Cultural Artefact: Grim Reaper campaign (1987 - )

5 April 1987
Health and HIV/AIDS


The Grim Reaper campaign was centred on a television advertisement aimed at HIV-AIDS prevention.

The ad was created by Siimon Reynolds for the National Advisory Committee on AIDS (NACAIDS). It depicted a macabre bowling alley of Grim Reaper figures knocking over 'pins' of men, women and children representing casualties of AIDS.

The commercial first screened in Australia on 5 April 1987. It was undoubtedly effective in raising public awareness of the issue; but also attracted criticism for scare-mongering, and for demonising homosexual men and IV drug users.

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