David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

John Lewis
"Buster the Boxer"
2 mins
10 November 2016
UK Department Stores

As the world reels in revulsion at the decision to put Donald Trump in The White House, one wise Twitter user summed up the mood of the nation. Philip Westerman used the social media platform to say: "The John Lewis Christmas advert better be fucking spectacular". Well, we've got news for you, Mr Westerman... for the next two minutes, everything's going to be all right because it is "fucking spectacular".

A week after John Lewis picked up the Grand Prix at the IPA Effectiveness Awards for the second year running, the engraver will be thinking he might as well have popped their name on next year's trophy. adam&eveDDB and Dougal Wilson have taken on the highest expectations in the world of advertising and absolutely smashed them by delivering a truly brilliant film.

There has been a creeping danger that this landmark ad was eventually going to collapse under the weight of its own sentimentality. Amidst the praise received by the last couple of instalments has been a murmuring of dissent which could easily have grown into a backlash. But this execution shuffles the tone from out-and-out pathos toward a lighter, funnier vibe and the move has been judged to perfection.

MPC's CGI work is sensational. So good that many viewers will be wondering how they trained the animals to jump on a trampoline. And the craft that's gone into their condensating breath takes the VFX to another level.

It is loaded with wonderful moments that reward repeated viewing: Buster's joyous face with his tongue flapping when he finally gets his turn on the trampoline; the look of wonder on the young girl's face, swiftly supplanted by a moment of perplexment as Buster races past; the soundtrack dropping out as we gain a perspective from a passing neighbour.

But it is more than the sum of these gorgeous parts and even though many people resist the idea that a piece of advertising heralds the start of the festive season, this film completely justifies the notion. So let's put the last forty-eight hours behind us and eat, drink and be merry... for next year Trump has the nuclear codes.

Boots
"The Gift of Beauty"

Sam said:

Supporting public services comes from paying your taxes not avoiding them


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John Lewis
"Buster the Boxer"
2 mins
10 Nov 2016
As the world reels in revulsion at the decision to put Donald Trump in The White House, one wise Twitter user summed up the mood of the nation. Philip Westerman used the social media platform to say: "The John Lewis Christmas advert better be fucking spectacular". Well, we've got news for you, Mr Westerman... for the next two minutes, everything's going to be all right because it is "fucking spectacular".

Waitrose
"Fish"
40s
9 May 2016
The latest instalment of Waitrose's campaign celebrating the freshness of the food available from the supermarket is probably the best yet. Anyone with concerns about fish stocks will want to know whether the cod they eat has been responsibly sourced so buying it from a retailer they trust makes perfect sense. Plus the food looks ace.

Waitrose
"Chickens"
45s
19 Apr 2016
More from the live feed at one of the farms supplying Waitrose in this ad featuring chickens. Once again, there's no voiceover and this cleverly adds to the sense of the rural idyll providing the posh supermarket with all its wares... a point underlined by the super informing us that only Waitrose can promise all its eggs are free-range.

Waitrose
"Cow"
45s
15 Apr 2016
To highlight the wholesomeness of the food on their shelves, Waitrose are enabling punters to watch a live feed from some of the farms that provide them. It's a satisfyingly peaceful watch and a sweet idea... though it probably isn't a great idea to signal how few people are actually watching it any given time... it's 37 at the time of writing.

Waitrose
"Easter Eggs"
20s
20 Mar 2016
Trust Waitrose to provide a swanky spin on the humble Easter egg. The camera pans across a kitchen table revealing the supermarket's range of seasonal confections, including Sicilian lemon, arabica coffee, and Scottish raspberry varieties. It ends with Heston Blumenthal taking a break from his gastronomic experiments to indulge his sweet tooth.

Waitrose
"Pick Your Own Offers"
40s
20 Jan 2016
This is an interesting initiative from Waitrose. You can identify ten items that you buy more often than any other (from a list of "hundreds") and then receive a 20% discount on those ten items whenever you purchase them from the supermarket. It's an appealing idea and seems certain to draw additional punters to the supermarket, especially as it's being communicated with Waitrose's trademark sense of well-being.

Mulberry
"The Miracle Of Mulberry"
2 mins 05s
2 Nov 2015
When adam&eveDDB ask James Rouse to turn one of their scripts into a commercial, awards swiftly follow and it seems likely that this wonderful retelling of the nativity will once again have juries bestowing gongs upon both agency and director. It's a blissfully sacrilegious take on the famous story with the baby Jesus being replaced by a highly desirable accessory.

Virgin Atlantic
"The Idea"
80s
4 Jan 2015
This is a very interesting approach... one that appears to take it for granted that all airlines are pretty much equal if you're among the privileged few who get to turn left once you're aboard. Instead of banging on about comfortable beds, impeccable service and staff who know what you need before you do, this terrific film by Rogue's Sam Brown asks what it says about you if you choose to fly with this airline.

Save The Children
"Christmas Jumper Day"
40s
5 Nov 2014
This is a great way to encourage people to donate to Save the Children: get them to raise money by wearing a classic 'Christmas Jumper' for a day. To Elvis Costello's revvy Pump It Up we see a whole bunch of individuals dancing in their reindeer / elf / tree-patterned pullies, and it really does incline you to join them.

VW Tiguan
"Compromises"
60s
14 Sep 2014
The scenarios in this delightful ad show a deep understanding of the nature of parental compromise. To the apt and gentle strains of I'd Do Anything, a dad cedes to his offsprings' wishes, consoling himself with the thought that once alone in his Tiguan, he is temporarily the master of his own domain.

Kwik-Fit
"The Love It Deserves"
20s
25 May 2014
Obviously inspired by the road trip in Little Miss Sunshine (right down to the styling of the little girl as Olive), this pleasant ad reminds us how integral our cars are to our lives, and what a vital role they play. As such, we should treat them with the care and attention they deserve, which they'll enjoy at Kwikfit along with some promotional football-related offer.

Kwik-Fit
"The Love Your Car Deserves"
20s
3 Mar 2014
It's true, isn't it? We use our cars as a versatile (albeit snug) room in which to perform all sorts of routines as shown in this spot. In fact, it would be fair to say that the car belonging to the DAVID household extends to being a shanty town in its own right. We're not sure how our affection for our vehicles equates to a £30 MOT with Quickfit, but it's nicely observed.


"Give In"
30s
17 Nov 2013
A woman who knows there is a pudding of the chocolate variety in her fridge is irresistibly drawn to it no matter how hard she tries to get on with other things. We all know that feeling. Who hasn't heard the siren song of three day old chicken nuggets from that dodgy takeaway calling to them from the bottom shelf?

Berocca
"Ride"
60s
9 Apr 2013
This longer version of the recent ad for Berocca featuring an adventurous commuter aboard a foldaway bike is much more satisfying. On a larger canvas, it's much easier to understand the point of the commercial - that the intrepid cyclist is able to execute his fancy stunts because of the energy-giving properties of the product.

Berocca
"Ride"
20s
8 Apr 2013
A smartly-suited yet fashionably unshaven young man makes his way to work in the busy city; neatly negotiating his bicycle down steps and over benches - only to miscalculate the glass doors of his office and bump his head in the presence of a pretty woman. A sunny, cheery ad reflecting how the product is supposed to make you feel.

Levoreact
"Video Game"
25s
16 Dec 2012
The 'hay fever as war metaphor' has been used before but in this execution, the sufferer is placed at the heart of the action as an animated version of himself. With the advertised product strapped to his back, he's in a position to fight back against the symptom provoking pollen and gain himself a clear head.

Debenhams
"Autumn"
30s
1 Sep 2012
Designers have been getting ready for the autumn season according to this commercial for Debenhams which shows glimpses of the workshops where clothes are conceived as well as people in the street donning the fashions that are created and available to be purchased from your nearest Branch.

Debenhams
"Matthew Williamson"
30s
25 Apr 2012
A trio of women enjoy the fashions available from Debenhams while the designer who made them moodily considers next year's styles. This is the kind of advertising designed to remind punters that the advertised retailer is an option to be remembered when buying clothes without necessarily making a compelling argument.

Debenhams
"Jasper Conran & Ben de Lisi"
30s
4 May 2012


Debenhams
"Life Made Fabulous"
20s
1 Mar 2012
While a trio of women stroll through a market of knick-knacks the designers who contribute clothes to the ranges available at Debenhams prepare to show off their wares. It's short and simple but it effectively reminds the target audience of the values the retailer wants to be associated with.

Listerine
"Tastes"
20s
31 Jul 2011
To cater for the differing tastes amongst punters, Listerine have introduced a new variant with a less intense taste. If ever a product came out of market research, it must be this one as one can imagine customers complaining that the existing product is overwhelming.

Listerine
"Millions Of Germs"
30s
2 May 2011
The camera focuses on a man's mouth to illustrate a claim about the germs to which it's exposed every day. The answer is Listerine. Or more self-discipline... if this guy stopped putting so much rubbish in his mouth maybe he wouldn't need mouthwash.

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