Stop It, Commercials

Catchy Jingle, Verizon.

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on March 7, 2010

If you’re part of GENERATION AWESOME TWITTER (born after 1993) and would like to know where that jingle came from originally, just search “Big Red” on YouTube, which can be done on your Verizon 3G wireless device. Look it up anywhere: The city (where anyone who would want this phone resides) or on a Wyoming ranch (where no one who wants this phone resides).

It should be noted that Verizon gets you. Each and every one of you. All of you web surfers watching Today’s Big Thing or browsing through sundry newspapers online or clicking StumbleUpon for an hour or so waiting to liveblog the Oscars at The AV Club’s website. What Verizon wants to give you is the power to “download stupid stuff much better” anytime and anywhere, no matter how inappropriate.

-Is your dad annoying you in his attempts to be a father? Ignore him with “David After The Dentist”!

-Are you desperately trying to get fired from your hourly wage job in this terrible employment market? Piss off your boss with The Huffington Post!

Verizon provides you all with a service promised to damage relationships, both business and personal, like a heroin-addled mistress that can be carried around in your pocket and cries out whenever it craves attention or a fix.

In addition to commandeering another product’s jingle (changing everything except the name of the original product, curiously enough), this commercial is also the lesser of two “on a horse” ads. Old Spice FTW.

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McDonald’s: Over 9 Billion Divorces Served

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on February 28, 2010

To celebrate the 2010 Winter Olympics in exquisite Vancouver, British Columbia, the various sponsors have stood upon the snowy mountaintops and cried up in a single voice: EAT SHIT, DADS.

This message shines most brightly in ads from two entities: The first, a series of Proctor and Gamble spots celebrating the moms who guide their children through lives that lead to the Olympics (completely at the request of the children, I’m sure) with no father in sight. I like to picture a single father sitting in an ice rink waiting room, pitied by the mothers around him but never included in their post-PTA get-togethers. As his young daughter undoes her skates and changes from her form-fitting outfit into her day-to-day wear in the locker room, a Proctor and Gamble commercial interrupts the midday Olympic coverage, celebrating the magnificent women doing exactly what he’s doing. Briefly, quietly, he questions his manhood and wonders if in this world of 3rd-wave feminism (possibly 4th), society has gone full-circle and sucked him of all respect. He lightly sighs and an image of his ex-wife, living comfortably in Portland with her new husband, new children, new job, and new life, graces his subconscious.

The ad that more predominantly disregards the family is the one that follows:

Mom wins! Yay! Son loves Mom! Freud’s corpse must get a chubby each time this commercial airs.

While it’s not shown in the commercial, it’s safe to assume the son turns to his dad and delivers a choice line from the film The Squid And The Whale: “Suck my dick, ass man.”

Putting aside the disgusting subtext of this commercial (“Buy your child a Happy Meal and you will win his love…just for fun, make earning that love the parental competition it should be”), it’s all the more baffling and Oedipal that the father doesn’t even win the competition, despite getting the kid the junk food and crappy toy (look at that apartment — why would a child raised in a place like that crave a dollar hamburger and an out-dated Star Wars figurine?). I suppose this ad goes to show that when parents compete, Mom wins. Because in the 21st Century, Mom is the hero of the world and Dad is the sad comic relief, pretending to have a grip on his life while Mom props a foot upon his nutsack like the great Conquistadora she is (might I direct you to ABC’s new hit comedy, Modern Family?).

So keep an eye out, television viewers: rumor has it that during the Oscars telecast, there will be a commercial where a young lad brutally slaughters his father while he sleeps and copulates with his mother right then and there, all because she promised him Disney World for his birthday. As it should be.

1st Annual Super Bowl Commercial Round-Up: The Results

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on February 17, 2010

After re-experiencing the commercials, I have reached a conclusion: No one cared. No agency. No company. No consumer. No one tried, no one connected. It was a complete waste of a venue (thank God the game itself was decent, because all of the icing on the SB cake was barely palatable).

To start off, the BEST:

This was difficult, because nothing was impressive and definitely did not endure. Betty White/Abe Vigoda was a good laugh at the time, but once that surprise is gone, the commercial is pretty hollow. One could argue the best commercial was the Dove Men’s, because I saw the product in CVS and bought it, for no discernible reason, but since we’re judging commercials on their entertainment value first and their effectivity second, Dove does not win. The best commercial of Super Bowl XLIV was Monster.com:

Does it sell the product? No. Does it connect to the product? Hardly. Is it fun to watch a beaver playing the fiddle for all of 30 seconds? Hell fuckin’ yeah. End of story.

In a close second was the E-Trade baby with his girlfriend, only for the use of the word “milkaholic.”

And now, the WORST:

This one was also difficult as well, since it takes legitimate investment in something to make it truly awful (see: the Twilight film). Since there was minimal investment in these commercials, the apathy was more offensive than the ads. However, two commercials were mutually representative of all wrong with this round of Super Bowl spots.

First, the “Green Police” ad from Audi:

This ad is despicable for it’s ass-backwards message. “We have a green car — not for the environment, but so that we can brag to all those fucking hippie scientists. Fuck you, issues!” Even if Audi pretended to give a crap about the environment, this would be more respectable. However, they insult everyone who believes that climate change can be slowed by little life changes (you know, the PEOPLE THEY’RE TARGETING WITH THIS AD). Audi is laughing at the very reason they have to decrease emissions. In the end, this commercial tries to sprinkle magic Irony Powder all over a real concern people have, trying to show detachment from a topic that people are tired of joking about (same goes for Auto-tune…I’m looking at you, Bud Light…)

speaking of Bud Light:

This commercial embodies two problems with this year’s set of SB ads: 1) Too many Bud Light ads, and 2)a hatred for women that goes beyond bro-seph homo-eroticism and is balls-to-the-face sexist. This ideal stuck out the most with the Dodge Charger ad where men list the things they do that they no like to do (a woman’s group has released a subsequent YouTube video that has the understated effectiveness of a scorned woman’s glare), but this moist pile pulls its wretched weight. It reads like a romantic comedy written by someone who has never met a real man or woman and was instead presented with a hastily assembled check-list of things each gender likes (Men = “the game,” beer; Women = book clubs). This scenario is so unbelievably horrendous, that watching it play out is akin to watching a bomb explode and wondering if you’ll get hit by shrapnel. This commercial did not even try to redeem itself by giving the men something remotely intelligent to say about a piece of literature, instead opting for attempts at jokes (apparently this sole writer who has never met a real man or woman has also never heard a real joke). Hell, even the women weren’t saying anything about the damn book (book clubs are odd entities, it’s true, but the club usually consists of people who have heard of “books”), and looked like they were desperately waiting for the man to take them over and save them from the devastating burden of thinking. This commercial insults me, both as an intelligent man and as some who loves and appreciate women, and that is why it can be the FUCKING WORST of the 2010 Super Bowl.

1st Annual Super Bowl Commercial Round-Up: Some Brief Thoughts

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on February 8, 2010

This is being written from a Starbucks near my DC-area home with miraculously free WiFi (I guess another case of DC telling New York to fuck itself). I’m stuck in the middle of the DC Blizzard of 2010, going on 57 hours without electricity. I was fortunate enough to find a working TV last night and caught the first half of the game. Once power is restored, I will be scouring Hulu’s page devoted entirely to Super Bowl ads (buh??) to catch up on ads from the second half and then present the best and words ads of the 2010 Super Bowl.

For now, some thoughts:

-Frontrunner for best: Betty White and Abe Vigoda playing football. If only for living rooms across the nation proclaiming in one voice, “I thought Abe Vigoda was dead.”

-All I got from Tim Tebow’s ad was that he loves himself almost as much as he hates abortion and that his mom looks like Mary Steenburgen.

-Are you a white male with a shitty beard? Congratulations! You’re a beer commercial!

-What was the deal with all the Man stuff? According to ad agencies, being a man is defined by doing things you hate for vaginas you don’t, and then rewarding yourself for it (or taking a personal television to the mall, which isn’t pathetic in the least bit). At least there was a nod to the Gays, which ad agencies define as limp noodles in bright colors who love to high-five in public. This deserves a longer post on how the complexity of “Mad Men” is too much in comparison to what viewers are used to on television, forcing people to cherry-pick which of the show’s qualities to focus on (in this case, glorified chauvinism).

-HAHA JAY LENO TOPICALITY LETTERMAN HATES LENO THIS IS FUNNY. You know what the simplest solution to creating an awkward late night host party? Bring Conan.

-Not only did a no-name company buy space for a boring spot on fish sticks, they bought two.

“Denise? Some guy wants to leave his wife for you.”

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on January 27, 2010

Two things:

1) Not only is the scenario and dialogue slightly off-putting unto itself, but the makers of this commercials managed to cast the one actor who embodies the idea of “I graduated high school 13 years ago, but still hang around the parking lot picking up tail.” Denise seems like a nice enough person, but everyone makes mistakes, and this guy looks like one of the biggest mistakes she has ever made. Ignoring that the subject is a new burrito (which sucks, bee tee dub), the look on her face screams, “What are you doing here? I work here!”, while his sad, pathetic look says, “While I was masturbating to your memory, I decided we should elope. I’m leaving Nancy for you, she will never understand me like you do. I hate myself.” Denise looks almost relieved when the subject turns out to be a burrito and not his wife.

I know I’m not alone in thinking this man is deeply unsettling, judging by the handful of re-dubs and remixes of this commercial on YouTube. So let this commercial be a warning to suspicious wives: if you don’t know where your husband is, he’s sniffing jailbait in the drive-thru lane.

2)Less remarked-upon but still striking: What is up with Red’s attitude?? Is she jealous that Denise got the older man, regardless of what scum he clearly is, hunting down his teenage mistress at her minimum wage job? Does she wish she was that teenage mistress? When he asks for Denise, there’s no confusion on her part, just fire-crotch bitterness (perhaps word travels fast around the Taco Bell kitchen. Good to know).

Everyone In Your Neighborhood Hates Trident Sandwich Gum

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on January 27, 2010

This commercial has been around for sometime, so you’re most likely familiar with the Trident Sandwich. It is a sandwich we’re looking at, right?

This commercial never says who has sponsored the campaign, but it’s an ad from some special interest group who deeply hates Trident gum. My guess is a bunch of fucking dentists or something. Why else would no one featured in this commercial appear to seriously want the product? Based on everyone’s over-the-top expressions, creepy gazes and toothy grins, they are all sarcastically implying that this gum is the absolute worst possible payment anyone could ever be forced to settle with.

“You expected money, silly babysitter, but hows about some gum instead?”

“Yes! Gum! I will settle for gum!”

“We are all jealous of your gum payment, especially us minorities working service jobs!”

I apologize for going into an analysis of irony, but I had to assure myself that the makers of this commercial had zero interest in anyone ever purchasing the Trident Sandwich. It’s so far-fetched to believe that the company that sells Trident gum would ever try to cleverly advertise their product as a joking replacement for money, because (obvs!) this gum is so terribly foul, that it’s beneath getting paid in brass knuckles to the face.

Well don’t you worry, Dentist Brigade (that’s their union): not only has your ad influenced this consumer to never purchase this gum or even accept a piece from a friend or colleague, but simply looking at the product sends me running.

Why Buy Products from Companies That Think You’re A Dick?

Posted in Uncategorized by hendyhendel on January 13, 2010

Nothing ruins television more than commercials that treat their customers like buckets of slime. Think about it: how often have you been watching TV, seen a commercial and wondered, “Am I in on that joke?” The answer to that question is always “No.” Look at it this way, if someone force-fed you moist and tepid garbage, all the while laughing at you, would you feel included in the joke and want to celebrate the occasion?

I want to start off with a type of commercial that has no respect for its target audience, because it tries to target individuals with no respect for themselves: beer commercials. Lately, there have been a growing series of Miller Lite ads that look like “Always Sunny In Philadelphia” took a dump and then that dump waited for its girlfriend outside Forever 21 trying not to look like a wiener.

Let’s break this horseshit down and investigate the chunks: First of all, what is the scenario of this commercial? No, it’s not a novel or a film, but context is important, it creates relate-ability. What we see here seems to be a post-collegiate man and his girlfriend taking his dog for an afternoon walk, and during that walk, they decide to stop into a bar and grab a couple of beers. While this is odd behavior, I suppose it’s believable, since beer can be refreshing and the dog must have already pooped or something, but that’s a flimsy context that, in a 30-second spot, I should get immediately rather than figure my way through it afterwards, making sure that Miller Lite might want me as a customer.

Now here’s where I’d be pissed if I were a woman: clearly this is a commercial for men of a certain ilk, because the woman shown is cruel, clingy and neurotic (the man’s an ass as well, but she’s the one instigating the conversation while he woodenly drapes his arm over her shoulder like a 12-year-old in the movie theater when her mom’s not looking). She is so obsessed with what this unshaven man-child thinks of her, that she desperately has him rank her. In fact, this ranking seems like some sort of giddy, child-like game to her. On top of that, her list of opponents grows more and more asinine so very rapidly. First she makes sure that she’s got the dog beat, because heaven forbid he date the dog instead of her. Next, she makes the least logical leap imaginable for this kind of man and brings up his mom (keep in mind that this ranking involves the man choosing which of the two options will he let fall to their death). Ignoring the fact that this man seems like the type who would only see his mother on obligatory holidays and would set personal goal to get poisonously intoxicated just to make his holiday stories more interesting, the woman still sniggers like a wretched hag when this boy sitting next to her implies that he would cavalierly allow his mother to helplessly hang over the edge of a cliff to save a girl who simply cannot hide how plain and average she knows she is.

And what’s behind door number three?: his beer. Yes, it is a beer commercial, but lets simplify the statement Miller Lite is trying to get across: our beer is so good, that if a bottle of Miller Lite were hanging over a cliff along with your lover, but only one could be saved, you should go for the one that is not human, because the beer lets you have an awesome time, and the human is an obnoxious whiner who deserves death. Yes, budding alcoholics, choose our beer over your relationships.

Okay, so he can’t decide, ha ha, cute. The concept is batnuts to begin with, so this resolution is fine in that it follows suit accordingly. But here’s another question: where the hell is she going? She’s supposed to get all huffy and leave (which would also follow suit), but she doesn’t leave the establishment, she sort of makes an “I didn’t get my way” noise and walks off. The simplest guess is that she had to pee and was going off to the bathroom to urinate and stew (not in the urine). She’s not going to complain to a friend, I would presume, because they’re acting too couple-y (read: he’s acting too couple-y) to have people they know around them; she already has a damn beer, so she wouldn’t be buying another, so it has to be the bathroom, right? Though if it is just the bathroom, she’s clearly coming back and sitting with him, so she’s just making a mountain out of a molehill in the bathroom for a few minutes (how like a woman!).

It’s clear from this commercial that Miller Lite wants to sell to people they think are dicks. Instead of a typical frat boy image, this is marketed to the guys too lazy or drunk or stupid to pledge fully and spend their six years at college regretting not being in a frat. Miller Lite wants to attract the sad, lonely asshole who needs to get drunk to have a good time (also how he enjoys Carlos Mencia). The target demographic for this commercial tries so very, very pathetically to fill the stereotypes he thinks exist, sacrificing every ounce of dignity just to convince himself that his buddies who actually got into frats consider him an honorary member, even though they only suffer him, because he’s too disgraceful to be left alone.

So unless you consider yourself the lowest common denominator who relies on the average people you worship, reject this damn commercial and Miller Lite for treating you like shit.