Thursday, June 30, 2011

Chins of the Father

What's up with this guy's chest? And why does he look like Jay Leno's illegitimate love child?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

That's Not a Taco

While we're on the subject of tacos, here's a commercial disaster from 1979 for Jimboy's Tacos in Sacramento, CA. It would be an easy mark to make fun of the dated clothing and cheesy production values, but I won't do that. For their time, these elements probably weren't too far off the mark for local commercials. In fact, they're better than some (most) of the local commercials I grew up watching in the 80's and 90's.


Watch for the camera pan of the menu items near the end of the spot.

Yep, nothing says authentic Mexican food more than hamburgers, french fries, and sub sandwiches!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Barbie Takes a Poop

I agree we've already seen enough dog poop in commercials (both literally and figuratively), but the makers of Barbie felt the need to get in on the action.

Not only is the product disgusting (really, who's going to buy this for their daughter?) But there was also a recall on the toy because the magnets used in it presented a choking hazard. (How'd you like to be the guy that writes that press release? "Toy is being recalled due to poop balls that can choke your kid to death...")

Monday, June 20, 2011

How Do You Spell C3PO?

In sharp contrast to the last post, here's an anti-smoking ad that almost works. If most smokers had seen this when they were growing up (especially in Star Wars' heyday when it was produced), they wouldn't be smoking today because, in the words of the person who posted this spot on YouTube, "there's no way I would have let 3PO or R2 down. NO WAY MAN!"

However, all that anti-smoking triumph is almost undone at the end because nobody bothered to PROOFREAD THEIR GRAPHICS! (Hint: it's spelled "GALAXY", not "GALAXAY"!)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Smoking Never Looked So Cool

During the '90s, as part of a multi-billion dollar lawsuit settlement with the U.S. Government, the tobacco industry agreed to produce a series of anti-smoking ads aimed at teens. The problem? The ads were not paid for by way of a fine to the tobacco companies which a government agency or other anti-smoking entity could draw from and pay to have the ads produced (as should have been done). No, the tobacco industry was left to its own devices as to when, where, and how the ads were produced with zero third-party oversight. The resulting Tobacco Is Whacko (If You're a Teen) ads were so ineffective that they, at best, portrayed a confusing, mixed message that was unclear to teens and adults alike and, at worst, actually encouraged teens to smoke. (Even the parenthetical (If You're a Teen) part of the title implied that it's perfectly healthy to smoke once you turn 18.) Don't believe said ads could possibly be so disastrous? Check out the following ad from this series and you'll see what I mean...

A study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that teens who viewed these ads were more likely to smoke. Surprise surprise.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Internet's Most Infamous Flea Market

Much like the Norton Furniture guy, the pitchman for Flea Market Montgomery, Sammy Stephens, has become something of an internet celebrity for the following commercial, even being featured on Ellen and parodied on The Cleveland Show. God bless the guy (I guess) for making the most out of his internet fame (you can actually buy his song on iTunes and Amazon), but after about 20 seconds of him repeating the same three lines over and over, I'm ready to change the channel. After two minutes, I'm ready to shove an ice pick in my ears.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

June Referral Contest Reminder

Just a reminder that the June Referral Contest is still going on through the end of the month. So far there have only been 2 official entries, so it's still anybody's game!

For rules and full details on how to enter, click visit the contest page here.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Gene Roddenberry Is Spinning in His Grave

The original Star Trek series was no paragon of Hollywood production, but the acting, special effects, and overall production values in this commercial disaster make Star Trek TOS look like freakin' Avatar.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

A Dark Day for Geeks

Thank you, Mr. Lafayette Electronic Supply, for reinforcing every computer geek stereotype out there.

(Note: the audio level for this spot is incredibly low, but you honestly don't have to hear it to get the full effect.)

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Budweiser Creep

Is there any woman out there that wouldn't instantly make a beeline for the door if this happened to them at a party? 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Pap's Place

If there's one thing I know about food service, it's that "Pap" should never be part of the name of a restaurant.

Besides the unappetizing choice of a name, the terrible Minnie Pearl impersonator and disturbing furries in this commercial disaster are more than enough to scare me away from eating at this restaurant. (Did you notice the catfish mascot has arms? Makes me worry about what kind of mutant catfish they're serving on their buffet.) And what's with the Jesus reference? Talk about a non sequitur! If all that isn't enough to dissuade you from eating at this establishment, keep an eye on the guy in the apron at the end. Scary.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Athletes Should Leave It on the Field

This commercial disaster from the Connecticut Lottery stars former New England Patriot John Hannah and is a perfect example of why athletes shouldn't act...

How is this commercial disastrous? Let me count the ways...
  1. No educated, affluent mother (as the setting, her wardrobe and appearance make this woman out to be) would really think it's ok for a 16-year-old to play the lottery. If she looked and sounded different, it might be believable. But as they're selling it, no one's buying.
  2. She's talking to herself in a way that no one ever talks to themselves
  3. Her acting
  4. His acting
  5. The look on her face that is supposed to say, "Oops, you caught me", but really says, "Who the hell let you in my house???"
  6. Why should we "take it from him"? What makes him a freakin' expert???
  7. The fact that to sell his credibility, they have to put him in his old Patriots jersey
  8. The graphics that, again in an effort to sell his credibility, describe him as a "legend"
  9. How, in a matter of seconds, the woman is convinced that this random home intruder must be right despite the presentation of any concrete evidence
  10. He hands her a football. Like there's any 16-year-old boy in America that's never owned a football before?
  11. The baby blue bow on the football
  12. The ridiculously long anti-gambling web address at the end. It's almost like they don't want you to visit it!
Whew! And that's just a 30 second spot! After all that, I need a drink! (Unless John Hannah is going to pop up in my kitchen and tell me I shouldn't do that either.)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sexy McDonald's

Speaking of Big Macs, am I the only one that finds this female version of Ronald McDonald both deeply unnerving and oddly sexy?

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Nicolas Cage Loves Balls

Nicolas Cage is more notorious for overspending his income than the federal government, so these days it would be no surprise to see him shilling anything from Big Macs to toilet brushes to make ends meet. But at the height of his career, back when he wasn't quite the celebrity basket case that he is now, he quietly made a series of commercial disasters... er... ads in Japan for Pachinko. (Pachinko, if you don't know, is a slot machine-like gaming device popular in Japan that dispenses steel balls which can be exchanged for cash -- because direct cash payouts are illegal in Japan, for whatever reason.) Below is one of five commercial disasters he made for Sankyo, a maker of Pachinko machines.

(If you guys are interested in seeing more from this series, let me know and I'll post them.)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

June Referral Contest

Commercial Disasters is proud to announce its first ever contest!

During the month of June, use a URL shortener to create a unique-to-you link that points to this site, send the link to me, and then share it with your friends. At the end of the month, I'll tally which link has referred the most people to this site, and the creator of that link will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card!

Click here for complete details and instructions.