Archive for the ‘advertising’ category

The NJM Narwhal and Nemesis “Carl…”

January 26, 2023

For a company that boasts of “no talking animals or irritating jingles,” the NJM insurance company has given us some great ones. And what’s wrong with talking animals, I want to know? Sirs, I am one! 🦊

One of the first great talking animals that NJM has given us was this full-suited narwhal. Now it’s not everyday that you run across someone in a narwhal fursuit, and this fellow has the best intentions…he just wants to audition to be the NJM mascot, and gets zero tolerance. The poor fellow seems to have a flaccid horn…don’t they have a drug now that you can take for that? No wait, that’s the infamous “bent carrot” commercials for Peyronie’s Disease, thanks to which we’ll never see misshaped carrots the same way again…aargh! 😾

Anyways, the NJM receptionist sics laid-back security guard Carl on the poor would-be narwhal mascot to usher him from the building. Wearing a full-body narwhal costume isn’t all peaches and crèam; it’s easy to fall on stairs, for example…

Now Carl the Security Guard played by Scott Watson ordinarily has a boring and uneventful job, except when blue narwhals show up. He is unflappable, and plays the role to deadpan perfection, even in this surreal circumstance. He is the perfect foil to the irrepressible narwhal, ebulliently played by Jared M. Smith.

The narwhal is not easily discouraged or defeated, and in subsequent commercials tries to re-enter the premises, including by vehicle again to be thwarted by Carl. “I’m outta here!,” blusters the narwhal, only to find that his flippers make poor appendages for operating a car…

So catch the delightful rivalry of Narwhal vs. Carl, which to me is vaguely reminiscent of Charlie the Tuna trying to get Starkist to take him in those old commercials. This might be a great live action cartoon…

And now for the first time ever, we bring you the fox-narwhal hybrid. Yes, I think I could get into that character! Please note that my horn isn’t floppy or bent. Everyone sing now: “Fox-narwhals, fox-narwhals, swimming in the ocean, and causing a commotion, because they are so awesome…

Liberty Mutual’s “Catchy Tune…Squirrel Squad”

January 24, 2023

If you’ve ever been to a Chuck E. Cheese place or visited the Orlando, Florida area in times past, you’ve probably had contact with those animatronic animal robot bands that may have been high tech at one time, but now are more cornball and laughable than anything else. Liberty Mutual recreates the look and feel of those vintage robot animal bands in their recent commercial, “Catchy Tune.” You see, if a catchy tune can be implanted as an ear worm in your head, perhaps you’ll be more likely to think of the company or product it promotes should you want to buy something as mundane and unexciting as insurance.

What’s more, it appears that this animatronic Squirrel Squad band exists on a miniature stage neatly squirreled away (pun intended) right inside a wall of your very own house, ready to be summoned forth at any time! That would get old in what…a minute or two? You might even say that this Squirrel Squad would drive you nuts! What would be more appropriate, actually? But I kinda like the drummer…and hey, these guys work for peanuts! I demand pizza or some Chinese noms…. 🦊



(What?I’ve played a few gigs…)

“Catering by Linda” Progressive Commercial…

January 20, 2023

The world of anthropomorphic singing fruits and vegetables is one that I usually don’t visit, being that it’s too “trippy” for me if not outright nightmare fuel. One wonders exactly what spices small business owner “Linda” is adding to her stewpot, but I’ll leave that to the authorities to determine…

Anyways, as singing carrots, onions, and other ingredients tunefully offer themselves and others of their kind to Linda’s blade for slicing and dicing, we are wondering if we’re witnessing renegade Muppets, a rejected episode of Pee-Wee’s Playhouse, or perhaps some kind of off-beat horror movie. An assistant then advises Linda that their delivery van has been sideswiped, and she must inspect the loss of mirror there suffered, and then call Progressive, through which she has small business insurance…

It’s not long thereafter that Linda can return to “living the dream,” unless you are one of her ingredients, I suppose, who must then be living a nightmare… 🦊

NJM’s “The Breakup” Walrus…

January 16, 2023

I find anthropomorphic walruses rather unsettling, although I’ve seen some portly balding dudes with brushy mustaches who rather resembled walruses; think Wilford Brimley! NJM has brought us some rather outstanding anthropomorphic animals in the past, including a standout ferret. He was a winner, whereas this guy is just disturbing…

In the commercial, the lady announces to her walrus dinner-date who symbolizes her former insurance company that she is breaking up with him, and going with NJM, a company that the walrus notes does not even have a mascot. The walrus is disturbed, and leaves in a huff, announcing that he is not then paying for dinner! The lady says that this is fine, as she’s saving money with NJM. The walrus waddles off in a huff, leaving us to notice the amazing details in his costume, flippers and all. I just think that the commercial could have gotten more into some walrus behaviors, like having him throw down an entire raw fish for dinner.

It’s important to remember that no actual walruses feelings were hurt in the making of this commercial.- – Goo goo goo joob!

“Break Free” VW Tiguan Commercial…

November 22, 2022

As the movie Lamb showed us, sheep have been, well, shorn of proper respect and attention in the animal kingdom. They have untapped potential as pets and child-surrogates. This is brought to our attention in a recent commercial for Volkswagen’s Tiguan.

So what happens when you allow a wayward sheep into your VW Tiguan, and take him home with you? Well, he or she becomes much like a dog, hanging out the vehicle’s window, and making themselves at home in your home, demanding walks, drinking from the toilet, making a mess when you’re away, and adorably taking a bath while bleating.—Ahh, the many joys of pet-parenting!

Life gets bigger, you see, when you break from the herd. So “make your own kind of music.” Who am I to judge? Just don’t call your new ovine pet Lambchop. They might get the wrong idea…🐑

And a Happy Thanksgiving, y’all! 🦊





“The Great Wolves Have Arrived” Commercial…

November 18, 2022

The Great Wolf Lodge commercials can be somewhat disconcerting. They are enormous wolves, you see, of a size that makes even dire wolves look wimpy. Fortunately they are friendly, and you ride them like oversized horses to the Great Wolves Lodge resorts…

A mother leaves work to find a Great Wolf waiting for her, and so rides him to pick up her son at school, even though the son would be barely a morsel for the wolf should he turn predacious. But not to worry! These wolves are just the iconic mascots for the family indoor water parks, which started in Wisconsin in 1997, and now have 19 locations…

Nothing brings the pack together like a trip to one of their indoor water resorts, so the commercial’s tagline is to “strengthen the pack!” We may all be grateful that these fantasy wolves are both imaginary and quite docile… 🦊

https://fb.watch/gT8kNjTyYx/


Amazon’s “Red Riding Hood” Ad…

October 28, 2022

We seem to be posting a lot about wolves lately, but hey, Halloween is coming, and we gotta run with the pack, so to speak. So much has been written about Little Red Riding Hood that it’s practically a cottage industry, which may be appropriate since Grandma kinda lived in a cottage, don’t ‘ya know?

Well, Little Red here might be little, but she’s kinda hawt as well, and she sure ain’t no fool…no Big Bad Wolf is gonna pull one over on her. Going through those creepy old woods to Grandma’s house, this Little Red (Mikayla Roberts) fears no evil. So when she reaches Grandma’s house, she whips out her cell phone and places an Amazon order, which miraculously arrives almost instantaneously in time for deployment.

The Big Bad Wolf arrives, too…a magnificent, snarling version in white. But when Red deploys the dog toy that she has purchased, Wolfie becomes a good boy, jumping and playing with the toy in total delight! We’ve seen a similar transformation in such films as The Bad Guys, when Mr. Wolf just can’t help wagging his tail when called a good boy. There’s no such thing as a bad boy, really, right?

The actress playing Grandma isn’t exactly an elderly, bedridden-cripple either, but looks to be a pretty hip and vital lady. Well-played update on an old timeless classic, Amazon!

(tip o’ the pen to carycomic…)

“The Real Cost” TV Spot, “Straw City”

October 25, 2022

The Big Bad Wolf continues to find new life in fresh incarnations, and this minute-long anti-smoking promo, while five years old, may have passed most of us by, and so bears visitation…

The Wolf here is kind of a pathetic figure, living a solitary existence is an apartment with a bare refrigerator. Seeking food, he gets in in his car, guided by his GPS, and goes to Straw City, which is populated by…surprise, pigs!

Now the Wolf used to be a seriously bad dude, you can tell by his leather jacket…but alas, years of smoking have so depleted his lung power that he now is incapable of blowing down their straw dwellings. Initially afraid, the pigs now look at him with a mixture of wonder and almost pity. Old Big Bad ain’t so bad anymore. One pig is so unconcerned that they walk past the Wolf while wearing headphones….

It’s too late for this Wolfie. He extracts a pack of cigarettes as he walks away, self-defeated. So toss the cigarettes…they ain’t no good for you! We preds have to keep our game up, ‘ya know… 🦊

https://youtu.be/9FKaJTV-0T0

Fluzone TV Spot: The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing…

October 21, 2022

In a Sandofi commercial for Fluzone, the disease is personified as a ravenous wolf stalking people in various settings with ill intent. The notion of “the wolf at the door” is historically a longstanding one often used to represent all kinds of hardships and deprivation, from war to famine to disease.

The attempted predations of the realistic and sizeable wolf depicted here are repeatedly frustrated in this commercial by the simple fact that his intended victims have been immunized. Eventually he becomes a wolf on the run, rendered impotent by the simple fact that the people he surveys and passes have been protected…

And so we finally see our wolf retreating to the extent that he’s looking out the rear window of a bus. I don’t know what fare he was charged, but think that being immunized is a good idea lest you be visited and victimized by the flu wolf…

I’ve had my vaccine this year…have you?

Liberty Mutual’s “Tools” Commercial…

July 17, 2022

I’ve never had an emu work on my vehicle, but I could argue that some gorillas have. We’ve all been at the mercy of garages and mechanics. Even the venerable Plymouth Duster chariot used by the dynamic duo of Doug and the LiMu Emu occasionally needs work, and in the Liberty Mutual “Tools” commercial, we are taken inside a garage housing a Bat Cave’s worth of assorted vehicles, all the brand’s trademark “banana yellow” color. I mean, there’s a motorcycle, some kind of utility vehicle, and even Skidoo-type things…

Doug is hard at work beneath the chassis of his Duster, but is he up to the job? – – Nope, and neither is the Emu, who hilariously brings his human partner the wrong tool specified for each step of the job. When asked for a socket wrench, the Emu brings a hammer. When a blowtorch is requested, LiMu deposits a stuffed animal into Doug’s hand…

At the end of his efforts, Doug somehow manages to extract what appears to be a distributor from the bottom of the vehicle! “LiMu,call a mechanic” are Doug’s closing words. Clearly one is needed to prevent this Duster from entering the dustbin…

The LiMu Emu and Doug are best buddies who dress identically, and have a long-standing history, the details of which we someday may learn…or perhaps it’s best not to ask!


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