I’m not generally one for nostalgia. I’m pretty happy with the here and now, and a lot of the things I treasured as a kid, when re-experienced as an adult, seem lackluster and one dimensional. Except Robocop. Don’t you dare say an unkind word about Robocop, or I’ll start smoking again specifically so I can butt a cigarette out into your open eye, you fucking philistine.
But I have many fond memories of ridiculous commercials from the 80’s and 90’s that only seem to get better with time. If you’re a child of the 80’s or 90’s, you’ll remember these. You’ll remember them if you’re from an earlier era, but unless you’re my mother, what the hell are you DOING here? Shouldn’t you be off somewhere, refusing to retire so that young people have difficulty entering the workforce?
I’m sorry, that was uncalled for.
I LEARNED IT FROM WATCHING YOU!
This is the quintessential anti-drug PSA, and a joke staple for anyone aged thirty-five through fifty. What I love about it, aside from that glorious ‘fro and the bushy 80’s mustache is the fact that this kid appears to have what would be, by today’s standards, about $1,000 worth of drugs. I think I see a baggie of weed, but there’s a second bag that looks suspiciously like white powder. And there’s a lot of it. Whether that’s coke or heroin, there’s a shitload of it, easily at least 10 grams.
WHERE IS THIS KID GETTING THAT KIND OF SCRATCH?!?
Aren’t most fifteen-year-olds saving up for a car? I picture this kid saving up every fucking penny he’s ever acquired in his entire life, and even then, he’s not going to be able to clear $1,000 until he’s of working age.
I find it fascinating that dad is more worried about who taught him how to do drugs than to ask him how the fuck he could afford it. Maybe he’s been taxing his dad. Dad definitely looks like the kind of guy who would get home from work, pound back a glass of scotch, and do a couple lines of blow.
TWO GREAT TASTES THAT TASTE GREAT TOGETHER!
What can I say about this commercial that hasn’t already been said?
Dude is trucking down the street with a chocolate bar. Nothing odd about that. But a girl walking down the street eating from an open jar of peanut with her fingers is really stretching the bounds of credulity, especially since she doesn’t weight 350 pounds.
Inexplicably, when they bump into one another, Joe Cool is wielding his chocolate bar like Norman Bates, and maniacally stabs downward into the peanut butter jar. And the chocolate doesn’t shatter into pieces, it just break in half perfectly. This makes me irrationally angry.
And that’s the part of this commercial that everybody always focuses on. But that’s not what sticks out to me. Sure, it’s goofy, but it’s got nothing on this guy:
Why is this smiling man emerging from seemingly nowhere, insinuating himself well past these kids’ personal bubbles, and wordlessly giving them candy? Who the fuck is this creep? Does he just stand out on the sidewalk in front of his shop and wait for people to do this? Is this a common occurrence in this neighborhood? I want answers, and I want them now!
THE MR. BELEVEDERE FUN KIT
Remember Mr. Belvedere? That lovable live-in butler who once famously sat on his own balls during a writer’s meeting and had to go to the emergency room? Well, he had a fun kit. You see, before the internet, there were fan clubs. Nowadays, you can just follow a Twitter account or like a Facebook page, but in those days, you had to send a Self-Addressed Stamped Envelope and like a dollar or two to some place – usually either in California or, inexplicably, Pueblo, Colorado – and then you’d get a little kit with stupid promotional shit like pens and notepads and stickers, and you’d get a monthly newsletter.
Apparently enough people liked Mr. Belvedere that there was a fan club for the show. I can’t imagine liking a lukewarm sitcom enough to join a fan club, but people like The Big Bang Theory, so obviously there’s something for everyone out there, even if it is crap.
The only way I’d join this fan club would be if I got exclusive footage of the ball-sitting incident.
BILL COSBY’S NEW COKE COMMERCIAL
You can talk all you want about Cosby Jell-o Pudding His Dick Where it Doesn’t Belong, but even when this man was universally known as a wholesome entertainer and a strong advocate of education, he was still a shameless corporate shill.
New Coke was an extraordinarily unpopular reformulation of the original Coke recipe. Most people seemed to hate it, which was damaging enough to Coca-Cola’s otherwise sterling reputation that a mere three months later, they rebranded the old recipe as Coke Classic. Keep in mind that this was during the infamous Cola Wars, which nearly ended in an all-out civil war that would have claimed the lives of millions.
Knowing how shitty this product was, Mr. Cosby had no problem acting like it was liquid orgasm filling his every nerve ending from a mere sip. I have to give him credit; his performance is outstanding. It is absolutely convincing that he is actually drinking the most soda delicious soda of all time, instead of just a can of tap water (which is what it almost certainly is). The way he rolls his eyes back in his head makes me think that he needed to change his underwear afterwards. I’m sure he probably just sexually abused somebody instead.
MCDONALD’S “A NEW DO”
Even a beloved clown like Ronald McDonald is not to be trusted. First of all, he has some kind of purple gumdrop demon as a best friend. Grimace is purported to love milkshakes, but with that giant mouth of his, I’m willing to bet he eats kids that get lost in the giant hamster habitat thing at McDonald’s PlayPlace.
I remember finding this commercial mildly amusing as a kid, but I was never one of those people who was way into Ronald McDonald. Actually, I’m not aware of anybody who was. There are people who are way into Mickey Mouse and Coca-Cola, though, so I’m sure there were plenty.
In retrospect, looking at this commercial makes me wonder whether or not Marilyn Manson took a little inspiration for his various looks from it. All you need to do is add black eyeliner, mismatching contacts, and turn that hair black, and you’re one step away from Mr. Superstar himself.