KFC's Virtual Reality Training Video Takes Place in an Escape Room
Have you ever wondered what it takes to be one of those chosen few who can fry KFC’s legendary, secret recipe chicken to perfection? The company’s—very strange—virtual reality training video may provide some insight.
In the opening moments of the video that was posted to IGN's YouTube channel, the “player,” (a pair of disembodied white-gloved hands) finds herself in a wood paneled room that could be Colonel Sanders’ study. A rasping voice comes over an intercom, whispering “Do you like games?” before erupting in a fit of coughing. The voice normalizes, and it turns out to be Colonel Sanders himself, who will be instructing the new employee on how to fry his trademark chicken, as he watches “your every move.” He then announces that the employee will be learning how to create his “original recipe chicken the hard way,” as a clock chimes ominously in the background. Not creepy enough for you yet? Sanders then proclaims that you won’t be allowed to leave the room until you learn how to fry the chicken correctly. It's basically Saw, but with a much kindlier villain.
From there, the employee launches into her training, eager perhaps, to learn the steps, and escape the room. A work-space emerges from the floor, and with the help of Sanders’ robot servant, who apparently cannot make the chicken because “robots are just stupid pieces of dumb metal without souls or mouths,” the employee goes through the process—which we won’t give away here, just watch for yourself.
When it finally comes time to fry the chicken, the video hits peak strange. The room goes dark, the robot servant begins clapping, and Sanders delivers a speech about the importance of frying chicken the “hard way.” By the time the training has ended and you’re released back into the KFC virtual reality break room (a brighter, much safer-seeming space), you’re left wondering what exactly you just witnessed.
KFC has been up to some odd promotional antics lately. The fast food chain released a romance novella for Mother’s Day, a chicken-themed clothing line, and even enlisted Hodor of Game of Thrones to promote the company. That being said, this training video is a bit unnerving, at times laugh-out-loud funny, and altogether exactly the type of stunt that KFC would pull.
Eater reports that the training video really is going to be used in training new employees (KFC did not return our request for comment at the time of publication); apparently, it reduces the whole process down to ten minutes as opposed to the 25 minutes it takes to do the training in person. Watch the video yourself to find out if you would pass the test.
Update August 24, 2017: A representative from KFC tells Food & Wine, "The VR training tool serves as an addition to the existing Chicken Mastery program. It will not replace it."