The Advent of Awesome
by Ian Doescher
Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like there is more awesomeness being created in the world these days than there used to be. Awesome things have always existed, but in the last five years it seems companies, filmmakers, artists, and more are trying to outdo themselves in creating awesome things. Jimmy Fallon, whose show I have come to love and respect greatly, seems to exist solely to create awesome things. And I approve of this.
A few examples? Sure! The nice thing about the advent of awesome is that recent examples are never far away. For instance, take this Foot Locker ad that was released this week:
Awesome. Foot Locker took five well-known characters from sports — Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Dennis Rodman, Brett Favre and Craig Sager — and gave the world what they always wanted to see from those men. The Tyson/Holyfield reunion and reconciliation is nothing short of amazing.
Example #2… filmmaker Evan Daugherty recently put together four short films showing what the real lives of four Super Mario Bros. characters — Mario, Luigi, the Princess and Toad — might look like. No longer bouncy and cute, the characters are now embroiled in their own emotional dramas and hopes:
Awesome. This doesn’t involve celebrities, it’s not advertising anything, it’s just an homage to everyone’s favorite game made by a fan. As far as I can tell, Daugherty didn’t even have the blessing or permission of Nintendo (but of course, why would they complain?).
Final example: artist Dirk Loechel created an infographic — to which he continues to add — of every spaceship from every major sci-fi show or book you can think of. I don’t even love sci-fi that much, but I think this is impressive:
Awesome. A sci-fi fan’s total dream. You can see a bigger version here.
Here’s the thing: I could reproduce these examples all day, because the amount of awesomeness flowing culturally these days is huge. Some of it has to do with the fact that video is easier than ever to create. A lot of it has to do with the fact that the Internet makes things much easier to share. But most of it, I think, has to do with the fact that more and more people are creating awesome things just for the sake of being awesome. (Yes, companies who create awesome things hope to profit by it, which has always been the case, but still their efforts are amazing.)
How will your company contribute to the awesomeness of our culture? What can you do to add your bit of awesome to the world? That’s my challenge to you — the challenge for all of us — as our culture enjoys the advent of awesome.