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If you get most of your British TV from services like Acorn TV, BritBox, PBS Masterpiece, and Best of British TV, you're missing out one of the best parts of British television – the quirky, often hilarious adverts. Luckily, most of them are freely available to watch online – after all, what company would argue with more free exposure?
We've gathered some of our favorite British adverts here for your viewing pleasure. Feel free to share those you've enjoyed in the comments!
Three.co.uk is a phone and internet provider in the UK, and they've done a great job milking cuteness for all it's worth. Exhibit A: The sad puppets of “When Stuff Sucks”.
There's not much of a commercial message to this advert, and that's precisely why it's so great. It's just a cute Shetland pony dancing around an island with lots of great scenery.
And of course, we can't forget the “Borrow My Corgi” campaign to coincide with the new season of The Crown…
No discussion of funny British commercials would be complete without Money Supermarket. In the last few years, their dancing men ads have gone viral around the world and attracted thousands of complaints to the Advertising Standards Authority. The adverts were the creation of the UK's largest independent ad agency, Mother, which has offices in London, New York, and Buenos Aires.
More recent ads for Money Supermarket have been a bit less racy but no less over-the-top. In 2017, they debuted a He-man and Skeletor Dirty Dancing parody, shown below.
Their most recent ad features a little army man abandoning his post and dancing around to celebrate saving at Money Supermarket.
Sun Bingo Are You Gonna Bingo?
There are actually two versions of this amusing ad – a 30 second spot and an extended 2:00 version that includes a rapping horse. Somehow this one manages to be both tacky and totally catchy.
The Great British Bake Off
I spotted this one quite recently on Channel 4. It's a long-ish promo video for the upcoming season of The Great British Bake Off, and it's awfully hard not to feel bad for some of those baked goods…
Young Director Award
This one's a few years old now, but it's still every bit as amusing. I won't say any more so as not to spoil it.
Virgin Media Tivo
This one manages to combine David Tennant with a pile of adorable cats – so I'm not sure how it's managed to get just 2 million or so views.
Carling Black Label
When you need something that's “just the right amount of British”…
Carling's been doing funny adverts for quite some time, as evidenced by this 1980s squirrel commercial.
What's Your Favorite Funny British Commercial?
Have a favorite we haven't listed here? Let us know – and if you enjoy British Christmas commercials, check out the posts we did the last two years: