Years ago I was talking to Peter Souter about a commercial AMV had done for Dunlop tyres.

Tony Kaye had shot it beautifully, it won a lot of awards, and it had a great Velvet Underground track.

It opened on a car crossing a viaduct as grand pianos came towards it.

It drove around them.

Cut to a bald, naked fat man throwing fireballs at the car, it drives around them.

Cut to primitive ethnic children rolling thousands of ball bearings at the car.

It drives around them.

Super: Expect the unexpected.

He asked me what I thought of it.

I said I thought was an incredibly stylish piece of film.

I just thought as an ad, it could work harder.

He asked what I meant.

I said I thought the line, “Expect the unexpected” could be more branded.

He asked me to elaborate.

I said I didn’t think tyres were a style purchase.

I thought tyres were a distress purchase.

You didn’t sit at home thinking you wished you had more stylish tyres on your car.

What happened was you went to the garage when you needed tyres.

The mechanic asked what kind you wanted and you said, “What do you suggest?”

So that’s the pressure point for advertising.

The interchange between the mechanic and the customer.

Now supposing you kept the film and soundtrack exactly as they were.

Didn’t change a frame.

Just made it work harder against that pressure point.

So the commercial opens, as it does, on the car coming over a viaduct.

Grand pianos roll towards it.

(Super: BIN THERE)

The car swerves around the grand pianos, unharmed.

(Super: DUN THAT)

Then a bald, naked fat man, painted gold, throws fireballs at the car.

(Super: BIN THERE)

The car steers around the fireballs, unharmed.

(Super: DUN THAT)

Then primitive children roll thousands of ball bearings at the car.

(Super: BIN THERE)

The car swerves around the ball bearings, unharmed.

(Super: DUN THAT)

The car drives of into the distance.

(DUN THAT changes to DUNLOP)

So, without changing a frame of the film, the strap line for the campaign becomes:


Now that can run on T-shirts, which mechanics could wear.

BIN THERE – DUN THAT on the front.

DUNLOP on the back.

You could shoot Pirelli type calendars of pinups, for the garage walls

With BIN THERE – DUN THAT over the photographs.

Suddenly you have much more purchase at point-of-sale.

It’s blue-collar language, like The Sun.

So much more relevant to mechanics, who become brand advocates.

DUNLOP as a brand gets more traction here than all other tyres put together.

That’s what I meant by working harder.

The film was beautifully shot.

“Expect the unexpected” was a good line.

But it isn’t inextricably linked to Dunlop.

It could be for Michelin, Goodyear, or Pirelli.

Whereas you certainly couldn’t remember BIN THERE – DUN THAT as Pirelli, Michelin, or Goodyear.

Anyway, Peter said it was interesting, but not really AMV’s style.

I think he thought it was a bit crude.

He was probably right.

Crude, but effective.

But then I would say that, wouldn’t I?

Years earlier David Abbott had written a press ad in Campaign saying:


Now you know.