Argos petrol station ad

The Argos ads are works of some cunning. For only the British could love Argos, which is like shopping reinvented by the civil service. The faffing with smeary catalogues, hobbit ballpoints and forms; the baleful queues eyeing the struggles of temporary seasonal staff with increasing tetchiness… It’s what British Christmases are made of. These ads, however, are brilliant. For of course focusing on the actual purgatorial horror of the Argos shopping experience is clearly not a starter.

Instead they have the sheer gall to ridicule alternative shopping options. So in one we have the idea that you might like your presents wrapped. The absurdity! Or, in the latest one for the Argos online store, that the only possible alternative to cyber faffing is to raid a petrol station at midnight on Christmas eve. It works though, by thunder. The casting is excellent, and the colours all drained of vibrancy. And perfectly topped off with the Elizabeth Duke twinkle of Stephen Fry’s voiceover. One of the best examples of turning a weakness into a strength you’ll see.