Peter York on Ads: Full-on underclass or clever and retro? Who can say

Lidl

It's everywhere. Not in Big London of course, they couldn't make any money at these rents. But they're everywhere else. "Lee-dirl"; the German supermarket Lidl, the cousin of Aldi and Netto.

It's everywhere. Not in Big London of course, they couldn't make any money at these rents. But they're everywhere else. "Lee-dirl"; the German supermarket Lidl, the cousin of Aldi and Netto.

Lidl is so unsmart, so un-21st-century, so not Choice, and Finest, and Low Salt, and Oak-Smoked, and Jamie Oliver, and all the palaver of middle-class supermarketry. Lee-dirl is dirt cheap and its advertising is primary coloured and jingly and repetitive and everything you're supposed not to do. So much so that it's extremely attractive and will have powerful appeals to the Nathan Barley Shoreditch set (we all wanted that series to work, didn't we?).

Lidl have been running the same basic commercial for ages now. A car pulls up - looking tremendously 1970s, but not on purpose - outside one of Lidl's modestly configured outlets (somewhere rather windblown near a Medway Town, I imagine). Then you get a young woman looking like an anorexic Amanda Holden in a cheap white jacket walking down the primary-coloured aisle pushing her trolley.

That's when they sing "Lee-dirl". It's the Lee-dirl moment and very '70s and Rotters' Club it is too. The rest of the song goes, "Brand new quality, but cheaper". You'd expect supermarket things to be brand new somehow wouldn't you, so what exactly do they mean? There's a long line of soft drinks they say are "up to 50 per cent cheaper". They all look rather feebly bright, in early synthetic, boiled-sweet colours and none of them seems to be quite the brand you're expecting - "Cola" written in a Coke-ish way, and so forth. Is Lee-dirl entirely own-brand, commissioned by Germans and made up in, say, Bulgaria?

On the back of the standard intro and the cheap food (difficult to say how cheap unless you're discounting a big brand or a Known Value Item), Lidl ads feature a wonderfully Lucky Dip range of non-foods. One week it'll be a barbeque, next it'll be one of those wire rack Wardrobe on Wheels affairs (£19.99). Or there's a wicker shelf thing (£24.99). Is it particularly full-on underclass - do the people from Shameless go to Lee-dirl - or rather clever and retro or what?

You certainly see a lot of the Lidl logo which seems to be fashioned from early primary plastics - yellow, blue and red - with the 'i' lying on its side in a naffly desperate way. No wonder the whole thing's such a cult.

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?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Arts and Entertainment
musicOfficial chart could be moved to accommodate Friday international release day
Sport
Wes Brown is sent-off
football
News
i100
Sport
Italy celebrate scoring their second try
six nations
Sport
Glenn Murray celebrates scoring against West Ham
footballWest Ham 1 Crystal Palace 3
Arts and Entertainment
Drake continues to tease ahead of the release of his new album
music
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

Ashdown Group: Junior Business Systems Analyst - High Wycombe - £30,000

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Junior Business Systems Analyst role...

Guru Careers: Talent Manager

£30-35k (P/T - Pro Rata) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienc...

Sauce Recruitment: New Media Marketing Manager - EMEA - Digital Distribution

£35000 - £45000 per annum + up to £45,000: Sauce Recruitment: The Internation...

Recruitment Genius: Marketing / PR / Social Media Executive

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A thriving online media busines...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower