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In the realm of unlikely connections, it is worth noting that while David Beckham was rising to be the most marketable and recognizable athlete in history, he filmed a Brylcreem advertisement at Brentford’s former stadium, Griffith Park.

Segueing perfectly into Beckham’s four-part Netflix docuseries, viewers are treated to glimpses of his “unveiling” by Brylcreem in 1997. If you were a devoted Manchester United fan or an ardent Beckham enthusiast back then, receiving a Brylcreem package adorned with a mug featuring Beckham’s iconic pose in the England kit was one of the most dependable Christmas gifts you could hope for. It’s safe to assume that some girls may have coveted the present purely for the mug itself.

That youthful charisma which captivated thousands of kids who met Beckham in the 90s is still palpable in his current conversations for the docuseries.

As a starstruck eight-year-old, this writer had the chance to meet Beckham in January 1997. The crowd that surrounded Beckham was so overwhelming that there was a lingering fear he wouldn’t have the time to sign my autograph book. Desperately, I turned to my parents and voiced my concern. In a heartwarming moment, the 21-year-old Beckham overheard my distress and reassuringly exclaimed, “Don’t worry, mate,” while affectionately patting me on the head. I still treasure that autograph to this day.

Others share similar anecdotes of their encounters, whether it be stumbling upon him in a store like Mothercare or Clinton Cards. In one instance, he sought advice from a woman on which children’s cutlery to choose for his son, Brooklyn. She recommended the Winnie the Pooh set, and Beckham promptly purchased it. The lady only discovered she had interacted with David Beckham when asked about their exchange at the checkout counter (he had been wearing a hat).

Despite reaching such levels of PR management and global fame that it’s conceivable people in the Amazonian rainforest have heard of him, Beckham has managed to retain his approachability. It’s easy to be skeptical at times, but his working-class values instilled by his parents, Ted and Sandra, still form the bedrock of his “brand.”


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