I’ll tell you who believes in Christmas: the advertisers. They absolutely love it. I should have made the exact note, but I’m pretty sure the festive promotions started right after Halloween. Or maybe it just feels that way.
The perfume ad alone is enough to drive you crazy. No one can tell what you smell like when you’re dancing on another planet or wandering Rome in meters of bright yellow cloth or the boy from Bridgerton run backwards.
All you need to be in a perfume ad is a stiff neck, small breasts and perfect abs. Yes, I am bitter.
On the one hand, I was annoyed by the new ads. Dawn French as a flying Christmas ornament and Jennifer Saunders as a knitted duck, both bought and paid for by Marks and Spencer.
The only good thing about those commercials – there are a few iterations – comes when they talk about hoisin rolls (whatever they are) and even the French dub can’t understand the fact that Her pronunciation of “hoisin” sounds like “poison”.
And I smiled a cruel smile. I know – get out more.
Then we have the commercial for The Late Late Toy Show. Has the country suffered enough?
The first was an advertisement for Toy Show: The Musical (“a roller coaster of emotions”) and then an ad that told how the Toy Show had changed the lives of a million children and their families.
This commercial, seemingly playing 24 hours a day, is only rescued by star power and the jarring sarcasm of the little girl with glasses. And the boy also said that when he gave something to someone, he felt kind. We all do, kid. Never before has the spirit of Christmas been expressed so precisely.
Then there are the old ads. I wonder if Guinness will ever spend a small percentage of its millions on a new ad, because we’ve been looking at the snow-trimmed sign for Claddagh over the course of three decades. That fox must be dead.
The Dunnes store has an old ad with a round tower. Those kids are probably living in Berlin with their tattoos.
Video of the day
Irish grocers are very frugal. I used to like the injured deer in the SuperValu commercial, running towards the take-off road on a suburban street, but that commercial aired first during the lockdown and I think we all moved on.
I didn’t mind the Pepsi Max commercial, though, with the girl rapping: “I didn’t want to do that so I sold my sleigh.” Or the Tesco with the fathers standing by their wheelie bins. Or Argos’ ad with neighbors – women with trifles are scary – descending on a household: “We’re going to need a bigger bowl.”
A new ad for An Post featuring Tin Man receiving a postcard from a nosy neighbor was done very well. The Tin Man’s face at the end is beautiful – shocked, tired, relieved. It is really good acting. And whether it’s all done with CGI effects, I don’t want to know. I’m not ready yet.
What I want to know is whether RTÉ (and Guinness) have heard about the energy crisis. One of RTÉ’s ads for itself features a detached house, where the following structures are so filled with fairy lights that they can be seen from space: house, two outbuildings , two deer figurines, a large bush and three large decorative stars.
Even the house in the city, in another advertisement, is lit up like – yes, a Christmas tree. How did the Irish celebrate Christmas before the fairy lights reached these shores?
Above Tommy Tiernan’s Epic West (RTÉ One). Is that the Honda 50 I see in front of me? Tommy travels along the roads of Westt and the bike is a great highlight. Overall, the two episodes of this short series can be considered an antidote to Hometown Quynh. premise of Western epic seems to be: what makes us so totally awesome? Is it the landscape? Is it poverty? You understand yourself.
Tiernan cuts through this cultural complacency as the show progresses, but it’s pretty mystical at first. Tommy smiled softly and said: Thank you, Tommy.
Everyone was interviewed outdoors, presumably in the event that the camera crew ran into a tumble dryer or television. Well over 30 minutes before Tommy hit the mainland. “There’s something elusive about Sligo… it’s a country with half a soul.” Is that so? I blame John Moriarty, to whom Tommy seems devoted.
Thank God, Tommy has finally reached Tuam and Tom Murphy and how he can shake you with the violence and hatred lurking in a small town in Westt – or perhaps anywhere. “Tuam has always impressed me as the Nashville of Galway,” Tommy said when speaking to Leo Moran and Padraig Stevens. (They were advertised before as The Saw Doctors. Where are the rest? Am I missing something?)
Tommy is great on Skelligs and on Blakeets and its storytellers; but nothing about Maurice O’Sullivan and his beautiful work.
In season two, Tommy finally takes his hat off (twice: hooray!) So be patient there, but not if you’re from Claremorris or Gort or Ballina or any other not-so-romantic place like that. . Although Limerick is mentioned, it is mainly because, as the Blind Boy Boatclub put it, like an unwanted mole on Wesht’s picturesque face. So now.
https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/television/tin-man-adds-some-heart-to-this-years-christmas-ads-42203420.html Tin Man adds a heart to this year’s Christmas ad