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October 4, 2015

tv commercials

Senate Outlaws Loud Commercials, But There's More to be Done

by Bob Sassone, posted Oct 4th 2010 3:30PM
womanCitizens always complain that politicians never get anything done, but it's not true. Last week the Senate settled one of the big issues of our time. Healthcare? Illegal immigration? The war in Afghanistan? No, something even more important -- to TV fans anyway. They made it illegal for commercials to be too loud!

This may seem like a trivial matter, but it's most definitely not -- at least not when you're sitting on your couch watching your favorite sitcom and then the commercials come on and for some reason they are nine times louder than the program you're watching. It's especially bad when local commercials are injected into the show -- they're the loudest. It's almost as if local businesses are screaming PAY ATTENTION TO US, WE'RE IMPORTANT TOO!

But the Senate doesn't have to stop with the volume of commercials. Even though I actually love commercials (yes, I'm one of those people), there are four other things I'd like to see them fix.

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Almost Everyone in Those Verizon Commercials is a Jerk

by Bob Sassone, posted Apr 14th 2010 7:07PM
VerizonI say almost everyone, because you know who isn't a jerk in the ads? The cable guy!

As I've mentioned here before, the Verizon commercials irritate me. FiOS is great, if you're still using cable TV you're practically a Luddite, yadda, yadda, yadda. But why does the FiOS guy have to be such an annoying jerk?

The cable (Comcast really, as we've now seen in the most recent ads) guy is always trying to talk to the FiOS guy about anything else and all Mr. FiOS can talk about is how great FiOS is, how much faster it is, how everyone loves it, how many J.D. Power awards it has won -- as if tech guy would have one of those in his apartment. While the Comcast guy is also trying to prove how good cable is, you get the feeling he's just trying to get by, not shove cable down everyone's throat.

Here's the latest ad. You tell me what's so irritating about it.

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How Well Do You Know Celebrity Commercial Voices?

by Bob Sassone, posted Feb 26th 2010 2:02PM
SuperCutsThere are a lot more celebrities doing voice overs than you might think. Sure, we can all instantly recognize David Duchovny when he plugs dog food, but there are a lot of other celebrities doing ads and you probably don't even realize it as you're watching the commercials (if you still watch commercials and don't speed through them on DVR).

TV.com has a quiz to see if you can guess which voice is on various commercials (don't read the comments on that page because they give away some of the answers). They show you the commercials and then you type in the actual name of the person (no multiple choice with this quiz, sorry).

A few of the voices will be familiar to you right away while some of them are going to leave you scratching your head a bit. I only got six out of fifteen, though all of the voices sounded familiar to me. I'm really angry at myself for missing number three...

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Your cat wants you to have a social life

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 18th 2010 5:00PM
Wow, there's a sentence I'll never type again.

MeetUp.com has a series of new commercials out, and they seem to suggest that this guy's cat really wants him to have a better social life. In fact, in this ad, the cat is so bummed that the guy doesn't have any phone messages that he... well, you'll see.

It's been my experience with cats (I'm a dog person) that they don't care enough about you to even think about your social life. You could be dying on the floor and they'd probably just look at you for a second and then continue to look out the window or clean themselves. (Here's a better ad.)

[via Adfreak]

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Drinking and driving? Pop a penny in your mouth!

by Bob Sassone, posted Jan 11th 2010 1:35PM
I think that anyone caught drunk driving should lose their license forever. In every state. Not sure if my law is doable or not, but I'm sticking with it.

MADD has a series of new Canadian commercials, and each one takes the form of a cheap, local talk show called Stayin' on the Road, where guests come on and give tips on how you can drink and drive and not get caught. Readers, please don't put dirty pennies in your mouth.

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Do you remember the Chuckle Bug?

by Bob Sassone, posted Dec 31st 2009 8:02PM
The fun pop culture blog (and soon to be book) Gen X-tinct posted this video of old commercials and it brings back a ton of memories.

I had some of those Best of the West figures (no idea why they were so...big). I remember the Chuckle Bug ad but never owned one (that's a weird name for a Big Wheel-like product, and those kids would be wearing helmets today). Chocolate Zestabs? Sounds like some pills they made chocolate so kids would eat them. Oh, wait, that's exactly what they are. (Side note: there's no way that guy invented chocolate chip cookies.)

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Do you love commercials or are you just lazy?

by Bob Sassone, posted Nov 2nd 2009 6:31PM
freecreditreport.com band
Here's an interesting factoid: 46% of people who record TV shows don't fast forward through the commercials.

Now, I'm a natural skeptic when it comes to studies like this. I always wonder how the question was asked, the specifics, is the respondent lying or over/understating something, etc, but I often find myself not fast forwarding through ads because I'm doing something else at the time (writing an episode review, for example). How about you?

Do you fast forward through commercials?
Always. Commercials suck!501 (59.1%)
Not always. It depends on what I'm doing.333 (39.3%)
Never. I wish I lived in a TV commercial!13 (1.5%)

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If TV Squad had a 30-second ad on NCIS, it would cost $133,304

by Bob Sassone, posted Oct 26th 2009 5:03PM
So, let's say TV Squad wanted to have a 30-second ad on CBS' highest-rated show, NCIS. It would cost us $133,304. It would actually cost more, because we'd hire scantily-clad dancers, include a 35 pound bag of Doritios, fireworks in the shape of each writer, guest appearances from people like Tina Fey and JJ Abrams, and would have special effects because some of the commercial would be set in outer space for some reason, but I mean CBS would charge us $133,304.

To give you an idea of how that stacks up against other shows on CBS and shows on other networks, here's a quick list.

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How many of the "You Will" predictions have come true?

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 17th 2009 1:36PM
Remember the early 90s commercials from AT&T that asked various technology questions and then ended with Tom Selleck saying "You Will?" Someone on YouTube has put a montage of the ads and it's interesting that so many of these tech predictions/plans have actually come true.

I don't know how many people open their doors with their voice, but most of the other tech stuff has come true in one way or another.

[via David Pogue]

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David Simon says advertising is ruining television

by Bob Sassone, posted Sep 1st 2009 11:02AM
Josephine the PlumberEveryone has an opinion about TV commercials. Some people think that advertising is a cancer that has to be erased, and they fast forward through all of the ads when they record a show. Other people love advertising and understand that commercials pay for a lot of our entertainment options (I would put myself in that category). David Simon, creator of The Wire, is in the former category. Is he right?

Is advertising ruining TV?
Yes! TV would be better without ads.227 (35.2%)
Yes, but we have to live with it.210 (32.6%)
No, ads help pay for shows.207 (32.1%)

[via TV Tattle]

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Things I Hate About TV: "online web sites"

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 27th 2009 8:10PM
Internet '96There are many phrases I hear on the news and in commercials that I find annoying, painful, and simply illogical. This is one of the worst offenders.

I was watching a commercial today for a bank and the woman in the commercial said that the bank was "the number one online banking web site." Which got me wondering: what's the number one banking web site that's not online?

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What's the best advertising slogan and who's the best advertising icon?

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 25th 2009 5:00PM
Snap, Crackle, and PopAs I've mentioned here several times before, I'm a huge fan of TV commercials, especially the history and what goes on behind the scenes of campaigns and slogans (I think it's 60% why Mad Men is one of my favorite shows). Advertising Week wants you to vote in their poll to name the best advertising icons of all-time and the best slogans of all-time. This poll happens every year, and you can see past winners who are now in the Walk of Fame at the link above.

This year the choices include Ronald McDonald (as well as the slogan "I'm Lovin' It"), that creepy Burger King guy, the Maytag repairman, Snap, Crackle, and Pop, "Got Milk" and more.

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New Coke wasn't it

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 16th 2009 3:03PM
So I hate summer and I spend most of the hot and humid days of June, July, and August sitting in front of a fan and drinking Diet Coke (and Diet Pepsi - yes, I like both). And that got me thinking about New Coke.

Remember that? It was the disastrous reformulation of the Coke taste that people didn't really like and it came and went rather quickly in the mid-80s (though you could still get it in some areas as recently as 2002!). Wikipedia has the history of New Coke (long, but very much worth the read), and here are the commercials that introduced it to the world.

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Someone is killing the great TV commercial icons

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 14th 2009 4:25PM
What would have if some Saw-like serial killer was killing TV commercial icons? That's the premise of the video below. It looks like a movie trailer but it's really an ad for an event called Night of the Adeaters, a party that's going to be held in various cities on September 25, celebrating the best in ads.

[via Adfreak]

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What the hell is going on with ABC World News with Charles Gibson?

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 5th 2009 1:31PM
Charles GibsonI'm not sure if anyone else in the world is experiencing this, but every time I watch ABC World News with Charles Gibson, something happens that confuses and scares me a little.

During the commercials, the vocal track is completely silent, and all I hear is the music track.

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