Dropping the Ad Cliches, This Father’s Day Video Looks at the Hopes and Fears of Real Dads

Interviews by Hill Holliday make powerful points

Hill Holiday

When agencies work on internal holiday-centric content (see: holiday cards and videos), the results can be enjoyable, but mixed. For Father’s Day, it could be easy to go down the predictable path that advertising has built over the years with bumbling dads or the other various stereotypes.

Hill Holliday, however, has significantly broken the mold with a video tribute that gets to the heart and emotion of being a father. “Fathers and Sons in 2018” features an agency dad, one agency son, and friends, family, colleagues and academic professionals. Dispensing with production gimmicks or tricks, the five and a half minute film explores what it means to be a man today, raising a good man and more.

The stories and emotions shared are real, honest and sometimes uncomfortable. One participant, for example, shared how hurt he was that colleagues, in the 1980s, talked behind his back about going home to take care of his child when his wife was sick. Another talked about how society expects men to act, noting that he believes a good man is someone who is “productive, respectful, thinks of others and has empathy.”

Brad Harrington from the Center for Work and Family at Boston College galvanizes the conversation by pointing out that men, for many years, were “not seen as real parents” but perceived as breadwinners with minimal roles to play in the family.

Additionally, he noted that “364 days of the year, when we talk about parenting, it’s women and one day a year, we celebrated the fact that dads are parents too. This is no longer a once a year thing, and fathers are really celebrated and understood every day of the year.”

It’s a genuine and interesting tribute that relies entirely on the hearts and minds of fathers, with several messages that show the continued evolution of men and especially fathers.

Chief Creative Officer: Lance Jensen
Chief Strategy Officer: Lesley Bielby
Director: Khari Streeter
Planning Director: Caleb Jacobson-Sive
Senior Editor: Liz Colanto
Content Producer: Kaitlyn Medeiros
Executive Producer: Gretchen Taipale
Director of Agency Communications & PR: Tracy Brady
Planner: David Kerner
DP: Jeremy Ramirez
Assistant Editor: Danielle Calder
Colorist: Mike Grasela
Gaffer: Benjamin Gibson
Sound Engineer: Mark Wong

@zanger doug.zanger@adweek.com Doug Zanger is a senior editor, agencies at Adweek, focusing on creativity and agencies.