Making fun of Nickelback, and especially his video for photographer, is so easy and commonplace that the joke no longer had any real comedic value when Donald Trump tried it on Twitter in October 2019. (The president’s tweet, which included a version of the video that was modified to deal with President-elect Joe Biden, was quickly removed for copyright infringement.)
But do you know who else can make a good joke about Nickelback? Nickelback, that’s who.
The Canadian rock band just released a creative reinterpretation of their 2005 Photograph video, which this time quickly turns out to be a plug-in for Google Photos functionality. Singer Chad Kroeger plays the lyrics again with serious intensity, but as the video progresses we notice that the lyrics don’t quite meet our expectations: “The photo rabbit hole falls down. Is it my hair or just a ramen bowl? “
“Fifteen years ago, we had no idea that the photos on our mobile devices were becoming an ubiquitous part of our entire lives,” Kroeger said in a statement on the ad. “When Google approached us with the idea of marrying the song with Google Photos, we thought it was a fun and nostalgic way to lyrically refresh the song and share some of our favorite memories.”
Arts & Letters Creative Co., based in Richmond, Virginia, worked on-site with Google and Nickelback. The agency has created several engaging Google spots, including Macaulay Culkin’s return to the home alone world to promote Google Assistant devices in December 2018.
The song display and changed lyrics show how users can use Google Photos to navigate and organize images and videos. So if you want to revisit all of the pictures you took of your dessert in one evening, they are all in one place. (Spoiler alert: you will never look at these food pictures. Just enjoy the food and save the photograph for each other’s ultimately unfortunate hairstyles.)
When it comes to hair, Kroeger is far from shy about making fun of his own: “Any memory that regrets all of my hairstyles – if you woven it all together, it would go miles. It’s hard to braid, time to shave. Goodbye, highlights. “
Google said they timed the ad for Christmas and the end of the year, when people were most likely to revisit their photos from the past 12 months (and years).