The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

If You Thought Fragrance Ads Were Mental Before …

Fragrance ads.

They are a law to themselves. All whimsical romance or overt seduction expressed in contrived, theatrical and over-acted ways.

I get selling smell using visual mediums is hard, so wrapping it up in some sort of concept makes sense … except when every one of those concepts is the work of someone who is obviously off their face on coke.

Sure, some can be funny.

Those horrific, pretentious Gerard Butler ads for Boss ended up being comedy gold … and the recent Johnny Depp ‘Sauvage’ campaign – that was hijacked by the public – turned out to be an act of genius but in the main, we are exposed to a plethora of commercials that feature a beautiful actor/actress getting paid a fortune to destroy their credibility against a backdrop of an overly produced stage set, a contemporary – but utterly bland – sound track and unsubtle messages of shining bright etc etc.

However recently I saw something different.


Because while it follows the well-worn path of the fragrance category, the script, acting and production values are so low, you would expect it to be an ad for a ‘Everything For A £1’ shop not Emporio Armani.

To make matters worse, it seems the people behind the ad sold it to the client by saying …

“We are targeting 40+ couples who hate each other.

They yearn to go back to a time where they were together out of choice, not because they have a mortgage to pay.

A time where they hung our spontaneously, not because they have to do the weekly shopping.

To connect with them, we will tell a story of a young couple falling in love.

We will capture the intensity of a developing relationship where they are intoxicated with each other.

We will incorporate scenes from classic films or ads from their youth – from 50 Shades Of Grey and those old Nescafe Gold Blend ads from the late 80’s/90’s to the classic ‘cycle to the moon’ scene from ET … though it could be more BMX Bandits, it all depends on how much budget you give us.

In essence, we are not selling perfume, we’re selling marriage guidance in a bottle”.

At this point, I imagine you’re wondering what the hell I’m going on about … well ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls … sit back and all will be revealed …

But please have a bucket ready for the flow of vomit that will be coming your way.

50 Shades Of Grey/Gold Blend Inspired Bollocks …

ET/BMX Bandits Inspired Shite …

27 Comments so far
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And I thought the script and performance in Cats was bad. Truly terrible but what a wonderfully acidic take down of it. Good way to end the week for this blog Robert. It has been of an unexpectedly high standard.

Comment by George

Your first sentence cannot be beaten.

Comment by Bazza

Thank you George. I think. Ha.

The ‘Cats’ reference made me laugh out loud.

Comment by Rob

See how short this post could have been?

Comment by Bazza

Cheeky sod.

Comment by Rob

I hate admitting it, I like this post. Especially your version of the agency/client discussion. You may have nailed it.

Comment by Bazza

What a way to end my week. Hahaha.

Comment by Rob

fucking sellout.

Comment by andy@cynic

I did not realise NYC cab drivers had become so tolerant. Just last week one rather aggressively informed me that I was taking too long to exit his vehicle. I wonder how he would have reacted if I had walked all over his cab?

Comment by Lee Hill

Maybe you can test the theory next time you’re there Lee?

Comment by Rob

The chick looks like Riley Reid. Don’t pretend you don’t know who she is.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Well it wasn’t. It was James Jagger (Mick’s son) and an Italian actress called Matilda Lutz.

Comment by Pete

Knew you’d know who Riley Reid was. Does Sarah know?

Comment by Billy Whizz

You’re such an asshole Billy.

But yes, she does look like her. And before you start calling me a perv, it’s because she is Pete Diaz’s friend and I met her at a party.

So there.

Comment by Rob

I hate how lucky you are.

Comment by Billy Whizz

Pete Diaz is friends with a porn actress?

Comment by Bazza

diaz? im surprised he knows any fucking women, let alone a porno star. dirty little bastard.

Comment by andy@cynic

I disagree with how you see the story behind these ads. Surely it was “just make a film about the white, privileged elite.

Who else could get away with climbing on cabs and riding around public monuments at night on expensive bikes that light up and not get arrested or robbed?

Comment by Pete

What sort of planner have I become to not see that one staring me right in the face?

Don’t answer that. Haha.

Comment by Rob

Oh please let me…….

Comment by DH

This came out in 2017! Nice to see you are still keeping up with the times.

Comment by Bazza

Well no one else knew it was old either so don’t start trying to be a smart arse. Ha. Guess they re-released it for Christmas time – and while I’ll never buy the product – I do consider its awfulness as a bit of a gift for me.

Comment by Rob

Armani – the fragrance for first world problems

Comment by Northern

Welcome back … you’ve been missed. At least by me, ha.

Comment by Rob

I always thought fragrance companies were selling to signalling teens and twenty-somethings and that the ads are just moving billboards. Thos confirms it.

Comment by John

It’s a fine line between a perfume ad and an Onion article.

Comment by DH

why do they fucking stop the music during scene changes.
why do they keep doing close ups of their fucking mouths.
why do they repeat “dont be late” so many fucking times you want one of the twats to shout “stop fucking nagging me you boring shit.”
why do the people behind this piece of fucking shit still live?

Comment by andy@cynic

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