1. Clairol Herbal Essences
In this spot, set in a courtroom, a female lawyer is transported to
orgasmic fantasy because she has the "urge to 'erbal". Step forward New
York's Kaplan Taylor agency and the poor sods who had to adapt the ad
for the UK, Banks Hoggins O'Shea/FCB.
2. AA Online Insurance
Hands up all the harassed blokes who would rather slit the brake cables
on the car driven by this harridan than let her nag them into logging on
to the AA website. OK, so everyone knows that buying car insurance is a
chore. But did HHCL & Partners really have to turn the experience into
3. DFS Furniture
Tacky rubbish even by the standards of most furniture retail
advertising. Sofas aren't sexy and Ward Longworth & Camponi's spoof
eroticism of this ad quickly goes limp. As for the couple pouring cream
over themselves, what a mess!
4. Carte Noir
David "Because I'm worth it" Ginola's transfer from flogging shampoo to
coffee doesn't work. Euro RSCG BETC's commercial looks like it's locked
in an 80s timewarp. Kraft Foods would have been better following the
lead of the French heart-throb's club, Aston Villa, by leaving him on
5. Honda Civic
Woman strips off in back of a car before signing autographs in a
restaurant, throwing in a bit of Timotei hair-tossing for good measure.
The Leith Agency's scenario would have been barely credible in a Rolls
Royce Silver Cloud. But in a Honda Civic? Oh please!
6. Nivea for Men
Two blokes on a sofa saying how rubbish they think an ad is. Of course
they're far too savvy to fall for advertising's blandishments; however,
they don't mind rubbing on a bit of Nivea. Sorry Banks Hoggins
O'Shea/FCB, but your brief's showing.
7. Conservative Party
Determined not to have a smart-arse London agency deliver its election
message - assuming it could have found one to take it on - the Tories
opted for Edinburgh-based Yellow M's advertising equivalent of a lost
The kindest thing that could be said about the Leo Burnett spot
featuring a couple of Geordies crooning Fog on the Tyne is that it must
have been an aberration by one of the UK's best advertisers. The
commercial is enough to make Gazza fall off the wagon.
A ridiculous and -thankfully - short-lived campaign in which a woman
cuts short a nookie session to sort out her finances. Well you would,
wouldn't you? No you wouldn't. Not a sound advertising investment from
HHCL & Partners.
10. Zurich Financial Services
And ad which must have cost a bomb to make -stars such as Peter O'Toole
don't come cheap - and did what was expected. It bombed. Casting the old
thespian in a wizard's outfit alongside a rugby-mad kid left nobody the
wiser about what Zurich actually did. Agency Joshua didn't make the
walls come tumbling down with this one.