UNICEF bombs the Smurfs
October 9, 2005 10:56 AM   Subscribe

UNICEF bombs the Smurfs. UNICEF recently launched a campaign to teach schoolchildren about the horrors of war. Among the efforts are a mini-cartoon, where, yes, the Smurfs are bombed (Warning: Video file, strong images, Smurfs don't kick in for 40 seconds, most of which are dedicated to limbless children. NSFW or small children). I couldn't understand the language the movie is in (Dutch?), but the Smurfs say it all.
posted by huskerdont (31 comments total)
Is the video working?
posted by Acey at 10:58 AM on October 9, 2005

The language is dutch, or rather the belgian dialect of Dutch (flemish).

Hmm, I was only getting about one frame out of 30 on the video.

I seem to recall this being posted before, but the last post didn't have the video.
posted by xthlc at 11:07 AM on October 9, 2005

That's smurfed up.
posted by ColdChef at 11:22 AM on October 9, 2005

Well, Bert was first, it was only a matter of time before those Godless blue communists tasted American steel.
posted by CynicalKnight at 11:30 AM on October 9, 2005 [1 favorite]

i liked the part where they bombed the smurfs but the rest of it really sucked ... poor kids
posted by pyramid termite at 11:32 AM on October 9, 2005

I am a flemish speaking belgian, will translate ASAP (need to boot into Windows).
posted by phrontist at 11:41 AM on October 9, 2005

I smurfluent in Smurf, will translate As Smurfly As Possible.
posted by etc. at 11:50 AM on October 9, 2005

Narrator: [talks about war in Burundi]

Chorus: Come to smurf-land, welcome everyone! Yes come to smuf-land
the land of [indistinguishable due to sound effect]!

*bomb whistle*
*child crying*

Caption: Do not let war destroy the world of children.

Narrator: The UNICEF campaign will run through April 1, and seeks to
speak to children about the lives of children elsewhere.

Woman: Children need to understand that life is not as easy elsewhere
as it is here... [something about appreciating what one has].

So much for childhood innocence...
posted by phrontist at 12:02 PM on October 9, 2005

what's sadder, bombed smurfs...or the fact that people are so unfased by bombed people that we have to resort to bombed smurfs...news at 11

thanks for the interpretation by the way
posted by NGnerd at 12:20 PM on October 9, 2005

Good job, phrontist. I'm always going on about making MeFi richer *and* more accessible by providing foreign language materials with translations, and you have outsmurfed yourself. Kudos.

Oh, and: poor smurfs. I suppose we have to fight Gargamel *there*, before... etc.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 12:28 PM on October 9, 2005

We had to destroy that Smurf village to save that Smurf village.
posted by basicchannel at 12:31 PM on October 9, 2005

Well, they had to free all the female smurfs from wearing burkas...too bad they got Smurfette.

This seems to be the genocide of the smurf race.
posted by furiousxgeorge at 12:36 PM on October 9, 2005

I think the ad gets the point across though... it's showing kids how screwed up the world is in a way they will understand.

It seems like the ad is aimed at parents as much as children though, "Hey look, you can't hide your kids from this forever, you should engage them on these images they are being bombarded with" is the less-than-subtle subtext here.

The real question is why Belgium (other than it being home to some of the brightest and most wonderful people to grace the earth ;-))? Wouldn't it make more sense for UNICEF to run this here?
posted by phrontist at 12:38 PM on October 9, 2005

That is totally smurfed up.
posted by ulotrichous at 12:47 PM on October 9, 2005

posted by ulotrichous at 12:49 PM on October 9, 2005

The horror. The horror.
posted by TwelveTwo at 1:50 PM on October 9, 2005

Good riddance to the smurfs, I say. They were a commercialized cultural pestilence, an insidious marketing strategy.

I remember seeing my first smurf - I thought it was kind of cute, I suppose.

Soon they were everywhere.
posted by troutfishing at 1:55 PM on October 9, 2005

Smurf blue is #006699.

Coincidence? I think not.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 2:10 PM on October 9, 2005

I'm not sure that it is aimed at schoolchildren, rather those of us who were schoolchildren in the SmurfEra. (oh, and are also Belgian) This Telegraph article (via BoingBoing) calls it "the first adult-only episode of the Smurfs", and it is not to be shown on television before the 9pm Adults Only watershed.

"Philippe Henon, a spokesman for Unicef Belgium, said his agency had set out to shock, after concluding that traditional images of suffering in Third World war zones had lost their power to move television viewers."
posted by slightlybewildered at 2:11 PM on October 9, 2005

Phrontist: The real question is why Belgium [...]? Wouldn't it make more sense for UNICEF to run this here?

In Belgium and France, the Schtroumpfs have been around since 1958 (vs 1981 for the US version) so the demographics of smurfisation are much older there: people in their 40s can relate strongly to the ad because they loved the characters when they were kids. To produce a similar impact, a US version would need US-born comic book characters of the late 50s - I don't know which ones though (not being familiar with US comics).
posted by elgilito at 2:31 PM on October 9, 2005

*shakes fist at Gargamel*

"the first adult-only episode of the Smurfs"

no, the second. you clearly missed the Bukkake Smurfette episode
posted by PenguinBukkake at 2:32 PM on October 9, 2005

But Gargamel has weapons of mass destruction

*shows vial of Liquid Mass Destruction*

So it's a clear and present danger. Gargamel being a tyrannical leader oppressing the little smurfs, it's our duty to save Smurfland

Let me close my speech with this 2 thousand years old lating saying

* Dulce et decorum est pro Smurflandia mori *

* Smurflandia delenda est *
posted by elpapacito at 3:33 PM on October 9, 2005

yup--Brussels is the seat of the EU, and it's where there's a large mainstream audience for comics/graphic novels. If it was for here, it'd be Springfield and The Simpsons getting bombed or something.

Very powerful commercial. UNICEF has really inserted themselves back into public discourse, which is great (it reminds me of when i was young). Nickelodeon is pushing "Trick or Treat for UNICEF" heavily.
posted by amberglow at 8:08 PM on October 9, 2005

why Belgium?

Because the Smurfs are FROM Belgium!
posted by easternblot at 9:38 PM on October 9, 2005

why Belgium

Franco-Belgium comic tradition.

BTW when in Belgium, they are called "Brussels waffles". Not sure what to order in Amsterdamn (probably "pancake").
posted by stbalbach at 10:19 PM on October 9, 2005

Smurfette + SNL (NSFW)
posted by quiet at 12:06 AM on October 10, 2005

I'm waiting to see Daisy Duck and Minnie Mouse infibulated.
posted by alumshubby at 3:35 AM on October 10, 2005

Fantastic ad, I say.
posted by dabitch at 4:13 AM on October 10, 2005

BTW when in Belgium, they are called "Brussels waffles". Not sure what to order in Amsterdamn (probably "pancake").

Oddly enough, "Luikse Wafels" (waffles from Liege, another town in Belgium)!
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 7:00 AM on October 10, 2005

*shakes fist at Gargamel*

Doubtful. He needs them alive to turn them into gold. More likely retaliation by the Monchhichi over favorable right-of-way trade routes granted to the Smurfs through Snork territory.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 3:16 PM on October 10, 2005

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