2.10.2009

I ♥ Infomercials!

As I mentioned last week, I watch Infomercials like they are real TV shows. Sometimes I get attached to the gripping, well thought out characters (The Magic Bullet). Other times I develop a crush on the host (Sham-Wow, Slap-Chop). But mostly I just love them for their poor production values and terrible editing. There are so many elements to a good Infomercial, but if you really want to pro-it-up, you should have either of the following elements:

"That Guy"
- He's the voice-over artist (I call him an artist, because he truly has developed his craft) who always introduces the Infomercial by posing a question. I also like how he speaks directly to me; it's very personal. I feel like I'm having a heart-to-heart with God.

Struggling
- Oh my god, the struggling these people do! Have you ever seen someone try to clean up a cola spill with a Sophie's Choice-look on their face in real life? Of course not! But the world of Infomercials has a different set of rules; in Informercial Land, everyone has aneurysm when faced with simple, rudimentary tasks like washing the car or brushing the cat.

So without further ado (and because you would all have my head on a stake, Lord of the Flies-style, if I didn't do a post about them) here are my favourite Infomercials!


It's 2:30 on a Saturday afternoon...what the hell am I going to learn about for 30 minutes? The Ped-Egg!!!

What does That Guy have to say about it?
Are you embarrassed by ugly feet in sexy sandals?

This one is definitely my favourite of last year. I am partial to beauty-based products, as they make me feel like I'm a hideous ogre without them. Every time I see this infomercial, I always look down at my feet and go "wow. They're right. I really need that. Who am I trying to kid, putting sexy shoes on ugly feet?" But my favourite part is at 0:43 where they do the side-by-side: since when does the Ped-Egg cause your toes to shrink and your footbed to widen? That's some clumsy photoshop, my friends. Also good? Pause it at 0:52 to watch her dump skin callouses all over her towel. Fuck, that's pretty gross.


It's 2:30 on a Saturday afternoon...what the hell am I going to learn about for 30 minutes? My Lil Reminder!!!

What does That Guy have to say about it?
Ugh, nothing. Instead we have That Guy's annoying, smart-alec wife.

I love this one because they talk to you like you just had a lobotomy or you fall in and out of comas. But everyone in this Infomercial is a fucking riot. The dad at 0:41 who's bopping his head to his message like he's listening to Zepplin. Or the "student" (aka Quest Personals actress taking time to earn a little extra $$) at 0:53 who needs to remind herself that she needs to read "Chapters 6 and 7 for Friday". Of course she has to use My Lil Reminder! She can't just whip out a pen and write that down! You know, it's not like she's IN CLASS TAKING NOTES ALREADY. But I especially love the mom giving it to the kid: "Don't forget Jimmy, I'll be at Grandmas. You're too much of a fucking Ginger, so you have to stay here while we eat ice cream and have fun without you".


It's 2:30 on a Saturday afternoon...what the hell am I going to learn about for 30 minutes? The Shed Ender!!!

What does That Guy have to say about it?
Goddamn, it's his fucking wife again!

The Shed Ender is one of those truly amazing infomercials because it combines two of my favourite things: before-and-afters, and heavily-sedated animals. Stop it at 0:47 - and imagine the cat going "no I don't". Okay, I also did a bit more research, and apparently there is another similar product out there called the FURminator. That's a way better name! Why don't they have an infomercial? It would be like Lazer Cats plus grooming.


It's 2:30 on a Saturday afternoon...what the hell am I going to learn about for 30 minutes? The Slap-Chop!!!

What does That Guy have to say about it?
Nothing! He's MIA!! But thankfully, he has been replaced by Heaven's Li'lest Angel, Vince. Swoon.

"You'll be in a great mood all day, cause you'll be slappin' your troubles away". Oooooh...can we quickly go check Chris Brown's house for a Slap-Chop? (Too soon?)


It's 2:30 on a Saturday afternoon...what the hell am I going to learn about for 30 minutes? The Magic Bullet!!!

What does That Guy have to say about it?
He's not here, either. But he doesn't have to be - the Magic Bullet sells itself!

This is like the Citizen Kane of Infomercials, people. I cannot even fathom the budget for this spot. Definitely in the 3-digit range. There are like, a-hunderd reasons why this is my favourite infomercial of all time. Firstly, it's twice as long as a regular infomercial (see why I've posted two clips). They barely repeat scenes and work in real-time (I believe it was the inspiration for the television show 24). Next, will you take a look at this cast; is this the morning after a swinger's party or something? This is a full cast! The Magic Bullet infomercial breaks down the typical tagteam between Harried Mom and That Guy; instead we're treated to a whole cast of totally believable, absolutely not hired by a casting director, group of friends. Let's take a look at them, shall we?

Husband & Wife - this is their house, and don't let that casual jean-shirt fool you; this guy's all business! Marble countertops, luxury kitchen, never-ending supply of food; he's clearly a player in the go-go world of finance or hustling. Plus he's British, so you know he's got class up the keister. His wife is a dead-ringer for Grace Kelly and probably owns her own jewelry business or scrapbooking supply company. I'd say she should be part of the cast of The Real Housewives of Orange County, but she's too sophisticated for that garbage.

Hawaiian Shirt Guy & Wife, Plaid Shirt "King of Queens" Guy & His Prostitute - all just white noise when it comes to the next two "stars" of the show...

Berman - the group's out-of-work alcoholic friend who clearly slept in a dumpster the night before and who is a total dick and won't stop being a skeptical bastard.

Hazel - their...maid? Crazy schizophrenic aunt? I dunno, but I do love the way she rocks a filmy muumuu and let's 8 inches of ash hang off her smokes.

I also enjoy that they never call it a blender. It's a personal versatile countertop magician. Of course! Because blender is too much of a mouthful.

8 comments:

Alice said...

I own a blender and a food processor with a blender attachment and I everytime I see that infomercial for the Magic Bullet, I still want one. How sad.

The Mayor said...

Trust, I make fun of the Magic Bullet, but I also own one. It is truly magic.

You can turn regular sugar into powdered sugar! If that ain't magic, then I'm nothing more than a disillusioned teen.

emily said...

vince says "you're going to love my nuts" - reaches down towards his crotch, and gets a bowl of nuts.

md said...

I first heard about the FURminator on the Shiba6 channel! They show a demo on the FURM website and also on youtube combing out a Shiba Inu!

emily said...

in case you haven't see this...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPLrm3Omkjg&eurl

emily said...

and by seen, i mean heard

Jeane said...

Lol. Vince is freaking awesome! There are a lot of sexual innuendos, "Your gonna love my nuts" and a pickle with eggs? Haha I offically love this guy!

The Mayor said...

He's right - I would love his nuts.