Google doodle

Google's Valentine doodle melts 'cold cold hearts'

Feb. 14, 2012 at 11:04 AM ET

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Valentine's Day Google doodle

You may not need to put a lot of effort into making someone's day today, but Google didn't skimp when it came to its Valentine's Day doodle, a heart-warming animated interpretation of the archetypal boy-meets-girl story — with a happy ending, naturally.

Set to Tony Bennett's version of the Hank Williams' classic "Cold, Cold Heart," the doodle creates a love story out of that endless pursuit to capture the object of a boy's affection — in this case, a little girl jumping rope. The boy, of course, employs every tactic he knows, using Google (naturally) to try to woo his love. But this is no material girl. At the end, he finds out all it takes is joining her on the ropes to win her heart.

The doodle's animator, Michael "Lippy" Lipman, told The Washington Post's Comic Riffs that the short plays on the universality of love. “These characters are archetypes, with no dialogue, so it can play around the world.”

Lipman, a doodle newbie, created the Flash video with Google designer Willie Real (a doodler who previously honored pioneer geneticist Gregor Mendel) and shared his inspiration for the piece. “That was every girl I met up until college ... The little girl who couldn’t see the magic within [me] — she had many faces.”

The video ends with a collage of couples, including two men in tuxes, a significant inclusion in light of Washington governor Chris Gregoire signing into law a bill that legalizes gay marriage in the state.

This animated short joins a long line of doodles that have entertained millions and pushed the tribute envelope, such as the birthday wishes for Freddie Mercury, the dancing Martha Graham-inspired mini-performance, the animated interpretation of John Lennon's "Imagine," Alexander Calder's moving mobile and the playable/recordable Les Paul guitar

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On Twitter, follow Athima Chansanchai, who is also trying to keep her head above water in the Google+ stream.