Walkers Crisps are a bona fide British institution. Through association with their longtime spokesman and face of the brand Gary Lineker, the snack company has a firm place in the nation’s hearts.
Walkers TV ads have had some hits over the years, featuring Lineker and a host of famous faces. Lineker has been the face of the brand since 1994, thanks to his fame as football’s ‘Mr Nice Guy’ and birthplace of Leicester, where Walkers are also from.
Over the years there have been plenty of crisp-related memorable moments – here’s a list of some of the very best Walkers TV ads…
‘Gazza’ – 1996
The best 90s adverts were often funny, tongue-in-cheek and satirical, and this classic Walkers ad is no exception. In this ad, Gary Lineker is joined by England teammate Paul Gascoigne to watch a football match. Gazza is tempted by Lineker’s bag of crisps, and tries to sneak one out of the bag. Lineker catches him, and crushes his fingers in the bag – triggering an over-the-top fit of tears, poking fun at Gazza’s infamous tears during the 1990 World Cup semi-final.
Crisp In or Crisp Out – 2022
While it might not feature many famous faces, 2022’s Crisp In or Crisp Out campaign makes the list as a top Walkers ad effort. This one had to be included – the advert was apparently amongst the top 3% most effective UK ads in April/May 2022.
Crisps are a household staple of course, from being tucked into school lunchboxes to accompanying many a desktop meal deal. Clearly, the advert’s central question – whether it’s best to have crisps with your sandwich, or in your sandwich – struck a chord with Brits, a famously crisp-loving nation.
All Mariah Wants This Christmas – 2019
A Walkers entry into the Christmas TV ads tradition, this 2019 short takes advantage of one of the most catchy festive tunes of all time. The ad starts with Mariah Carey singing her iconic All I Want For Christmas as part of a videoshoot. During the break, the A-lister distributes outlandish gifts to a bemused TV crew, before heading to the snack table. Grabbing the last bag of Walkers crisps at the same time as an intimidated assistant, the Grammy Award Winner refuses to let go. Clearly she’s a fan of the Pigs in Blankets flavour!
Great British Dinners – 2004
To celebrate the launch of the Walkers Great British Dinners line of crisps, the TV advert needed something special. So, the crisp company turned to celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, and put him in a position UK TV viewers have come to know – angry, and in a kitchen. The ad sees Ramsay on the hunt for his missing bags of crisps, which eventually turn up in the possession of a scared sous chef, played in cameo by Walkers superfan Lineker.
Extra Crunchy – 2010
Featuring a catchy jingle performed by none other than music legend Lionel Richie, this ad to launch the new Walkers Extra Crunchy brand was a hit with audiences. Not only due to the earworm tune that you just can’t get out of your head, but thanks to the unceremonious dumping of Richie through a glass window when he dares to nick one of Lineker’s Extra Crunchy crisps.
Do you have a favourite Walkers TV ad from over the years? Let us know in the comments below!