Commercials that stink

Posted: Sunday, February 21, 2010

I was asked the other day what one of my biggest pet peeves was other than the flat-line brain scans that are running the country.

I pondered the query for a moment and decided on the one that has been ticking me off the most for the last few months. Actually I should say "ones" because there are a bevy of them wrapped into an aggravating ball of b.s. known as commercials.

I must admit there are those that are a riot such as some Budweiser clips, the cool toddler hawking E*Trade and most anything featuring psycho pets. But then there's the stuff spawned from writers that require drool cups for their coffee.

What kind of demented mind thinks up a wad of money with eyeballs that lurks around the country trying to embarrass some poor dweeb because he or she didn't insure themselves with Geico? They should just chill out with the dapper little gecko lizard. He at least shows some class of intelligence and doesn't immediately give one the urge to flatten the thing with a sledgehammer or run over it with a lawnmower.

Then there's the ShamWow Guy. Where did they find this weird nimrod to pitch sponge-like products? I always get the feeling that I need a long hot shower every time this guy gets done slinking around the screen cleaning up messes with his wonder goop eradicator for only $19.95 plus shipping and handling. I don't care that if I act within the next 20 minutes that they'll double my order for free and throw in some Tinker Toy mop that looks like its head has been through a cheese slicer. Of course I must also agree to pay extra shipping and handling that probably costs twice as much as it does to manufacture the stuff. I wouldn't trust that clown to comp me free air for a car tire.

Speaking of creepy persona, who created that mental case skulking around in a Burger King costume? How can a grotesque, human powered, dork doll possibly make someone crave a Whopper by sneaking up and scaring the heck out them, rap about square butts or have its mammoth head peeking through their bedroom windows? In Alaska the scuzzball would last as long as it would take to chamber a round.

I won't even touch on the Burger King Flame Body Spray promo but if you haven't eaten yet, you can Google it yourself. If that doesn't put you off you feed for a month, then you are probably enjoying B.K.'s latest ode to the truly bizarre, a man in a baby suit playing a sand box or sitting a high chair with a commentator stating, "This baby was born yesterday ... but even he knows the quarter pound cheeseburger for a buck is a very special deal."

(Rumor has it that the E*Trade ankle-biter has a contract out on the fruitcake.)

The execs who bought off on that drivel should be started on major meds or be returned to the primate zoo they are on loan from.

I could go on about insipid adverts like the wiener baggage handlers pining away for the luggage they ship out on Southwest Airlines or commercials claiming you can lose 90 pounds in 90 days by simply taking a pill once a day while forgetting to mention that's all you can have, but my space is limited.

To be very truthful, I don't know who's more terminally annoying: the guy in baby outfit or the Anchorage Dodge dipstick who dresses up in a suit made out of ersatz dollar bills and struts around like he's the only rooster in a state full of hens. He should sell Advil. Just watching him has been known to cause migraines. I must admit though, the cut where they simulated him getting creamed by a delivery truck was deeply appreciated.

Finally we come to my biggest peeve of commercial peeves. What is with this blasting of ads during breaks in the regular programming? Not only do the local stations cram in so many advertisements that they run the shows into the next hour, but they adjust the things to "ear bleed" settings loud enough that you have to be gun fighter fast with the mute button or you're peeling the cat off the overhead lights.

The Fox channel is the worst and I'm thinking of taking them to small claims court. Last week my dog Howard and our emergency back-up pooch, Little Bear, were curled up snoozing next to speaker while Jane and watched "House." During a regular break a national Chevy ad had just ended when a Bailey's Furniture commercial blasted through that should have registered on the Richter Scale. Howard launched about a foot into the air. Unfortunately, Little Bear likes to sleep on his massive back so she went higher. I won't go into the aftermath other than to say it took two hours and haz-mat suits to return the rug to normal.

I would asked the FCC for help on the volume problem but being a government outfit they'd probably end up making a worse mess of things than the dogs did.

Nick can be reached at ncvarney@hotmail.com if he isn't sitting on a driftwood log on the beach somewhere muttering to himself about Extenze commercials.



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