Posts Tagged ‘advertising’

Your Nightmares Will Now Be Televised

July 8, 2012




The unbelievably dumb-ass Geico commercial above has been annoying the living holy hell out of my girlfriend Bridgitte and me.

In it, an interviewed couple says “Home security systems are expensive, so we decided to adopt a rescue panther.”

That’s about as hilarious as the ad gets, so don’t bother waiting for the punch line; please just pause now to slap the shit out of your knee till you shatter your kneecap. I mean, is that comedy or what?


Y’see, right out of the gate we’ve got one of the stupidest ads in the history of advertising, even before we get to the “punch line.” It’s is not funny, nor does it make any sense. There is no joke there that we’re missing. It’s just one of those Chewbacca Defense moments; it…does…not…make…sense. Who the hell signs off on this shit?

Anyway, the truly annoying part is that the reason you shouldn’t wait for the “punch line” is because nobody seems to know what it is. The punchline comes when the couple is shown in bed in the middle of the night being watched over by the clearly dangerous panther — and the husband says…something.

Just what he says is the subject of some speculation on the interwebs, by people who apparently have just as much time on their hands as I do. Nobody seems to be able to figure it out, but it appears to involve a phantom “Shhhhhhh!” that potentially comes from lips unknown. It could be the wife. Or could it?

First and foremost, I consider it outrageous that in making this commercial, they inconvenienced a perfectly good panther who, I hope, promptly devoured its agent. But how the hell could they produce this thing and not realize how unbelievably obscure the “humor” is? Not in the manner of Terry Jones’s dada-est compositions like “I Like Traffic Lights” or “Here Comes Another One.” Just in that special way that says “The audience (remember them?) can’t even tell what’s supposed to be funny.”

Now, I’m as enthusiastic about another viewing of the Zapruder Film as the next guy, and believe me, I love NOTHING more than watching lame suburban couples get eaten by big cats. But in the case of this stupid commercial, I admit there’s no there there. There isn’t even a lesson to be had in how to (not) write comedic advertising spots. But sometimes I just get FREAKIN’ PISSED OFF at how stupid advertising is. I’m a pit bull for stupidity, which maybe sounds like something Harlan Ellison would have proudly proclaimed circa 1985 when boasting of yet another lawsuit…but if the Cruel Shoe fits, wear it.

Yes, it’s a little weird watching a goddamn Geico commercial over and over again on You Tube just to freakin’ figure out what the hell the joke is supposed to be when I’m damned sure it’s not going to be funny, but at least other people are similarly annoyed by it.

But if it’s adding self-inflicted injury to insult for something that’s such a waste of space to begin with to drive me to distraction, well, it gets worse, for me at least. It’s been annoying both of us because it’s on heavy rotation on — wait for it — Project Runway. This would be bad enough, if it didn’t follow on a short-lived orgy inspired by my much-beloved Oakland roomate K., who tempted me into the wicked embrace of American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, and yes, even The Tonys.



And in case you’re wondering, yes, the sound of breaking glass you just heard was the infinitesimal remnant of whatever goth cred I had left, making short work of my apartment window. Hell’s bells, the television I put up with for the women in my life. Sons of Anarchy, where are you now? I promise, I won’t even complain this time when you assholes fly to ireland.


Herman Cain’s Chief of Staff is the New Cigarette Smoking Man

October 25, 2011

The smoking is what everyone’s getting worked up about. But there are actually several weird things about this Herman Cain campaign ad:

1) First is how confused Herman Cain’s chief of staff, Mark Block, seems about his lines. He seems to pause in odd places. Block is chief of staff to a guy running for President, and he can’t be bothered to learn his lines? And when he croaks them out weirdly, their obviously highly-paid videographer with an iPhone can’t say “let’s try that again, from the top?” What demographic is that appealing to? The voters who spend all their time thinking, “Whoever I end up voting for, It’ll be the guy whose chief of staff doesn’t really care that much.”

2) Then there’s the truly bizarre gay-dance-club-at-12:30-am Autotune Anthem toward the end. WTF voter demographic are they trying to reach with that? “We go out of our way to go to really shitty clubs and complain about the music…and we like it that way?”

3) Also at the end, it’s weird how hard Cain seems to be trying to look sinister there while the Autotune Anthem plays. “Okay, now smile. No, no, smile like you just eliminated Medicare. That’s it!” Maybe he’s just trying to look serious at first, then friendly. If that’s Cain’s serious-vs-friendly face, I do not want to see his “Oh shit, the Europeans already tried this!” face.

4) Going back to Block, what the hell happens to his head there at 0:22? When he says “…can put the ‘United’ back in the ‘United States of America'” it looks like he does a bit of that Doctor Who thing where everyone became The Master. It’s pretty freaky.

5) Last, but far from least, is the cigarette. That’s right. There at the end, crusty-looking Mark Block takes a HUGE DRAG OFF HIS CIGARETTE.

Then, you wanna know what he does, just in case you missed that he just slurped a cloud deep down into his small-cells? Block blows smoke at the camera, as if to say, “Yeah, fuckwads, I’m smoking a cigarette. Wanna say something about it? Go ahead. This shit will get put out in your eye.”

It’s almost as if this video were being shot in an office park right beneath a “No Smoking” sign.

What voter demographic is Cain is going after by letting his chief of staff smoke a butt on camera? The vast legions of Republican voters who were closet X-files fans when they were younger — and who always rooted FOR the Cigarette Smoking Man?

If they’re looking for smoking fetishists…well, there are much more enjoyable ways to indulge that vice…

Julie Simone for (link is NSFW)