Archive for the ‘commercials’ category

Geico’s “The Gecko Explores an Old Attic”

October 6, 2019



Attics may be disquieting places in which the stored past lives on, even intruding on the present. Mannequins can be creepy because they imitate a life that they lack, a horrific potential that has been explored in Twilight Zone stories among others.  As part of their GEICOween series, the Gecko takes a new homeowner into the attic of his recent house acquisition, convinced that doing so can reveal the home’s charm in what has been left behind.  While the Gecko discovers a music box complete with a tiny ballerina, the focal point of this attic is a table around which are seated a number of broken mannequins, their faces frozen in a variety of peculiar and even disturbing expressions as they partake of a tea party of the damned…

Observing these house haunts is a bit too much for the new owner of the abode, who beats a hasty retreat from further exploration of his discovery.  Perhaps in the Rod Serling tradition, these mannequins each have stories to tell, and lives that they live when not under observation.  I’d join their little attic party for tea and tales, wouldn’t you?

The inference is that while Geico may not be able to help you with malevolent spirits in your home, they can assist you with homeowners and renters insurance.  Just keep an eye on those mannequins, OK?- –Boo!

 

GEICOween is coming!

October 1, 2019


In a series of Halloween-themed commercials, Geico insurance introduces us to Griselda the witch, a witchy but wonderfully hip witch who builds on traditional stereotypes to in one commercial host a karaoke cooking show, complete with bubbling cauldron in which angel sneezes and a thumb drive are added to the brew!

But I digress…in one wonderful, furry-themed commercial, two female college students have taken in Griselda as a compromise roommate, one seeking someone who can help with the cooking, and the other wanting someone who likes cats.  Griselda fits the bill nicely, spoon-feeding one of the students soup that transforms her into an anthropomorphic cat complete with cat ears, facial features, and furry forearms… I’d drink of that brew anytime! While her cooking may be questionable, Geico can really help these students with renters insurance, we’re told.

Anyways, Griselda is a real hoot as is her furry creation, and deserves to be a breakout  character.  We Halloween lovers thank you, Geico…watch for yourself, and meow!

 

(tip o’ the pen to Carycomic for the idea for this post!)

 

 

Allstate’s “Mayhem Cat” Commercial…

September 14, 2019

Dean Winters is back as the Allstate Mayhem guy, a role he plays to perfection…and he’s no stranger to playing animals as well, having played a raccoon in the attic in an earlier outing (below)…

This time he’s portraying a cat, and the absurdity and whimsy of his portrayal is enhanced by the fact that he’s neither in costume nor CGI enhanced, but simply appearing as a normally dressed adult human male adopting feline mannerisms, poses, and behaviors. 

“I’m your cat,” announces Winters, “and ever since you brought me home that day, I’ve been plotting to destroy you,” he declares calmly, flashing back to his batting away the petting hand of his male owner on that first day. We are show Winters doing a variety of iconic cat-things, like playing with kitty-toys while lying on his owner’s couch, and spitting a mouse onto their sleeping face.  “I’ve been sizing you up, calculating your every move,” Winters shares as he peers from a cat-condo and rides a Roomba.  “You think this is love?  This is a billion years of tiger DNA, waiting to pounce!” Eventually a faucet left running by the Winters-cat overflows the sink, causing the upstairs bathroom to collapse down to the floor below.  His feline agenda is proceeding nicely…

If you have the wrong type of insurance, you could be stuck coughing up the cash for this,” advises Winters as he coughs up bird feathers by a now vacant cage. “So get Allstate, and you could be better protected from Mayhem, like meow,” he closes, dipping his fingers into a cat-food bowl bearing the name “Mayhem,” and laughing in a rather sinister fashion, his outfit complete with a collar and tag…the devil is in the details, you see!

 

 

 

Progressive Agents of the Corn…

August 6, 2019


   
Fans of Stephen King will get this commercial (The Corning) about Progressive Insurance agents emerging from a cornfield and chanting in a monotone to Charlie the farmer that he is covered for an automotive mishap and saving money because he bundled his home and auto insurance together…

…it’s suitably creepy and surreal.  Led by iconic Flo, half a dozen Progressive agents, identically clad in their immaculate white uniforms, issue forth from the dense cornfield and begin their eerie slow chant while standing in near formation.  “We’re all here for you, all day, all night,” they intone. “Get in the house, Sarah!,” urges Charlie to his wife, wisely following her inside. Their intonation over, Flo congratulates her team for calming a customer by speaking slowly and clearly.  

The best is saved for last when you hear lovable loser Jamie ask the other members of his team if they heard “weird voices” while in the corn.  They all deny it, to which Jamie responds, “Me neither.” Listen carefully, and you’ll then hear a faint, otherworldly voice whisper Jamie’s name, presumably from out of the cornfield…Haunting!

 

IHOP’s “Surprise Attack” Trojan Chicken!

July 31, 2019

Well, most of us are familiar with the Trojan War, ended when the wily ancient Greeks rolled an enormous wooden horse secretly loaded with soldiers up to the impenetrable city gates of Troy.  The Trojans, revering horses, thought that the gigantic horse was a gift from their defeated foe, and so rolled it inside of their city where after dark the advance Greek force descended, opening the gates and allowing the full Greek army to launch a devastating surprise nocturnal attack.  It was then game over…

…now imagine that the Greeks had crafted a gigantic chicken for their attack device rather than a horse, and you have the premise of this IHOP (International House of Pancakes) commercial done in period costume.  Possibly the Trojans would have doubled over with laughter, rendering them incapable of defending their fabled city (“Stop, you’re killing me!”). But no, the soldiers within the great chicken are wondering why they are sneaking into Troy rather than heading over to IHOP to enjoy some nice chicken and pancakes or waffles…make dinner, not war, you know…and pass the pancake syrup, please!  A Trojan soldier even hears the Greek soldiers conversing within and questions the giant chicken, to which the Greek strike force leader replies in (-what else?) a chicken voice, complete with squawks!  Then the great chicken reverses course and hastens to an IHOP, colliding with cars parked there, and totally out of time and space.  That should make for interesting reading on the insurance claims, but I worry about a rift in the time-space continuum…

Brad Pitt as Achilles is nowhere present in this fractured version of the Trojan War, although if he chickened out it was probably at the IHOP, and certainly not the battlefield.  Homer (not Simpson) sure didn’t write this Iliad…

 

Chantix’s “Paddleboard Turkey”

July 27, 2019

Well, everybody’s heard about the bird…the Chantix turkey, that is! And while I’m aware that the turkey is paddleboarding rather than surfing, they missed a great chance to use 1963’s Surfin’ Bird by the Trashmen as the sound track for this commercial!

Now there was foreshadowing for this commercial in the last one when we saw the turkey getting out his flip-flops, knocking them together, arranging seashells, and looking at beach scenes on his phone. We shoulda seen this coming, folks. And as I’ve said before, this turkey has a better life than I do. He even returns from his beach visit in the coolest little convertible vehicle that suits him perfectly!

In my twisted mind, I can see Peter Griffin from Family Guy either getting into a dance-off or perhaps a fistfight with the turkey. And like Peter Griffin, “I dream of an America where everybody knows that the bird is the word.” Papa-Oom-Mow-Mow!

Colonel Chester…

July 10, 2019

The iconic KFC founder and spokesman Colonel Sanders has enjoyed a lively if bizarre post-mortem career, melding into Robocop, being portrayed by Reba McEntire, and even tripping the light fantastic with Mrs.Butterworth.  Now the Colonel has morphed once again to be portrayed by Chester Cheetah, retaining the original’s trademark white suit, beard, and tie.  Frankly, this spokes-cat wears the garb well!

And so it comes to pass that Cheetos mascot Chester Cheetah becomes Colonel Chester to mark the launch of a new Cheetos Sandwich, even skateboarding in his commercial outing.  The popular anthropomorphic mascot is but the latest in a kind of rotating spokesperson concept for the franchise.  Time will tell if he continues to be “dangerously cheesy…