Al dente – Mamma e figlio
Creative director: Anders Weinar
Art Director: Eugenio Patrini
Copywriter: Enrica Gatti
Directed by: Dick Mc Neil
Director of photography: Adolfo Troiani
TV Producer: -
Production Company: NEW CBN
Duration: 5”, 30”
ASB Code: BAR I Re 1983/1-2-3-4-8 - 1984/1-10
Abstract: The season campaign is set in two phases: it started with a few teasers that did not show the logo of the Company, and presented themselves as brief messages that played humorously on the idiomatic expression “Al dente” such as «And from that day on they all lived happily and al dente»; «We wish you a really al dente evening»; «Little thought: you are not born al dente, you become it»; «Al dente… Not al dente. Al dente… Not al dente»; «Liberté, fraternité, al denté»; «I am al dente, and you? »; «Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the most al dente of them all?»; «Pay attention, a really al dente show is about to start»; «Ring around the rosy, an al dente pocketful of posies». (1)
In the television season that followed, some TV presenters of famous Italian shows inserted in their scripts phrases like: «You are a truly al dente singer» (Pippo Baudo); «An al dente show» (Maurizio Costanzo); «Our sports championship is truly al dente» (Maria Teresa Ruta).
After a month, the real campaign started, and revolved around three subjects: a young man goes back home to his mother who welcomes him saying: «Look at you! Do you think you are al dente with that face? I will make you feel al dente» and she prepares a nice plate of pasta immediately on the spot; likewise, a wife cooks for her stressed out husband dealing with life’s problems and a daughter cooks for her father that comes back home tired after a long day of work. The concept remains the same in 1984 as well, thought the dialogue is substituted with a jingle: «Yes; when there is the color of the sun, when there is that fragrance and that precious taste, Barilla, yes, to feel al dente is truly like this». Therefore we see in the same number of spots two wives at the stove cooking to comfort their tired husbands, of which one has just come back from a tennis match with a bandaged knee and a broken racket, and the other one who broke the engine of his yacht trying to start it in a careless way. Every spot ends with the same phrase written in white on a red background and in quotation marks: «Barilla makes you always feel al dente».
(1) All of the teasers are puns based on words, and while some are easy to understand, like the one on the motto of the French Revolution, or the pun on the phrase that Snow White’s Witch says to the mirror, other phrases come straight out of the repertoire that Italian TV personalities had developed as their personal trademark that identified them to the public.
The “Ring around the rosy” nursery rime is the closest way I found to render “Giro giro tondo”, the Italian equivalent of the children round about song.