Peter York on Ads: I can't see this product doing anything for my aching back

K-Y Warming Liquid

The Mentholatum Deep Heat commercials of the 1970s have stuck in millions of mature British minds where other things - such as home address - now prove terribly elusive. This is because the resonant bass voice-over said "D-e-e-p Heat" in an echo-chamber, in a drawn-out sort of way. I can't remember what it showed, probably a broad back being massaged with it. I imagined it as a warm version of Vicks VapoRub, but the colour of raspberry jelly.

The Mentholatum Deep Heat commercials of the 1970s have stuck in millions of mature British minds where other things - such as home address - now prove terribly elusive. This is because the resonant bass voice-over said "D-e-e-p Heat" in an echo-chamber, in a drawn-out sort of way. I can't remember what it showed, probably a broad back being massaged with it. I imagined it as a warm version of Vicks VapoRub, but the colour of raspberry jelly.

New K-Y Warming Liquid must be something of the same kind, so it's surprising to find it advertised rather too late to catch the concerned, elderly backache sufferer who'll be in bed by 10pm.

This commercial is, so I strongly suspect, foreign - probably American (it has a man reading a broadsheet newspaper "Metro" section with that old-fashioned design you get in North America. The headline says something like "Man arraigned in stolen check case", but the ad has been re-rendered into British with a giggly voice-over.

Everything about this commercial is giggly - the voice-over says "create a gentle warming sensation on ... contact ... there's never been anything quite like it". At this point there is a great deal of eye contact between the female presenter who talks to camera and the male newspaper reader, unnecessary if you ask me. The woman has the Notting Hill, thirtysomething look, aspiring to the elegance of, say, the BBC's incomparable Francine Stock. However - and this is something I cannot imagine Ms Stock doing - she squeezes a drop of the warming liquid from the red nozzle on to her palm and says something about how "it takes work to keep a relationship alive". It's the kind of thing American women say. But what does it really mean?

The whole thing is tricked up to suggest a sophisticated metropolitan couple's lifestyle of a kind that the ultimate K-Y consumers, Darby and Joan in their cottage gardens, will not thank the K-Y company for. All this suggestive hoo-ha seems entirely misplaced for what is simply a new, improved "personal lubricant", or, in plain English, a back rub. They suggest visiting their website www.ky.com, but I imagine all except the most arthritically afflicted will give it a miss.

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
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Guru Careers: Account Executive / Account Manager

£18 - 20k + Benefits: Guru Careers: An Account Executive / Account Manager is ...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Social Media Account Writers

£12000 - £13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This social media management pr...

Ashdown Group: Deputy Editor (Magazine Publishing) - Wimbledon - £23-26K

£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Deputy Editor - Wimbledon...

Ashdown Group: Editor (Magazines/Publishing) - Wimbledon - £26-30K

£26000 - £30000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Editor (Magazines/Publish...

Day In a Page

Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones
Theme parks continue to draw in thrill-seekers despite the risks - so why are we so addicted?

Why are we addicted to theme parks?

Now that Banksy has unveiled his own dystopian version, Christopher Beanland considers the ups and downs of our endless quest for amusement
Tourism in Iran: The country will soon be opening up again after years of isolation

Iran is opening up again to tourists

After years of isolation, Iran is reopening its embassies abroad. Soon, there'll be the chance for the adventurous to holiday there
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Transfer window: Ten things we learnt

Ten things we learnt from the transfer window

Record-breaking spending shows FFP restraint no longer applies
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent