Monthly Archives: June 2012
Upon a special request, I decided to do an article on an old FedEx commercial. There were so many made in the past, but the one that stood out the most on Youtube was this one, which features the one and only Joe Moschitta. You’d all know him best as the fastest talking man in the world which landed his role as Blur the fast talking Autobot from Transformers. He is able to speak 1/4 of a second which I think is a good requirement when it comes to getting hired as an annoucer for that “As Seen on TV” infomercials. Like the Pro 200 infomercial I did a while. Joe can talk so fast he can make an auctioneer look like studdering idiot. But enough about Joe’s speech pattern, for we’re here today to talk about the commercial that made him famous.
Keep in mind that this commercial plays in a fast pace, so I had to watch it several times in order to know what was happening. The ad opens up to an office where we see a bussiness man talking incredibly fast on the phone about a business trip for L.A. and New York. He hangs up and askes the job applicant why he thinks he deserves a job at the company. The applicant says he has a sharp mind. The Business man like the response and hires him on the spot(don’t you wish all job interviews today are quick and satisfying?). The scene goes quickly to a different room where a meeting takes place and the business man just says it plain and simple at a fast rate that business is business, and in order to get work done we have to do it right away. Which the meeting concludes after a really really quick lecture. We then see the business man have a chat with another business suit who I swear looks like Jeffrey Tambor. The guy who uploaded the commercial claimed it wasn’t Jeffrey. But I’m not convince, cause how often do you meet someone who has a great resemblence to an actor who always plays frustrated authority figures in movies and tv shows. Anyways way they have a quick chat about a bank job in Pitsburgh or something and askes the Tambor impersonator if it’s ok to be called Pete. Which he’s perfectly alright with being called Pete for short. The yet another cut scene shows a receptionist telling the business man that a Mr. Smitler is here to see him. But the Business man tells the receptionist to have him wait for 15 seconds. The commercial finally concludes with the business man switching lines on his phone back and forth on various stock market exchanges and any other money related chats(Notice that he’s looking up which indicates he’s reading a que card). We then here the annoucer say “In this fast moving, high pressure, get it done yesterday world. Aren’t you glad there’s one company that can keep up with it all?” Which we then see a FedEx package placed on top of the business man’s desk, which he is still doing business chats over the phone. The ad concludes with the tagline “Federal Express, When it absolutely, positively has to be there over night”.
This commercial was produced by Sedelmaier who also produced the original Where’s the Beef commercials for Wendys. Not sure when I’ll do an article on those commercials, but within time when I feel like it. Cause I got others in mind to publish before hand. This commercial which I mention beofre did made Joe famous after it aired on TV. His talent landed him in various TV shows and other commercials. Such as the Micro Machine commercials from the 80s, but we’re not covering those ads for today. While he also did a humorious Sesame Street skit which he is a bussiness man for Peter Piper’s which sells products with the letter P. Which he says words that begin with the letter p in sentence if possible. But gets into a real hassle when the company was bought out by a company that only sells products with the letter S. Nothing else to say about this commercial, other than Moschitta is awesome and it takes mad skill to speak as quick as he does. For next week, will be another Carl’s Jr. commericial.
It was one year ago when Randy “Macho Man” Savage suffered from a heart attack and died in an off-road car accident in Seminole, Florida, USA at age 58. The WWE fan base took a great moment of silence as they lost one of the most prolific veteran wrestlers of WWF(predecessor to WWE). Besides wrestling, he was an actor in various tv shows and voice over roles. As well as commercials, in this case being the sponsor of Slim Jim beef jerky. Before the Slim Jim Guy came into existence, I remember first being introduce to Slim Jim beef jerky by these commercials. It was also how I first learn about the existence of Macho Man, sadly wrestling is a sport not displayed in my house so I grew up with no exposure to wrestling at all other than parodies of it in movies, TV shows, and cartoons. As you can imagine, I never kept myself up to date and was embarrass when I didn’t know WWF was changed to WWE. So to memorate a legendary wrestler let’s discuss his exposure to Slim Jim advertisements.
Macho Man made his debut in the Slim Jim commercials back in 1993, where he was a color commentator for Monday Night Raw and would only wrestle during certain occasions. In each of these commercials, Randy would occasionally invade a normal boring location and lighten it up by making things explode by eating slim jims. You heard me right, eery time he or someone else eats a slim jim something explodes with in the perimeter. Wether its light bulbs, a stage set, or a computer, everything explodes when someone eats a slim jim. Cause that’s the tagline “Want a little excitement? Snap into a Slim Jim!” Other commercials would have Randy disposing chips or pizza and claims that Slim Jims are a real man’s snack. Constantly expressing the combination of beef and spice making it the ultimate snack. Can’t blame him, cause even I admit it’s a good item for snack time. While the remaining commercials would depict of Macho Man convincing a wrestling bigot that wrestling is a real man’s sport and not rock climbing or snow boarding and another scenario where Randy is confine at an asylum but padded cells can’t with stand the imprisonment of Macho Man. Not as long as he has Slim Jim beef jerky, he’s invisible. You don’t want to mess with Macho Man, cause he’ll chew you up, and spit you out.
These commercials came to an end sometime in the mid to late 90s. Slim Jim focused on different hosts for their commercials including the Slim Jim Guy and other wrestlers(but that’s another story). Randy Savage’s exposure to Slim Jim created a huge impact on his career and on the Slim Jim company. Some merchandise was made on the adds, while people gradually recognize Randy due to his role in these ads. And that’s one of the things people will remember him the most by right next to his wrestling occupation. He was a wrestler like no other, always wore shades and bright color clothes in public. There won’t be another like him with in this life time. The next time you visit his grave, be sure to place a box of Slim Jims on it. Cause I’m sure he’ll appreciate it that people years from now will remember him from these commercials.
So enjoy the commercials themselves down below of this paragraph. For next week, I’ll be doing an article on Joe Moschita and the commercial he star in that made him famous. That commercial in particular is the FedEx busy office commercial. And remember it’s only another four weeks until my first year anniversary article will be published. What will that one be about, I won’t give it away, but it’ll be a really old commercial.
Yet another actress I didn’t know at first glance, until I discovered she was Sandy Olsen from the original Grease. Which I used to get the title confused with the country, until I finally did watch an old VHS tape on the movie to finally know what was the hype about the movie. After hearing about it so much from my parents, it was a good film. And today I completely understood the legacy it built up ever since it was originally released back in 1978.
I’m sure you already know how it begins in the intro to these psas. We see Olivia say “This is a vial of crack, like cocaine” “As you may notice, it doesn’t come with a warning label” “If it did, it might tell you smoking crack takes the brain, nervous system, lungs, & the heart” “What it also say is crack can kill you” “The problem is no one knows how much it takes to do it” “So every time you try it, it’s a guessing game” “You can guess wrong with this stuff” “You die” And ends with the usual ending you already seen four times before.
The one thing that makes this PSA different from all the rest, is that it’s the only Thrill Can Kill PSA with a non-American celebrity. Yeah you heard me right, cause Olivia was born in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England, UK which says so on her IMDB profile for proof. And to this day people remember Olivia best for her role in Grease. Which she starts off with the sweet and gentle as a lamb Sand Olsen and then becomes the sweet and tough as a thorn rose Sandy Olsen towards the end. So I can see this PSA being likeable if it has the lead heroine from Grease. And after reviewing all five of these PSAs, I have come to a conclusion that crack is wack and always has been. There’s plenty of other good Drug PSAs out there but I’ll take a break from doing them for now. As for next week I’ll be doing an article on Randy Macho Man Savage with Slim Jim, cause it’s already been one year since he passed away.
This is another celebrity I didn’t recognize at first until I look up her filmography. Which I then discovered she was Stephanie Speck from Short Circuit, Allison Reynolds from Breakfast Club, the NY Ticket Agent who told Kevin he’s in New York from Home Alone 2, and Jennifer from War Games. One of those, you don’t remember their name but you remember their movie character celebrities. For this one you’d expect it to be like the other three where each celebrity talks about the dangers of crack, well Ally does it much differently for her PSA.
The usual opening with the cameras surrounding the shadowy figure occurs and we Ally with this statement “A lot of drug abusement messages are full of statistics” “How many people die, how many lives are ruined, how much drug use is costing the economy(well it was a better economy back then, we had less homeless people and everyone had jobs)” “But this message is not about numbers, it’s about crack” “And the message is simple, crack can kill you” “I won’t bore you with the statistics, except to say it’s not worth becoming one for a ten minute high” With that being said we see the usual close up of the vial of crack and the taglines of Thrill Can Kill.
Two things noticeable about this PSA, one it was the only “Thrill Can Kill PSA” to show a celebrity who doesn’t show a vial of crack as a sample of what it looks like. Maybe she didn’t want people to be reminded that she star in the Breakfast Club which had a marijuana scene. And second, average Drug PSAs even at that time don’t have statistics on the number of people who use drugs or die from them. Maybe she wanted people to think that her PSA is different by claiming there are statistic drug PSAs. Which ever the case she’s probably the coolest actress to host a Drug PSA. I mean what’s there not to love about Ally, she was one of the nine original members of the 1980s “brat pack”, she was friends with Number 5 from Short Circuit, she helped Matthew Broderdick save America from being nuked, and she was a goth girl in Breakfast Club. So along with Eastwood, this was my second favorite PSA for Thrill Can Kill. Now for the final Thrill Can Kill PSA with Olivia Newton-John in article number 54.
This was one of the fewest celebrities, I did not recognize at first for this PSA series. I had to look up her IMDB filmography just to be sure if I have heard of her before. I finally did after I discovered she was a guest star in the “Krusty Gets Cancelled” episode of the Simpsons. And she also did the voice of Georgette from Disney’s “Oliver and Company”. Along with being a guest celebrity in the live action segments of Fantasia 2000, and Winifred ‘Winnie’ Sanderson from “Hocus Pocus”. So I have seen her before, it’s just I never came around to knowing her name. My apologies to all of the Midler fans who are reading this. So now for the summary on what she has to say on crack.
PSA starts with the usual cameras and microphones surrounding the celebrity which we then hear Bette say “I’m so hot, I’m so cool, I’m so where it’s at, I’m it, I’m a genius” “Yeah, crack will make you feel like that….for exactly 10 minutes.” “Then you crash, and then a craving starts, and you need more and more and more to get that feeling back” “The problem is crack can kill you and no one knows how much it takes to do you in” “Each time you try it could be your last”. She then holds up a vial of crack and says “You see this?” “Crack comes in a vial like this” “If anyone offers you some” “Tell them where to SHOVE it” “Please don’t even try it, could lose”. Then it ends with the close up of the vial of crack and the same taglines like the previous two PSAs.
Unlike Paul, Bette is a more appropriate choice to be in a Drug PSA as from what I understand she is a highly likeable singer. And almost always sings in each movie she star in. Such as her introduction as Georgette in Oliver immediately went into a musical number. While a lot of people regarded her “I’ll put a Spell on You” in “Hocus Pocus” to be one of the most memorable scenes from that movie. Which was a watchable live action Disney film, it’s far from being listed in the bad Disney films. I won’t list the ones I’m referring to cause you wouldn’t imagine how many people I talk to who actually like them. So enough talk on Bette, now for article number 53 with Ally Sheady.
This one, I’m sure you’re all familiar with due to its exposure off of Nostalgia Critic’s “Top 11 Most Nostalgic Drug PSAs”. A review he did which he listed 11 most off the wall PSAs on drugs. It was also how I first discovered the Thrill Can Kill series after learning Paul Ruebans wasn’t the only actor who did this PSA. I also like to thank the Nostalgia Critic for pointing out a few things that makes Paul an unlikely actor to tell kids to not do drugs. Why so? please read this article to find out for yourself.
The PSA starts the same as the previous one with Eastwood. We see Paul Reubens dress up as his trademark character Peee Wee Herman. He holds up a vile of crack and says “This is Crack, like cocaine”. “It isn’t glamorous, or cool, or kids stuff”. “It’s the most addictive kind of cocaine and it can kill you””What’s really bad is no body knows how much it takes” “So every time you use it” “You risk dying” “It isn’t worth it” “Look, everybody wants to be cool, but doing with crack isn’t just wrong” “It can be dead wrong”. Then the camera fades from Paul to the close up of a vial of Crack with the same “Don’t even try it” and “The Thrill can Kill” taglines on the bottom. Which is where the PSA ends.
This one is infamous for three reasons, first his show “Pee-Wee’s Playhouse” was often joke to be influenced on drugs where all of his furniture and appliances are alive. Course the same could be said about H.R. Puffnstuf, but Sid & Marty Kroff both said that they had no association with drugs. Second, Paul Reubans played a drug addict in a movie called “Blow”, I never seen it but I heard it was hard to watch. But I’ll be the judge of that if I ever watch it for myself, just to see if it was as hard to watch as “American Beauty”. Third, Paul was once arrested for doing dirty business at an adult theater which almost ruined his image to the public. So not saying Paul is inappropriate for hosting a Drug PSA, only saying that today they wouldn’t have drug PSAs with someone like Paul. Anyways on to article number 52 with Bette Midler.
Happy 50th Article!!!
Thank you all of you for supporting this blog for almost a year now. The increase of viewership each month, made it possible for me to continue on as promised. Not to mention the popularity this blog has received from third world countries as indicated off of the globe stats that WordPress installed back in late February. To celebrate my 50th article, I present to you a five-part article or articles 50-54 to be precise. Cause this subject is so big it has to be typed up in five separate articles. So without further a-do, here is part one of The Thrill Can Kill with Clint Eastwood!
The PSA starts with a dark stage room being lit with stage lights and cameras start to surround a shadowy figure in the middle. Which the mysterious man starts to say “You see this cute little vial here?” as he holds it up. A light is place on the figure who is revealed to be Clint Eastwood which he says “It’s crack, like cocaine, the most addictive form. You think it’s the grammar drug of the 80s? Well that’s the point of this fundamental reminder. It can kill you. And if you’re going to die for something. This sure’s hell ain’t it.” After he says his opion on the substance the camera fades from Clint to a close up of crack which you hear the rapid thumping of a human heart. A tagline appears on the bottom which reads “Don’t even try it”. And after the thumping stops to indicate that the heart stop beating. Another tagline reads out: “The thrill can kill”.
The reason why this one is the first is because, it had an introduction that went with it during its first showing in the 1980s. Which is mainly the now former first lady Nancy Reagan and Clint Eastwood telling us about this series of PSAs that give out warnings about crack. Which Nancy and the movie industry made a deal with the movie theaters and TV networks to sponsor these PSAs to the public. In hopes it’ll put a stop to the drug market and influence people about how much of a risk it can be to try out crack. Sadly it’s not that much different than it was back then, as there are some people out there who still try out crack just to see what it’s like or use till their hearts stop beating.
My thoughts on this PSA, for the first one I like how they hired an A listed actor for the job. Using the guy who played Harry Callahan can create an impact on a drug PSA. Cause using someone who is prolific in films can reach out to the public better than the PSAs that only use unknown actors or people hired off of the street. Cause who would not like Clint Eastwood? He’s iconic, and most of his films are listed in the top 250 movies of all time. I haven’t seen all of his films as of yet. Though I have seen all of his famous ones, including all five Dirty Harry films, the Man with No Name Trilogy, and his first film the” Revenge of the Creature”. Nothing else to say about this PSA other than Eastwood kicks but when it comes to stomping out drug dealers, so be sure to see the second PSA with Paul Rueban in the 51st article.
I’m sure anyone my age would remember these commercials. Cause I swear every Saturday Morning line up(back when all channels had Saturday Morning cartoons) aired these PSAs all the time. I’ve been holding out on doing an article on drug PSAs and it’s time to do one. Cause besides fire safety PSAs, these were the dominate PSAs due to drug abuse being a bigger issue than fire hazards. The reason I’m doing this one first is because it was one of the first ones I remember seeing on TV. The official title for this series of PSAs is “Partnership For A Drug Free America”, but since it’s mostly focused on a boy named K.B. I’ll call it “K.B. & Friends” for short. So let’s talk about this PSA.
These PSAs always feature light doodle drawings to make it seem it was drawn by a kid. This took place during the Generation X era, so you can tell the producers of this PSA were trying to stay up to date with the society. Something kids can relate to, and the results are flawless if the PSA captured the nature of the youth of that era. The first one would be about an unseen interviewer asking KB a question, “Who are your friends?”. He says his friends are Ocean(really you could name your kid after a body of salt water that covers 3/4 of the world?), his teacher Mr. Quip, his dog Donut, Marty, An un-named black boy who just says “Hey dude”(We never learn his name, but he does pass as a stunt double for Jonny 2×4)& Kelly(who he comments that she’s ok, a typical answer for a boy who isn’t into girls yet). We then see a Japanese kid who says “Hi, I’m Kai”(Either K.B. isn’t friends with him or he forgot to mention him to the interviewer). The interviewer then asked K.B. who are not his friends. K.B. tells the interviewer that the ones who are not his friends are Jesse & Jeff who are two kids who have blood-shot eyes and are completely stoned. K.B. mentions how they think their cool cause they are smoking joints. They try to convince K.B. and his friends to join them cause they’ll be cool. Or in the words of Jesse, “Hey, guys wanna have some fun”. Which K.B. and his pals say in response. “No thanks man” “Yeah get a life you guys”. Good answers kids, cause who’d want to hang out with two pre-teens who have a cloud of smoke surrounding them. And will likely to go juvy with all of the other drug addicts, shop lifters, bullies, and gang members. After that, the PSA closes with a black screen that says “Partnership for a Drug Free America”. There are two different versions of this PSA, only difference is that some of the characters were either excluded or newly added to the “Who are your friends?” introduction.
The other PSA is like the first one only the interviewer asked K.B.’s friends with this question “When others ask you to do Drugs, what do you say to them?” Kelly walk pass Jesse & Jeff and says “I ignore them”. Kai says “I rather stick anchovies in my ears” (Yeah, whatever Kai just as long as you know drugs are bad for you). Ocean says “No way man, I respect my body man”. An unseen kid says “I don’t want to look and feel like this” with a picture of a scribble silhouette of a neon like sign person like Neon Noodle from “Duck Tracey”. The Jonny 2×4 look a like says “Take a chill pill”, yet we still don’t know his name. And finally Donut who obviously can’t speak just grows as a response to what would he do if he’s offered drugs.(Glad the dog doesn’t welcome drug dealers). The PSA then ends with the same “Partnership for a Drug Free America” black screen.
Originally aired as early as 1991, and was produced by Roy Yokelson’s Antland Productions. While the music used in the background is stock music that can be obtained without asking permission(Gotta love public domains). My thoughts on it, it was one of the best Anti-Drug PSAs for its time. While I never did understood what it was about whenever I saw it on TV as a kid. the only thing I did remember about it was the animation. To think I’d only remember what it looked like but not what it was about. Much like the commercial for Final Fantasy 3, except I knew it was a video game when I saw it on TV. After I did learn what drugs were in the fourth grade, I found this PSA to be more understandable than I did back in the early 90s. Luckily I was never threaten to take drugs as a kid before or even after I was introduced to the D.A.R.E. program at my school. Thanks to that program I always think twice when it comes to drugs, I have no desires to die from cadiac arrest or an overdose any time soon. Anyways enjoy the PSAs below, and for next week will be my 50th article. Which will also be accompanied with four other articles cause the subject is too big to be one single article. The subject will be on the dangers of crack with five different celebrities saying their own opinions on the substance.