[SIGCIS-Members] John Cleese Compaq tv commercials

James Sumner james.sumner at manchester.ac.uk
Sat Aug 10 12:48:48 PDT 2019

These are a wonderful window into their time.

The "bonnie Scotland" commercial (starts 00:37) is particularly 
interesting. Since the mid-1960s, in a climate of strong pressure to 
protect the UK's domestic industry, both IBM UK and Honeywell had run 
campaigns positioning themselves as meaningfully British manufacturers, 
often with reference to their production plants in Scotland. I wonder if 
the joke was directly inspired by such campaigns. (There's certainly 
some fairly involved commentary on familiar advertising tropes 
throughout the campaign. "Bonnie Scotland" is actually a parody of a 
parody, with the nondescript bare background collapsing to reveal the 
authentic scenery. Some of Cleese's Australian commercials from around 
the same time involve more obvious subversions: 


On 10/08/2019 10:14, Joly MacFie wrote:
> https://youtu.be/Xj1hpoePXkg
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