Stand on the edge of a train station platform; Eat medicine that’s out of date; Use a clothes dryer as a hiding place; Get your toast out with a fork; Keep a rattlesnake as a pet; Eat a two week-old refrigerated pit — according to a viral safety video released by Melbourne Metro Trains, these are all dumb ways to die.
Launched as a reminder to people to be careful in, around and on trains, the music video titled “Dumb Ways To Die” features cute and quirky cartoon characters doing ridiculously silly and dangerous things to a catchy tune by Tangerine Kitty.
The fantastic soundtrack — performed by Emily Lubitz, the lead vocalist of Tinpan Orange, and produced by Cat Empire keyboard player Ollie McGill — features the chorus “Dumb ways to die; so many dumb ways to die” which has been billed as the successor to Psy’s hit “Gangnham Style” catchphrase.
Created by advertising agency McCann Melbourne, the video has been an instant internet sensation becoming the fastest spreading Australian viral branded hit of all time. At the time of writing, the video had clocked up just under 7,500,000 hits on YouTube.
McCann Executive Creative Director John Mescall said: “It’s pretty cool to make an ad that’s getting more shares than Rihanna. And even cooler that people are actually buying it off iTunes. I might be wrong, but I suspect the last time people paid money to own an ad in this country was when ‘C’mon Aussie C’mon’ was huge in the late ’70s.”
Also becoming an overnight hit, the video soundtrack hit the iTunes top ten within twenty four hours of release and by the 18th of November had become the sixth most popular song globally.
According to the campaign website, dumbwaystodie.com, “Most people are able to recognise for themselves that trains are big, fast and not to be messed with. But sadly a few people just don’t get it. And that’s why we’re running this campaign. To stop people from that brain fade, from doing something dumb and being hit by a train.”
All the scenes from the video can be viewed as animated GIF's on tumblr here
The video can be viewed below: