Uncommon's playful campaign for ITV inspired by '90s 'beat 'em up' video games

If you're a fan of the '90s video games that featured Ryu and Ken or classic one-liners like "Finish him!", then Uncommon's fun campaign for ITV will spark plenty of nostalgia. Inspired by the era's 'beat 'em up' classics like Streetfighter and Mortal Kombat, it highlights the wealth of drama and reality shows available on the ITV Hub.

Simply named Drama vs Reality, the playful DOOH campaign features our favourite fictional characters and reality stars as their own profile-like computer characters, battling it out in familiar scenes such as the Love Island villa or a coastal crime scene from an ITV drama, the backdrop of which has notes of Monkey Island. The idea behind the campaign is that it "shows stars from drama and reality TV stopping at nothing in the fight for our attention," as Uncommon explains.

You can expect to see fights between BAFTA-winning actor Jason Watkins vs Love Island winner Kem Cetinay and actress Katherine Kelly up against reality queen Ferne McCann. And in true homage to the video games we all love, each player has a special winning move to beat their opponent including a shadow pass, electrocution and power punch. (Just remember the button combo, and you've got a fighting chance!)

The motion graphics were created in collaboration with renowned illustrators Rave Growl, based in South Africa. It was their intricate design experience that aided the craft and execution of the individual character icons and game-like moves.

The Drama vs Reality campaign is set to continue with more cinematic battles airing later in the year as well as over the coming weeks with it also being rolled out on platforms such as Snapchat and Tiktok. It's deemed as one of ITV's biggest campaigns in recent years.

It follows on from a series of long-form films shot by Oscar-winning director Tom Hooper (The King's Speech, Les Misérables), which showed renowned drama stars pitted against beloved reality stars, where each unexpected pairing attempted to take each other out in amusing, underhand ways in their bid to win the battle for viewers' attention on ITV Hub.


Get the best of Creative Boom delivered to your inbox weekly