Five things on Friday #308

Things of note for the week ending Friday 24th January, 2020.

Newsletter #308: Introduction

How are you?

Unsurprisingly, for me at least, the year has started off in its own typical relentless fashion with workshops, pitch briefs, and client work abound. It is challenging. It is fun. And my colleagues are bloody great to work with. I am blessed.

What can I tell you?

First of all, this week I stood in front of a room full of clients and, shortly after sharing the wonders of this gif (sorry not sorry), asked them – at least for this year’s campaign planning – to consider keeping kindness in mind. A thought I owe to Nicola Kemp. And one I intend to return to. Thanks Nicky.

Next thing I can tell you is that I’m working on a really exciting diversity and inclusion project that I can’t wait to tell you more about (probably in about two editions from now-ish). We cleared one pretty significant piece this week and now we’re head on into building the website (as I write to you it’s 1130pm on a Thursday evening and I’ve just close that particular tab to start this one to you). But yeah. I’m excited.

And finally, THANK YOU for all the lovely emails, DMs, tweets, carrier pigeons – and in one instance, a Google Hangout – regarding the return of Five things on Friday. It really is lovely to be back and the warm embrace of your awaiting inbox has never felt more inviting.


Shall we crack on with the things?



*except for the folk in the US, sorry.

In what is frankly THE BEST NETFLIX NEWS SINCE SEASON TWO OF SEX EDUCATION STARTED, Netflix has gone and bought the rights to the entire Studio Ghibli back catalogue and it all kicks off in a matter of days.

If you’ve never seen or experienced a Studio Ghibli movie before then a) where have you been? And b) you are in for such a beautiful and life-affirming treat, words cannot describe.

Studio Ghibli is who Pixar look up to. Princess Mononoke, Howl’s Moving Castle, My Neighbor Totoro, Spirited Away… so many

Coming to Netflix in February.

Ach. My heart. I can’t wait.


It’s funny. At the top of the this newsletter I referenced a note about encouraging kindness – throughout your work, your life… everywhere really.

And Amy was actually in the room when I was gifted this nugget. And here it is manifested as a piece of branded content trend prediction.

The truth. It burns.

For real though, please read this excellent, supremely cutting, and highly on point predictor of actual stuff that COULD happen next year.

But ok actually for real, if you need more actual (read: all of the) trend documents, Julian Cole has got you covered.

The kindness one, we should all do that.

PS. At this part of proceedings, for the long-term readers at least, this is where you would expect my own customary contribution to this somewhat over-crowded topic. The interesting thing about trends is that they don’t all pack up their bags on Dec 31st and make way for a new batch on Jan 1. So our trend piece will be coming later this year.

Away from the noise.


I might keep the ‘THIS WEEK IN…’ format. It’s normally THIS WEEK AT FACEBOOK but honestly I just can’t do that every week (Bob Hoffman does a bang up job of that already).

So for this THING 3 this week we’re going with THIS WEEK IN GAMING. Or ‘TWIG’ for short. Let’s go let’s go.


In what can only be described as a 2020 trend writer’s wet dream, two of the biggest and hottest things coming out of 2019 have joined forces for a new campaign.

The hook is simple:

Fortnite, a game where characters (among other things) can use emotes to celebrate winning / great plays etc (this is a huge over-simplification), has asked TikTok users, already used to creating and emulating dance moves, to create Fortnite’s next big emote. This is a huge deal.

And The Verge has a decent write up as well. Go see.


The world of relationships can be divided into two very clear categories:

Those couples that love each other and are completely happy and fine.

Then you have those couples that have spent any time whatsoever attempting to play OVERCOOKED together.

Never heard of this game?

Want to put your relationship to the test?


This article ‘Couples that survive playing Overcooked together can outlast anything‘ says it all really:

“In China, players have nicknamed Overcooked “Divorce Kitchen” because of the sheer, unfiltered rage it manages to bubble up inside of your very soul. But when you do sync up and nail a round, there’s nothing quite like it.”

So go play* it.

*FToF accepts no responsibility for any end of relationship arguments.


I know I go on about Destiny a fair bit (and truth be told I’m on a seasonal in-and-out swing with the new content drip and, to be frank, I am loving Death Stranding still, so I’m not massively into it right now) BUT when one of the game’s own community managers is telling the players to TAKE A REST FROM THE GAME then maybe the puzzle you’ve put in the game is a bit… much?

I don’t know.


by Martin Weigel.

All Watched By Corporations Of Loving Grace?
It’s Time We Punctured The Feverish Toxic Dream.

If you’ve read this already then good – hit reply and tell me what you think.

If not, then set aside your lunch hour today, grab a sandwich, and just digest the thing (and the sandwich).

Martin is one of our great thinkers – and articulates this question and argument thus. In a world where we are being told the brands and corporations will save us, why on Earth should we believe them?

Just read it.

(this was one of my many highlights)


I mean, there have been SEVERAL awful stories about Airbnb.

But this one? This one will really bake your noodle.


Here be the stuff you shouldn’t eat but you can’t help it. Right click, open in new tab, right click, open in new tab, right click, open in new tab…

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Author: James Whatley

Chief Strategy Officer in adland. I got ❤️ for writing, gaming, and figuring stuff out. I'm @whatleydude pretty much everywhere that matters. Nice to meet you x