John Byrne: Tech Manager
Armen Kesablyan: Tech Lead
Lester Dizon, Alen Shen: User Experience Designers
Lester Broas: Quality Assurance Lead
Walter Velasquez: Quality Assurance Analyst

Production Company: Furlined
William Speck, Josh Gordon: Directors
Diane McArter: President
Robert Herman: Managing Director
David Thorne: Senior Executive Producer
Aris McGarry: Producer

Editorial: Cut + Run
Steve Gandolfi: Editor
Russell Anderson: Assistant Editor
Carr Schilling: Executive Producer
Remy Foxx: Producer

Visual Effects: Framestore
Dez (Derek) Macleod Veilleux: Executive Producer
Ben West: Creative Director, Visual Effects Supervisor
J.D. Yepes: 2-D Lead
Mike Bain: 3-D Lead
Scott Boyajan: Commercials Producer

Telecine: Company 3
Dave Hussey: Senior Colorist

Sound Design: Stimmung
Gus Koven: Sound Design
Kristina Iwankiw: Producer
Ceinwyn Clark: Executive Producer

Mix: Eleven
Jeff Payne: Mixer
AJ Murillo: Assistant Mixer
Dawn Redmann: Producer
Suzanne Hollingshead: Executive Producer

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