Tag Archives: re-invention

We need to talk about Martin Brennan

Every fortnight, at the back of Private Eye, there’s a big advert for the Brennan JB7 and an introduction to its founder Martin Brennan, ‘the man who re-invented the hi-fi’.

The advert is invariably accompanied by a photograph of Martin Brennan.


I worry about Martin. For a man who has re-invented the hi-fi, he doesn’t look very happy.

Then again, what do I know? Maybe this is what men who re-invent stuff look like. Perhaps he’s too busy to smile because he’s thinking about how he’s going to re-invent the video recorder. Or maybe he’s genuinely sad because he’s realised that Sony have seen his idea and will make far more money out of it than he will.

Or perhaps the pic is meant to guilt-trip us into buying the Brennan JB7. Martin is re-inventing the advert. Instead of TV commercials of Jamie Oliver and all his friends running around looking happy, implying that if we shop at Sainsbury’s we will also be able to run around looking happy with friends, Sainsbury’s will just use a picture of Jamie looking sad or pensive, implying that if we don’t shop there an ennui-overcome Jamie will top himself.

Actually, that would probably backfire, wouldn’t it?

Whatever the reason, I’m tempted to buy a Brennan JB7 if only to see if in the advert for the next issue Martin is smiling a little bit, with his eyes if not his actual mouth. But instead I stick Private Eye in the recycling and start thinking about ways to re-invent the sandwich maker.