If, like me, you enjoy nothing more than being a satirical little sod and passing comment on some of the lesser grade advertising you see on Irish television, then I’m sure the ad for The Dublin Bus Ghost Tour is one that has been flagged in your database of ‘ads that are so completely wank I cannot fathom how it ever came to be aired‘ for a long time. If you haven’t been fortunate enough to see this masterpiece in recent years, then please watch it now.
I understand Dublin Bus have seen their fair share of losses and driver strike action over the past few years. Ireland’s Economy is finally on the up, but the years preceding this have been a struggle for many – and I guess Dublin Bus was no different. What I’m theorising here is that they needed a new focus to bring in the money; they had already hiked up fares and cut routes so why not try to jazz up some more attention for that other business venture they’ve had skulking around in the background since 1998 while they’re at it?
Enter stage left, The Dublin Ghost Bus.
‘Okay, but now we need a representative figure to speak on behalf of this bus! Someone memorable, someone with character and charm….but also with an element of creep to them. Someone who sets the tone for just how scary this tour is going to get; someone to add an air of intrigue and provoke the Irish republic to want to get onto this damn bus and pay €28 for the pleasure!’
Luckily for them, at that very moment Mick from accounts was was walking by the door of the advertising department and heard the art directors’ frenzied cries:
‘Howayas, couldn’t help but overhear, are yiz doin a new ad for d’ghost bus are yiz? Well me young’fella has a grey rubber mask and black cape combo left over from the Halloween from the trick ‘r’ treatin n’ that. I picked err up in Dealz for €1.49, unbelievable value! D’yze wanna give it a go?’
…And just like Mick from accounts was in denial about his son’s actual Halloween activities that consisted of collecting crates from industrial estates and burning them, Dublin Bus was in denial about A POORLY RUBBER MASKED FACED INDIVIDUAL BEING A GOOD FOREFRONT FOR THIS AD. I mean from a few seconds in it becomes clear that the mouth of this mask is never going to be in sync with whatever sound is coming out of it. Not even close. I guess that is the cross you have to bear when your face is made out of rubber though. What I find most unsettling and spooky is that I can’t tell if they’re actually his hands or not. His narration begins;
Don’t you just love a good ghost story… but what if it was real.. like a real experience in a real place?
And If I took you there? And showed you things in the dark?”
…Like what? Your genitals? Are you going to touch me in the dark? Is this experience going to turn into my own real personal horror story? Is that what you’re getting at here? Because that is the vibe I feel you are getting at, Dublin Bus. The gravelly voice continues:
“…In a graveyard maybe? Or a secret place in Dublin called HELL?”
A secret place in Dublin called hell? So what like O’Connell St? Or the Jervis St Luas stop? Is that where you’re going to assault me?
“…And I took you there in my ghost bus, specially designed to spook you with legends, dark romance and more, MUCH MORE. WHAT THEN?”
Well if by ”Ghost Bus”
you mean: ‘White HiAce van’
and if by: ”Specially designed to spook you with legends, dark romance and MUCH MORE”
you mean: ‘The van has an internal locking system’
Then I would say yeah, we’re definitely well on track to having one scarring experience alright! Anything else I should know?
‘Word of advice, bring a friend, you may need one’
Ah yes, it will be easier to fill out the police report afterwards if I have a witness. Thanks for that Dublin Bus! And then finishing with a final shot of my rubber faced attacker making his scary facial prowess known and a last helping of those T-Rex hands.
What a train-wreck of an ad. I love it.
– Aisling Abbey