“My name is Mike and I have a Coke habit.” Produced by a New York-based creative studio Dress Code, Coke Habit tells the true story of a 16-year-old who finds himself battling a strange addiction to the fizzy drink.“I’d get up in the morning and chug a can of Coke. I’d get to school and have another can. I’d have one or two at lunch. After the final bell, I’d have another. And then another one right when I got home. And then one or two at night.”

Eventually, Mike’s love affair with the drink ended when his parents refused to fund his addiction. But that proved to be the beginning of a horrible cycle of health problems, caused by withdrawal pains leading to awful migraines and blind spots.

The beautifully animated video takes the story to another level – the result of two years of hard work. The company decided to use liberal splashes of red, white and black to portray the emotional and physical rollercoaster the protagonist went through.

“Throughout the history of design, the colour red has also been used in agitprop posters and protest art. This dichotomy between the two associations of the colour seemed fitting, since our film is somewhere between a testimonial and a piece of propaganda,” Dress Code explained.

Mike is also shown wandering alone in a scary forest. Dress Code chose this setting with a contemporary idea in mind. “Forests remind us of suburban youth – where kids, from middle school to high school, go to hide from the watchful eyes of their parents and do things they aren’t supposed to do. It’s where they explore and get into trouble, where they find out what they like and don’t like, where they grow from children into men.”

Significantly, Coke Habit gently reminds its viewers to not discount the challenges posed by substance dependency of any kind, even the seemingly harmless ones like soft drinks.