Bad day at the office 10

Pigeon Ukulele Blues

Opening and closing stills from UK Cash Cowboys’ brilliant ground-breaking new TV ad, ‘Pigeon Ukulele Blues’

UK Cash Cowboys challenge the big banks with… a pigeon

UK Cash Cowboys set tongues wagging in the advertising world today with the launch of our bold new TV campaign, ‘Pigeon Ukulele Blues’.

The ad, rushed out by our new agency Pratt, Rypov, Igo, Charlatan, Konman & Shytter, is being hailed as a masterpiece of post-post-modernist film-making by everyone from Quentin Tarantino’s neighbour to the bloke who lives down the road from me, who hammered on my front window this evening and silently mouthed the words, ‘WHAT THE FUCK?’, then wondered off into the darkness shaking his head.

BBC art critic, member of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts and all round cultural sage Mark Kimodo, called UK Cash Cowboys’ ground-breaking TV spot the advertising equivalent of Tracey Emin’s ‘My Bed’.

“It’s right up there with James Joyce’s impenetrable masterpiece of gibberish, Finnegan’s Wake,” said Kimodo, “which nobody in the western world still understands to this day, even though it was written almost a hundred years ago”.

There is talk of bringing the World War II code-breaking centre of Bletchley Park out of mothballs and inviting Benedict Comberbatch to stand in for the late great code-breaker and father of the modern computer Alan Turing, to help crack the deeply puzzling, “unfathomable” ad.

The ad, which features a feral pigeon pogoing up and down on a wet pavement, rapping to a ska version of George Formby’s ‘When I’m Cleaning Windows’, leaves a tantalising clue in its tagline – ‘There’s pigeons, and there’s UK Cash Cowboys pigeons’, but early efforts to crack its meaning have defeated philosophers and Times Crosswords experts up and down the country.

A superficial reading of the ad might be taken in by the brilliantly cheap, tacky, tawdry, cheesy, kitsch, low-budget, low production values, and the dramatic tension between the anthropomorphic overtones and punk rock undertones, to infer subliminally that UK Cash Cowboys are positioning themselves as a bunch of shitty pigeons on a wet pavement in the middle of nowhere. But as cultural gurus around the globe are already pointing out, the flaw in that analysis is that UK Cash Cowboys are supposed to be a bank, selling banking products to customers.

As Kimodo proclaimed, “if you were a bank trying to build your brand, I can’t think of many TV ads that would have been less effective than this. If you sliced up every TV ad that had ever been made in the history of advertising, threw them all in the air and spliced together random bits of ads in no specific order, the result would probably make more sense than this. Perhaps, after all, that is the ad’s true genius.”

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