First published in New Zealand Herald 18 August 2015
Air New Zealand has done an incredible job over the years turning boring safety videos into unique, totally Kiwi and extremely viral marketing campaigns.
They’ve been so masterful and taken ownership of something that is tedious and traditionally serious from most other airlines. Despite – let’s be honest – all our doubts that any of the safety measures will actually save us in the event of a crash.
Then, following hot on the heels of last week’s column on New Zealand flags, the Victorian Government of Australia launched a rip-roaring logo of their own.
The Big V, as it’s fondly known, was released last week by Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews. We haven’t heard too much from Premier Andrews since he was elected last November. But like a textbook (dud) new CEO, there he is, working hard to get the people of Victoria… a new logo.
The Big V brought out all the best headlines this week. Such as ‘NSW Premier epically trolls Victoria over new logo’ and ‘Victoria has a new logo. Why?’ Along with, ‘Victoria’s new logo likened to map of Tasmania.’
Sure the Aussies make fun of Kiwis (especially a couple of weeks ago when the All Blacks temporarily let their guard down). They also take great pride in making fun of each other, each city and State.
So, while the new logo was a bit of an eye roll, the strapline ‘Best of everything’ was a red rag to a bull.
Everyone took the bait and took to Twitter to share.
New South Wales Premier, Mike Baird retweeted the logo and ‘Best of everything’ strapline, with his own disclaimer “*offer excludes harbour, infrastructure and sunshine.” Invoking Sydney’s unassailable beach and temperature advantage over Melbourne.
I live in Melbourne and we can never come back from that one. It’s cold in Melbourne and it displeases us greatly that our Sydney friends are in t-shirts down at Bondi during winter, wearing Havaianas and strolling along the cliffs to Bronte for a picnic.
Side note, we’re okay with our Queensland and Western Australian compadres swimming in July. Those guys are practically in another country. But Sydney and Melbourne are a little over one hour flight from one another, so how is it even fair that Sydney is 20 degrees when Melbourne is 13 today? Why, why?
However, Andrews was quick to respond with a classic Melbourne comeback, summoning good coffee – but wisely leaving little laneways as a backup – “You’re just grumpy because you haven’t had a decent coffee since you were last in Melbourne! But thanks for the free coverage” he said.
Maybe this is the Australian government easing us into our own flag redesign. Bob Brown, the former leader of the Greens yesterday wrote a piece on the inevitability of Australia’s new flag. He suggested replacing the Union Jack with a bounding kangaroo. At 10.15pm Australian time last night, 79% of the 2802 who bothered to click on the poll in The Age, agreed with him.