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Does stupid sell?

by Matty filed under stupida on April 25, 2005 11:02 PM

Normally, we don't watch commercials. We fast forward through them. But sometimes there is one standout commercial that is so special that we watch it, rewind and watch it again and again.

This entry is about one such 30 second gem, that was so mind boggling that I took time to write this post about it. You will probably want to read the rest of this story so that you can watch the commercial for yourself.

Okay... so I watch Attack of the Show (used to be called Screensavers) on G4 (used to be TechTV). I am not particularly proud of this fact, but I enjoy it. Even Nanc has grown to like this show. --- Ha ha, your dirty secret is out now!

The show is about basic geek stuff, such as computers, videogames, and technology.

Obviously, this show attracts a certain type of commercials (you know, the ads that run at 2 in the morning on a cable channel). The one that I would like to talk about today is for a correspondence school. The commercial proposes the following view; "If you like to play videogames, I bet you'd like to make videogames." Oh yeah, right. I like to eat food. Maybe I could work at McDonalds!

So here's the deal... let's talk about the commercial, then click play at the bottom for streaming video goodness. Let's start with the script. my comments are in italics.

[Setting: an office, with two buds hanging out and playing videogames. ]
Boys with Toys
Greatest American Hero: Awwww, hurry up man... boss is comin'in.
Jock Guy: duuude...I almost got it.

{Dude, where's my acting career?... Oh, I know... it's in the Westwood Correspondence commercial.}

That mean ol' boss!
Lady Boss: Hey guys, finished testing that game yet? I've got another one I need designed.

{Upon close examination of the video, it appears as though GAH and JG are playing a Playstation game. If these guys are testing a Playstation video game, what are they going to design next? Something for NES or Atari??}

JG: We just finished level 3 and need to tighten up the graphics a little bit.

{Dude, tighter graphics. Sweet}

LB: Great. [smiles and turns away]

JG: Hey. I can't believe we got jobs doin' this.

{Maybe if we're really lucky, the bong factory will call us about the tester job}

GAH: I know. and my mom said I'd never get *anywhere* with these games.

{It sounds as though GAH has repressed anger towards dear old mom. Of course it was pretty obvious, after he created titles such as "Super Mario I hate my mom Sunshine" and "Doom 3: My Mom"}

Blah Blah Voiceover Guy: Blah Blah voiceover.

Okay, so that's it. Here's the thing that I still can't figure out. This is a commercial with a basic level of production quality. There were many different people involved in this commercial. Actors, directors, lighting, sound, makeup, probably even craft services. Didn't anybody notice how much money they just spent on a heaping, steaming pile of poo? I digress. watch the commercial below.

Okay, now watch the commercial a few more times... Once you think... "hey, they paid somebody to walk in the background behind the Lady Boss", then you're done.

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read comments

Hi, this blog has been upgraded, but I'm leaving the old pages online until the search engines catch up. If you want to join the discussion, this may be the page you're looking for on the new site.

Posted by: rachel on April 26, 2005 07:49 AM

Here in my neck of the woods, we have a similar gaming technology commercial. We are also lucky enough to get the Iowa don't ever have sex, because sex is scary commercials. What strikes me about this commercial is the extreme 70's vibe in the clothes and hair. Forshadowing for the technology you will learn? I think you might need to send away for more information regarding this exciting career!

Posted by: Pamelalala on April 26, 2005 08:11 AM

Man! I was all set to call (about time to make a drastic career change - when you're 8 months preggo, you know) when I saw the disclaimer! Not intended for residents of Texas?!?!? What the ??

Posted by: Nanc on April 26, 2005 01:11 PM

Yes, my second-hand, geek STiV viewing habits are out. Wait - there's still no shame. But it's no Unscrewed with Martin Sargent, Matt!

Excellent writing again, Bonez. You had me snickering into my monitor, despite exhausting the jokes when you found this "gem."

Posted by: Kathy B. on May 2, 2005 01:01 PM

Man... what's up with this "Not intended for residents of Massachusetts or Texas" thing, (dude)? Life is soooo unfair!

Posted by: Aubyn on May 9, 2005 10:51 AM

i finally saw this add and it is sooooo bad-i guess tx and ma kids won't get anywhere with there video game playing so their moms might be right

Posted by: Todd on May 20, 2005 04:27 PM

This is, by far, the stupidest commercial airing on tv right now.

Entertaining but still stupid.

At the end of the spot, they should have cracked a beer, sparked up a joint and started surfing for porn. "Dude. No way! I never thought work would be this fun!"

Greatest American Hero. I like that!

Posted by: PinCushion on May 23, 2005 04:52 PM

This fine piece of cinematography has clearly been skewed by this article. It should be clear to most viewers that these fine testers are not in fact testing a PlayStation game, they are actually on break, they just happened to have gotten caught by the boss. Clearly they are in an office during working hours noted by the diligent employee working in the background. And as for the next game there developing???

Heck if I know, did the writers of this farce have any clue as to what the job they are advertising for even entails? Perhaps subliminally they did? I write this while working for a game company, simultaneously playing a game. :D

P.S. clearly 48 other states donít have problems with the removal of the schools accreditation. I'm sorry, what is there "job" again? Test, design,???

Posted by: jake on May 24, 2005 10:15 PM

Career in graphic tightening.

Posted by: Joey Sinclair on June 2, 2005 12:47 AM

HEY! I was in that commercial, dont make fun of me, that is how you make games, we even made one, the game makers use a technology called RPG Maker, you just stick the disk inside your game system and you make a game.

Posted by: Daystrom on August 8, 2005 02:11 PM

You know what? I thought that was the greatest commercial evar!1!!

Now if you'll excuse me, I must go tighten up the graphics on level 3.

Posted by: Baltis on December 4, 2005 08:43 PM

I've been laughing my ass off at this comercial for ever now... I mean, laughing... so hard I can't breath sometimes. I think it's hands down the funniest thing I've ever seen... ever. These two guys are complete and total tulips.

Thank you, whoever you are, that made this comercial... it's made me laugh atleast once a day for the last 6 months or better.

Posted by: Chad on January 3, 2006 12:18 PM

OMG this commercial is absolutly horrible. I make commercials for a living and I have to say this looks like a student project. Does westwood also teach television production? And I love how the "Boss" says hurry up I need another one designed! Like it takes a couple days to produce a game HAHA!

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