The Week: Best of the blogs - The bach of press ads

Even if you think Jeremy Clarkson is the spawn of Satan, you will grudgingly find yourself sharing one or two of his opinions as expressed in his review of the Range Rover TDV8 Vogue SE.

(I am fairly safe in this belief since my father, who generally regards Clarkson as the embodiment of materialistic vulgarity, sent it to me approvingly the day it came out.)

What Mr Clarkson is saying is that he is a bit of a Platonist. That, while most categories contain many variants, and very nice they may be too, all are defined by a kind of archetype - a conception of a thing at its most perfect. He lists a few of these: France, the iPhone, bacon and eggs. The "Who's the daddy?" campaign for Holsten Pils a few years back played off this same thought. It's a game you can play with any category: brands (Coke), classical composers (Bach) or prime ministers (Churchill).

Now I have to confess something here. While I think originality is a wonderful thing, and while I'm all for stretching envelopes, pushing boundaries, throwing out rulebooks, thinking outside boxes, casting off straitjackets and generally pissing against the wind, I do still believe there is a Platonic archetype for press advertising. In short, I still feel the full English breakfast of a press ad involves a big piccie at the top, a headline (and even a subhead) underneath, with two or three hundred words of intelligent, characterful chit-chat leading smoothly towards a logo or coupon at the end.

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