PETER YORK ON ADS: No 289: METZ
It all happens in that particular world that's never seen on land or sea except in liquor commercials aimed at mass youth. This world has a very particular aesthetic - OTT early-1980s brought to boiling point - and it's peopled by very particular people, dressed up as if everyone wanted to look like Isabella Blow. So in a banana-and-raspberry-coloured back-room club called Headshop, with "modern-classic" furniture and Deco sconces, and people done up just so, the girls with lots of make-up writhe around. A more conventional threesome drink Metz straight from the bottle and enjoy a mind-altering, face-altering experience.
"What is that?" This summons up the freelance scientist, putting himself about with his explanations. This freelance scientist has Byronic hair, an early 19th-century white linen shirt, with a stock, an eyepatch and a Northern accent. (He also seems to have the same effect on girl viewers as Colin Firth playing Mr Darcy.)
"Gentlemen, let me explain, I'm a freelance scientist," he says, lifting his eyepatch. "It's technically known as a judder - it kind of monkeys about with the body's periodontal atrium." There are shots of very made- up people's faces wobbling around in computer-generated ways. Plump posers, Alternative Miss World, Hispanic belles and Lillian Gish-style elderly ladies all experience judders, involving rumpling of the flesh and exposure of the skeleton by X-ray.
"I've just experienced my first judder," says the old party. "It's totally humane, well almost," says the freelance scientist.
This ad's got a hugely memorable set of words, mannerisms and special effects all built round the most basic liquor claim possible - yes, it does blow your head off. I'm surprised they can get away with it. But since they have, all praise to them for launching an unpromising product so well.
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