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Monday, January 27, 2003


Ad It Up, Ad It Up Special

Everyone knows that the Super Bowl doesn't draw 44 million viewers just so people can watch (my beloved, victorious) Tampa Bay Buccaneers humiliate some team from Northern California whose fans wear Darth Vader helmets. Average Joe and Average Jane are equally as interested in the interstital product-pitching, which has become as much a part of the festivities as all-night benders in Tijuana, as the opening coin-flip. Which advertiser got the most bang for it's 2.1 million bucks per 30 seconds? In true Monday afternoon quarertbacking tradition, B[d]TV presents its first Super Bowl Ad Report Card:

Reebok's Office Linebacker : I'm not sure what sneakers have to do with office drones being body-checked and cross-blocked through the walls of their cubicles for non-compliance on new TPS report regulations, but this commercial said "football" and "ass-kicking" in one hurried breath. Grade: A-

Upside-Down Clown: It sounds like the classic set-up: "An upside-down clown walks into a bar..." And then it goes horribly awry when said inverted merrymaker attempts to chug from the wrong end and bunghole some Oscar Meyer tubesteak. But sick is good in my book. Grade: B+

Mean Joe Greene Steals Child's Coke: It seems a curious way to sell a product: a linebacker from the 70's intimidates a child into "sharing" his soft-drink after a tough day crippling quarterbacks. Mean Joe Greene? More like Big Bully Greene. And his taunting the child after snatching away his Coke by tossing his sweaty Steelers jersey in the tyke's face was overkill. Boo, Joe. Boo. Grade: C-

Spuds Mackenzie: Using a cute, Little-Rascals-mascot puppy to sell beer seems a tad quaint. Don't the people at Bud Light know that selling beer is now all about "The Twins" and jaw-dropping, slow-mo catfights? You'd think they would since someone over at Amheuser-Busch did throw a couple of chicks in some bikinis and had them grapple in a tub of Quik-Krete. This ad seems a curious step backwards to more innocent days, when women in bikinis swooned over cute dogs instead of trying to claw out each other's eyes in search of a cold one. Grade: C

Clara Time: She's old, she's wrinkly, she's adorable, and she utters the line that will be spoken in more bad porn setups than perhaps any other besides "I'm here to fix the cable." Old Clara Pell hucks patties for Wendy's, uttering what is sure to become a classic catchphrase spawning many imitators in the fast-food universe and at least two network sitcoms: "Where's the beef?" And the best part of the commercial is perhaps the most grisly, as the deceased Dave Thomas makes a posthumous pitch for the largesse of his ground beef. Grade: A+

About this site

This is the internet home of Mark Lisanti, a Los Angeles writer sometimes known as Bunsen. He is the founding editor of Defamer, a weblog about Hollywood, where he now serves in the nebulous capacity of "editor-at-large."
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