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Dublin: 16 °C Thursday 6 August, 2020

11 Irish TV ads that defined your childhood

Oh Mr Soooooft.

COME, ALLOW US  to bathe you in a warm glow of nostalgia…

1. This old voice comforted us for some unknown reason

Source: brennansbread/YouTube

There’s just something about the old salt-of-the-earth Brennan’s man that made you want that sliced pan. Or, in this instance, the Whippersnapper.

2. We didn’t know what waffly versatile really meant

Source: Matt H-P/YouTube

But we could sing every word.

The tune that you can’t get out of your head and some of the worst punning in advertising history. Waffly versatile indeed.

3. That Harvey Norman guy

Source: zampakid/YouTube


Well, OK.

4. This festive classic filled our hearts with Penneys hope

Source: Primark/YouTube

*tries to hit high notes* “Penneys, got a whole lot of things for Christmas.”

5. Those Guinness horses that came from nowhere

Source: Alltmor/YouTube

The distinctive black and white look combined with that deep voice just freaked you out as a kid. This ad was launched in 1999 and ran for some time.

6. Actually, Guinness seemed to specialise in intriguing ads

Source: themoaningcow/YouTube

WHY is he dancing? That music. To a child, this whole ad is all sorts of confusing.

7. This ever present baker was a constant companion

Source: Syzy9ial/YouTube


From 1980 to 2002, this ad woke you up every morning – its insane catchiness never leaving you for the rest of the day (and life).

8. This impossibly 90s Barry’s tea effort

Source: BarrysTeaIreland/YouTube

9. And this one from the 00s was slightly confusing

Source: BarrysTeaIreland/YouTube

We could not handle these subtle nods. What DOES she mean? Being captain is a good thing, surely? We give up.

10. Them bones, them bones needed… milk

Source: kazimann/YouTube

Yes, them bones need calcium. Yes, it’s a natural law. We get it.

11. With this ad, you did spoil us

Source: KhaliStar/YouTube

Nobody had any idea what was going on, we all just needed a Ferrero Rocher. Whatever they were. The apparent decadence of it all was hypnotising.

What ads do you remember with a strange fondness? 

More What’s that tune? 11 songs from ads currently plaguing your brain>

More VIDEO: A 1970s guide to selling Guinness to the British>

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About the author:

David Elkin

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