David Reviews

 "You're not an artist, Peggy. You solve problems." Don Draper.

Latest Work
    • What The What?This slick communication suggests style and substance can, on occasion, coexist quite comfortably
    • Cheque it out.As Covid-19 continues to disrupt the financial sector, TD Bank urge customers to party like it’s 1992… and not for the first time, so to speak.
    • Protect our protectors.This extraordinarily impactful film supports frontline healthcare workers in their bid to force the government into providing badly needed PPE to help protect them against Covid-19.
    • All clapped out.Clapping for the NHS aside... let's look at how we respond to Covid calls to arms.
    • Comfort eating.This eloquent short film by director Libby Burke Wilde sheds light on Blackpool’s Syrian community, and the importance of food to those forced to leave their homeland.
    • A cycle for life.Joe Ogunmokun - a producer at Havas - is using his furlough to 'cycle to France' in his living room to raise money for his friend Ben Chatfield's fight against cancer.
    • When the stars align.ITV’s big guns are on the case to mark Mental Health Awareness Week 2020.
    • Front Line FacesThere's a second epidemic brewing amidst the chaos of Covid-19: a looming avalanche of mental health problems.
    • Life: InsideThe barbarity of the American prison system is widely documented, but Covid-19 has thrown its issues into stark relief.
    • Fear of the UnknownThe prospect of contracting Covid-19 is scary for everyone, but those with pre-existing conditions have an extra layer of worry.
    • Brick shift.This Lego ad provides a welcome jolt to the system amidst a glut of commercials that are well-meaning but samey by necessity.

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TD Bank
"Dancer From Home"
30s
18 May 2020

As Covid-19 continues to disrupt the financial sector, TD Bank urge customers to party like it’s 1992… and not for the first time, so to speak. Last year, the brand introduced a bank employee who bops to ‘Rhythm is a Dancer’ by Snap, and this 30” follow-up keeps the party going during lockdown.

Shot in actor Julian Rozzell Jr.’s home, the ad draws attention to online cheque deposits with lanky, early Nineties charm. The seemingly throwaway premise, meanwhile, speaks to a desire to celebrate any minor victory during the pandemic - whether that’s depositing a cheque or waking up at a reasonable hour.


PPE for Healthcare Workers
"Letter To My Unborn Child"
90s
21 May 2020

This extraordinarily impactful film supports frontline healthcare workers in their bid to force the government into providing badly needed PPE to help protect them against Covid-19.

Dr Meenal Viz and Dr Nishant Joshi are launching a legal challenge to the government's guidance because, contrary to the claims of Boris Johnson and Matt Hancock, the UK government has gone against World Health Organisation (WHO) guidance and failed to provide adequate PPE for the 'heroes' they applaud every Thursday evening.

The film takes the form of a message from Dr Viz to her unborn child. It unflinchingly describes the pandemic and the way it has affected the world, before focusing on the dangers faced by frontline healthcare workers who have consistently been expected to operate without adequate protection.

This is not an abstract danger... many healthcare workers have died in the UK and it is reasonable to assume that this is – in part – because of the government's failure to procure the required PPE.

Having claimed in March that, between pandemic preparation and measures put in place to cover the possibility of a no deal Brexit, there were sufficient stockpiles of PPE to cover all eventualities, our government has twisted and turned every which way in a desperate bid to deny culpability for the shortage.

This included the hurried decision on March 13 to remove Covid 19 from the High Consequence Infectious Diseases (HCID) list on the declared basis that its mortality rate was lower than had been previously thought.

In an edition of BBC's Panorama broadcast on 27 April, sources revealed to the programme makers that Covid-19 was removed from this list because it changed the legal obligation to provide PPE for those treating infected patients.

In our deranged modern politics, many of those who voted for both Brexit and for Boris Johnson's Conservatives at the election last December hide behind the idea that it simply wasn't possible to anticipate the severity of the pandemic. In reality, the UK's government squandered every opportunity to tackle the outbreak effectively, and thousands of people have paid for their ineptitude with their lives... including the healthcare workers whom Dr Viz and Dr Joshi are seeking to protect through their campaign.


Thank-You Care Takers
"Thank-You"
46s
18 May 2020

Let's level with each other, as adult citizens of the world with brains: clapping for the NHS and thanking them is a nice gesture, but it in no way compensates for the fact our health service has been defunded year on year by a government which doesn't seem to care... yet places the blame for failures readily at the NHS's door.

DAVID nearly combusts with frustration every night at 8pm when people set off fireworks to praise the NHS, while front line health workers ask people to please stop calling them heroes and actually make corporations pay taxes so 90 year olds don't get celebrated for tottering out miles for something that shouldn't be a charity.

It's extremely tempting to call those required to work right now heroic. That's the national narrative. And in that spirit this film is lovely and deeply emotive - even under normal circumstances - and outside of its quality of production (which is very high) it raises profound questions about whose stories are told.

Shots of current health workers and vintage footage of doctors and nurses change the tone, however. It's poignant and emotive. One can only hope that the more real-life footage of health workers is shown to the public, the more the 'hero' narrative can be destroyed and real funding can begin.


Short Films
"A Taste of Home"
3 mins 20s
18 May 2020

This warm, eloquent short film by director Libby Burke Wilde sheds light on Blackpool’s Syrian community, and the importance of food to those forced to leave their homeland. Much has been left behind, but recipes travel.

The proud cast - despite pining for their “land of paradise” back in Western Asia - are determined to ensure dishes like fattah, yabrak, and tabbouleh thrive on the Lancashire coast and beyond. What’s more, they want to share their culinary zeal with others.

It’s a refreshing (and appetising) twist on the refugee narrative. As one interviewee puts it, “We are not coming here just to sit at home and close the door”. Instead, they want to open people’s eyes to Syrian cuisine.


A cycle for life.

Joe Ogunmokun - a producer at Havas - is using his furlough to 'cycle to France' in his living room to raise money for his friend Ben Chatfield's fight against cancer.

Ogunmokun's original plan was to cycle to France for real but Covid-19 happened and that forced him to adapt his fundraising plans and, instead of enjoying the French countryside as he raised money to extend his friend's life, he's enjoying the slightly more prosaic charms of his Wimbledon home.


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On This Day
(1-25 of 25)

Samsung Televisions
"Incredible Journey"
60s
26 May 2011
That's more like it. If you thought the shortened version of this ad was a bit lacklustre then we're sure you'll agree that the idea works much better in this minute-long edit. A train journey is enlivened no end by the images available on its 'windows' after passengers put the advertised high definition televisions in place of the usual glass.

Irn Bru
"Get A Grip"
30s
26 May 2015
This is the funniest Irn Bru commercial we've seen for quite a while and everyone involved deserves huge credit for pushing at the boundaries of what is and isn't permissible. According to Irn Bru website, this can only be shown after the watershed but DAVID suspects even post-9pm showings may be short-lived and it may have to exist wholly online.

LG
"The Best Gift Ever"
75s
26 May 2015
A heartwarming film from LG offers a childish spin on their range of vacuum cleaners in the best possible way. Filled with cake and excitement, children at different parties eagerly await the opening of the big present. After carefully unwrapping their giant gifts, they don't seem too thrilled with what they've received - an LG vacuum cleaner. However, fun quickly ensues.

Huawei
"School of Pronunciation"
2 mins 45s
26 May 2015
When the teamsheet lands in front of a commentator, certain names seem purposefully designed to strike fear into the vocal cords of many a microphone-wielding pundit. A mispronunciation can lead to national scandal, while individual interpretation can lead to a painful mess over the airwaves. Gordon Friend, representative of telecommunications giant Huawei, is here to help.

Johnsonville
"Jeff And His Forest Friends"
60s
26 May 2016
Johnsonville have already established a reputation for an unconventional approach to advertising, and they've joyously cemented that reputation with some spectacular new work created by New York's Droga5. These films are genuinely based on ideas put forward by the client's staff and - if they're anything to go by - the long-held fear of client interference could be unfounded!

Betway
"Arctic"
40s
26 May 2016
This spot for Betway is one of three lovingly made ads in the style of classic movies. Regardless of your feelings about football and betting, this a lot of fun... with the misunderstanding at the heart of it getting sillier and sillier until the poor arctic explorer is engaged in a wrestling match to the death with a polar bear.

Peperami
"Granny"
20s
26 May 2006
Another unsuspecting innocent has eaten one of Peperami's World Cup toys in the mistaken belief that it has as much as nutritional value as one of the meat-based snacks. DAVID would find it a hard choice between the two.

Piriton
"Pigeon Allergy"
30s
26 May 2006
A woman looks intiidated by the flight of pigeons menacingly scavanging near her car but her fear is based more on allergy than on some Alfred Hitchcock-inspire nightmare as she ois one of 303,000 Britons allergic to the winged beasts. Piriton can help.

The Observer
"Antipasto"
10s
26 May 2006
Neat trick here. An olive appears to roll on to a plate of antipasto but it is revealed to be a glossy picture from The Observer's Food Monthly when someone tries to nab something from the plate. It must be from the front cover since FM switched to a cheaper format.

Toyota (Malaysia)
"Loch Ness"
30s
26 May 2007
A jogger is lured into stopping by a cardboard cut-out of a new Toyota model in this Malaysian ad from 2006. What could lie behind this sinister event? We swiftly find out when the man is grabbed by the mysterious occupant of Loch Ness who then resets his trap for the next runner.

The Biography Channel
"Sean Connery"
20s
26 May 2007
Amusing piece for the Biography Channel takes one of the best-known of little-known facts - that Sean Connery was once a milkman - and speculates about what that might have looked like by showing us a piece of vintage footage purporting to be the grumpy Scot delivering milk.

ITV
"Euro 2008"
60s
26 May 2008
ITV's Euro 2008 salvo shows how our love affair with football is to be challenged by the absence of British teams in this summer's tournament. It's an amusing idea... but there is a slight flaw in the logic. This man being cheered up by watching Euro 2008 is like an abandoned husband watching his wife have sex with her new beau.

McCain Home Fries
"Potato Gourmet"
20s
26 May 2008
This commercial has the ingredients in the latest product from McCain moving like a marching band. It's a neat conceit and manages to get across the idea that it's a healthier option than we are used to from McCain without harping on about it. And when was the last time you heard rousing military music? Exactly.

McCain Home Fries
"It's All Good"
20s
26 May 2008
Potatoes dance once they have been peeled before they are then chopped and turned into McCain's Gourmet range. It is claimed that this dish is the perfect accompaniment to our cooking... true, so long as our cooking isn't essentially comprised of chips.

Cadbury Crème Eggs Twisted
"Terminator"
30s
26 May 2008
The long version of the amusing ad which suggests the new offering from Cadbury came about through a Terminator-style reconstruction of a splatted Crème Egg after the wave of confectionery suicides which we saw in the build-up to Easter. This campaign has taken on a life of its own.

Cadbury Crème Eggs Twisted
"Hair Dryer"
30s
26 May 2008
The new Crème Egg variant is being cleverly advertised with this series of ads which follow on neatly from the highly regarded campaign for the seasonal confectionery in the run up to Easter. The idea that we can still get our Crème Egg fix during the rest of the year is effectively conveyed.

WKD
"Jacuzzi"
30s
26 May 2008
One of the WKD regulars saunters his way through a gym offering a thumbs up to the weight-lifters before plonking himself into the jacuzzi. He kisses his bicep to suggest that he's had a satisfying work out to a pair of people who are already soaking themselves in the bubbly water.

Foreign Office
"Travel Insurance"
60s
26 May 2009
This amusing COI filler uses a piece of comic dialogue to convey the idea that it's foolhardy to go abroad without travel insurance. The only problem with it is that the woman's sensible message is slightly undermined by her being so damned annoying.

Mazuma Mobile
"Stavros Flatley"
40s
26 May 2010
Stavros Flatley who provided comic relief during Britain's Got Talent demonstrate that they're still game for a laugh by contributing to this commercial for the mobile phone recycling company.

HP
"Hands"
60s
26 May 2010
Is this or is this not Sarah Jessica Parker and, more importantly do we really care? It's important to consider all of the evidence when trying to work out the answer to the first question: is there, for example, any sign of a nose bag? As for the second question... that's easy. It's "no".

Jamie's Money Saving Meals
"The Return"
40s
26 May 2014
Jamie Oliver is as engaging as ever as he shows us how not to be afraid of leftovers and frozen food. It all looks like basic common sense, really, but it has to be said it's too easy to throw stuff away, whether you can afford to or not. This makes him the perfect TV cook to encourage the unsure and the generally profligate among us to make an effort.

Ford Transit
"Work It"
60s
26 May 2014
This entertaining ad comes with a soundtrack that's basically Daft Punk and Ray Winstone in a blender, which works surprisingly well. Demonstrating the many and varied uses the ubiquitous white van can have, it features everything from spot welders to sultry girl bands and delivers them up with a stylishness not normally associated with drivers of said vehicles.

Mankind Charity
"Violence is Violence"
1 min 50s
26 May 2014
This striking film for a charity which hopes to highlight the problem of female-on-male domestic violence certainly achieves its aim - but we worry about where it fits into the broader picture. When you watch it, you'll probably anticipate where it's going... it's obvious that there's going to be a different response from the public when they witness a woman physically assaulting a man as opposed to the other way around. But you may be shocked when you see that rather than merely failing to intervene, people actually laugh at this man's plight.

Transport For London
"Your Mates"
40s
26 May 2014
There are only so many ways you can reliably approach certain subjects, but it's how you do it that makes the difference. And while we've seem the 'doomed youths in a car' before, this Transport For London safety commercial nonetheless manages to hit you quite unexpectedly, as it were. We suspect it's the speed at which everything goes wrong that's the key to its impact.

Dispatches
"Space Invaders"
40s
26 May 2014
This is rather clever. Anyone who's ever played the game Space Invaders will remember the claustrophobic feeling as the columns of animated figures close in and likening that to the unrelenting efforts of food companies to market their unhealthy wares proves highly effective. Brave too when you consider that Channel 4 is one of the vehicles for these companies' marketing.

On This Day
(1-25 of 25)

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