WTF Commercials, Part 3

I am highly intrigued by the Sprint Framily, also known as the Frobinsons.

The original Framily commercials made a lot more sense–a family, or a group of people who were always together, like a band, could save money by adding more people to their family phone plan, regardless of whether or not they were actually family. Even if they thought someone was creepy or annoying, the point was that they could save a lot of money by adding them.

Then, presumably, the admen behind the Framily wanted to give us a really unusual group of family members who could, despite their differences, express their love of one another through texting and data plans. Instead, we have a disjointed cast of characters that create a unit that Seth MacFarlane would find unrealistic.

So apparently, the mom is a mom, the dad is a hamster, the sons are a hipster and a hillbilly, and the daughter is a French child who is, for reasons I cannot fathom, surrounded by animated birds at all times. Is she Snow White? Is she from Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Why do I find her a stranger member of the Framily than the hamster-dad?

I get the general intent of this ad, but it was a lot more direct in its original incarnation. The Framily is charming, but I don’t really get why they switched to this model. If they had been turned down from other phone companies but then accepted by Sprint, or maybe they were all so different and needed lots of features in their phone plan that Sprint could provide, that would actually make sense. Instead, they just kind of…dance and hate Goths.

 

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Odds and Ends

A few things I’ve been thinking about:

  • Snowpiercer. It’s playing at the Charles theater, which would involve me venturing out to Baltimore, but it just might be worth it because all my film major friends are going ape for it. Anyone seen it? Thoughts?
  • Cracked.com’s Luis Prada had a great little article on his own WTF commercials, including the DirectTV puppet ones, which actually gave me the idea for WTF commercials in the first place. I really, really need to know how a human man and a puppet woman can have a child. I can only assume the puppet boy is the product of a previous relationship, because otherwise he should be like a weird Pinocchio creature.
  • Going back to my list of shame–anyone know where I can find The Life Aquatic online (without getting my computer a weird Russian virus)? I mean, I understand I might just have to rent it on Amazon or whatever, but it’s worth a shot.

WTF Commercials, Part 2

Here’s another commercial I’ve been seeing a lot lately that I have questions about:

I straight-up love this commercial. I think it’s hilarious. But that doesn’t mean I don’t find it slightly disturbing that this couple is ready to run back to their hotel room because the innocent, screaming, tormented woman is turning them on. It’s the utter guilelessness that gets me. This is no deep, dark secret. This guy has no problem if his friends and neighbors know his interests include erotic witch burnings–to him, it’s mildly naughty at best. Which leads me to wonder, what else is this couple into? Is it a specific witch-hunting fetish, or are they just generally a fan of false accusations? When are they getting their own TLC special?

Hey, bro, at least nobody really died at your visit to Colonial Williamsburg, which honestly does look like a lot of fun. Glad you and the missus made it to your early teatime.

WTF Commercials, Part 1

I realized that I needed to add a new category for commercials that seem a little weird to me, because there are a lot of them. They’re not technically movies, but someone had to write and direct and act in them, and I see them all the time.

1. Guilt Cow

The Chick-fil-a advertising format has been the same for as long as I can remember. There are intelligent cows that protest the eating of beef, suggesting we instead ‘eat mor chikin’. They can’t spell, but they’re cute enough, and I always get a hankering for those nuggets when I see a billboard with the cows on them.

I was thinking about posting a different video, where a woman is eating a burger while a cow looks at her accusingly. She turns to see a sign for a missing cow, and with horror, she realizes she is eating the cow’s friend. That’s kind of sick, but if someone made my friend into a burger, I’d give them a dirty look, at the very least. But this ad shows a cow on a campaign to haunt the everliving shit out of this woman until she stops eating burgers. She can’t go through a drive-through or on vacation or hide in a parking garage without this cow harassing her with its misspelled ‘busted’ sign. If I were her, I’d turn this thing into a burger or ten.

What’s really creepy is that the cow is not asking the woman to stop eating the meat of other creatures. It just wants her to eat chicken. It couldn’t care less if she becomes a vegetarian–indeed, it is banking on her NOT doing that, because it wants her to go to Chick-fil-a.

Am I overthinking this ad? Absolutely. Is it still creepy? Absolutely. (I could go for some nuggets now, though.)

2. Literally to Die For

I honestly found this commercial really funny, but it’s also so disturbing. It’s 15 seconds long, so watch it and tell me you didn’t laugh. And also that you weren’t a little freaked out that a woman accidentally murdered someone, then went ahead and used the ‘to die for’ line anyway instead of alerting an ambulance. (Wah, wah, it’s a commercial, it’s not real life, wah, wah. I know.) That burger looks really good, and I laughed at the macabre pun, but generally I don’t want to associate my lunch hour with brutal stabbing. Besides, I’m already nervous about ordering this, because if I do, a judgmental cow will follow me around until I give up eating burgers forever.

The woman in the new Red Robin campaign is adorably naive. In another ad, she mentions that royalty members can get a free burger the month of their birthday, which is great to know, because everybody wants free stuff. Then she adds, with what appears to be genuine glee, “Even if you don’t know what month it is, you have a one-in-twelve chance of getting a free burger!” I cannot imagine any situation outside of head injury or being stranded on a desert island in which you would not know what month it was, but I’m no fun, and she seems so happy about that fact that it makes me happy, too.  You know what? I hope it’s your free burger month, Red Robin spokeswoman. Just try not to kill anyone as you celebrate.

3. Muno on a Skateboard

I have nothing negative to say about this ad. It’s probably one of the most bizarre ads to appear in modern America. It’s a Yo Gabba Gabba character skateboarding and advertising Vans with his own image on them. I love it.

So now it’s your turn. What are some weird ads you’ve seen on TV lately?