Documentary series created by Applemask (aka Matthew Harris) of Bob the Fish Productions looking at the history of TV advertising in Britain. Episodes usually focus on a specific type of product or service, but occasionally they look at one brand in particular (Not Brand X) or a selection of adverts from a specific commercial break (Have a Break)
Tropes used/discussed in the series:
- Art Shift: The coffee episode shifts from black and white to full colour once Applemask gets the chance to drink his first coffee of the day.
- Cool Car: Applemask points out that car adverts' attempts to invoke this trope don't work on him:"To me, a car is just a box on wheels with some chairs in it and an internal combustion engine [that] probably runs on fairy dust."
- Christmas Episode: Episodes looking at Christmas-related adverts pop up around the Christmas period, as you would expect.
- Mushroom Samba: Applemask concludes that Mellow Birds must be "Amsterdam coffee" when it appears to send Joanna Lumley off into a pleasantly bucolic hallucination.
- Not a Morning Person: Applemask, by his own admission in the coffee episode.
- Shout-Out: There are plenty of these throughout the series:
- "Far be it from me to argue with Patrick When-You-Hear-The-Air-Attack-Warning Allen..."
- "This, on the other hand, is pushing the Alan Partridge button a bit too hard."
- "Let's start from before the beginning, as Morrissey once said," referencing the opening line from the title track of Moz's 1997 album Maladjusted.
- The Nescafé Gold Blend couple are described as being played by "Rupert Giles and Alice Eve's mother." The ads themselves are described as a pretty typical Mills and Boon story.
- The Sainsbury's recipe adverts from the nineties feature a young Catherine ZZZZZZZEEEEETA-JOOOOOOOOOONNNNNNZZZZZ!
- "The voice of Ian McKellen commands you! I'm Gandalf and Magneto, Bitch!"
- "Beer. The cause of and solution to all of life's problems.
- A dystopian-themed McEwan Export advert as described as "cross-pollinating the myth of Sisyphus with 1984 and casting the Observer from MST3K.
- When Jan vankmajers name flashes up on the screen so that viewers will know how to spell it correctly in order to Google it, a snippet of "The Gallery" from Vision On plays in the background.
- "Fear is a perfectly cromulent emotion."
- In the first Halloween episode, Applemask closes out with "Don't have nightmares."