David Reviews

 Biting the hand that feeds us since 2002.

Birds Eye
"Battered Cod"
20s
13 March 2017
UK Frozen Food

Captain Birdseye himself makes an appearance in this ad for his eponymous battered cod fillets. When he and the boys on the fishing boat have a craving for cod, naturally the best thing to do is heat up some from the freezer. Rousing, inspirational music plays as the very realistically dressed sailors tuck into their frozen fillets with worryingly loud crunching noises.

Tesco
"The Cheese Fortune Tellers"

Matt said:

'Without the cows, you can't make decent cheese'. Laser sharp insight right there.


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Birds Eye
"Battered Cod"
20s
13 Mar 2017
Captain Birdseye himself makes an appearance in this ad for his eponymous battered cod fillets. When he and the boys on the fishing boat have a craving for cod, naturally the best thing to do is heat up some from the freezer. Rousing, inspirational music plays as the very realistically dressed sailors tuck into their frozen fillets with worryingly loud crunching noises.

Birds Eye
"Peas"
90s
15 Nov 2016
Grey London goes green with its first piece of work for Birds Eye. This beautifully shot film pays tribute to the humble pea - not the most obvious launchpad for a campaign, but what’s that they say about big things and small packages? We follow pea growers throughout the seasons. Despite the changeable conditions, these workers know what patience brings.

Birds Eye
"Marvellous Midweek"
30s
1 Nov 2016
This Birds Eye Inspirations ad depicts a bloke in the throes of slow-motion ecstasy. Arms aloft as if he's won every competition going, it's an unusually buoyant commute home. It may only be the middle of the week, but that doesn't mean his dinner has to be humdrum. Fun visuals and a burst of Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture get the idea across.

Birds Eye
"Only The Best For The Captain's Table"
20s
9 Sep 2016
Now that the great unwashed have voted to withdraw the UK from the EU in the hope we can return to the lost paradise of the early 1970s, we can expect more revivals like this ad for Birds Eye. Perhaps the aim is to create a nostalgia for such foodstuffs so that as we descend into poverty we can start to recognise it as the 'once a week' treat which breaks up the monotony of all the gruel.

Birds Eye
"Waffly Versatile"
20s
10 May 2016
You can imagine things from the 1980s (and that covers a lot of things) standing eagerly in a line waiting to be revived. The latest property to receive a fresh lick of paint is Birds Eye's 'Waffly Versatile' campaign, and the fusion between classic tastes and modern visuals produces an enjoyable tribute to the Renaissance waffle.

Birds Eye
"A Boy's Tail"
60s
9 Apr 2016
Birds Eye manage to put the ghost of children's canapés to rest with a lovely commercial which brings a long overdue sense of adventure to the brand while evoking a seasonal atmosphere. Just as the school day is drawing to a close, a boy gets a sniff of something tasty in the air. His brow furrows, his nostrils flare... and a bushy tail suddenly springs up from behind.

Birds Eye
"Stir Fries"
20s
3 Feb 2016
Will whoever thinks that chirpy whistling is the way forward in advertising please stand down? It's like a timeslip back to the 1960s only without the nostalgic glow. These ready-in-minutes meals do not benefit from the whistling in any way. Quite the opposite: such an unimaginative aural accompaniment suggests the food will have all the flavour of stir-fried cardboard. Stop. Now.

Birds Eye
"New Inspirations"
20s
5 Nov 2015
The food photography is good but everything else is missing in this lacklustre effort that suffers from the need to incorporate the dreary soundtrack. If making the product look good is what counts then you can't really say this doesn't get the job done - but you can't help wishing it had a bit more about it.

Birds Eye
"Free Attractions"
20s
17 Aug 2015
The one thing this Birds Eye spot has going for it is that the ghastly jingle which has been plaguing the campaign is nowhere to be seen. And the voice performances are a bit better too even though a child actually says "Yippee!" as if he's just wandered out of a Famous Five book. With free trips to Legoland for every pack finished, it's lashings of fish fingers all round.

Birds Eye
"Canapés"
30s
10 Aug 2015
Birds Eye's resident food vlogger Katie Bryson claims to know how capture children's imagination at a party. Is it with pizza? Nope. Ice cream? Nope. Why, it's with canapés of course! If the little 'uns haven't already run off in disgust, they risk turning into mini-Michael Winners there and then: "The pesto and chicken dipper creations left a lot to be desired."

Birds Eye
"Stir Your Senses"
20s
27 Apr 2015
"Ooh," mimics the bloke down the phone as his missus murmurs approvingly at her Birds Eye Tagliatelle. He sounds like Alan Partridge pretending to know about sex. As we've mentioned before, the deceptive simplicity of the first ads made for this campaign appear to have created the illusion that they can be easily thrown together. This is the strongest proof yet of the fallacy of that notion.

Birds Eye
"Indoor Picnic"
30s
18 Apr 2015
Even if it didn't have the annoying 1950s-style jingle there would be little to take from this curious ad for Birds Eye. Katie Bryson explains that at this time of year her boys get tired of being stuck indoors all day. Is that because she's forgotten it's spring, or because she's keeping them prisoner? Either way, her idea of a picnic won't be much consolation for them.

Birds Eye
"I Freeze, I Save"
20s
9 Apr 2015
We get the gist of this, but it just doesn't quite come off. The move to make us wake up and realise how much food we waste as a nation each year is extremely sensible - but if the problem can be solved by eating frozen products from Birds Eye then we need to see exactly how that might work.

Birds Eye
"Beefburger Bunny"
30s
30 Mar 2015
Food vlogger Katie Bryson once again provides questionable "tips" on making food more exciting. There's exciting, and then there's... the beefburger bunny. Any child presented with this is likely to need therapy in the coming years – if they don't choke on the hidden cocktail sticks first. Eat it quickly and never speak of it again... well, you did ask us what our idea was.

Birds Eye
"Peas"
30s
5 Mar 2015
Food vlogger Katie Bryson shares a terrific idea to "give any dish a lift" - pop in a few handfuls of Birds Eye frozen peas. In what sense is that an actual idea? It's the sort of thing you do mindlessly when you're throwing together a basic meal and you remember the almost-empty packet of peas that expired two years ago lurking in the bottom of the freezer.

Birds Eye
"Steamfresh Range"
20s
4 Feb 2015
Oh, here we go again. This is another of those Birds Eye ads which emulates the naturalistic style of its lovely predecessors without matching them. It's such a shame as this idea had real legs when it started. No-one talks like this, and the decision to include close-ups of a strangely smiling mouth only adds to the stilted quality.

Birds Eye
"Fish Finger Pie"
30s
21 Jan 2015
Just like Sainsbury's, Birds Eye has hopped on the food vlogger bandwagon. This ad features Katie Bryson; a mum who makes quick, cheap meals out of whatever she has to hand. So here's introducing the Fish Finger Pie: all the ingredients you'd expect on a normal plate - fish fingers, peas and mash - but ...wait for it ...mixed up in layers in a pie dish. Hang on to your hats, folks.

Birds Eye
"Brother and Sister"
30s
15 Oct 2014
Something odd has happened to this campaign. Previous ads had a delightful, low-key naturalness about them, but this has a 'brother and sister' galloping through a script which feels as though it's been heavily annotated by the client with demands for 'more product information! More description!' It's a shame: the older ads weren't going to trouble award juries but they were good.

Birds Eye
"New Experience"
30s
16 Sep 2014
As with a recent EDF ad, Birds Eye has taken existing footage and repackaged it, so to speak, using a different script to give it a fresh new feel. It's as charming as ever, and even the tagged-on section at the end for Chicken Dippers works well with the youngsters' greedy little paws scrabbling for that last piece on the plate.

Birds Eye
"The Big Snack"
20s
2 Jun 2014
A man desperate to enjoy his fishfinger sandwich with the footie pretends to be his own answerphone message when his missus calls. Understandably, too, as the camera is cleverly focused upon the sandwich, which looks like a veritable feast. She isn't fooled, but our sympathies lie entirely with him because in his position we'd feel the same way. Who'd have thought a simple fish finger could be made to raise such passion in our hearts?

Birds Eye
"Greece"
30s
19 May 2014
Another clever ad in this subtle campaign has a group of female friends getting together for a bite to eat. The food, as usual, is the focus of conversation without this feeling at all contrived; and the well-spoken voices are a shrewd move too: these are women who can afford to eat out and go on holiday, so if they appreciate what's being served up, it must be pretty decent.

Birds Eye
"Lush"
30s
7 May 2014
Another excellent piece of work in this campaign. It's so unobtrusive as to be almost subliminal in its message - you barely have to listen to it to pick up on the idea that what's onscreen is a contented family enjoying the advertised product without making it a contrived conversational focal point. Instead, the camera does the work; leaving you with the sense that the food is responsible for the thoroughly agreeable atmosphere.

Birds Eye
"The Proposal"
30s
14 Apr 2014
A lovely spot in the current campaign for Birds Eye which focuses on the dinner table and snippets of conversation prompted by the food. Here, a woman makes a meal for a special occasion, which prompts her chap to express a willingness to marry her if she'll prepare dishes like this every night. It's beautifully naturalistic and deadpan - and doesn't succumb to a predictable cheesy ending, either.

Birds Eye
"Rice Fusions"
20s
4 Feb 2013
Willem Dafoe's latest advertising gig has him playing the devil in a Mercedes ad that aired during the Super Bowl but, to us, he'll always be a cute polar bear living in an ice box. In this reworked piece he seductively tries to persuade us that the advertised vegetable and rice mix will prove utterly delicious.

Birds Eye
"Lucy"
30s
11 Nov 2012
This charming commercial demonstrates that the way to a boy's heart is through his stomach... and not just for practitioners of keyhole surgery. A little girl called Lucy tries in vain to attract the attention of a lad she likes but it's only when she offers him some chicken made by Birds Eye that he responds.

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