Dissecting every bullshit point from that 'back to the office' Tube ad 1 year ago

Dissecting every bullshit point from that 'back to the office' Tube ad

"Proper bants"

You've all likely seen it by now. The ad on the Tube extolling the virtues of going back to the office at a time when more than 1,000-a-day are still contracting coronavirus.


The ad seeks to tap into our inherent love of the office. Our love of our colleagues. Our love of getting up early and making a salary hundreds of times less than the owners of the companies we work for.

We don't do it for the money, we do it for the buzz of the office, right?

Except we don't. We do it because we need to. And what this ad accidentally does is distil the inherent cynicism of the modern working world to the point of trying to brainwash us into thinking we will actually lose a part of our soul if we don't go back to the office.

It's all shite. Every single point. Below, we explain why.

tube ad

Hearing an alarm


This is literally the worst fucking thing in the world. No one likes their alarm. It is a harbinger of doom. That’s why we snooze them 20 times before we wake up and, once we do wake up, lie looking at our ceiling wondering what the fuck we did to deserve another day at work. An alarm is an end to sleep; the greatest fucking thing in the world. Why lead with this?

Putting on a tie

This is just “wearing clothes” but using different words. Wearing clothes is not a treat, it is merely a part of life. If we leave the house without clothes we will get arrested. And wearing a tie is probably the least enjoyable part of wearing clothes. Again, nonsense.

Carrying a handbag

Good news, ladies! Now that you have to go back out into the world, a world in which your work clothes almost certainly don't have pockets, you can go back to being forced to carry all your stuff in a bag!



What about them? They are people. Why not add “bus drivers” to it?

Caffeine-filled air

Kinda weird phrasing, 'the smell of coffee' would work but 'caffeine-filled air' sounds like there was a disaster at the Nescafe factory and now you can't breathe without having heart palpitations.


Taking a lift

Yeah, who doesn’t love an elevator? A claustrophobic tin box in which you are forced to stand next to people - during a fucking pandemic by the way - all the while trying to avoid eye contact. What a treat.

Seeing your second family

We have to go to work. We have to commute. We have to go to an office five days a week. All to earn money so that we don’t starve to death. To earn money to give too much of it to a landlord who would not think twice about evicting us. So they can give money to someone else. And they can give money to someone else. Not to come over all 'teenagers after reading the Communist Manifesto’, but we are cogs in a machine. It doesn’t have to be this way.


And now you’re asking me to consider my colleagues my ‘second family’? Fuck off. I like them, but I am contractually obliged to spend time with them.

Water cooler conversations

Not only are water cooler conversations shite, this ad seems to forget that they are literally just a means of escaping the mundanity which has become working in an office on a daily basis.

“Did you see the game last night?”

“Which one?”

“You know, the big fixture. The reds against the blues, what a contest.”


“Are you really sad too?”


“Ok, see you later.”

Proper bants

The only people who use the term “proper bants” are the sort of wankers who possess the least amount of “bants” anyone on earth could possibly possess.

The boss’s jokes

This copywriter must have been after a pay rise. The boss’s jokes are useless, often deeply inappropriate and the only reason we laugh at them is because of the corporate structure of fear that we’ll lose our jobs if we don’t.

Plastic plants

Nothing sums up the macabre beauty of this ad like the inclusion of plastic plants. Literally something fake and damaging to the earth masquerading as something which benefits the world.

Office gossip

Sorry, but I really fucking don’t miss listening to Frank from accounts' insistence that Anthony in marketing is a 'stuck up prick who won’t stop talking about his trip to Lake Como' If I want to listen to vocal expressions of people’s own personal insecurities and neuroses, I’ll just call my mates.

Those weird carpets

Ah yes, nothing we love more than walking along the cheapest kind of carpet in the world, and one that makes us accidentally give people electric shocks when we interact with them.

Face-to-face meetings

Those brilliant face-to-face meetings where it takes everyone five minutes to actually say anything of note, before agreeing that you’d all made great progress and that you’d “circle back” on this later in the day.

Only to repeat the process ten fucking times before anything “actionable” is decided.

Not having to make lunch

Sorry, this just translates to "spending £2 on an egg sandwich at Pret". I have eggs and bread at home, thanks.



Not dignifying either of these with a response. They are email functions ffs. Why not add "Junk Mail" to it?

Accidentally replying-all

Lol, don’t you miss the excruciating moment of fear when you send an email to absolutely everyone and you have to check back through to make sure you didn’t call anyone a c**t? Great craic.

Hearing buzzwords

We hear all of these words multiple times a day over Zoom from the comfort of our homes. Why do I need to put on a suit and travel 45 minutes to hear someone say 'blue sky thinking' 15 times?

Leaving early for a cheeky afternoon in the sun

Literally the only good thing on here. Are you actually trying to convince people to come back to the office by ending the list with “and you get to leave the office”? Ignoring the fact that, for most of us who aren’t a boss, leaving the office early will - wait for us - get us the fucking sack. Piss off you cynical pricks.