David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Harveys
"Extra Savings"
20s
18 January 2017
UK Furniture Retailers

Harveys plonk “extra savings” on top of their existing winter discounts. We’re shown three sofas worthy of having their prices slashed while the VO emphasises each saving with terminal enthusiasm. Still, at least the retailer’s recent ads featuring mischievous customers angling for a new sofa are fresh in the memory.

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Harveys
"Extra Savings"
20s
18 Jan 2017
Harveys plonk “extra savings” on top of their existing winter discounts. We’re shown three sofas worthy of having their prices slashed while the VO emphasises each saving with terminal enthusiasm. Still, at least the retailer’s recent ads featuring mischievous customers angling for a new sofa are fresh in the memory.

DFS
"Introductory Savings"
20s
15 Jan 2017
The DFS winter sale continues and the furniture retailer has some "special introductory prices" to tempt consumers. As is par for the course, we're shown a variety of sofas while the VO reels off the necessary information: a fifteen-year guarantee, nothing to pay for a year... all the greatest hits, really.

Harveys
"Sale"
10s
12 Jan 2017
This ad for Harveys' latest 'sale of all sales' (can't help but think they've missed a 'sale of thrones' joke here) focuses on one sofa, panning up the red leather to show us the finer details of the product. Meanwhile, the voiceover is desperately squishing in as much information as possible, which inevitably makes it sound like she's overdosed on helium.

Oak Furnitureland
"Morning Routine"
20s
13 Jan 2017
We join the (surprisingly small) Oak Furnitureland salesman as he gets ready for another exciting day. Judging by his wardrobe, perhaps the brand does have a sense of humour about this campaign’s repetitive nature. Plus we can’t help but think they missed a trick in not releasing ‘Fresh Oak Pour Homme’ before Christmas: “The perfect gift for the furniture store assistant in your life”.

Oak Furnitureland
"Sale"
20s
13 Jan 2017
No sign of Oak Furnitureland’s familiar duo in this standard sales ad - and the old adage that absence makes the heart grow fonder doesn’t apply here. Anyway, the retailer claims this is our last chance to procure discounted sofas, dining room sets, and the like so get your asses down pronto. Well, last chance until the next sale, that is.

Bensons For Beds
"Best"
30s
12 Jan 2017
To illustrate a claim that we're at our best after "a great night's sleep", we see a number of jolly people clambering up a hill for a few seconds before the ad switches attention to a number of special offers. The background music is annoying to the point of being intolerable and - as a whole - this ad undermines some of the achievements of last year's brand-building exercise.

DFS
"Winter Sale"
30s
12 Jan 2017
See, not all winter sale ads have to be drab affairs. DFS return to the handstitched factory introduced in their Christmas ad, where Aardman's charming character designs produce some fun moments as we tour the workshop. We especially like the 'no hands!' flourish from one employee. In the end, we see one of their handcrafted sofas in action, so to speak.

IKEA
"Win At Sleeping"
60s
11 Jan 2017
Ikea turn the struggle to get a good night's sleep into a competitive sport in this rousing ad. Featuring the vocal stylings of motivational speaker Derrick Moore, sleepers are framed as athletes gearing up for the biggest test of their careers: eight full hours. The small details are particularly satisfying here: including the 'Snoozin' Jo' boxer-style robe and night cream applied in the manner of warpaint.

made.com
"Unboxing"
30s
6 Jan 2017
made.com provide their own twist on unboxing videos with this kinetic ad as a contemporary dancer conveys the frisson of opening a delivery from the online furniture retailer. January is always a busy period for this particular sector, and the commercial's minimalist set design and jerky backing track helps the brand stand out against the competition.

Furniture Village
"Early Bird Offers"
30s
19 Dec 2016
Queen's 'It's A Kind of Magic' can't do much to enliven a typical commercial in this humdrum sector. The emphasis is placed on the products available at their outlets even though it surely makes sense to concentrate on the experience of being there. After all, there is little to choose between what's available at places like this.

SCS
"Sale"
30s
19 Dec 2016
Sofas cost a lot more than they ought to and companies that sell them at prices like these must turn over a very healthy profit. But some of them don't want us to know this so they ensure their advertising looks like it was made by the chairman's dim-witted nephew on his iPhone. With one or two honourable exceptions, this sector is governed by a cartel of mediocrity.

Oak Furnitureland
"Santa"
30s
19 Dec 2016
Santa has no time for the treats left for him and Rudolph when he wanders into a house furnished with gear from the advertised retailer. Given this campaign's stubborn adherence to lame humour and production values to match, we have to assume this works. Maybe it's because the ads imply a reassuring level of cheapness.

Harveys
"Dining Table"
30s
31 Dec 2016
Harveys has a wife secretly destroying an old dining room table in the hopes of getting her husband to buy a new one. Not to worry though, as the immensely cheery voiceover says, the "sale of all sales" is now on at Harveys, so the wife, and other secret furniture destroyers out there, can have the new table of their dreams.

Harveys
"Spaghetti"
30s
23 Dec 2016
Harveys have decided to ensure that husbands like Pete, who messes up a white sofa with spaghetti to convince his wife to buy a new one, no longer have to resort to these extremes. With the "sale of all sales" on, hatching a complex plot to destroy your furniture and trick your family into thinking it was accidental is no longer necessary.

Harveys
"Wine"
30s
23 Dec 2016
Harveys have decided to make us aware that the common practice of dramatically pouring wine onto a sofa to convince one's husband to buy new furniture is no longer necessary. In this amusing ad, an extremely stationary poodle looks on as his owner does just that, before being reminded that the new sofa was on sale anyway.

IKEA
"A Good Listener"
60s
25 Nov 2016
Following their attention-grabbing portrayal of divorce, Ikea present another understated family snapshot. The retailer plays a small but vital role in ensuring this father is always there for his daughter. Once again, director Martin Werner puts story before product and the result is one of the more emotive portrayals of a wooden stool we can remember.

IKEA
"Operation Treenapping"
60s
17 Nov 2016
Three boys believe everyone and everything should be together at Christmas in this Belgian Ikea ad. Under cover of darkness, these lads put their daring plan into action: liberate the Christmas tree. A charming festive outing - though it may prompt parents to stick a bike lock on the tree.

Harveys
"Sale"
30s
2 Nov 2016
You can save up to 50% in the Harveys sale and have your shiny new seating arrangement delivered in time for Christmas. This ad features footage from their recent campaign, plus shots of the latest sofas on offer in their current sale. Plenty of time to get some more seats in case relatives turn up unexpectedly over the holidays.

DFS
"Special Delivery"
30s
1 Nov 2016
DFS employ Aardman's stop-motion expertise for this charming Christmas ad. In the same mockumentary style as Creature Comforts, we're given a sneak peek behind the scenes at the retailer's Derby workshop. Hand-stitched spokeswoman Laura believes it's their craftsmanship, work ethic, and delivery options that make DFS the perfect option before Christmas.

Maisons Du Monde
"Keytar Hero"
40s
26 Oct 2016
French home furnishing retailer Maisons Du Monde make a colourful splash with this ad to announce their website hitting the UK. A young keytar player discovers she has the power to make furniture appear and disappear at will, transforming her house as she plays. The soundtrack is a lovely piece of synth-driven 80s nostalgia, which ties in with the young player's fashion sense - nothing wrong with legwarmers.

Oak Furnitureland
"Christmas Dinner"
20s
21 Oct 2016
The Oak Furnitureland boys have finally managed to leave the shop floor in this Christmas ad for their dining table range. When unexpected guests show up for Christmas dinner, an extendable table means you can extend your hospitality to everyone (getit)... even your chirpy little work mate who brings his hundreds of friends over. Best to call first, wee man.

IKEA
"My Way"
60s
21 Oct 2016
IKEA encourage us to embrace our weirdness and live how ever we like in this ad. They promise not to tell anyone about our nude dinners or kitchen dance parties... and we almost believe them. The montage is nicely put together here, clips of different lives shown affectionately and without judgement in a way that makes them feel universal.

Fabb Sofas
"Launch"
30s
25 Oct 2016
Another ad that could easily be part of the annual cringe-fest that is BBC's The Apprentice. Against a bright and breezy soundtrack, a number of 'punters' declare their devotion to the newly-formed brand. It's a masterclass in gaining attention for a new player in a fairly crowded market but it's achieved at the cost of subtlety and craft.

IKEA
"Welcome Home"
60s
8 Oct 2016
IKEA tug the heartstrings with this understated, affecting ad for its lighting range. The ad opens with quiet shots of a woman heading home after work at night, walking through poorly lit streets while her son waits up and worries. A look around the room gives him an idea, and the next day he canvasses the neighbourhood and borrow lamps from as many friends and neighbours as possible to light her way home safely.

Bensons For Beds
"Be..."
60s
7 Oct 2016
Bensons For Beds finds comfort in familiarity with a gentle remix of last year's 'Be...' campaign. The brand goes beyond its usual cast of sleepyheads and tells us how a good night's sleep can help you seize the day. It's an agreeable depiction of work, play, and of course rest, but is it enough to spark fresh engagement with the brand?

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David Reviews - Lovely Lenzie Ltd, Woodbourne House, Seven Sisters, Lenzie, G66 3AW. Telephone: +44 141 776 7766. Editor: Jason Stone.