The word “dollface” has long been used as a complimentary term of endearment that old-fashioned gents have historically bestowed upon their ladies fair. When you see an actual human woman with a doll’s face, however, as you do in Ikea’s latest, the only natural response is arctic shivers up your spine.
Like a live-action Tottie, the stop motion film that terrified children in the 1980s, the new Ikea video takes place in a dollhouse. Created by agency Mother, the new spot is part of a campaign Ikea is running in the U.K .titled “Make Small Spaces Big.” If there is a better way to examine how spacial economy can improve one’s home life than “super creepy living-doll quarters,” I have yet to see it.
The video, “One Room Paradise,” features a re-recording of the same-titled Aretha Franklin song by up-and-coming singer Elayna Boynton. It’s bookended by scenes of a young girl playing with her one-room dollhouse, a pleasant-enough commentary on the importance of space efficiency. It’s the in-between scenes, however, featuring plasticine doll-masks and herky-jerky motions that will give you what David Foster Wallace referred to as the Howling Fantods. Watch at your own risk.JB