The SAS in-flight safety video

Raymond Chen

Each time I see the SAS in-flight safety video, I am amused by the story they tell about each of their “characters”. The safety video features four groups of travellers, a man and a young girl, a retired couple, a (very Scandinavian-looking) businesswoman, and a (vaguely Hispanic) young man. Each procedure is illustrated one of the four travelling groups. How to buckle your seat belt is illustrated by the man and young girl; the girl can’t figure out how the buckle works. (Unbuckling is demonstrated by the retired gentleman.) When it’s time to turn off electronic devices, a flight attendant politely asks the businesswoman to put away her laptop computer. When passengers are reminded that smoking is not permitted, the single guy frustratedly puts his pack of cigarettes away. The retired gentleman has to be reminded to return his seat to the upright position. The young girl takes a look at the flight safety summary card, but holds it upside-down. Okay, so what have we learned: Young girls are unbelievably stupid. I mean, sure maybe she’s too young to read, but certainly she should know how to hold the (pictographic) safety card right-side up, no? Watch out for those Hispanic guys, they want to smoke. After landing, we see each of the travelling groups as they get off the plane. The retired couple light up with joy as they hug their adult children who came to meet them at the airport. The businesswoman meets her business partner with a friendly handshake. Mom welcomes the man and daughter with hugs and kisses. And the single guy just wanders off on his own. He’s probably looking for a smoking area.

The other thing I find amusing about the safety video is that after it is completed in English, the video is played a second time (heavily abbreviated) with Danish subtitles. “Okay, those slow Americans had to get the long version. Now here’s the quick version for you clever Danes.”


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