The John Lennon advert for the Citroën DS3 is total bollocks on so many levels it's difficult to know where to begin.
Let's start with the fact that John Lennon's voice is totally out of sync with the picture. Why? If he was saying something he'd clearly never said, such as "I think Citroëns are great", you could understand why they needed to get an actor to do an impression, then dub it over footage of Lennon. But he's actually saying something that sounds plausibly like something he actually would say. So the fact that the audio doesn't correspond to the picture, and the way the picture jumps around in an effort to disguise the fact, is just stupid.
Secondly, is it actually Lennon speaking? If so, then obviously it's exceedingly tacky to use a dead rock star's voice to sell a shit French car. If it's not him, then obviously it's exceedingly tacky to get a drawling Scouser to do an impression of a rock star's voice in order to sell a shit French car.
Thirdly, the concept is completely flawed. The slogan, and the gist of what the bespectacled Imagine crooner is saying, is that we need to look forward, rather than backward. That nostalgia is rubbish. The slogan for the DS3 (spotted also on billboards) is "anti-retro". So what better way to get this message across than to use some 40-year-old footage of a dead bloke? Is this too clever by half, or is it just complete shit?
Rhetorical question. It's obviously complete shit.
As has become more apparent of late, I do like some adverts. As it's the end of the decade it's the season for 'best of' lists looking back over the last ten years. Inevitably, rather than do something more interesting like putting an angry Charlie Brooker in a room with some ad execs, there's a perfunctory 'best 20 ads of the decade'-type programme tonight titled ITV's Best Adverts Of The Decade.
All of the choices are pretty obvious, which is not to say they're not good, by and large. Frankly the programme doesn't do them justice, nor do the awful talking heads who contribute absolutely fuck all to our appreciation or understanding of the ads.
Some people called Mark Charnock, Andrew Castle, Sharon Marshall, Jonny Vegas (actually I like Jonny Vegas), Stephen Mulhern, Anthony Worrall-Thompson, Claire Beale, Paul Ross, Kym Marsh, Duncan Bannatyne and some dancing kid compete to be the biggest twunt on display.
Astonishingly it's not Paul Ross, but Andrew Castle – a man with all the charm and searing insight of a pile of dog shit. Anyway, I've collected them all below, along with my own pithy opinions of the ads in question.
ITV's Best Adverts Of The Decade
Halifax - Howard
No, no, no, no, no. Fuck no.
Budweiser - Wassup!
John Smiths Peter Kay adverts
Funny, probably Peter Kaye's best work.
Carlsberg - Old Lions
Brilliant, lovely to see everyone's favourite old footie players in action one more time.
Waterslide - Barclays
Event ads jump the shark. Patronising, twee and fairly disingenuous drivel.
Volkswagen Golf GTi - Singin in the Rain
An undisputed classic.
Sure For Men - Stunt City
Sony Bravia - Balls
A nice ad that looks phenomenal.
Citroen C4 - Transformer
Fun, funky, French. Stone-cold classic.
PG Tips - Monkey and Al
Sony Bravia - Paint
John West - Bear
This first example of flash mob advertising is quite good.
Guinness - Tipping Point
I've long since tired of Guinness' smug, ethnic vibe. And it's a rip-of of the far-superior Cog.
Cadbury's - Gorilla
Skoda Fabia - Cake
Honda - Cog
It had to be. It's not my personal favourite but it's a slice of fried gold.
Compare the Meerkat
Funny and gains points for subverting an awful genre, but rapidly becoming tiresome.
Well observed, but hardly the best ad of the last ten years.