Sunday, 15 November 2015

The Return of The SUPERHUMANS.

It's not often I want to write up about an ad that I like. Mainly because there haven't been many recently.

Of course I could bore you with my opinions on the highly anticipated Christmas ads from John Lewis (made me cry) or Sainsbury's (it's just a cat fucking up Christmas), but then I'm not sharing anything new or valuable with you.

I saw this trailer for Channel 4's 'Meet The Superhumans' - spine-tingling stuff.

(Click to watch)

You may remember the original SuperHumans ad for the 2012 Paralympics. If you haven't, here it is - an extremely powerful video that I personally find emotionally overwhelming and highly gripping.

(Click to watch)

Channel 4 are bringing back the idea for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janerio,

The original idea for 'Superhumans' came because the Paralympics never had as much worldwide coverage or air-time as the Olympic Games (the Para's opening ceremony had 11 million views, whereas the Olympic opening ceremony has 27 million). Channel 4 wanted to raise the profile of this undervalued franchise and show that it can rival the Olympics in terms of drama and thrills, as well as hoping to change the way people view disability along the way,

The flashback sequence from the 2012 trailer reminds us that every athlete in the Paralympics has either had their life knocked sideways by a traumatic event or has been battling the odds since they were born.
'Inside Incredible Athletes', a C4 documentary, told the stories of these disabled athletes and how they have overcome them and pushed the limits of the human body.
It showed how a blind football player uses sonar-like ability to “see” the ball and the field, how a wheelchair rugby player paralyzed to the chest compensates for diminished lung capacity by making his lungs work three times harder, and how for a swimmer with cerebral palsy, the right side of her brain controls both sides of her body to perform a perfect breaststroke.

When I lost my hearing back in 2003 I worked twice as hard to prove that I could still do everything I wanted to do. I graduated from Uni, worked many jobs, and bought my own property, all whilst coming to terms with, and grieving for, the loss of my hearing - and it hasn't been easy. I think when you go through something like that, you adapt a 'do or die' attitude. You complain less, push yourself harder, and just 'get on with it'. Disabled people are in no way secondary to those who are not disabled, which is why the Paralympics shouldn't be treated like an after-thought.

C4's print ad after the Olympic Games had finished.

Hopefully next year we will see a rise in the profile of the Paralympics and the world start to see it as equally, if not more, impressive. After C4's 2012 campaign, they conducted a study which showed fantastic results and shift in viewer's behaviour:
  • 69%* of viewers said it was the first time they had made the effort to watch the Paralympics.
  • 65%* of viewers felt Channel 4's coverage had had a favourable impact on their perceptions of people with disabilities.
  • 82%* agreed that disabled athletes were as talented as able-bodied

Will you watch it next year?

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