There's so much to love about this early Stephen Colbert commercial. That down-home banjo music. The font! Oh God, the font. And most of all, Colbert's round little baby face. (I also love how they point labeled arrows at the credit card and the phone showing us what to pay attention to. Ads today should bring that back. We need guidance.)
912 is a joke! In the fourth of six planned John Kransinski Alec Baldwin New Era ads, Baldwin's burning hatred for the Red Sox results in him accidentally setting his heavy mahogany furniture and supple leather sofas aflame out of spite. In the end, Alec and John have to move in together a la The Odd Couple, forced to get along despite their competing personality quirks and the increasingly obvious fact that, in this world, Alec Baldwin has completely lost his mind.
I'm not going to criticize Bill Cosby or the Bill Cosby iPhone app. The man is an institution, a legend, and as this video points out, a charming grandpa that I wish would hold court from my parents' living room each and every Thanksgiving. "I will tweet you better than anyone has every tweeted you," Cosby promises. Bill! That's the filth. I will however take umbrage with whoever filmed and produced this commercial. The man is crammed into the lower 1/8 of the shot! This is an ad for an app, not a heavy yet tasteful mahogany mantle piece. They were also using a mahogany microphone and mahogany sound [...]
Ugh, Super Bowl commercials. These ads, which have become events worth paying attention to by virtue of their pricetags, pretty much provide a master class in what not to do as a comedy writer. They're full of lazy, sometimes-offensive punchlines, and they all follow unsurprising formulas that we've seen a million times before. If people tried to write crap like this into sitcoms, they'd never get work. Or maybe they'd get work on the most popular comedies on TV on CBS? I don't know, guys. Let's just look at some examples.
Weird: Will Ferrell is doing ads for Old Milwaukee beer now. Weirder: he approached them, not the other way around. Weirdest: he requested that the ads take place in Davenport, Iowa (even though Pabst Brewing Company is based in Wisconsin, and the beer he's talking about has "Milwaukee" right in the name). What witchery is at the bottom of this?? Has an Iowan gunslinger with a lot of state pride got some kind of dirt on Will Ferrell and is blackmailing him into submission? Two more ad spots below so you can continue your investigation, gumshoe.
Beyond the economic factor, comedians give off an image of lightheartedness and humanity, which is valuable for heavy-hearted, faceless, evil corporations. In the words of Charles Torrey, vice president for marketing for the Minute Maid trademark (oh, right, him), “humor is a way [...]
Here's the second of six (!!) planned ads for New Era that feature a Yankees-loving Alec Baldwin and a Sox-loving John Krasinski locking horns over their choice of local baseball squads. These are so very good. Why can't all commercials be short comedy sketches featuring very funny people? Specifically, Alec Baldwin? How many baseball hats do we need to buy to make that happen?
Was 1991 a particularly slow news year? Or did we just miss out on the rampant Seth Green fever that swept through the Gulf states during the early nineties? In this painfully earnest human interest story from WVUE New Orleans, we meet Seth, just your average seventeen-year-old carrot-top struggling actor actor who's catchphrase in a Rally's commercial ("Cha-CHING") earned him a trip to the French Quarter, a key to New Orleans, and the love of thousands of Saints fans. New Orleans must have given away an unquantifiable number of keys if even the Rally's kid was getting one.
Not much seems to be getting done in congress these days, but at least they are getting one important thing done: "The Senate unanimously passed a bill late Wednesday to require television stations and cable companies to keep commercials at the same volume as the programs they interrupt."
It's itty bitty Jason Bateman! And his hair! Just think, he was 18 when this PSA was made, but he was already fighting for the curmudgeonly cause against those gosh-darned kids with their new-fangled jim-jam noise they call rock music. Also, he looks and sounds like he is 30-40% asleep, which I guess was all the rage for teen heartthrobs in '87.
Totally Obvious News of the day: ratings for shows are really, really different when you factor in DVR. Networks are finally starting to count the number of people who watch a show on DVR in the seven days after it airs, in addition to the previously-measured number of people watching live or on DVR that night. And it makes a real difference: according to same-night viewers, Two Broke Girls was the biggest new sitcom this fall; counting seven-day-DVR, New Girl does better.
Interesting, sure. But will the new measurement actually stop good shows from getting canceled? Probably not. The key number is still the C3 rating, or how [...]
Comedians in commercials are definitely a thing. I’m no good at trivia, but I can always impress my (non-comedy nerd) friends and family members by knowing the names of actors in commercials because so many of them are stand up and improv comics. From a 2009 episode of The Comedy Nerds Podcast called Comedians in Commercials comes this: “It’s a great way to make money and also to get seen. For many comedians, they’re good actors, and have good comedic timing and good comedic abilities and it’s hard to get someone to actually pay for that in the stand up comedy world. The path of least resistance is [...]
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