Wilkinson Sword ads

Wilkinson Sword introduces The Blade Master

A new campaign from ad agency Pablo features sparkling copy and a series of humorous films to introduce a new positioning for the razor brand

Marketing for razor brands has been on a journey in the past decade or so. For a long time, all we were offered was imagery of square jawed fellas showing just how smooth their shave could be while foisting any number of different brand razors. So far, so dull.

Then Gillette threw the world a curve ball by discovering purpose and shifting their messaging from The Best A Man Can Get to The Best A Man Can Be, in a bid to address toxic masculinity. Society was not ready for such a shift though, and a backlash ensued, including calls for a boycott of parent company P&G.

By contrast, this new campaign for Wilkinson Sword has opted for using humour to relay its message, via a series of commercials and OOH. The films, directed by Craig Ainsley, feature an enigmatic character named The Blade Master, who mocks bad razor blades via a series of deliberately ludicrous comparisons, including an inaccurate bartender and a waiter trained in a zoo.

The jokes continue via a set of posters which emphasise copy (accompanied by slightly clunky product shots), which feature the same absurdist style as the TV spots. While some of these are more obscure when seen in isolation, others – such as ‘We’ve got your back, face’ – go for broad laughs.

The campaign then ties back into the brand’s 250-year heritage via the tagline ‘Blade Masters since 1772’. While the overall vibe feels very British, the campaign will also play out across 29 European markets.

To ensure the campaign will work in the different countries, Pablo worked with the AI film company Flawless to ‘vub’ (visual dub) the English picture into French and German and produce perfectly lip-synced films, enabling The Blade Master to speak directly to international audiences with the impact of a native voice.

Wilkinson Sword ads
Wilkinson Sword ads
Wilkinson Sword ads

Agency: Pablo London
ECD: Dan Watts
Creative: Oli Beale
Production Company: Arts and Sciences
Director: Craig Ainsley
DOP: Maciek Ryter