MediaCorp's Spouse for House ad: "Annoying" its way into viral status?

This ad spot for MediaCorp's Spouse for House TV programme cheekily enacts a karaoke video spoof that has gotten international traction.

On Huffington Post, an article on the video came with a fair warning, " It will be stuck in your head for the rest of the day, and when you close your eyes tonight, there may be no solace in sleep, either."

Malaysian publication The Rakyat Post noted the video's "odd lyrics with bizarre analogies that would surely tickle one’s funny bone, if not annoy them."

The music video spoofs the manner in which one of the main characters in Channel 5's Spouse for House Kai, played by Desmond Tan, speaks.

Created by Wang Guoshen, the video spot starring Chen Tian Wen is a promotional video for the latest season of Channel 5 drama, Spouse For House. The video features Chen in a floral shirt sporting an 80's wig crooning to the lyrics in true Singlish fashion: "I so stunned like vegetable, you blossom like a flower."


A spokersperson at Mediacorp said: "The production team and artiste Chen Tian Wen delivered the music video like a pro. We are really pleased to see the video go viral both locally and overseas. This has inspired the team to look at creative and fun ways to promote a drama and variety that will resonate with the audience."

Hilarious or plain annoying?

On what makes a video spot viral, Preetham Venkky, head of digital & strategy, KRDS Singapore, said, “Crass content tends to get viral and anything that’s annoying can also become viral on the internet.”

He added, “Not many viewers knew that the content was intentional, and it did not seem to matter that the intention was to spoof a character’s tone of voice.”

When asked why it seemed to have gained international traction, Venkky said, “The ‘Singlish’ in the video also plays right into the Western perception of how Asians sound like when they speak English, thus making it seem like they've hit comedic gold on discovering this ad."

Lee Kai Xin, head of digital and social media, Wild Advertising and Marketing shared some thoughts on the success of the video: "The video has a winning formula. The humour is pretty spot-on. It’s a great throwback to Mediacorp’s glory days. Lastly and most importantly, it has a lot of “meme-able” moments. To get anything to spread like wildfire on the internet, create opportunities for memes and this video did just that."

She added, " Just like the blue/black dress, it will now to be interesting to see how brands respond to this and take this to another level."

The agency added how it already leveraged the video's viral success for its client, Central Provident Fund. The agency's social media team was " inspired"  by the video and used a cartoon inspired by the video to share a recent announcement:

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Lee said, "We felt that with a less formal channel, like social media, we are now given an opportunity to not just respond quickly but also show a bit of personality to build affinity with the customers. The response to announcement has been positive with even the star of the video, Chen Tianwen himself being tagged in one of the shares."