David Reviews

 "You're not an artist, Peggy. You solve problems." Don Draper.

Latest Work
    • Tom Marshall hooks up with HunkyDory.TV comedy director Tom Marshall has expanded the directorial options at HunkyDory with the addition of his name to their already impressive roster.
    • Generation GenerateThis sci-fi short for Red Bull offers a different take on the concept of energy.
    • Home is where the hurt is.Stuart Douglas’s beautifully played drama from 2018 hits home more than ever right now.
    • Water World.Water Aid reminds viewers of the origin of rainbows - and the importance of ensuring everyone can have them.
    • Boxed In... with Paul Burke and Sue HiggsIn the first of a new series of podcasts that will soon have its own home outside of DAVID, Paul Burke and Sue Higgs share their top TV boxset tips with Jason Stone.
    • What The What?This slick communication suggests style and substance can, on occasion, coexist quite comfortably
    • Cheque it out.As Covid-19 continues to disrupt the financial sector, TD Bank urge customers to party like it’s 1992… and not for the first time, so to speak.
    • Protect our protectors.This extraordinarily impactful film supports frontline healthcare workers in their bid to force the government into providing badly needed PPE to help protect them against Covid-19.
    • All clapped out.Clapping for the NHS aside... let's look at how we respond to Covid calls to arms.
    • Comfort eating.This eloquent short film by director Libby Burke Wilde sheds light on Blackpool’s Syrian community, and the importance of food to those forced to leave their homeland.
    • A cycle for life.Joe Ogunmokun - a producer at Havas - is using his furlough to 'cycle to France' in his living room to raise money for his friend Ben Chatfield's fight against cancer.
    • When the stars align.ITV’s big guns are on the case to mark Mental Health Awareness Week 2020.
    • Front Line FacesThere's a second epidemic brewing amidst the chaos of Covid-19: a looming avalanche of mental health problems.


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Thank-You Care Takers
18 May 2020

Let's level with each other, as adult citizens of the world with brains: clapping for the NHS and thanking them is a nice gesture, but it in no way compensates for the fact our health service has been defunded year on year by a government which doesn't seem to care... yet places the blame for failures readily at the NHS's door.

DAVID nearly combusts with frustration every night at 8pm when people set off fireworks to praise the NHS, while front line health workers ask people to please stop calling them heroes and actually make corporations pay taxes so 90 year olds don't get celebrated for tottering out miles for something that shouldn't be a charity.

It's extremely tempting to call those required to work right now heroic. That's the national narrative. And in that spirit this film is lovely and deeply emotive - even under normal circumstances - and outside of its quality of production (which is very high) it raises profound questions about whose stories are told.

Shots of current health workers and vintage footage of doctors and nurses change the tone, however. It's poignant and emotive. One can only hope that the more real-life footage of health workers is shown to the public, the more the 'hero' narrative can be destroyed and real funding can begin.

Short Films
"A Taste of Home"
3 mins 20s
18 May 2020

This warm, eloquent short film by director Libby Burke Wilde sheds light on Blackpool’s Syrian community, and the importance of food to those forced to leave their homeland. Much has been left behind, but recipes travel.

The proud cast - despite pining for their “land of paradise” back in Western Asia - are determined to ensure dishes like fattah, yabrak, and tabbouleh thrive on the Lancashire coast and beyond. What’s more, they want to share their culinary zeal with others.

It’s a refreshing (and appetising) twist on the refugee narrative. As one interviewee puts it, “We are not coming here just to sit at home and close the door”. Instead, they want to open people’s eyes to Syrian cuisine.

A cycle for life.

Joe Ogunmokun - a producer at Havas - is using his furlough to 'cycle to France' in his living room to raise money for his friend Ben Chatfield's fight against cancer.

Ogunmokun's original plan was to cycle to France for real but Covid-19 happened and that forced him to adapt his fundraising plans and, instead of enjoying the French countryside as he raised money to extend his friend's life, he's enjoying the slightly more prosaic charms of his Wimbledon home.


"The Call"
18 May 2020

Mental Health Awareness Week 2020 arrives slap bang in the middle of a nationwide lockdown, in case you haven’t noticed, and some viewers are now at breaking point. Thank goodness ITV’s big guns are on the case then.

Thanks to the power of video conferencing (and some post-production jiggery pokery), stars including Ant & Dec, Lorraine Kelly, Tinie Tempah, and Holly Willoughby urge viewers to reach out to one another sooner rather than later. After all, some lives may depend on it.

The stakes have gotten significantly higher since the channel’s first ‘Britain Get Talking’ ad in 2019, and this feels like a worthy response to the crisis. The novelty of celeb-heavy Zoom calls may be wearing thin, but it’s a call worth making given the circumstances.

Laura Hyde Foundation
"No Mask for Mental Health"
18 May 2020

There's a second epidemic brewing amidst the chaos of Covid-19: a looming avalanche of mental health problems. While all of us have dealt with heightened anxiety over the past few months, front line workers have had far more intense crises to handle.

The persistent use of military terminology surrounding disease doesn't help. Patients 'battle' the virus and nurses 'wage war' despite a desperately underfunded health service, implying that those who die, somehow, just didn't fight hard enough. This makes it extra difficult for medical personnel to seek help for mental distress - if they step away from the battle, are they a coward?

This dilemma is neatly illustrated in this affecting film, which sees nurses wearing face masks explain a little of what they've been going through. The depersonalising effect of the mask is especially poignant, as their pain stays hidden behind both a physical and mental barrier. Those chiding teachers about being 'too cowardly' to prematurely open schools, take note.


On This Day
(1-25 of 25)

"In The Kitchen"
31 May 2013
Ikea ads are good, aren't they? This magnificent piece shows with utmost style the importance our kitchens have for us: it notes everything from quiet moments shared in domestic chores to that first house party to the setting for impromptu sex. Set to a rollicking track, it oozes confidence and charm.

Epsom Derby
31 May 2013
Lovely trail for the Epsom Derby with an unexpected angle. Two speed cops are having a slow day, and half-heartedly try to entertain themselves while waiting for traffic to pass. There's everything from nostril-poking to a Partridge-esque reference to scotch egg-breath before three 'vehicles' take them by surprise.

31 May 2013
This commercial for Carling harks back to the brand's golden era in more ways than one and it's just possible that the line: "It's good, but it's not quite Carling" will enter the lexicon. This is a relatively understated opener and we suspect that's a deliberate part of a plan to quickly establish the campaign.

"Bolt to Brazil"
31 May 2014
Is there no end to Usain Bolt's charm? Inspired by the football match on TV in his local bar, he whips out his Visa card, flies to Brazil and makes his way to the stadium via a kick-around with some kids on the beach and a little shimmy in Rio. That man can move. But we discover he isn't planning on just watching the game... as the little mascot at his side realises.

Paddy Power
31 May 2016
Before a ball has even been kicked, Euro 2016 has been a success story for the home nations and the Republic of Ireland... well, with one notable omission. Having fallen at the qualification hurdle, Scotland won't be scrambling to find their passports to France, but advertising court jesters Paddy Power are keen to get the Tartan Army onside in the name of "la bantz".

Deus Ex: Mankind Divided
"The Mechanical Apartheid"
3 mins 30s
31 May 2016
This trailer for upcoming video game 'Deus Ex: Mankind Divided' renders the title's lofty themes of transhumanism and segregation in compelling live-action. As the world embraces the benefits of augmentation, the cracks begin to appear in disturbing fashion. Ethical debates soon boil over into outbreaks of 'us versus them' violence, and the game's setting takes on a worryingly familiar aesthetic as humanity turns on its own.

31 May 2016
When we heaped praise on AMV's Stirling Gravitas work for Tena, we expressed the hope that the agency might be allowed to take a similarly edgy approach to products aimed at women. And have they? By heck, they have! This is a simply fantastic piece of work reflecting an up-to-date approach without a hint of condescension.

31 May 2017
With a 75% share of the sports drink market in the USA, Gatorade isn't really competing against other products in their sector... they're competing against tap water. And this brilliantly executed piece of 'in camera' work demonstrates a willingness to take the fight to H2O and kick its ass.

UEFA Women's Football
"Come Play"
1 min 37s
31 May 2017
Ahead of the 2017 UEFA Women's Champions League final, Europe's football bigwigs release this pacy film designed to help women's football kick on. Jumping between multiple matches and kickabouts, the action always returns to one protagonist. After making her debut, animated flourishes convey her growing confidence.

"Driving Test"
31 May 2017
This empowering film by Nick Ball has a young woman facing a driving test with confidence bordering on recklessness. Instead of nervously negotiating the course - as one might expect - she uses an array of tricks which appear to loosen the contents of the examiner's colon as he tries to hide the terror he's experiencing in the passenger seat.

Anti Gun Crime
"Pulling The Trigger"
31 May 2006
If you keep quiet about gun crime you might just as well pull the trigger yourself, according to this film financed by Southwark Council which hammers its point home by showing a mother shooting dead one of her children at the dinner table. Rated 18 this film is only showing in cinemas.

31 May 2007
The culmination of an advertising event which took place in Reykjavik last year when BBH and The Viral Factory used helicopters to 'walk' a giant marionette clad in Levi's jeans. Unsurprisingly, the mobile phone footage of the event was swiftly to be found on YouTube and has been edited into an ad.

31 May 2008
There are echoes of last year's Trident Gum campaign in this effort for the American beer. A pair of young white men are inspired by the likeness of the beer to launch into an ill-advised rap. Although this is plainly tongue-in-cheek, the absence of a pay-off allows the naive to imagine it is not intended to be ironic.

Sky Sports
"Get Behind Them - The Ashes"
31 May 2010
One of a series of trials for Sky Sports' output which encourages us to get behind the participants. Slow motion is used to good effect here as people mimic Graeme Swann's habit of chucking the ball to himself as he gets ready to bowl.

Sky Sports
"Get Behind Them - The Ryder Cup"
31 May 2010
One of a series of trials for Sky Sports' output which encourages us to get behind the participants. Slow motion is used to good effect to show people mimicking Ian Poulter's motions as he knocks in a crucial putt at The Ryder Cup.

"Rachael's Invite"
31 May 2010
Some more neatly-judged camp nonsense on behalf of the mobile phone network. This time we're introduced to Rachael, who seems to have an appetite for action movies and has recreated a typical scene from one in her house with improvised props.

"Dark Road"
31 May 2010
This striking test film by John Turner, Nice Shirt's latest acquisition, would represent a radical departure for the German car manufacturer if they were to adopt its style. Horror movie iconography abounds as the car makes its way down the dark road.

"Forts, Pyramids & Castles"
31 May 2012
Cute happenings in the living room where children play gleefully on furniture provided by the advertised retailer. If DFS's advertising continues along these lines, DAVID is going to have to select a different whipping boy to represent 'lowest common denominator' advertising.

"Spiffing Finest Foods"
31 May 2012
Another ad for Jubilee-related offerings that references the era when Princess Elizabeth became queen. Blue supermarket's Finest range is rather spiffing according to the monochromatic testimonials from the formally-attired advocates.

31 May 2013
This rather lovely montage demonstrates the diversity of programmes on the advertised channel, illustrating as it does the diversity of the audience itself. Children pushing themselves to their limits to achieve goals; children helping others, facing up to adversity and more besides.

"Dash for the Sun"
31 May 2013
Seldom can an ad have been more timely than this celebration of the meagre British summer. As the Met Office announces one of the coldest springs on record and we wait with bated breath to see if summer will deliver something more impressive, we can completely relate to the protagonists pouncing on any hint of sun in this ad for Warehouse.

Sky +
31 May 2013
This is effective - you're not left in any doubt that as a subscriber you can now watch Sky TV on a tablet away from home. After single-handedly securing the rights of Gurkhas to retire in the UK, Lumley's star has never been higher and she's the ideal person to communicate these attributes to the older generation.

30 May 2014
Elvis is back in the building - thanks to the return of the McDonald's Memphis burger in this reprise of last year's ad. A series of bemused Brits gawp at the unlikely sight of good ole boys cruising down the river, yellow cabs gridlocking the roads, and pompom-waving cheerleaders bringing some colour to a genteel game of cricket - all in the name of the foodstuff that caused the King's demise.

31 May 2014
This ad taps into a hopeful sense that England might surprise us at the World Cup if they can just believe in themselves enough. The film has been attractively done and although it could do with being less portentous, there's surely a place for unbridled patriotism as we ready ourselves for another burst of shattered optimism.

31 May 2015
This is a classy piece of work for Apricot and one that helps set them apart ahead of the summer fashion rush. Pastel shaded set design and a silky rendition of 'Can't Take My Eyes Off You' make for an ad that's pleasing to both the eye and the ear while maintaining an ambiance of cool from start to finish. A confident effort from the online retailer.

On This Day
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David Reviews - Lovely Lenzie Ltd, Woodbourne House, Seven Sisters, Lenzie, G66 3AW. Telephone: +44 141 776 7766. Editor: Jason Stone.