There's no denying it: the LG G5 is weird. The Korean company is pitching its latest flagship as a do-everything device and selling a bunch of accessories called "Friends" that expand its capabilities. There's a swappable battery, a camera grip, a VR headset, a VR camera, a high-res audio attachment and even a rolling robot.
Our first impressions of the device, and its Friends, were good, but one question remained: How exactly would LG market the G5? The answer, at least initially, is an equally weird ad with Jason Statham:
Let's unpack this. Throughout the minute-long spot, Statham's face is literally everywhere. It starts with a bunch of Stathams huddled around an LG G5 on a crowded subway. A fight breaks out, before we randomly see the high-res audio attachment, and then switch to a Stathamized mother and baby. Cue cross-dressing Stathams played for laughs, and a quick shot of the camera grip.
A quick aside: Throughout the commercial, we see Statham clicking in modular accessories and batteries. In the real world, switching accessories (at least the ones that plug directly into the phone's expansion port) requires the phone to turn off and boot up again. Small print on the ad points this out.
Some mayhem later, and the British model-turned-action-star's face is now in a bank heist, where all the hostages are playing with G5s. We then briefly see the rolling robot and VR headset, before we switch to a Pamplona-esque running of the bulls, which is LG's chance to highlight the VR camera:
It's a terrible piece of filmmaking, but that doesn't necessarily make it a terrible ad. It's fun, and memorable -- helped by the background track, Ievan Polkka, being one of the catchiest songs ever. The problem is, apart from a voiceover at the end stating that the phone has "a modular design," it fails to explain why anyone would want a G5, or one its Friends.
Do you need to change the LG G5's hardware to listen to music? What does that weird camera grip even do? Wait is that robot a camera? What's that thing he holds up at the end? I know the answer to all those questions, but someone coming to the ad without knowing about the device will surely be confused. Hopefully LG follows up this spot with short looks at each of the accessories.