Sunday, August 30, 2009

America's Commercial Sweethearts?

As promised, here I am with the [completely subjective] list of commercials with the cutest kiddos. Never say I don't deliver!

1. Welch's (grape juice). Here's just one of their adorable spokeskids: Where did they find these kids? They're supernaturally darling. Plus they have actual lines to say, which no other child on this list does.

2. Mott's (applesauce). Oh Marcia Cross. I'm almost too jealous of you to put this on my list. But the blog deserves the truth so Jules' pride be damned! The truth is you are living my dream with your redheaded boy/girl twins. They're gorgeous, applesauce-eating darlings. For my own selfish sanity I have to believe they're rotten brats.

3. Cole and Dylan Sprouse for Danimals. Ha ha! Not really- just seeing if you were paying attention.

4. Huggies (diapers). Frankly, the starring baby is average looking, (I hope his 'rents aren't Ad Bits fans) but I'm a big fan of this commercial: Sneaky! They had me sold on those sassy running shoes and then... BAM! I'm buying Huggies instead!

5. Tyson (chicken nuggets). These kids are hilarious- I particularly adore the one who crams his veggies in the car and pushes it away (not bad acting kid- you may have a future in the biz). But could I have a word with Tyson please? It is not the amazing feat you seem to believe it is to get a kid to eat chicken freaking nuggets above their peas.

6. Frosted Mini Wheats (cereal). This is hugely disappointing! I cannot find the exact commercial I'm looking for! You know the one? With the little girl who (God love 'er) is cute sort of like a pug is cute. She certainly won't be winning any beauty pageants anytime soon (although those aren't really won on looks anymore are they? But that's a whole different blog). The truth is, this girl coulda been my kid with those freckles and those ears (I can see you now, "Oh! I know the commercial she means now!"). Come clean time- my sibs affectionately (?) refer to me as "Lefty" because my left ear sticks out. Jim also has sticker-outers but at least he's symmetrical. Because I have this empathy for her I choose to pronounce her "Cutest Commercial Kid". Which I can do. Despite your audible protests.

Friday, August 28, 2009


Today I was going to do my favorite kids in commercials but my computer went down so I am sharing Jim's computer (i.e. begging Jim for a couple minutes on his computer, even though he's trying to do actual work that brings in an actual income). So consider this a teaser and be thinking of your favorite rugrat commercial actors, who deserve some props for putting up with their stage moms' disappointment that they are still only doing commercials. Hang in there stage moms- there is somebody writing a horrifying movie for your child to star in that is bound to screw them up irrevocably.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

There's A Tear In My Beer

A tear of joy that is! Hands down, the beer industry has the best commercials. Insurance companies are rallying but they just don't have the sex appeal beer does. I could be here all day talking about beer commercials and since my girls are tired, cranky, and needing baths, I'm going to do a great injustice by listing my top three favorites (with every intent of revisiting beer commercials again soon).

Honorable Mention: Captain Morgan. This isn't a beer so they only get an honorable mention, but I had to throw them a bloggy bone for ads such as this:

Honorable Mention: Bud Light. These ads are absolutely my favorite. Unfortunately, I believe they were just on radio and never on TV so they just get the HM.

2nd runner up: Dos Equis. Their spokesman gives Chuck Norris himself a run for his money. This commercial is just one of a few (are they just now starting to advertise on TV? I think so! They've been holding back!) One of my other favorites claims he lives vicariously through... himself. I've said it before and I'll say it again- if a company can pull off hilarity using a serious tone like this, they'll be hugely successful. Or at least win 2nd runner up on obsure blogs.

1st runner up: Labatt Blue. Yes, in a surprise twist Labatt Blue wins 2nd place! Unfortunately I couldn't find some of my favorite commercials starring the Blue Bear as they are pretty old but please trust that this one (while funny) is just the tip of the Canadian beer iceberg. I watch a lot of hockey so I'm quite familiar with these commercials but what I love most about them is: a) I haven't seen one in quite some time but it stuck with me and that is important in a marketing campaign, right? b) I not only remembered the commercials but what brand they were advertising! I have to admit with Dos Equis and even my first place winner I had to double check with Jim to make sure I wasn't getting my beers mixed up. And c) the talking bear (I can't help it).

And first place goes to.... Coors Lite! For their hilarious press conference commercials! Here are a few of my favs:
The guys asking the questions are perfectly cast and hilarious in every way. Coors Lite is the official beer sponsor of the Superbowl, which I imagine is a really big deal and undoubtedly puts immense stress on the Coors marketing think tank. I'm here to tell you Coors Lite- you delivered. You delivered on the tube and consequently I'm sure you deliver a lot of beer.

Note: I know I said I'd only do the top three but I added the honorable mentions at the last minute. I couldn't help myself.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

I'm in a list making mood this week! Here are commercials with (what I believe to be) the best music...
1. Target/Calabria:
2. Planters Peanuts/Just Too Good To Be True:
3. Apple/Technologic:
4. MasterCard/We Want the Funk:
5. Honda/Orange Sky: I couldn't find this one! Boo!

And my personal favorite.... Swiffer!!! Way to use classic tunes to sell your product! (Baby Come Back) (Breaking Up Is Hard To Do) (Don't You Want Me Baby)
And these are just a few! Swiffer, you can clean my house anytime! (Actually, anyone can- open invitation).

Here are a few ideas of my own that I think would liven up ads for the following companies:
Payless: Footloose
Cool Whip: Whip It (is that too obvious?)
Bandaid or Banana Boat: Blister in the Sun (I'll let the two companies duke it out for rights to that one)
Botox: Poker Face
Trojan condoms: I Get Around (I think the Beach Boys would be honored)
Burger King: Dancing Queen (perhaps a creepy lady love for the creepy, masked king)
Hanes: Underneath Your Clothes (get Charlie Sheen out of those commercials and get us some Shakira!)
Rolex: Time After Time (duh.)
Any car touting a high safety rating: Crash Into Me

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

If I Were A Commercial Actress....

Here are some commercials I would not be in for any amount of money:
1. Pepto Bismol. Their upset stomach, diarrhea jingle is both catchy and gross. But the commercials keep getting weirder and weirder. Let me direct your attention to this one as a case in point:
2. Head-On. Be in our commercial and the whole world will hate you! Thanks but no thanks.
3. Activia. I take issue with most yogurt commercials anyway, but this one gets a little too close to the digestive tract for comfort.
4. KY Yours and Mine. These commercials are funny (and weird- likening sex to a circus trick? Odd. But I would have to refuse their advances (if you will) on the off chance my Daddy may see it.
5. Smooth Away. Granted, I don't care to be in any infomercial- especially one magnifying my hairiest body parts. Are those actresses paid a lot? It seems there should be an indignity clause in their contracts, securing them a little extra moola.
6. Many pharmaceutical commercials. I hope this goes without saying, but I don't care to be in a herpes or erectile dysfunction ad. I remain unsure how "Smiling Bob" from the Enzyte commercials can face the world every day. Thankfully, they are in huge trouble and owe 2.5 mil for being straight up (pun totally intended) idiots.

On the flip side, here are some commercials I'd love to be in!
1. Cover Girl (or Neutrogena). This would mean I am gorgeous and have flawless skin. Move over Vanessa Hudgens!
2. Skittles. Or Sour Patch Kids. These are funny commercials and maybe I would get free candy?
3. Any commercial in which Johnny Depp is the celebrity spokesperson (for obvious, gorgeous reasons). Of course I have never seen him endorse anything. Except France.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I Want the Funk! (and More!)

Ohhhh... back to school, back to school
To prove to dad that I'm not a fool
I've got my lunch packed up,
My boots tied tight,
I hope I don't get in a fight
Ohhhh... back to school, back to school
~ Adam Sandler (Billy Madison)

It's that time of year! TVs across the country are blowing up with back to school commercials! Sadly, I have yet to see my all-time favorite BTS ad: Dancing is practically a must have for these Aug-Sept ads and I've never seen better break it down boys than these in the Visa commercial. Old Navy has some decent dancers and JCPenny kids can bust a move in a big way. Remember a few years back the little girl they featured in their B2S commercial? Alyson Stoner. She went on to be in a Missy Elliot video, played Sally on Mike's Super Short Show (Disney thing), was cast in Phineas and Ferb, and finally hit the big time in the phenomenon that is Camp Rock. (And there you have it folks- my tangent du jour).

Staples' ad is worth mentioning as it captures a dad's joy at sending his kids back to school, while they are clearly dismayed. Or maybe they're dismayed because their friends will show up with bright, funky folders and pencils while their supplies are business casual. Hit the Easy Button kids, perhaps that will brighten things up.
Office Max disappoints with their hidden cam/penny prank commercials. Even this guy's red hair doesn't salvage his commercials. When he tries to pay for large ticket items (diamond ring, car, etc.) with pennies he acts freaking smug and I end up pitying the salesperson and vowing to stop shopping at Office Max (or rather, I vow to not start shopping there). Bring back the rubberband man Office Max!

Friday, August 21, 2009

The What What What!?

I don't know if infomercials fall under Adbits jurisdiction, but the Neckline Slimmer is too funny not to mention. I particularly love that there are three levels (beginning, medium, and advanced). With all due respect, if you buy this and cannot immediately start at the advanced level you likely have other muscles you should be toning before tackling that turkey neck. That being said, it is becoming abundantly clear to me as I approach my 30th birthday that this could be a useful tool (in theory). But then I look at it and it is too hilarious to be legit. What do you think?

Friday's Flo's Day

MSN had a link to this article today regarding Progressive's spokesperson, Flo.
I was not in a hurry to comment on the Progressive ads but since MSN brought it up...

I first "met" Flo in her commercial claiming you could save enough money to buy a "big, tricked out name tag." I was immediately put off because, a) she's basically saying you'll save 1-2 dollars and b) her name tag was not even tricked out. There were no rhinestones, no neon lights, just three letters on a white background. F L O. But it's Friday and I'm feeling generous so I won't blame her completely for that. She was just reading the lines they gave her, right? Then, I tried to blame her for being a cartoon character. But again, that's Progressive's handy-work. Her commercials following the name tag debacle were mildly annoying but so far nothing I can't handle. I'm just very aware that she has the potential to send me jumping off a bridge in annoyance at any moment, with any one line that comes out of her mouth. But she hasn't so far and that says a lot. But you better watch your step Flo. Just watch your step.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Soul Funny

I know, I know. Me and my animal commercials. But seriously? Everyone I know (?) loves this commercial! Usually rodents freak me out to no end, but apparently when they're huge and tapping their little paws on the car door, while bopping their rodent heads to "A New Way to Roll"*, they are hil-ar-ious! I appreciate that Kia made a commercial differentiating themselves from the billions of other vehicle ads, but even more I appreciate their use of giant hamsters. Hamsters with some personality nonetheless! They're hip and cool, bold (they chose a red Soul!), and environmentally friendly (the hamster in the backseat indicates carpooling). Kia does a good job of not making the critters silly and that's what works for this commercial- the seriousness of the hamsters. They're just loving life- driving on a sunny day, rockin' out with the windows down, acknowledging (but not gloating) their less fortunate, wheel-spinning buddies. It in no way makes me want a hamster (or a Kia, actually) but I do give them props for an entertaining ad!

* I Googled this song playing in the ad, and found there are some claims that other songs play in different versions of the commercial. But I like this one best.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Caught Ya Mars, Inc!

Yesterday I saw a commercial for personalized M&Ms (to be clear, this was 7/18/09). They advertise a free bag of M&Ms with your order (ok, you have my attention), but the expiration date that flashes on the screen is 7/15/09! Not cool to dangle free M&Ms in front of the general public and then claim the offer is expired Mars, Inc. Not cool at all.

Geyser of Ick

Have you guys seen this commercial for Gushers fruit snacks?
Thanks to this commercial I will never allow Gushers in my house. This is what is communicated to me in their 30 second time slot:
1. These will distract my kid from their schoolwork.
2. They will cover my home in disgusting, sticky, staining goo.
3. After touching a million things with their sticky little patties, my children's teeth will begin to rot, compliments of this gushing goo.
4. The liquid sugar bomb coated with additional cavity-creating sugar is bound to get my kiddos unbearably hyper.

As you can see, Gushers are the perfectly destructive storm. Now let's be clear on something- normally I love the brightly colored sweet candies. Skittles? Oh yes, I taste the rainbow. Gummi bears? I buy 'em in bulk. Jujubes? I can't enjoy a movie without those chewy little loves! But these candy darlings don't magnify their weaknesses in icky commercials. Maybe the Gushers commercial speaks seductively to kids, but I'm willing to bet any mom who sees that squirting, drippy mess of an ad will skip the Gushers and opt for a less messy treat with a more appetizing ad campaign. Mentos anyone?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Jimmys Beware!

Who knew synthetic oil could be so funny!? Not me. Truth be told, I don't even know what synthetic oil is. But if ever I am in a position where I need such a thing (it goes in your car, right?) I will be sure to request Castrol. For one thing, their spokesperson (if you can even call him that) is Scottish (accents= hilarity) and a redheaded Scotsman at that! You can bet any commercial with a ginger is going to be a favorite of mine. Additionally, our Scottish friend repeatedly inflicts pain on unwitting Jimmys, and isn't this why America's Funniest Videos is still on the air? Americans love watching strangers in pain! Good thinking Castrol! What's the best part of the commercial? No, it's not the Scot's bushy, crimson beard. It's that golden slogan: "Think With Your Dipstick Jimmy!"

But the number one reason Castrol wins the "Julie's Commercial That Comes In Handy Like All The Time" award? My husband's name is Jimmy.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Let me provide a little food for thought. I saw an ad for a pregnancy test (can't remember which brand and am too tired to look it up) in Florida; this ad showed a stream hitting a stick and a voice says, "the most advanced piece of technology you'll ever... ahem on." I saw the same commercial in Michigan but this time the voice says, "the most advanced piece of technology you'll ever pee on." Is this weird to anybody else? Are Michiganders so uncouth that commercials can be cruder up here? I don't think so but what else is the logic behind the different verbiage? Anyone?

Note: For those who have ever visited a "Trying To Conceive" (TTC) message board, POAS stands for "Pee On A Stick."

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Dairy Queen Of My Heart

The weather is finally August appropriate here in MI and ice cream is calling my name. Consequently, I'd like to draw your attention to the Dairy Queen commercial(s). The one with the floating mouth stupidly buying 2 million Girl Scout cookies doesn't do much for me. I guess it provides a little comfort in that DQ isn't likely to run out of the Thin Mint Blizzards; but do they even show a close-up shot of the cookies swirling around in creamy deliciousness? I don't think they do! And that is what's going to make me get my sweaty hiney (spell check? I've never actually typed hiney before) off the couch and into the closest Dairy Queen.

However, taste buds need not fret! You'll get your Blizzard after all as the DQ ad I saw yesterday is a different story. Its got it all. Clever and adorably toothless businessgirl (note: a responsible adult escort stands just feet away- safety first!), scrumptious thin mint cookies, and chubby guy's conscience screaming at him to "buy the cookies"! Round that off with zoomed in shots of the Blizzards (size: large) complete with giant cookie chunks and surrounded by steam (purpose? none. But somehow works when swirling around this yumminess).

The best part? The handy caloric justification that by buying a Thin Mint Blizzard I'm supporting the Girl Scouts. Thanks to me and my expanding hips, young women will have increased esteem, be First Aid qualified, and able to start a fire with a toothpick. I'm coming to get you Blizzard!

Monday, August 10, 2009

A Dentist By Any Other Name

What a fun weekend! We had weddings, baby showers, our TV is back in order after taking a small hiatus- all kinds of excitement! But it's Monday and we must get back to commercial business. It seems appropriate to start the week with a smile, so how about that Colgate commercial with Brooke Shields? Not a particularly noteworthy ad except for Brooke's dentist's name: Dr. Joyce Fang! Love it! This is funny for the obvious reasons, but also because I'm starting to notice a pattern of punny names in the field of dentistry. For example, my past dentists have been: Dr. Beaver, Dr. Payne, and most recently, Dr. King (insert your favorite crown pun here).

I'm a Crest girl by choice, but tag teaming brushers with Brooke Shields and Dr. Fang? Colgate truly could not have produced more reputable mouth professionals.

Friday, August 7, 2009

My Taco Bell, My Love

Today's commercial of choice is in honor of my husband (have I mentioned him? He's the coolest!) who brought this Taco Bell ad to my attention. First a little background on my love affair with Taco Bell. In addition to providing delicious food (to be enjoyed sober, drunk, or hungover) their marketing team is second to none. Let's take a look at their marketing genius of past:
1. They were talking animal pioneers with the talking chihuahua (I heard he died this year- R.I.P. little buddy)
2. They made the phrase, "run for the border" as popular as keggers on college campuses.
3. They encouraged consumers to, "think outside the bun"- yes! And inside the taco shell!
4. They coined the term "fourth meal" (best idea ever in more ways than one)

And now they bring us the, "It's all about the Roosevelts Baby" song!
The song is catchy, the video seriously funny (little blinged out piggy banks? Priceless!), and it is perfectly consistent with their marketing strategy! Additionally, I see this song is available as a ring tone. I'm here to tell you- I'm tempted. I love you Taco Bell marketing team! Keep 'em coming!

note: does TB's mad marketing skills make up for the elimination of the Chili Cheese Burrito? Let's not get carried away.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Cows in CA

Today I had the pleasure of touring a friend's dairy farm (so much fun AND wore Molly out in a big way, which is what I strive for on a daily basis). My visit was educational (cows only have teeth on the bottom!) and blogicational as it got me thinking about the infamous California cows and the California Milk Board's claim that "Happy Cows come from California". What!? Come on Cali! Maybe this ad works out west (namely, in CA) but why air it across the country? At best it may inspire a handful of former die-hard Californians to search (in vain?) for Californian milk at their local Piggly Wiggly (or whatever). At worst it will insult other geographic areas and instigate Facebook groups entitled, "Cows are not happier in California" (446 members) and the much more adamant group, "Happy Cows Do Not F***ing Come From California" (19,838 members).

Admittedly, the cows are entertaining (when they aren't running away from a snowy terrain, leaving me feeling like an idiot for staying in such a blizzardy habitat).
This one with the earthquake is cute, but something tells me earthquakes don't really make anyone happier.

So, California- you may have your surfing, your vineyards, and your amazing national parks, but since cows can't enjoy any of these things I trust they are NOT, in fact, happier in California.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

all For Loving You

Is this a clever commercial or what? Strategically slipped into the prime "Mommy's TV time" time slot, moms everywhere watch as ketchup, Cheetos, and other stainy foods raise a white flag, surrendering to all [brand] laundry detergent. Frankly I think all should be proud of themselves. Proud enough to capitalize their brand name in fact! Yes, all. This ad takes you from all to All!

Of course, if I put this commercial together I'd have a white flag raising out of a baby's backside as I find poop stains on onesies to be most persistent.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Puppet Love

More and more you may notice my love of anything animalistic in commercials: the Geico gecko, the Boost Mobile pigs, etc. Well here's another notch on my critter loving bedpost- the car fox.
The casting is fabulous; nice, normal couple meets shady, moustachey car salesman. I do empathize with the sales guy in that I spend much of my time voicing a cow puppet for Molly's entertainment. I scarcely remember my regular voice sometimes, but my cow voice sounds strikingly similar to this gentleman's fox intonation.

What's important here though, is that after I totaled my car last December and started shopping around for a new vehicle, this absolutely silly commercial prompted me to request a Car Fax! Once in a while these ads actually serve their purpose!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Long vs. "I'm a PC"

Happy Monday! Over the weekend it occurred to me I would be remiss to not mention the Microsoft/Mac ad war. I love my PC, but I have to say when Justin Long started taking the old, square, no-name PC guy to school I was feeling a little sheepish. "Here I am, a hip and cool (?) twenty-something using a PC!" I thought. "I should be typing my memoirs (ha!) on a sassy orange laptop like Elle Woods in Legally Blonde!" Really, they couldn't have found a better Mac than Justin. I mean- he dated Drew Barrymore! But then. After a Long period of abuse from Apple, Microsoft finally responded with the "I'm a PC" commercials. "These people are well-rounded and living life and seem super-cool" I thought. *slip credit card back into wallet and with nothing more than a backward glance, walk away from colorful Apples*

Just like that Microsoft undid an entire marketing scheme. For me, at least. Honestly, Mac people are Mac people and PC people are PC people. For the most part. Both parties may get the occasional drifter but computer users are pretty loyal to their... well... computers.