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2 February 2020

Echo Through the Ages

by Syd Briscoe

Amazon Echo: “Before Alexa” - 90s

There was a time - in days of yore - when voice-activated computers following our commands were nothing more than sci-fi staples from some fictional future. Nowadays, many kids won't remember a time before smart hubs ran the show, and this playful Super Bowl commercial for the Amazon Echo sets out to remind them just how different things were in days gone by.

Bookended by Ellen DeGeneres and wife Portia de Rossi, an entertaining sequence explores Alexa equivalents through the decades - from paper boys and servants to secretaries and even carrier pigeons. There are some lovely moments of absurdity throughout, including a hawk-chomping dragon and a cameo from Richard Nixon, of all people.

Director Steve Rogers has the balance spot on here, demonstrating the Echo's utility while gently poking fun at our reliance on it. Still, it's better to shout at a smart hub than accidentally set oneself on fire trying to turn the temperature down, eh?

Creative Agency: Droga5 Ⓟ Ⓦ
CCO: David Kolbusz
Group CD: Shelley Smoler
Creative Director: Matt Hubbard
Agency Exec Producer: Rachel Hough
Ass't Prod (Agency): Manon Rees
Film Production: Somesuch Ⓟ Ⓦ
Director: Steve Rogers Ⓟ Ⓦ
Producer: Lee Groombridge
Cinematographer: Emmanuel Lubezki
Editor: Jonnie Scarlett Ⓦ @ The Quarry Ⓟ Ⓦ
Offline Producer: Tor Adams
Post Production: Misha Stanford-Harris / Angela Toner @ The Mill Ⓟ Ⓦ
Colourist: Jean-Clément Soret @ MPC Ⓟ Ⓦ
Sound Designer: Will Cohen / Lawrence Kendrick / Jim Stewart @ String and Tins Ⓟ Ⓦ

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