Very French, very music hall, and very green
No 182: PPP
Sunday 29 June 1997
Novelty number one is the lovely little Franco-retro song "Boom Boom", sung in the original French. Piaf aside, there hasn't been very much of this stuff in advertising, since our boys prefer the American archive.
This kind of music suggests a kind of pre-war French film that derives almost from music-hall. And the PPP ad opens with that kind of atmosphere. An extremely French-looking fellow stands against a very obviously paint-and-canvas brick wall. He is tapped on the shoulder by a shadow (from an early Maurice Chevalier film, perhaps), and then positively shoved towards a glass screen and a woman doctor.
Behind the screen lies the second novelty - a completely different set of tricks. It's the x-ray movie, shot in florescent green. Pierre and the doctor become walking skeletons. He is put through routine health- check paces: running on the spot wired-up; touching his toes; sticking out his tongue, and other indices of middle-management assessment.
It's actually deadly dull - but diverting in green. It's nicely syncopated - a boom-boom chorus synched to the knee-jerk test for instance - and simply shot.
The theoretical objection to skeletons - advertising clients are always deeply nervous of them - is overcome here because the whole thing's so very animated and so very familiar. Given the memorable novelties, the branding and service claims are correspondingly modest (PPP: there to support you).
This is a distinctive extension of the supportive-shadow theme of earlier PPP ads, and if the IT manager starts singing "Boom Boom" to the Strategic Planning Assistant around the sixth-floor photocopier, this commercial should pay back its costs.
Game of Thrones
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 The difference between a migrant and refugee, in one sentence
- 2 Miley Cyrus calls out hypocrisy of women’s nipples being taboo
- 3 Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
- 4 iPhone 5c to be discontinued, no iPhone 6c to replace it
- 5 Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Game of Thrones season 6: Jon Snow theorists believe Ned Stark's son may have a twin sister
Artist takes LSD, draws herself over different stages of the 9-hour trip to show its effects
These Harry Potter lipsticks are sparking all sorts of controversy with Hogwarts fans
Game of Thrones season 6: Director promises most exciting premiere yet 'starts off with a bang'
Hunted: Channel 4 to test 'surveillance Britain' by taking Big Brother to sinister new lengths
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
Labour leadership: Jeremy Corbyn accused of 'deluding' young supporters with 'claptrap'
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Iain Duncan Smith calls for urgent ESA overhaul as part of drive to cut down welfare costs