Peter York on Ads: Feisty model with a fabulous body ... shame about the car

Vauxhall Corsa

Naomi Campbell's a Cherokee person now, promoting Tesco's "private label" clothing range. The central joke in the commercial is that Miss Campbell's thoroughly bad-tempered and badly behaved. She doesn't like the red price sticker that keeps attaching itself to her new clothes, so she bats it away, she sprays it with champagne and generally looks as if she might do it GBH. All this derives from her newspaper reputation, which has her shouting and slapping all day long, when she's not going into Narcotics Anonymous.

Naomi Campbell's a Cherokee person now, promoting Tesco's "private label" clothing range. The central joke in the commercial is that Miss Campbell's thoroughly bad-tempered and badly behaved. She doesn't like the red price sticker that keeps attaching itself to her new clothes, so she bats it away, she sprays it with champagne and generally looks as if she might do it GBH. All this derives from her newspaper reputation, which has her shouting and slapping all day long, when she's not going into Narcotics Anonymous.

But when the world was young, before Tony Blair was Prime Minister, before the dot.com bust, when Peter Mandelson had a moustache and things could only get better, we thought differently about Naomi, as a goddess among goddesses. Back then, in 1993, when Vauxhall launched its new little Corsa, they bought a job lot of supermodels to promote it. And even by the standards of car advertising, which is all about giant production budgets, this was quite something.

The Corsa commercial had a Batman-ish theme and a Rotten Gotham Chrysler building hyper-deco look, like Anton Furst's dramatic original designs. It's the Eighties brought to the boil. You wouldn't see anything this narrative or this colourful now. We'd get attitude or art, something silvery with a new effects package, like Audi's storm of whirling letters or Peugeot's clever dancing car-parts creature.

This is a big hair, big shoulder pads kind of commercial. The gang's all there - Linda Evangelista, Christy Turlington, Tatjana Patitz and Naomi, and they're fiercely jealous of the new little Corsa, the new supermodel.

They're attempting to savage it in panto ways. They cut giant chandelier chains with boomerangs to crush it. They pour ink from the top of epic newspaper buildings to spoil it. Naomi, in tight leather and a gay disco peaked cap, threatens a tethered man who's been ogling the car. "You like the way I look best don't you?"

At the end the Corsa faces the press - brown double-breasteds, trilbys and pre-war flashbulbs - on a revolving stage and a supermodel falls over, like Naomi's famous catwalk fall off her Westwood platforms. Very Guys and Dolls. But ultimately the most dating thing about this engaging period piece is the car, which looks ancient and cheap throughout.

Peter@sru.co.uk

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Life and Style
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Rocky road: Dwayne Johnson and Carla Gugino play an estranged husband and wife in 'San Andreas'
filmReview: In the face of all-round devastation, even Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson appears a little puny
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Bright lights, big city: Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles by dusk
books
Sport
Harry Kane makes Paul Scholes' Premier League team of the season
footballPaul Scholes on the best players, managers and goals of the season - and the biggest disappointments
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Guru Careers: Marketing Manager / Marketing Communications Manager

£35-40k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Marketing Communicati...

Recruitment Genius: Media Sales Executive - OTE £37,000

£16000 - £37000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The ideal candidate will want t...

Guru Careers: Software Developer / Web Developer

£30 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Software / Web Developer (PHP / MYSQL) i...

Guru Careers: Account Executive

£18 - 20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: An Account Executive is needed to join one...

Day In a Page

Fifa corruption: The 161-page dossier that exposes the organisation's dark heart

The 161-page dossier that exposes Fifa's dark heart

How did a group of corrupt officials turn football’s governing body into what was, in essence, a criminal enterprise? Chris Green and David Connett reveal all
Mediterranean migrant crisis: 'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves,' says Tripoli PM

Exclusive interview with Tripoli PM Khalifa al-Ghweil

'If Europe thinks bombing boats will stop smuggling, it will not. We will defend ourselves'
Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles: How the author foretold the Californian water crisis

Raymond Chandler's Los Angeles

How the author foretold the Californian water crisis
Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison as authorities crackdown on dissent in the arts

Art attack

Chinese artist who posted funny image of President Xi Jinping facing five years in prison
Marc Jacobs is putting Cher in the limelight as the face of his latest campaign

Cher is the new face of Marc Jacobs

Alexander Fury explains why designers are turning to august stars to front their lines
Parents of six-year-old who beat leukaemia plan to climb Ben Nevis for cancer charity

'I'm climbing Ben Nevis for my daughter'

Karen Attwood's young daughter Yasmin beat cancer. Now her family is about to take on a new challenge - scaling Ben Nevis to help other children
10 best wedding gift ideas

It's that time of year again... 10 best wedding gift ideas

Forget that fancy toaster, we've gone off-list to find memorable gifts that will last a lifetime
Paul Scholes column: With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards

Paul Scholes column

With the Premier League over for another year, here are my end of season awards
Heysel disaster 30th anniversary: Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget fateful day in Belgium

Liverpool have seen too much tragedy to forget Heysel

Thirty years ago, 39 fans waiting to watch a European Cup final died as a result of a fatal cocktail of circumstances. Ian Herbert looks at how a club dealt with this tragedy
Amir Khan vs Chris Algieri: Khan’s audition for Floyd Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation, says Frank Warren

Khan’s audition for Mayweather may turn into a no-win situation

The Bolton fighter could be damned if he dazzles and damned if he doesn’t against Algieri, the man last seen being decked six times by Pacquiao, says Frank Warren
Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor