Bechdel! NZ Police Recruitment video

If your script begins with “We open on our hero female police woman leading a team into action”, you’ve kicked things off well. Freeze! NZ Police Recruitment Video manages to be aspirational, informative, entertaining (a much-neglected quality) and stereotype-shattering all at once. The police aren’t characterised as a bunch of aggressive, donut-eating white blokes, but rather as fit, community-focused, and ethnically-diverse women and men. No one is stereotyped to dumb things down for the audience, and no one is objectified when the action needs to slow down. Well, no one, except for maybe this guy:

Good sunglasses, bruz.

This spot is a real feat of bravery: you can imagine just how shite this spot could have been in the hands of any other nervy government client. So many stakeholders would have had to sign off on this thing, it’s a miracle it is as good as it is, and that they trusted the agency to cast badass women (real po-po were the talent too) to lead the narrative. Great clients leading great work. And no one wrote a press release clapping themselves on the back for how ethnically- and gender-inclusive the spot is. They just did it because, to echo Trudeau: it’s 2017.

I’ll end things by quoting the magnificent Lee Clow: “Don’t interrupt the thing that interest people. Be the thing that interests people.” This spot is interesting beyond its entertainment value: it takes every last boring stereotype about police, and flips them on their arse, giving us a reason to watch, care, and share.

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