Thursday, January 24, 2008

Psychopaths prefer Snickers: Regular and Dark

Not much to say about this. These guys are clearly fugitives from a local mental hospital. They're out for a roadtrip. Perhaps they're going to rent a boat and hang out with some hookers in your neighbor.

I could rant about this for 2000 words or more, but lemme just sum up what the geniuses at Snickers want you to think of their product.

Some weirdos dressed up like a pilgrim and a viking or something take road trips in their car. They stop at gas stations, and when they need to refuel, they opt for Snickers. Deprived of Snickers, they vandalize the station and dent parked cars. Furnished with Snickers Dark, they further vandalize the station and dent parked cars. You have to wonder if Snickers/Snickers Dark consumption is associated with violent outbursts, psychopathic wardrobe choices, and other general signs of insanity. Based on this series of commercials, I am sure to view Snickers in a whole new light: as an opportunity to play with madness.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Ford Fusion: If You Want to Drive Like Your Mother Told You Not to

I've been watching Law and Order this evening and it seems like every commercial break has the ad for the 2008 Ford Fusion, featuring young 24-35 year olds demonstrating the features that would be useful to such a demographic.

If you have to drive like a nut job, there's always the Ford Fusion.

I can't find video, but if you've seen it, maybe it made an impression. First, Just-in-Time Justin vaults a rail, dangerously swerves around a garbage truck, and then arrives at his destination right as his clock ticks to 9 AM. He's Justin Time. Oh, pardon me. He's Just In Time. Except where I (and most people) work, it doesn't matter what time you arrive in the parking lot. It's more about when you step in the door, or sign in, or sit at your desk. So, Justin Time is probably just in time to get yelled at by his boss. Remember, the Fusion is aimed at those 24-35 year olds, who are out of college, deep in debt from loans and not quite sure where they are career wise. Justin is a cube slave and we're pretty sure that his boss is a clock watching jerk. So, it's important that Justin get to work on time. I guess that's why he signed up for a $400/month lease for a new Ford Fusion. So he can drive recklessly and be just late, rather than really late. Perhaps $10 for an alarm clock would get him there on time. It's a nice analog clock in the car, though. Too bad it never helped him get to work on time.

Next up is Maria. Maria multi-tasks. Like she drives and does all kinds of business on the phone while she's driving. I will grant that the Fusion apparently comes with a hands free phone that lets you dial with your voice. But, Ford, in what we can only describe as a moment of clarity (I suspect their legal department had something to do with this moment of clarity), puts a disclaimer at the bottom of the screen. They suggest that Maria's behavior might be dangerous and shouldn't be emulated. After all, she's driving around the loop of a parking structure, making multiple phone calls. She's probably also looking at charts and maybe even looking at some fun stuff on You Tube. Like this:

Is there anything better on Youtube? I don't think so.

These reckless drivers are at least reckless in the service of productivity, or a facsimile of productivity in Justin's case. Our final Fusion owner, however, is nothing of the sort. Formula One Frank as he's know, lives only to drive like a nut job. Weaving through traffic, disregarding speed limits, and driving as if he were in a NASCAR race where he could turn left and right. He's also the type of jerk who blindly tosses his keys to a valet, who has to make a diving catch to keep these precious keys off the deck. Jerk might be too light. Ass____ would be how it would come across on a basic cable rebroadcast of this blog. Frank should remember his days as a wage slave. In fact, he's probably tossing his keys to the valet at the restaurant where he works as a prep chef. You know, the last generation off the boat is the worst to the next set of immigrants.

I guess we can conclude that the Ford Fusion is a car so safe (check out the car's site), that you can drive as if safety is no concern.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

One Touch Jar Opener: A Commentary on the Manual Dexterity of Informercial Casts

Here is a two minute ad for the One Touch Jar Opener.

As with many of these mini-infomercials, there are a couple of sequences explaining the problem. First, the gap between a gadget free life and a gadget full one. The later, the gap between other gadgets and this novel solution. In both, the casting directors for these dig deep into their reserves to fine people. The must canvass every drunk tank, Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, methadone clinic, and degenerative nerve disease ward for people clumsy enough to adequately demonstrate the scope of the problem. Here, the woman cannot open the jar. She heats it. She twists on it. She taps it with a wrench. And then, either in a fit of rage or a lapsing of her palsy drugs, it falls and shatters.

"Other jar openers are hard to use." It's a rubber pad. You hold it in your hand, pick up the jar, and you twist. It's really not that hard.

"And they all require too much force." I dunno. Maybe I'm superman. I don't think so, but it's not that hard to open jars. The demonstrator though appears to be deep into her DT's. It's not even a question of force. It's a question of being about to put the goofy device on the lid. If your shakes are so bad you can't even position the device properly, how can you even comment on the amount of force it requires? Perhaps a better demonstration would be a testimonial by someone who strained a bicep opening a jar, perhaps even with the gizmo we're dumping on. Perhaps we could even reenact. But instead, we have a meth addict who's about 20 hours into quitting.

As a bonus, they will throw in a device that can make anyone pour a beverage as if they're a couple days into detox and feeling pretty bad about the decision. Look at that little girl trying to handle the 2 liter. Look at the shakes. If this anemic little girl could lift the 4.1 lb 2 liter bottle just a little higher, we'd have a mess, courtesy of the One Touch Bottle Pourer.

Here's the final question, I guess. Why do infomercial products that might be useful (if you have arthritis or Parkinson's, this might be a pretty useful device) get bundled with products that are clearly junk? If you're RonCo, and you can bundle some okay cheapo knives with the Countertop rotisserie, but the other companies have one product of value and a bunch of crap they have licensed. I guess it's an inventory management thing. No one is going in, thinking, "I'm getting the jar opener or $10 because I'm getting $10 worth of bottle pouring for free. $10 surplus. Yeah!" They're probably thinking, "What's the extra shipping and handling?" I guess, you buy all this crap from invention submission corp or some other licensing company, and you don't know what's gonna be a winner. Maybe you do a little, but you take a risk on the bottle pourer. Then, you gotta get rid of all the ones that came from your contractor in China. You bought em on spec, get rid of em. There are harder sells, but a crappy licensed product has to be up there.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

AciPHex does what now?

I wasn't watching the TV when this ad first came on, but I could swear, the man said Ass Effects. Then, I heard some talk about side effects and proton blockers.

When you put it like that, I guess it doesn't have to be about anal distress...

Now, I dunno much about making up words that sound reminiscent of real words to name your car, your drug, or your new telecom company. But, I think it's probably a good idea to make sure no one, no matter how casually they aren't listening, confuses your product with a crap, fart, or hemorrhoid. And if those aren't Ass Effects, I dunno what AciPHex might do.

FWIW: It's apparently a heart burn blocker. I used to suffer, and when I say suffer, I do not mean it lightly. I was literally floored by it a few times, and I had it all the time. The cure? Go sugar free. It works with a side effect of losing weight and killing your sleep apnea too. I think I have fewer ass effects as well. And couldn't everyone do with fewer events you might describe as an ass effect?

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Coors Light: Color Changing Label Has Viagra Like Effects?

I'm sorry I cannot find video of this ad. It plays frequently during sporting events and if you've seen it, you will know what I'm talking about. If you know where I can find it, lemme know and I'll put it up.

Seek immediate medical attention if your beer label stays blue for over 4 hours.

The Ad:
A guy is in the fridge, looking at his beer. His wife is in the closet or something, apparently peeing. They are both talking about something turning blue. The man, his beer, the new Coors Light bottle, with a color changing label. The mountains are white, until the proper temperature, when it turns blue. The woman, peeing in the closet, is apparently looking at a pregnancy test. Or perhaps a ketosis testing strip. Either way. She's excited. They share dialog. And eventually, she moves out of their water closet and closes on the guy who might be the father of her baby, unless it was that pool guy with the abs after a party with too many bottles of Coors.

At any rate, at the moment of truth, she reveals the little plus sign and he reveals that his thin alcoholic swill has fallen below room temperature. She gets mad, and he tries to cover, by saying it's blue like her eyes. She angrily reminds him that her eyes are green.

So, you might be wondering, where does Viagra enter the picture? Perhaps the beer addled buffoon required some to defeat the inevitable effects of continued large beer quaffing? But no, I'm talking about that other effect of Viagra. The Blue-Green color blindness. But, this instance is stronger than just the regular BG color blindness associated with boner pills. This is so strong, it's had an effect on his color memory. So, either he's been hard drinking and Viagra popping for as long as they've been together (there's no indication that he's been there long term. How could she have actually committed to a guy who is more interested in his beer than her urine?), or his new beer label contains a strong dose of a prescription only erectile drug.

The really sad thing is, I'm not sure who to refer you to if you experience blue-green color blindness due to exposure to the newest Coors Light label. If it's dosing people with stiffy stims, then you'd call the FDA. But, Coors Light is regulated by the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms. You make the call. But only if you've had a Coors Light in your hand (and not several in your belly) and you cannot remember if the sky is blue or green (it's blue, unless you're expecting a tornado, in which case, it's the other way around).

Monday, January 7, 2008

Bud Light: It limits your vocabulary!

Apparently, if you drink enough Bud Light, your vocabulary dwindles, eventually leaving you with a single monosyllabic word. Dude. This word apparently serves you in all of life's opportunities and frustrations.

I would be very cautious. Joe Buck, while being possibly the world's worst announcer in any sport who didn't catch for Bob Gibson (I'm talking about Tim McCarver here), is a generally literate person. But exposure to Bud Light and random brain damaged morons has reduced his vocabulary down to a single monosyllable, as well.

The condition appears viral. At the :16 mark, Joe gets an aerosol exposure to the Dude Virus. At the :30 mark, he starts to demonstrate a multiple word vocabulary. He is then brushed by the carrier. Then, either through the delayed first exposure at the :16 mark, or the scarily fast exposure at the :30 mark, his vocabulary is reduced. By the :48 mark, it's gone. All he has is, "dude." While I don't think it could have happened to a better person (imagine, world series and football playoffs without the dulcet tones and nails-on-the-chalkboard play-by-play of Joe Buck (or Schmuck as my in-laws from St. Louis call him).

If you suspect that the Dude Virus has emerged anywhere near you, please contact the United States Center for Disease Control and Prevention. They will give you the best next steps. Or call a nuke strike on your city to eradicate it. Either way.