A new advertisement for Virgin’s TiVo on demand service is causing knots in knickers at the BBC. The ad makes a pretty blatant reference to Doctor Who and oh by the way, stars David Tennant. Yeah, like that all accidentally came together.
The BBC wants Virgin to pull the ad as they think Virgin is breaking rules by using the Who aspect to cash in without giving BBC any dues. That, and the BBC doesn’t want to appear as though they endorse outside companies. Virgin, however, insists the commercial is about CEO Sir Richard Branson’s love of exploration. Riiiight.
I think it’s silly of Virgin to deny they aren’t taking advantage of the popularity of Tennant as the Tenth Doctor and the series. If they were worried about it being perceived that way, they wouldn’t have touched time travel in the commercial and included Tennant flipping to the series name and logo. That was foolish. Even though they are refrencing Doctor Who without permission, the BBC can’t deny that this is lots of free publicity for the show. That’s not such a bad outcome.
Check out the commercial after the break and let us know what you think.