Milk Tray man: from the Caramel Bunny to the gorilla, Cadbury's best TV ads

The new Milk Tray ad is the latest in a long line of successful Cadbury ad campaigns

Clare Hutchison
Friday 09 October 2015 17:43
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Original Milk Tray ad

Carbury is on the hunt for a new Milk Tray man – or woman – to feature in a television advert, breaking a 13-year hiatus for the polo neck-clad hero.

When the Milk Tray man first appeared in 1968, he was styled as a kind of James Bond character, leaping off bridges onto moving trains and diving into shark infested waters.

The new Milk Tray ad is the latest in a long line of successful Cadbury ad campaigns

Cadbury have said they want the new Milk Tray man to be more thoughtful and generous than his macho predecessor and have called for people to apply for the post with a TV campaign featuring James Coombes which will be shown during ITV’s The Chase on Friday night.

Cadbury will be hoping to add the new Milk Tray man to a string of ad hits in recent years, including:

The drum-playing Gorilla

A gorilla playing the drums to Phil Collins' In the Air Tonight.

Not what you might ordinarily link with a bar of Dairy Milk, but by all accounts a huge success for the company.

Aired in 2007, the 90-second commercial masterminded by London-based agency Fallon aimed to entertain, as well as promote, and was a viral success story.

It followed bad press linked to a salmonella scare and was adapted for England's Rugby World Cup campaign that year, with message to the team beamed onto on the bass drum.

It won a number of awards, including the Film Grand Prix Lion at Cannes Lions in 2008 and was credited with pushing sales up 7%.

The suped up egg'n'spoon

This choreographed sequence advertised Cadbury's Egg'n'Spoon snack and garnered a legion a followers.

It remains the most watched video on Cadbury's YouTube channel, and the company even created a how-to video for fans wishing to emulate the ads slick moves.

The Flake

Only crumbliest, chocolate tasiest chocolate... tastes like chocolate never tasted before.

It's just what you need when you lose a paddle canoeing, get drenched by a waterfall and find yourself in a cave.

But who are we to argue with what has become one of Cadbury's classic ads?

The Airport Trucks

In the same vein as the gorilla ad, Cadbury wanted another piece of entertainment.

Fallon landed upon a high-speed race between airport trucks with a Queen soundtrack.

But even with its high-quality production and bang-on choreography, it couldn't quite live up to the unexpected gorilla masterpiece.

The Caramel Bunny

The Caramel Bunny was a fixture of the 1980s and 90s.

Using the classic tale of the hare and the tortoise, Cadbury sold its chocolate coated caramel bar with the help of the animated rabbit and her “Take it easy” tagline.

Cadbury obviously missed her influence and she was revived in 2009 with a string of adverts using the a new catchphrase: “Still got it”.

The Fingers

Agency Adam+Eve were resposible for this model-based, 60-second long sequence involving models of Cadbury's fingers.

Directed by Simon Willows, it shows a Finger models taking on various challenges.

See how it was made here.

The Milk Tray man

For everything you need to know about the competition to become the new chocolate hero or heroine, click here

Or if you are already decided on it and are over 18, register your interest – or nominate a thoughtful, yet dashing acquaintance, here.

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