Sunday, March 17, 2019
Ah, the good old days- when portraying certain nationalities as cartoonish cliche'd caricatures was just fine because Hey I Know People Like This And They Think It's Funny.
Here's a family of....well, I'm going to guess they're Irish, only because it's about ten thousand time even more offensive if they are not..."celebrating" St Patrick's Day by heading off to McDonald's and ordering green milkshakes and wearing stupid green plastic bowlers because That's How You Show You're Irish and that You're Proud of Your Irish Heritage. Then they do a little dancing because That's How Irish People Are, too. Later the kids will walk in the parade while grampa gets blasted at O'Dooley's like he does every weekend anyway. The day ends with the whole family gathered around the tv to watch Notre Dame win the 1977 NCAA title on VHS.
I'm sorry, but this is pretty rank, nasty stuff even if it is just making fun of the whitest people on the planet. I'm guessing it wouldn't pass the smell test today. Certainly if it did manage to accidentally make it on to the airwaves, it would be greeted with protests and "grow up you SJW snowflakes I know Irishmen and they all love this ad" counter-protests. Heck, since everything old is new again, I wonder why McDonald's doesn't just throw this ad on tv for today and today only to see how much attention they can get out of it.
(One thing people might note is that in 1983, these milkshakes didn't even come topped with whipped cream. It's as if people back then thought that there were enough empty calories in these things without it. Weirdos.)
Saturday, March 16, 2019
I'll use my usual excuse first: the internet simply wasn't a thing back in 1985. When this ad first appeared on tv, I was a Sophomore in college and probably too busy working on an essay assignment or studying for anthropology with my girlfriend to take much notice of stupid commercials. But also, being a non-pet owner it's very easy for me to just tune out during ads featuring food for the dirty little mammals some people just insist on populating their homes with.
Anyway, a few things about this vintage Fancy Feast commercial: First, there's the butler bringing in a tray holding about a dozen cans of the stuff to show the "customer." What, is that cat going to pick out which flavor it wants to eat tonight? I kind of doubt it- so why not just open the can somewhere else and just bring in the food? Why go through the trouble of stacking all those cans and carrying them on a tray into a room just so you can open one and bring the rest back? Think this butler guy ever took a moment to reflect on how horrible wrong his life had gone?
Also, what's with the idea of serving the food in a wine glass (is that a wine glass? Or a tiny candy dish? I really don't know what that container would be used for if not cat food- but are there really cat dishes that look like this? If so, why? Are they made of glass? Plastic? I bet plastic. Is it safe to assume that this glass/dish thing is for the exclusive use of the cat, and it's not going to be washed and added to the family china set?)
Why is the very least impressive thing shown in this ad the actual cat food? It just looks like cat food, at least until it's flaked with the fork. Then it looks like cat food that's been doctored up to make it look better than it is (didn't work.) Meanwhile, what's the cat thinking? My guess is it's thinking "just put the damn food down so I can get at it already."
I'd say people were weird in 1985- and I'd be right- but it's not like they are any better now. Check out radio ads for Vitabite dog food. Those people are INSANE. It was fun to be nostalgic for a few minutes, though. So there is that.
Friday, March 15, 2019
Nobody Nobody NOBODY has a fixed idea in their heads of what a "Buick" looks like, sorry Buick!
And Nobody Nobody Nobody says things like "that's my Buick," "where's my Buick?" or "how are we all going to fit into your Buick?" Because no matter how hard you want us to think of them like BMWs or Audis, they aren't BMWs or Audis. They are just freaking cars- cars that impress nobody, cars that look like every other car that isn't a BMW or Audi.
Sunday, March 10, 2019
I guess this would have been even FUNNIER if this woman's friend hadn't been holding on tightly when she was pushed and ended up suffering a severe injury. Wouldn't that have been an absolute laugh riot?
Meanwhile, this woman feels "absolutely secure" in using her instant-pay Federal Navy Credit Union app while in the middle of the woods, connected via who knows what crappy, probably very insecure service. Why anyone would need to use this app is beyond me- I go away from time to time, even into the woods, and manage to get my bills paid without EVER using my phone to do it because, well, I'm capable of planning ahead. I can use my laptop from home or even write a check and mail it now and then rather than wait till the last minute when I have to interrupt a vacation including tromping through the woods to get on an App and send money I could have sent before I left the freaking house. What the hell is with you people, anyway?
I'd like to end with a shout-out to a very special YouTube commentator named Vince Cartelli. Vince Cartelli is very, very upset with all us snowflakes who don't like ads like this. Actually, I'm not even sure that "upset" is the right word. It's bigger than that. Vince sounds like he sees complaints about commercials as a sure sign that the End Times are upon us. For the sake of your own heart rate, I want you to avoid this blog at all costs, Vince. But by all means, keep after those Triggered Social Justice Warrior Snowflakes! You tell 'em, Vince!
Saturday, March 9, 2019
"It's fine.... your human isn't listening...."
And nor should she. If Wells Fargo wants to make an ad in which a dog "talks" to the dog in the viewer's home, the viewer should feel perfectly free to tune out and let that dog deliver whatever message it wants to the viewer's dog. Hey Wells Fargo, if you can sell my goldfish a line of credit, feel free to do that, too. But you don't get to insult me with this crap and think you're going to win me (the one with the actual money and language skills and legal ability to seek you out for a mortgage) over with noxious, manipulative nonsense like this.
Meanwhile, to those of you who think steaming piles of dung like the Talking/Thinking Like a Human Trope is still cute (or ever was,) let alone persuasive, let my remind you that the dog featured in this ad has no idea it's being filmed, has no idea that a horrifically annoying human voice is being used to narrate it's non-thoughts, or that it's being used to sell a product it can't come anywhere close to comprehending. Because it's a f--king DOG. It thinks "its human" is a bigger, more powerful dog it must respect if it wants to survive. The "home of its dreams" is a shelter with enough warmth to be comfortable and enough food to allow it to continue to carry out its regular bodily functions. That's IT.
Thursday, March 7, 2019
1. The family in this ad is so uninterested in the free chicken and biscuits which has suddenly shown up at their doorway that they have no reaction at all to the Robocop character presenting it. In fact, when the character repeats the offer, one member of the family actually attempts to "shush" it, I guess so she can focus on the thirty-year old* film on her screen.
2. It's not until the Robocop character actually threatens the family with punishment unless it "complies" within fifteen seconds that the family lunges for the fried bird parts. So the message of this commercial seems to be "you'd never voluntarily consume this crap. You will, however, agree to eat it if faced with violence if you don't."
3. What is it with KFC and it's never-ending parade of Colonel Sanders impersonator spokeschoads? Randy Quaid has had the job. Then Darrell Hammond. Norm Macdonald had the gig for a while and seemed to be doing ok. George Hamilton, Ray Liotta...and about five minutes ago, KFC made a bit of a splash by hiring Jason Alexander for the role of fried chicken huckster who died forty years ago. Is getting hired for this gig just a matter of hanging around Hollywood long enough?
*Which Robocop film is this family watching? I hope it's not the original, which is way too violent for that kid, and probably not something anyone wants to be watching while eating. If it's Robocop 3 or the more recent remake it's nothing anyone wants to be watching period.
Monday, March 4, 2019
So I guess James Harden is just fascinated by the workings of the modern microwave oven. Can't say as I blame him, it's not like microwave ovens didn't become common household appliances years before he was born.
He's so fascinated in fact that instead of putting the chinese food container in, setting the timer (five minutes? Have you ever used one of these things, James? That's not a large amount of food) and walking away, he just stands there staring at the window. I guess his plan was to just stand there staring at it for five minutes. Maybe watching it go 'round and 'round is super-fascinating for some people. I got over it myself, when I was, oh, five or six.
Harden's decision to just stand there and watch the food go 'round and 'round doesn't pay off however because when he sees the metal handle on the chinese food container spark, he doesn't do what 99.99 percent of adults would do- quickly open the door to prevent a fire or any damage to the oven. Instead, he just keeps staring at it. So first we learned that James Harden likes to watch chinese food containers go 'round and 'round through the glass window of microwave ovens. And now we've learned that James Harden is one of the one in ten thousand adults out there who do not know how to react when the item being heated up lets off a spark.
And then we learn even more about James Harden- when the container bursts into flames, he.....continues to just stand there and watch. He really, really enjoys looking at that microwave do it's work, it's so mesmerizing. First it spins food, then it sparks, then it turns into a little fireplace. And Harden just stands there.
In the end, James Harden lets out a little scream- I guess it's suddenly occurred to him- about two minutes after it would have occurred to everyone else- that something is not quite right here- and his response is not to call the fire department or get out of the house, but to let out a little scream. Dustin Hoffman in "Rain Man" responded about 100 times more intelligently to a smoking countertop stove. I'm frankly surprised that Harden survived his little adventure with the microwave oven- does a deleted scene show him being carried out of the burning kitchen like a mannequin by the local fire department?
And here's a depressing endnote- how much money did James Harden make in the time it took for that fire to start? Probably more than you make in a month. Understanding that you should not put metal in a microwave is an overrated quality. Being able to quickly respond to the resulting malfunction is also overrated. Being able to dribble a basketball? Here's some more cash.