Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Shaq, The General, and Two More Total Sellouts

"Hey Shaq, remember when you told us that The General offers quality car insurance, and we said we didn't believe you because it's not the insurance you carry, you are a paid spokesman for The General and a bunch of other stupid crap so it's really really obvious that you'll endorse anything as long as someone pays you for the endorsement, and the commercials are really stupid?"


"Well, it turns out that we are also willing to endorse stupid crap as long as we get paid, so we came into this commercial to let you know that we've changed our mind because Reasons and we now believe The General is quality insurance even though that's not even the name of the actual insurance company- to get that you have to read the fine print, plus it's not available in all states, both of which are really sketchy, but like I said they paid us to change our minds about The General so we did."

"I see.  I'm going to have this stupid kid sitting next to me take a drink of his soda and say 'ahhhh,' and then I'm going to do the same, and then I'm going to tell you that it means 'no you can't sit with us anyway,' because of YouTube algorithms requiring that these commercials be a certain length and we have to pad this steaming pile of stupid out for that length because what are we going to do, actually talk about the insurance?"

"Not a problem, Shaq.  We read our lines and we can collect our money now."

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Well, at least it's just Verizon and not another Ghostbusters disaster....


1.  Kate McKinnon isn't going to be able to sell me anything, sorry.  I just find her face annoying and her voice too nasal.  Maybe it's just me.

2.  Showing me a few dozen zombies standing around a room which terrifyingly looks like it has no walls or windows or doors (because it doesn't matter, I guess, because there's no place you want to go when you've got an electronic device and 5g*) staring at their phones and tablets etc. doesn't make me think "wow, that looks awesome, where do I sign up?"

3.  I grieve for a society that finds any of this worth emulating.  I know people who can't seem to spend enough time staring at their stupid phones while the world goes on around them.  

*I really don't know what's going on with this in Verizon commercials.  Is it that the world might as well not be there if you have a screen to look at and play with?  Is Verizon worried that we might be reminded that the world IS there and maybe there are other things to do besides play with our phones?  Please explain this to me, Verizon.  As soon as you get done explaining why you thought Kate McKinnon could sell me anything. 

Saturday, June 12, 2021

The Geico/Black Widow Cross Promotion is as stale and brainless as it gets


Not to mention predictable, manipulative, and just plain insulting.  

I mean, look what we've got here:  An insurance company which ran out of ideas on how to pitch its product roughly two decades ago teaming up with a studio desperate to keep a superhero franchise alive despite the (merciful) end of the 12-year, 47-film Avenger v Generic Galactic Villain Looking to Secure Control of Magic Macguffins saga (or is it epoch?  It was Age, in one of these headache-inducing money-printing time wasters.)  An insurance company which wasn't even willing to pay Scarlet Johannsen to show up and be in the commercial promoting her stand-alone (presumably prequel/origin story) film?  

We are all used to this garbage by now:  Dairy Queen promoting the latest Jurassic Park film.  IHOP being pimped by the Lorax.  Any number of automobile companies trying to get us to go to this year's insult to the once-valuable Star Wars universe.  This is not novel in any way.  What it is is so damned lazy that it looks like the "brain child" (to be generous) of an ad man who was given the assignment as he was walking out the door at 4:55 on a Friday afternoon and had tickets to the game that evening. "Ok, we'll just have the stupid lizard thing sitting in a car, he'll see a billboard for the movie- that will get the name of the movie in there- and then he'll imagine being in the trailer of the movie.  And we'll shoot it in a way that will trick people into thinking that Scarlett Johannsen is there, but she won't be so we don't have to pay her.  We'll use quick cuts and throw in an explosion or two and nobody will notice how stupid it is and will forget what they saw the moment we get back to the stupid lizard thing anyway.  Done and done." 

Friday, June 11, 2021

"Before Anything, Forget who has the Medical Degree here and demand this treatment."

Once upon a time, when someone in the United States got sick, that person would call their doctor and ask for advice on how to treat the illness.  Probably this would involve making an appointment and having the doctor examine the person and suggest proper treatments, medications, etc.

Those days are, apparently, over.  Nowadays, according to Television, what you're supposed to do when you find out you are sick is call you doctor and tell HIM about your condition and how you believe it should be treated.  Because Television Knows All, I guess.  Television even knows how the whole diagnosis thing works- you get a call announcing you've got an illness, and then the person who gave you this information promptly hangs up and leaves you to figure out the next step....the next step naturally being to call your doctor and prescribe your own treatment As Seen on TV.

I often wonder what doctors make of all this; I'm sure they all went to medical school figuring that they would be examining patients and then going over the available treatments for whatever conditions the patients were determined to have.  But now they find themselves facing the demands of half-informed, frightened sick people who were told by Doctor Television to demand Such and Such Right Away.   As if doctors cannot be trusted to respond to diagnoses like "my patient has COVID-19" with anything other than "well, ball's in her court now.  Guess I'll just sit here and wait for her to call and tell me what treatment she wants."

I mean, come on.  I was tested for COVID-19 twice last year.  If either test had come up Positive, my immediate response would have been to call my doctor AND ASK FOR ADVICE.  Not to hit YouTube for commercials featuring this or that treatment and make a list of them to hit my doctor with.  That's just stupid.  But it's easy to imagine liability-wary doctors just prescribing Whatever because they don't want to be charged with neglect.  These ads are weaponizing fear and putting patients in adversarial relationships with any doctor who wants to consult before just saying "yeah sure fine" to Monoclonal Antibody Treatments, and I think that's more than a little irresponsible.   Notice that the title isn't "ASK your doctor."  It's "CALL your doctor."  Because he doesn't know already.  Because he's not Dr. Television. 

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

The LG Wash Tower would fit perfectly in my apartment. Not my budget, just my apartment..


This is another one of those commercials which is face-palm dreck but So Bad its Good with the sound turned down, but if you try to watch it with the volume up it becomes grating to the point of being almost intolerable in it's mind-bending stupidity.

These people are actually dancing around because they own a freaking $2300 washer-dryer combo that fits into a small if anyone who can afford a $2300 washer-dryer combo can't also afford a space large enough to accommodate a regular sized washer-dryer combo.  I mean, come on- are these things built exclusively for those idiots who spend 80 percent of their paycheck on a Manhattan Efficiency because they want to live in a neighborhood where they might run into a cast member from the Big Bang Theory at the corner deli? 

If not, the people in this ad have no business dancing around like that, because their priorities are seriously screwed up.  If this is just another vanity purchase because they've got money to burn, well, dance away, I guess, but jeesh keep your eye on what you are doing, because every time I watch this 30-second bucket of Dumb I think that guy is going to forget himself and throw that baby into the dryer. 

Sunday, June 6, 2021

Geico Reminds Us that it's another Olympics Year and we are supposed to care and share


I just gotta love the overbearing condescension and utter lack of respect displayed by the makers of the commercial in the final scene, where the viewers are reminded that if they like the ad, they should, maybe, feel free to share it with other people who might like it.  As if there is anyone watching this ad on YouTube who isn't aware that they have the ability to pay it forward when it comes to sharing rank garbage.  Weird Al Yankovic wrote an entire song about our ubiquitous Sharing Culture several years ago.  Thank you, Geico, but we were already very familiar with the "share" feature.   If we don't pass along your videos, it's not because we don't know how to.  It's because they are stupid crap and we don't want to irritate our friends.

That being said, this commercial is just the beginning of what I expect to be an onslaught of "Keep in Mind that the Summer Olympics is being held this year, it wasn't cancelled just postponed tune in please please please" ads featuring gymnasts, runners, etc. who can be featured without jeopardizing their amateur status because there's no professional status for their particular skill set.  Get ready to see a parade of young people attempting to cash in on the tiny sliver of fame they'll enjoy for a few months before they compete in mostly-empty-due-to-C-word-restrictions-stadiums and then vanish back into the ether.*  Young people like this one, who in the bizarre world of a Geico commercial was instantly recognized by two shmoes* playing frisbee but in real life could walk through any grocery store in the United States without causing anyone to so much as bat an eye.  

(And don't even get me started on how these guys are treating this woman like a freaking dog who is going to keep fetching their frisbee no matter how many times they throw it on the roof; though it might be helpful if she hadn't jumped in to volunteer to retrieve it the first time without even being asked, apparently because she just happened to be in the neighborhood, was dressed for her routine, and wanted to show off?)

*Mckayla Moroney is 25 years old.  She's been retired from gymnastics for five years.  

*Mckayla Moroney is best known as a meme.  She's the "not impressed" girl from that week back in 2012.  Which is why we see her fold her arms and do "her look" here.  If she's recognizable, it's from that moment.   Can't really blame her for milking it, but I wonder how she feels about being in the same category as Ratt and Tag Team- the "hey remember these guys, well here they are doing their shtick for Geico" category- at the age of 25.

Saturday, June 5, 2021

Kia sells crappy cars, not Therapy for Boomers


Not that anyone is ever going to do anything like what we see in this commercial while driving a freaking KIA anyway, but....even if some middle-aged boomer with inadequacy issues decides to take his Suburban SameMobile off-road and roar up a path to the summit of some mountain in a vain attempt to feel just a little bit alive for a few seconds, I am sorry to report to Said Boomer that the mountain you just "conquered" with your the OvercompensationMobile you purchased because your bank account isn't quite large enough for the kind of vehicle that actually does stuff like this doesn't give one flying damn that you reached the top of it.  You may be roaring because you depressed a gas pedal and got yourself somewhat sexually excited because you went Really Fast up a Mountain Trail and (bonus) probably ran over a few animals while doing so, but all you really accomplished was putting a few deep scratches abd some noticeable dents into the car that will be sitting in the driveway of 506 Whitebread Avenue when you slink back to your- um- castle.  And the mountain isn't whimpering.  The mountain doesn't give a damn about your issues.