Why I want to fly Air New Zealand:

the Rico campaign.

Rico is a globe-trotting puppet who promotes their series of international seating arrangements through a series of off-colour jokes and dirty double-entendres which push the limits of what can be implied in a television commercial. He's also featured prominently on their YouTube page.

I won't lie, I found Rico by way of Air New Zealand's The Inseperable Sheep commercial which features David Hasselhoff doing... weird David Hasselhoff-type stuff that makes you feel kind of uneasy (which is what makes it great)

but I love, love, love the Rico campaign.

At times it's eye-yolling bad and at others it's so borderline crass you wonder how it manages to make its way onto TV. They have him being obsessed with Kim Kardashian and even made a special Valentine's Day message to her.

He also interviews celebrities on The Skycouch

makes rap videos with Snoop Dogg

and wrote a fake book called "Beating off the Track"

what I love about this campaign is that it shows that the airline is willing to take some risks with its image in order to stand apart in an otherwise (let's face it) pretty bland market. It also implies that Kiwis don't take themselves too seriously and that Air New Zealand is a 'fun' airline which will be a unique experience.

usually I think puppets are weird and creepy, and even though Rico is a weird and creepy puppet, he isn't a typical 'airline mascot' in the boring, normal sense. let's face it, marketing something like a seat on an airline isn't the most enthralling campaign, but Air New Zealand hit the ball out of the park on this one.

not to mention Rico gives some pretty sweet advice.