Duchovny's a driven man

PETER YORK ON ADS; No 215: FORD MONDEO
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The Independent Culture
ADVERTISING FOLK are deeply eclectic: they take bits from everything. And sometimes, they're positively archaeological. The current Ford Mondeo commercial is an absolute cat's cradle for buffs.

We know where its star, David Duchovny came from of course - Canada. But mercifully, he doesn't bring too much of The X-Files with him. The other borrowings come from Hitchcock, The Twilight Zone, and Forties film noir. The Twilight Zone influence can be seen in the sheer arbitrariness of the two trees that fall across Mr Duchovny's path. The Hitchcock can be seen in the great aerial swoops over deserted mountain roads. All these strands turn a lovely-looking road into something much cleverer.

The story seems to be that the Mondeo's a clever sort of car, on which all sorts of sixth-sensory stuff comes as standard. It's so clever, in fact, it can stop you driving over cliffs from unfenced roads - indeed, it anticipates those falling trees.

The voice-over is delivered by a woman who speaks with the American equivalent of BBC RP, saying psycho stuff in a Fifties-hypnotist way. "We see, we hear, we feel - we can even sense things. But for some reason, some of us sense more than others."

So what can she tell us about David Duchovny? What is it with David Duchovny? On this showing, his reputation as a "thinking actor" (dread phrase) is based on his ability to do a 360-degree twirl after cheating death twice - without any visible expression.

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