New York - "At least he isn't wearing that Hobbitesque Dildo Baggins beanie hat," was how one Manhattan fragrance consultant put it about Brad Pitt's latest reincarnation as a perfume industry troll.
"But that horrid little goatee of his just has to go, it's so pipe-and-slippers only over-60s matrons would want a dab of his damned scent behind their, er, ears."
The Hollywood movie star's foray into the rarefied world of French perfume advertising is an industry first 'and one for which he should have had a damned good shave' according to audience response comments to the televised campaign.
Featuring a long, 'existentialist' rant ['It's not a journey... every journey ends but we go on...the world burns and we burn with it....er, turns! Turn with it!'...] the TV commercial is said to baffle 'anyone not high on combustible substances'.
In London where the campaign has kicked off the lucrative pre-Christmas sales market Pitt's Chanel No 5 ad is being compared to French ex-footballer Eric Cantona's 1996 Eurostar TV ad rant.
Philosophizing out aloud ['So I ask myself, does a bird in a cage sing as sweetly as a bird who is free?'] to a packed First Class carriage, Cantona tries to pull in punters who look like they wished they'd flown QueasyJet as usual.
The ad eventually became a icon among honeymooning civil partnershippers hoping to sneak a couple of days of matrimonial bliss in Gay Paree.
This morning a PR source close to Pitt said the agency is unaware of any negative feedback for the 90-second ad 'and that Brad Pitt is an international superstar who happens to love French perfume'.
A 15ml bottle of the precious liquid retails for around $200.