The Admiral is now showing a slight edge to her character, telling off hapless Tom for exactly the sort of kooky nonsense that seems to be her stock-in-trade in this new Admiral TV advert. Combined with her omnipotence this brittleness set me off on a disturbing flight of fancy.
What does the Admiral do when everyone's gone home at night? And what if the overwhelming burden of superhero-level powers, coupled with the high-pressure boardroom environment that goes with running a multi-billion insurance company were to have releases that might be deemed... unconventional?
I offer the following as my script for the next advert. Perhaps an Admiral TV Advert: After Dark kind of thing. What if, when she's finished always looking out for the customer during day, by night she's more concerned with looking out for her own sado-masochistic sexual needs? Granted, we're not likely to see such depravity on-screen but it all fits when you think about it. The uniforms, the slavish devotion to 'customers', the overly familiar relationship with work colleagues. In fact, there's enough material here for an entire conference...
Admiral: Evening Tom
Tom: Oh. Hello.
Admiral (simultaneously): Is there something...?
Tom (simultaneously): It's just I didn't expect...
Admiral (simultaneously): ..wrong?
Tom: (simultaneously): ...to see you. Hahaha!
Admiral: Sorry. Go on.
Tom: It's just... we never see you unless it's at the office? [Beat]. Can I smell gin?
Admiral (removing hat and shaking hair out): Oh, come on Tom. Even Admirals let their hair down from time to time you know.
Tom (awkwardly): Oh, haha. Yes I suppose all work and (tails off).
The Admiral fixes Tom with a grin and moves slightly closer
Admiral: Aren't you going to invite me in, Tom?
Tom (laughs without humour): It's just, er...
Admiral: You aren't going to keep a girl waiting on the doorstep, Tom?
Tom: No! No, come in. Excuse the, er. It's just I wasn't expecting, um...
Admiral (a little slurred): Aren't you going to offer me a drink? When I have too much to drink I'm naughty! I bet you like naughty girls don't you Tom?
Tom: Oh, haha! Well we're all a little bit naughty sometimes. Look, I've got this Fray Bentos pie in the oven...
Admiral (pouting): Don't you like me Tom? I've got all dressed up for you. I thought you'd like it.
Tom: It's... very nice. I always wondered if you actually wore it after hours... Look, this is...
Admiral (hiccuping): Aren't I beautiful, Tom?
Tom: Yes but I'm... I'm seeing someone.
Admiral: Oh, oh God. I've made such a fool of myself.
She starts crying.
Tom: Look, it's OK. Look I'm very flattered. You're a very beautiful... Admiral.
Admiral (sniffs): Am I really beautiful? No-one's every told me I'm beautiful.
She touches his hand.
Tom: Very beautiful. I mean there are lots of men... If things were different...
Admiral (softly): I've seen you looking at me Tom.
Admiral: In the office. I've seen you looking at me; undressing me with your eyes. You want me Tom. You want to make love to me don't you.
Tom: Make love?
Admiral (looking down): It's so very unprofessional you know. Looking at me, lusting after me. And with me being your boss...
Tom: What do you mean?
Admiral: I could overlook it of course, if you were nice to me.
Tom: I don't...
Admiral: I mean if you were very nice to me, Tom.
Tom: Look, I think...
The Admiral removes her tunic to reveal a peephole bra. The aroma of Fray Bentos Steak & Kidney pie can be detected coming from the kitchen.
Tom: Oh Jesus.
Admiral: So you see Tom. It's a mutually beneficial arrangement. I'm always looking out for my staff Tom.
Tom (flustered): Look, I think I can smell burning and I said I'd visit my Mum...
Admiral (directly): Jesus Christ. Tom, you're going to walk over here, bend me over this couch and whip me until I come. Is that understood?
Admiral (sharply): Is that understood?
Tom (softly): Yes.
15 minutes later
Admiral (breezily): Tom?
Tom (slowly buttoning up shirt while looking at the floor): Yes?
Admiral (coldly): We don't need to mention this. Ever.
Tom miserably closes the door behind the Admiral, just as a smoke alarm in the kitchen rents the air.
What a strange time for awful adverts. I can only assume it's something to do with the Conservative government. March doesn't just herald the arrival of adverts that are truly appalling - the sort that you only have to see once to recognise its hideousness - in the shape of the Admiral advert, but enduring efforts such as the Just Eat advert, Go Compare advert and Big Bad Wolf Moneysupermarket ad - or even commercials back from the dead, such as the M&Ms 'I could really use a snack' advert, arse-wipe Andrex effort and Travelodge muppets spot.
All are currently making people hurl their remote controls, pets or even spouses across the room in the vague direction of the television. An ad break that featured all of the ads mentioned above might just lead to the sort of outbreak of spontaneous mass violence that JG Ballard would have written off as too horrible to contemplate.
I don't think I've ever seen such a confluence of truly terrible adverts. As a result I've been forced into a kind of mini Worst Advert of the Year poll, a bit like an Treasury Autumn Statement. Choose your most hated ad with care - you only get one vote. I understand that's a bit like having Piers Morgan, Michael Gove and Louise Mensch in the same room and only being able to throw rotten tomatoes at one of them, but there you go.
If you must - and you can bear to put yourself through it - you can remind yourself of the horror of it all below. Just be warned - watching all of them in one go could turn you into hermit crabs.
A hideous confluence of sickly kid cutesiness and someone asking you how you feel when you wipe your arse.
More omnipresent than Olivia Coleman and more awful than The One Show.
Containing the most hideous phrase you can possibly see on television right now, apart from anything that comes out of Donald Trump's mouth: "I could really use a snack."
The Just Eat advert is less of an earworm and more of an earparasite. Don't expect to be free of it any time soon.
Jim Henson's gift to the world, hijacked in this unlovely evocation of business-trip misery.
Frankly a misfire that is astonishing even for advertising. The Admiral advert is an absolute horrorshow of what happens when something goes wrong and no-one can stop it happening.
Go Compare advert
It's clear now that we will never be free of Gio Compario - just like you're never really free of sensitive skin, bad knees or Irritable Bowel Syndrome.