Thursday, 16 July 2009


Advertising in its various forms can be inspired. At the moment, on TV at least, it certainly isn't. A selection of the worst TV ads on at the moment: - I think my main bone of contention with these is that actually want you to believe that people record themselves on YouTube talking about car insurance comparison websites. Add to that the fact that the people on the ads are at best not very believeable as genuine members of the public, and at worst are annoying enough to make me want to stick a fork through their skull. Especially the guy who gives "hilarious" examples of questions that "other price comparison sites" ask you. Except that they aren't hilarious, just annoying. Fits in with the rest of the advert then.

Envirofone - In a similar vein to, except that it has even worse production values (which considering has made theirs look like YouTube is pretty impressive by Envirofone). The backgrounds look like the makers of the advert have simply picked some generic neon tie dye backgrounds found in a five second Google image search. The people chosen are again painfully unconvincing as average people, and the fact that they've been chosen to appear diverse (the first three being: Asian man, Welsh woman, punk with over-the-top spiked mohican) makes that even more apparent. The worst has to be the bloke who shouts "WONGA!" into the camera in a feeble attempt at a cockney accent, so feeble it doesn't even deserve to be called mockney. Whenever Mr. WONGA! comes on screen I want to dispatch him and every other loser on the advert as quickly and violently as possible. Other reasons for annoyance include the sheer lack of information on the advert, almost to the point of false advertising (so, I'll get £50 for my old Nokia 321o that I used about ten years ago, will I? I highly doubt it), and the fact that the man I assume is meant to be a biker (although I only assume this from his beard, seeing as his accent sounds more like a cross between Seann William Scott and Alan Carr) is wearing a shirt that I own. Bollocks.

John Frieda: Sheer Blonde - The only version I could find on YouTube has a German (?) voiceover in the middle, but it doesn't take away from my point. The whole premise behind this advert is just shockingly bad. Woman with blonde hair interrogated by second-rate good-cop-bad-cop team. The advert has a mainly American feel, and yet the accents and the newspaper clearly point to England as the setting. London, to be precise. The whole thing just feels, well, shit.

Savlon Advanced Healing Gel - I can just imagine the advertising ideas guys at Savlon Towers sitting in the board room agonising over the idea for the new Savlon advert. Then, after hours, maybe days of crap idea after crap idea, they finally had to settle on this as the best of a bad bunch. "Well, some kids might buy fake wounds to pretend they've got injured... I mean, I know my kid wouldn't, but maybe yours... No? Fuck it, let's go with it anyway". It's just rubbish any way you look at it. Not funny. Doesn't make me want Savlon. Twatty little kid in my face on the telly. Interestingly, looking this one up on the 'net led me to find out that it had received ten complaints. Eight of these ten apparently thought the advert "glamorised wounds" - okay, I can stretch to that - "and could be seen to condone knife crime amongst the young". Wait, what? If you haven't done so yet, watch the ad. Spot any knives, among the young or otherwise? Maybe the ad at a stretch encourages bad bike riding, but we don't even see the bike crash, just hear it after watching Twatty ride past and make the leap ourselves. At the end, a bunch of eight-year-olds look at Twatty's obviously fake cuts and grazes in a park. Yep, obviously off to stab someone for their iPod Touch once the sun sets.

As we seem to be receiving such a wealth of toss from the people in TV ad land, maybe I'll make a follow up to this entry. I'm also going to unearth some of my favourite adverts from years gone by and put them up here soon. Feel free to let me know of any other truly bad, or indeed truly great, ads that you see.

1 comment:

happylittlecynic said...

I hadn't seen any of these apart from the one (and let's face it, I don't think they've ever done an advert that wasn't annoying and shit). Your deconstruction of the Savlon one really made me laugh though. I think I'm going to start nicknaming all annoying children "Twatty".

Plus yes, that bloke in the envirofone one is indeed wearing you shirt. Tee hee ;)