W+K HQ plays safe with KFC’s Colonel Sanders

A while ago new agency Wieden+Kennedy exhumed Colonel Sanders for KFC’s 75th anniversary.

Well the old boy must have done something right because he’s still with us in this new campaign, played by Norm McDonald as opposed to Darrell Hammond – which leads to a gentle joke.

Seeing some of the new stuff from W+K in the US makes you think: are they becoming a touch more conservative in their old age? Producing stuff to please the client as well as opposed to what they think is right for the client? It did the same thing for P&G’s Old Spice recently, lumping together two sub-brands which, if nothing else, saves the client money. The Mad Men’s ancient dilemma.

When you’ve won all this new business it’s a good idea to hang on to to it for than a couple of years and KFC owner, Yum Brands, is a whopper client with a few marketing issues to solve.

This one’s like the McCann of yore, with a twist.

MAA creative scale: 6.


  1. As I say on AdScam, it’s just the old geezer reading the menu. Neil Christie would never allow stuff like this out of the door of W+K, London. Never forget, these are the people who gave us the Kraft “Lusty Smithy” shagging housewives on his throbbing anvil! Perhaps they should stay away from food accounts. Jay Chiat once said… “I can’t wait to see how big we get before we turn to shit.” Things are starting to smell a bit in Portland.

  2. I’m not sure this is intended to please anyone but the smirking geniuses in Portland. It’s fairly creepy and I’m not sure how a dead pitchman enhances appetite appeal. KFC’s problem is that an ever-growing part of the population in the US considers their food to be deeply unhealthy and their stores to be havens of rodents and salmonella. Addressing those two topics in advertising would be truly “daring.”

  3. A copy of the recipe, signed by Sanders, is held inside a safe inside a vault in KFC’s Louisville headquarters, along with eleven vials containing the herbs and spices. In the 1960s, the officially recommended model was the L S Hartzog developed “KFC 20-Head Cooker”, a large device that cost $16,000.

Back to top button