Ads I Hate

I don’t watch very much television. In fact, the only things I watch on a regular basis are Lost and sports (OK, and Battlestar Galactica, but I normally go out on Friday nights and download BSG episodes from iTunes on Saturday, so that doesn’t really count). But whenever I do flip on the tube, I always find that certain ads really piss me off. Ads like this one:

Hey, Volkswagen? This ad isn’t really convincing me to buy your cars.

You see, I want to own a car that is actually enjoyable to drive. You know, a car that will let me drive at high speeds through rugged terrain…

…or let me drive in luxury…

…or at least make me feel as manly and uber-tuff as Toby Keith:

But your ad doesn’t do any of those things. No, your ad…

…makes me think that if I buy Volkswagen Jetta, I will get into a near-fatal collision. Needless to say, almost getting killed is not a very strong selling point for me. Surely, there has to something good about the Jetta other than the fact that I might not die while riding it. This. Ad. Sucks.

How about the rest of you guys? Are there any ads that you positively hate?

UPDATE: Candy writes:

All ads for medications which will cure what ails you, and which you should ask your doctor to prescribe, unless:

You are taking MOAs, have a compromised immune system, impaired kidney or liver function, high blood pressure, brush your teeth daily, breathe, get less than ten hours of sleep a night, or have a bad temper.

Side effects may include dizziness, sleeplessness, paranoia, drowning in your bathtub, acting like Atlas Pam on speed, flashing your chest on the internet, or death, which you’ll soon be praying for, if you take this drug.

Oh, a billion times yes. That’s the very next ad I’m going after.


Comments: 128


I don’t watch real TV at all (we haven’t hooked ours up to anything but the DVD player and our gaming consoles), but now I ALSO hate that commercial. Gah!


You will never be as uber-toff as Toby Keith.
He is more manly than a thousand Hercules’ssss…
More tough than a Ford F-four hundred something or whatever…
More virile than K-Fed…
More…everything. He is Toby Keith, and you are not.
Deal with it.


All ads for medications which will cure what ails you, and which you should ask your doctor to prescribe, unless:

You are taking MOAs, have a compromised immune system, impaired kidney or liver function, high blood pressure, brush your teeth daily, breathe, get less than ten hours of sleep a night, or have a bad temper.

Side effects may include dizziness, sleeplessness, paranoia, drowning in your bathtub, acting like Atlas Pam on speed, flashing your chest on the internet, or death, which you’ll soon be praying for, if you take this drug.


HAY guyz what if wer started a trend of Toby Ktih jokes!?!

“Toby keith doesn’t have to aim, he makes teh toilet stand in front of HIM!@”



All of my viewing enjoyment is completely ad-free. I download everything, period.


OK, it’s not my favorite, but it’s driving the wingnuts crazy too, so it can’t be all that bad. No serious, I couldn’t “bleeping” make that up.,

The wignuts are now fighting the “BLEEP”!

“Recent television advertising that used “bleeped” profanity as to grab attention and shock viewers is being compared to the Bible’s warning concerning seduction and deception getting worse and worse.”

“How about a Volkswagen ad promoting the built-in safety features in one of its models? Passengers in a new Passat blurt out “Holy …” after surviving a crash. Instead of hearing a profanity, viewers hear a voice-over saying “safe happens.”


I think the last time a tv ad made me want to buy something was back in college when I was recovering from a concussion.
What candy’s meds made her forget to mention is half those ads don’t even really tell you what the damn drug does.





’nuff said.


Any commercial for any diet aid which promises that you will lose “up to” a certain number of pounds in a week.

Umm……think about what they’re actually promising you. What they’re promising is that you won’t lose any MORE than that amount in that period of time. If I say “You’ll lose UP TO ten pounds in just one week”, you could actually GAIN fifteen pounds in a week, and my promise is still valid. If you want to be a math geek about it, you would have lost negative fifteen pounds that week, and that’s still “up to” ten pounds.

I have the ultimate diet aid to get you to lose up to ten pounds a week – it’s a slice of strawberry cheesecake. Take one a day, and I guarantee results.

I mean, *all* diet pill commercials are irritating. But this particular brand of snake oil chicanery just steams my hide something fierce.

calling all toasters

Any ad that makes people buy fewer Volkswagens is performing a public service. Take your medicine and watch the damn ad.


I dunno, I was involved in a traffic accident in which my big heavy 94 chevy four door was hit by a VW bug. My car had to be towed away, while the cute little hippie chick in the Bug just popped her headlight back in and went on her merry way, after many assurances that I wasn’t killed.

That was the most pleasant accident I’ve ever been involved in, by the way. Us hippies is nice peeps.


These advertisements work so well that they have you talking about them right here on this blog. That is all that really matters, they get their names in your head, even if it isn’t conscious. And by putting up this blog entry, you are advertising their products even more.

The beauty of marketing.


It may just be me, but diet commercials make me eat more. Especially the one with the tinyvapidchick who giggles that now that she’s lost thirty pounds, her husband says he has his wife back! Goodness! Thirty whole pounds goes from frumpy cow to someone he’s not embarrased to be seen in public with! Honey, he’s a misogynist pig. DTMFA.

Also, “Have a happy period” is a tagline that belongs on new chocolate flavored Prozac/Valium, and nothing else.


I have sat on my couch and said exactly that… Volkswagons must be aiming for hazardous airhead population…

VW – Its a wonder you didn’t kill someone.


Any commercial for any diet aid which promises that you will lose “up to� a certain number of pounds in a week.

I’ll up the ante on that one, Jillian. There are at least one diet pill commercial which claims that you will lose “on average, up to X pounds.” There’s a beauty product commercial which likewise claims to make you look, on average, up to X years younger.

That doesn’t make any bloody sense. “Up to” indicates an upper limit. Average, by common use, is the midpoint. Something can’t be both the upper limit and the midpoint unless all the results are the same. Damn, commercials are stupid.

I’d also like to add the Jared jewelry commercials. Thanks to their saturation marketing, “He went to Jared” is now pissing me off more frequently than any other catchphrase. And whose bright idea was it to cast that as a tagline, anyway? It’s a statement of fact, not a jingle.


Not gonna watch it, but if it’s an ad for the Volkswagen Tuareg, I’m gonna boycott it.

Don’t name cars after third world people, man. I’m not buying the Toyota Navajo, either.


Ah, yes, the Jared commercials. Horrible! Those chickies in the background screeching “Jared!” Arrrgh!


I watched the second half of that Cowboys-Giants game and every ad was either that Volkswagon ad or the Allstate (at least I think it was Allstate) one where four people are driving home from a movie and get slammed by some SUV running a stoplight. I saw more bone crunching hits in the ads than I saw in the game.


Hmmm. An oldie but a sucky . I hate Viagra ads. I especially hated Bob Dole’s Viagra ads. Damn things worked better than abstinence only education in reducing under age pregnancy. I also hate cola ads. What they actually had to do with cola was, well, nothing. But the linked video is a true accomplishment of creepiness and emptiness that is the result of combining the two.


Y’know, at first I was very impressed by the volkswagon “sudden collision” ads. They were tremendously effective mini movies, with fabulous production valuess and tremendous videography. How effective a marketing piece they are can be debated, but the gut-wrenching, outta-the-blue effect is certainly memorable. If it was my campaign, I would have really pushed to buy a few very high-viewership slots and not run them to death. They have lost their impact and are, in fact, annoying.

I’m more annoyed by cheap, low budget, poorly produced or written, or just plain ineffective advertising. To me the worst of ’em are the little locally produced commercials, usually for a car dealership, and frequently featuring the owner’s family or pets. They tend to be shot with consumer equipment, they don’t throw for a sound man, and they do not offer a compelling message. Yuck…



You probably don’t appreciate the sheer stupidity of “beauty” advertising unless you are part of their target audience – i.e., unless you’re female.

On any given day, you can catch a commercial for a product promising to “oxygenate your skin”, and then later on one for a product offering “antioxidant protection against the damage caused by free radicals”.

I’d like to hit those idiots upside the head with a good chemistry textbook. OXYGEN is a frigging “free radical” in the way they’re using the term here – it’s what makes metal rust, for Christ’s sake! Why would you “oxygenate your skin” (whatever the fuck that means in the first place) and then complain about “free radical damage” that you need an “antioxidant” to protect you from?!?!?

God DAMN, but I hate commercials. Violently hate ’em.Primarily because of crap like this.


1.) The Snoop Dogg Orbit commercials, just because I can’t imagine that there are a lot of people in their teens and twenties that are facing the dilemma of wondering which type of gum keeps it the most real.

2.) The Burger King with the giant creepy head doing anything. That head gives me nightmares.


Any commercial for any diet aid which promises that you will lose “up to� a certain number of pounds in a week.

“I lost 72 ponds in 4 weeks!!!”

Tiny print: “Results not typical.”


Oh, yes, the head is horrible. That whole King on the bed thing is the stuff of nightmares.

I felt the same way when I lived in Seattle and we had the Jack in the Box commercials. Totally creeped me out.

With the fever I have right now, they’ll both make an appearance tonight.


To me the worst of ‘em are the little locally produced commercials, usually for a car dealership…

Speaking of…



Ambien commercial where the Green Butterfly of Death (suspiciously similar to the Angel of Death in the Charleton Heston/Cecil B. DeMille Ten Commandments, and much more similar to the angel of death in the animated Prince of Egypt) comes and puts everyone to sleep. O sh*t, those poor people didn’t read the whole handout from their druggist.

I’m still waiting for the Ambien green butterfly to make an appearance in a Cialis commercial. That would be something. Sproing!


I know I am not in your little photoshopping contest, but I made a little image to commemorate the passing of Sadly, No! on Wikipedia


Shoe deserves the prize, Gavin.


I’m still waiting for the Ambien green butterfly to make an appearance in a Cialis commercial. That would be something. Sproing!

Now that’s creepy. Death by boner. Fatal Priapism. Not a peaceful end…



Is that.. is that robot molesting that car? This is some weird, transhumanism version of a gang rape or something? I feel dirty now.


I hate those car crash ads. My husband turns the tv off every time they come on. I dunno, they just remind me of Adaptation, and then I have to remind myself that they probably didn’t even see the movie, that probably almost no one did. And then I get mad at Hollywood and moviegoers and all sorts of irrelevant stuff and then just start wishing that I could trade my Ford Taurus for a Bug or a Bus, and quit my stupid job, and just roll down the highway going someplace warmer than Pennsylvania in December, and I realize I can’t, and I get further depressed, open another beer, and—

Oh, uh, I really hate those commercials.


I’m surprised nobody mentioned the Apple computer ads. I’m a proud Apple user, but those commercials with the Apple guy and the Windows guy are the most smug, self-satisfied ads ever. They make me embarrased to be a Mac user.


Mikey: To me the worst of ‘em are the little locally produced commercials, usually for a car dealership, and frequently featuring the owner’s family or pets.

Go see Cal, go see Cal, go see Cal!


All ads for medications which will cure what ails you, and which you should ask your doctor to prescribe

Advertising for drugs used to be heavily constrained in what they could say, so there weren’t many commercials for them on TV. Then the Republicans deregulated pharma advertising, and now they can say pretty much whatever they want! Isn’t that great? Reason # a million to hate the Republican party.

Of course no commercial in the remaining history of the universe as we know it will ever be as bad as “Can you hear me now? Good!”


The Jetta ads are extremely effective; as was pointed out, they’re disturbing and memorable, and that’s the point. Two other ads which grab me are the Volvo ad with the little girl buckled into the back seat while she rambles non-stop (“…and I don’t know what it is…and there were bugs and worms…and its head is so tiny…”), and, of course, the Citi Rewards ads with the guy with the nearly impenetrable Eastern European accent. “Rewarding! Very, very, very rewarding!”


Oh come on. How can that even beat, “Look Hurricane Katrina, the WTC, buy a Chevy Truck!”


I really hate the Ford commercial where a smug young asshole (with uber-hip stubble on the chin) has a satisfied smirk as he looks at (or drives) his new Mustang. I want that bastard in a twisted wreck. With malfunctioning airbags. And a hip fireball explosion. I somehow believe that Ford didn’t want me to think THAT about their product.


What is wrong with VW promoting their cars’ safety? Isn’t this a bit more socially responsible than promoting SUVs as if they were really intended for off-highway use or promoting what is, in effect, street racing?

I like the ad. It makes the point, in a dramatic way, that you can walk away unscathed. I especially like the smart philosophical conversation before the crash, and how unpredictable things really do happen no matter how skilled a driver you think you are.

I’m kind of a car nut. I love racing, and I don’t mean watching it on tv. I’m also a stickler for safe driving practices, probably because of the years I spent as an otr truck driver. I also like philosophical conversations. This ad was clearly aimed straight at me, and it hit perfectly.

I won’t buy a Jetta, though. They’re just too expensive for what you get compared to a Honda or Toyota. Or even, FSM help me, a Ford or Chrysler.

Not that my broke ass will be buying anything less than 10 years old anytime soon…

VW ads have always been at least pretty good, and often very good, going back to the classic, “Ever wonder how the guy who drives the snowplow gets to work in the morning” ad from the ’60s.

The ad for the new Beetle convertable (oops, I mean “cabriolet”), featuring the smile that gets passed around from person to person in reverse time till you see it all originates from a pedestrian smiling at the cute little car. That was cool.

Burger King has NEVER had a good ad campaign. At best, they’re bad. At worst, they’re creepy like the giant-plastic-headed king. Ew.

My least favorite car ad was the one for the Nissan (Altima?) that had all the traffic clearing out of the guy’s (of course it’s a guy) way, with his own personal lane, his own gate at the toll, etc. It dripped with smugness, self-satisfaction, entitled privelege, I’m-better-than-everyone attitude. Another Ew.

My current favorite is the one showing the Toyota Tacoma through a time-lapse surf cam. We see surfers park the truck on the beach. Tide comes in, truck rolls around in the surf for what must be hours until the tide goes out, truck is unscathed. The point is to reinforce the Toyota’s reputation for absolutely bulletproof reliability. The reputation is well-deserved, imo, I’ve owned a couple. They really are hard to kill, even with neglect and abuse.


The VW ad with John Mayer playing guitar pretty much blows.


Anything with John Mayer playing guitar blows.

Christ, I’m glad I don’t have cable and, unless something’s change, there’s no network affiliates close enough to Athens for me to pick up anything that way. Closest one is in Tacoa, I think.

My folks have about seven of them tiny satelite dishes, though, cause they love them some baseball. There’s an ad with Peyton Manning cheering on stockboys and getting autographs from mechanics and whatnot. I don’t remember what the commercial was for or what it was trying to say or sell, I just know I wanted to throw a rock at friggin’ Peyton after four days at my folks’ place. I feel bad about that, too, ’cause I interviewed the kid while he was at Tennessee and he’s a helluva nice guy.

There’s also one of those late-night Get Super Abs things that creeps me the hell out. It’s the guy in it, the one who shows you how to do the excercises and so forth. He don’t look right. He looks like a condom stuffed with walnuts, to quote Molly Ivins. Freaks me right out.


gjdodger, I also like the Volvo one with the weird little girl nattering on and on about nothing. (“He wanted to change the color of him” always gets me.)

First, because the look on the dad’s face is, to me, neither proud nor bemused. He mostly looks like he can’t believe the sheer quantity of nonsense in which, being a good modern dad, he has to pretend polite interest.

And, second, because I remember being a weird little boy happily generating all sorts of verbal nonsense.

Smiling Mortician

Haven’t had actual teevee since Poppy’s War (CNN’s portentous war-in-the-gulf music made me snap and I pulled the plug), so I have to reach back a ways, but I have a very clear memory of the most stupidly, unintentionally ironic commercial ever.

United Airlines, wanting to convince everybody how smooth and comfortable its flights are, actually aired an ad with a little girl all buckled into her seat who slides up the window screen and sees . . . whales! She’s underwater! What a smooth flight! Why it’s almost like . . . swimming? No, jackasses, it’s like our transatlantic flights generally nosedive, but your last few moments will be spent communing with sea creatures, and won’t that be nice?


Who likes pie?


Whats the drug that should not be used by “women who are or may become pregnant”. Dosen’t that cover almost all women?

The current late night cable ad that cracks me up is, and I shit you not, guys gone wild!!


European commercials are so much better than ours.

Text at the end says, “Need glasses?” in German.


Ambien commercial where the Green Butterfly of Death…

Ah, and who can forget this classic moment in statesmanship:

“You don’t use Ambien? Everybody here uses Ambien.”
-Secretary of State Colin Powell, in a 2003 interview with an Arab newspaper.

Side effects of Ambien include amnesia, hallucinations, delusions, impaired judgment, uninhibited extroversion in social settings, impulsive behavior.

All that to ward off the deadly disease… insomnia? (You see, nobody holds a patent on chamomile tea.)

Kind of puts the Iraq war in perspective, doesn’t it?

Tara the anti-social social worker

Speaking of the viagra/cialis ads, what’s with the one that shows the couple in side-by-side bathtubs? Outdoors? Does he have Erectile Dysfunction because he doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing there?


I’d like to comment on the drug commercials. My mother is a nurse, and she hates those commercials. They make her job more difficult, y’see, because every patient is an M.D. now. She runs into people on a regular basis who actually request that they switch their medication after seeing those commercials. Never mind that their current drugs are working fine, or that the new stuff conflicts with other medicines or even their own body chemistry.

There’s actually a bit of history to the much-mocked warnings in those ads. It used to be that drug companies couldn’t actually say what their medicines did, so you ended up with those great corporate ads that didn’t seem to be selling anything. Now the pharma corps can be more open about the effects of their drugs so long as they attach those warnings.

A bit of an inside track on those warnings: they’re mostly bullshit. I’m told that a lot of the side effects never actually occured during trials, but are either very common side effects (dizziness, nausea, dry mouth, etc) or are effects common to that type of drug. It’s mostly CYA.


Fuck a buncha Cal Worthington.


As a nurse myself, I have to agree with your mother. What happens alot that is particularly dangerous, though, is that people will be prescribed meds from different doctors, such as their regular doctor, their cardiologist, their internist, and so on. When you are prescribed a new drug, always talk about the effects of interaction will ALL of your doctors- your regular doctor may not know as much as your cardiologist, etc., even if it is not a heart medication. What I think many people don’t realize is that the effects different drugs will have on each other while being taken together is not really studied to the extent it should be before it gets to market. Many people are essentially guinea pigs without knowing it. A good doctor is of course cognizant of this fact, and will be careful, but there is a growing segment of doctors that recieve kickbacks from pharmaceutical companies that will prescribe something more expensive, and potentially more dangerous, instead of a tried and true generic because of this. There was a doctor that had privileges in a hospital that I worked for previously that actually got a new computer system for his office, but it had a catch. It kept track of how often he prescibed the medication they were promoting- and if he didn’t make a quota they would confiscate the system back.


when my brother was little, he thought that the cal worthington commercials where they chant, “go see cal! go see cal!” were commercials for something called a “pussy cow.” “pussy cow! pussy cow!” he’d say, after they were on television. oops!


Burger King AND Jack-in-the-Box, no question, the creepiest, worse than Ronald McDonald. As for the Apple vs. Microsoft ads, the big mistake they made there was having John Hodgman as the Microsoft guy instead of the Apple guy, and having that flavor-of-the-week actor, whose main appeal seems to be to shrieking pubescent Britney wannabes, as the Apple guy. Any idiot can see that John Hodgman is the guy you want on your side.


Apple actually just fired that “I’m an Apple,” guy for that very reason; people were identifying with the PC more then the Apple, which is usually not the response you want.
Smug little git.


There’s a commercial for Tide that says “it’s the difference between smelling like a mom and smelling like a woman”, and ends with “because every mom is a woman too.” (see it here – It just bugs me. My initial reaction to the ad was “Don’t tell me what to smell like, motherfuckers. I’ll smell any way I damn well please.” I also dislike the insinuation that the smell of Tide = how a woman is supposed to smell. There’s more that sends my righteous indignation senses tingling, but I don’t want to monopolize this rich subject.


And y’all wonder why I don’t watch TV? I should put up with this crap for eighteen minutes so that I can watch forty-two minutes of some mindless reality TV show?

I love that Mort doesn’t even have TV. I haven’t gone that far myself yet – I still like a bit of news in the mornings, and I do have to indulge my shameful addiction to Mythbusters every now and then, but Mort definitely has the right idea.


Carls Jr. and those 8 lb. monstrosities that are air-dropped into view
with the accompanying sound effects like pig guts thrown from a third floor window.


Here, in Cleveland, we have a “famous” furniture store downtown that caters to the low roller. Norton Furniture. Mainly used (repossessed) furniture. The fellow that owns the place is crazy as a loon. He has a huge store with furniture everywhere. Interspersed among them are statues, mannequins (sp?) and other oddities. If you buy a peice of furniture, not only will you get same day delivery, you get a loaf of bread.

He has some of the bes commercials in the business:

Patton Oswalt did a whole riff on him when the Comedians of Comey were in town last. Invited us all to his store the following day for hotdogs. He and Brian Poesehn, Maria Bamford and Eugene Mirman showed up with bags of hotdogs for the fans, and the owner gave us all tee-shirts. Pretty fun.


Oh, if you’re talking local ads, our personal injury attorneys in Little Rock kick ass. We’ve got one guy, Peter Miller, with a beard, glasses and an ever present, very broad smile; earlier this year–mercifully, I only saw it once–he had an ad in which he became a giant, stomping through town and rattling buildings. I was in a non-injury wreck a year ago, totalled my cherry, 1992 Lincoln; it was the other guy’s fault, and on the same day about a week later, I got eight solicitations from personal injury attorneys and one phone message.


There’s an ad for some hair product that shows an “invisible” mother doing things for her family and talks about that “invisible mom” feeling – but says that it doesn’t have to apply to your hair. HUH?! Your hair doesn’t have to be invisible, even if you are? Your worthless, ungrateful, self-involved husband will notice you if you have better hair? What?

Also on my hate list: the Dr. Pepper ads that are all about 23. The guy who drinks his Dr. Pepper, then makes a 23 out of his peas and then looks so surprised and self-satisfied. “Holy shit, I just made a 23 out of my peas! Who knew?!”

Regionally, I loathe those TitleMax commercials. “TitleMax got your MUHHH-ney, your MUHHH-ney, your REAL MUHHH NEEE. [Obnoxious giggle]” Someone beat me into unconsciousness.

I agree that the Head On commercials are horrible, but I can’t help but appreciate the new ones where, in the middle of the ad, someone walks out and says, “Head On, apply directly to the forehead. Head On, apply directly to the forehead. Head On, I hate your ads – but I love your product.” Still annoying, but it’s annoying with some level of self-awareness, which is far to rare in advertising.


About 10 years ago, Scottie Pippen used to do his own commercials for the “Scottie Pippen Dodge Store” he owned on Western Ave. They were *riveting.* Scottie encouraged us — with all his Easter-Island-head screen presence — to “step into one of these!” All I could think was “Where is this man’s agent?” Shortly thereafter the ads were pulled, the store changed its name to Western Ave. Dodge or somesuch and Mr. Pippen was wearing leather trenchcoats in Nike ads.


I know some people have already mentioned this, but the side effect statements on drug ads are mandated by the FDA. The drug companies certainly don’t want to put them there . Not many other industries have to have those sorts of claims on their ads (maybe investment firms have some FDIC regulation, I don’t know). They’re not perfect, but I’d rather see them than get what you have with the supplement industry where basically companies can make any claim they want without backing it up (much) or discussing the possible downsides of using the supplement.

I think it’s really odd that people are bothered that the drug commercials have all those warnings on them. It’s the one part of the commercial that is meant to provide some balance to the claims of the drug company for the consumer and people react more strongly to them than to the content of the ad.

Pharma advertising is highly regulated. For any claim they make, they need to have at least 2 randomized controlled clinical trials to back it up. We’re not talking the Pepsi Challenge here. Anyway, it probably could stand to be more regulated. But I wouldn’t want them to take away the side effect info from drug ads.


This is really weird. I watched the game yesterday because it was on in my apt. bldg laundry room and was wondering whether those VW ads were really effective given that the first time you see them there is an element of surprise but they kept running them over and over and over again and I just started to find them very annoying.

But the other ads they kept running was this one for Arby’s that showed construction workers hooting at some guy because he had a Reuben sandwich. That really annoyed me.

In Saudi Arabia they had a series of really weird ads for Viagra (given that in that society you could never actually discuss the actual product and what it does on TV – so they had to use visual metaphors). I described them at my blog at the time.


Ed, what needs to happen is that prescription drugs should not be advertised at all. There is just no good reason to get non-medical people all enthralled about a drug they probably don’t need so they will harrass their dr. to prescribe it.



I agree.

And for full disclosure: I write pharmaceutical promotions. Though not tv ads. And no one has paid me to post here.


Easy. The Hummer ad where the woman and her boy get knocked out of line by another mom and her daughter, then the first woman buys a hummer and drives like a mad thing, suddenly all smug that she is better after all and could run the mocking woman over and not even notice the bump. Or something.

“Get your girl on”

Can’t find the ad.


Holiday jewelry ads frost me the most. Why don’t they just come out and say “Give her a diamond and she’ll fuck you”?


The Bob ads. They’re for some “natural male enhancement” and this guy struts around, because now his penis is bigger or something. Gah. I *hate* those ads.

I’m Canadian, and some of the national ads here are The Worst.

There’s one where a mom of two very ugly kids asks if they want buns for their sloppy joes. (duh. no, I want to eat ’em with my hands) The kids start to giggle. Finally, it comes to light that they’re giggling because, “Mom, you said… ‘buns’!” Um, was ‘buns’ even a funny word in the Leave it to Beaver era?

Every McCain’s ad EVER.

I just hate ads. Period.

Oh, and speaking of that. Feminine hygiene product ads. “Have a happy period”? Fuck off. And that stupid red dot (period, get it? ha ha) can go straight to hell. And any ad where the woman is wearing white pants and supposedly has her period. Puhleeze. I don’t care how “confident” a woman is, she’s not wearing white pants unless she’s also taking copious quantities of pills from those drug ads.


The all-time worst has to be the new car ad (don’t remember which one; almost all car ads are stupid) where a guy comes running up his driveway after a run while his neighbor simultaneously pulls into his driveway in his new whatever-the-hell-it-is. Running guy is breathing heavily, sweating, takes a swig out of a water bottle, checks his pulse — and driving guy hops out of his car and does the same things. Announcer guy tells us how the car will raise your pulse or some shit like that.

Seriously — on what possible level is running an equivalent activity to driving a car? On its effect on the environment? On the depletion of non-renewable resources? On the value to one’s cardiovascular system? On the weight loss from exercise?

Bill Hicks was right — everyone involved in marketing and advertising should go home and kill themselves.


THANK YOU! I thought I was the only one. I switch channels as soon as I recognize the setup. Well actually, I switch channels as soon as most commercials begin…

(although I am glad someone tries to attack the abuse of “like”)


But, Luna, the tune in the “Bob” ads is awfully catchy. Brak even sang a song to the tune of it.

Oudemia, Scottie gets high marks from me; he cut an ad for his alma mater, the University of Central Arkansas, that really seems sincere.


Those AG Edwards ads with the eggs- they are monuments to greed and selfishness, perfect expressions of “I’ve got mine, fuck everyone else.” Just plain obnoxious.


“I’m thinkin Arbys” translates as “I’m thinkin it might be fun to vomit up
some putrified chunks of rancid cow skin smothered in a bloody BBQ
sauce later this evening”.


Public Commercial Enemy #1: the Chevy-Mellencamp ads. It’s not the song itself, really, although the less said about the music the better. It’s the idea that buying a Chevy is a patriotic thing to do. “Our Country” prresumably means “Chevy’s Country, and definitely not those Ford bastards.” I also despise the conflation of the civil rights movement and Vietnam, and I really fucking despise the use of the NYC skyline with the big hole and floodlamps. That’s especially obscene: buy a pickemup truck because otherwise the terrorists have won! Or something.

Deserving of special mention are any commercial for non-OTC medicines, any commercial for fast food (especially Taco Bell and McDonald’s), and the fucking Vonage commercials with the extremely annoying song that’s reminiscent of Camptown Races (perhaps the most cloyingly catchy thing ever).


I think it was Allstate that started this particular marketing meme. You know the one – guy stepping out of his parallel parked car suddenly swings his door wide into heavy downtown traffic. Truck rips door clean off the hinge.

That particular ad taught me that I should be even *more* paranoid about stupid people as I drive.


Buffalo Gal:

Holiday jewelry ads frost me the most. Why don’t they just come out and say “Give her a diamond and she’ll fuck you�?

Here ya go…


the fucking Vonage commercials with the extremely annoying song that’s reminiscent of Camptown Races

A non-TV-watching friend last year was reading the business section and turned to me, puzzled. “Have you ever heard of a phone company called [highschool French accent]’Voh-NAHJ'[/highschool French accent]?” Like it rhymed with ‘mirage.’


That particular ad taught me that I should be even *more* paranoid about stupid people as I drive.

Bwahaha. You want real paranoia? Ride a motorcycle. You’ll become absolutely convinced that complete strangers are seriously trying to kill you.

I can’t believe we’ve gotten this far and nobody’s mentioned Old Navy… Even the freakin’ name makes me vomit a little.


The fact this is a debate means that the rest of you just don’t watch enough football. “This is our country” My god the oversaturtion and the schlockiness combine to make me want to hit mellencamp with “our truck”.


Volvo used to advertise this way, until PJ O’Rourke pointed out that they were essetially saying: “Volvo: Ugly cars for people who are so self-important they think the world can’t survive without them.”

VW has taken it a step further: “VW: Ugly little cars for vacuous twenytysomthings that talk too much and don’t pay attention to the road.”


For Rob W:

Old Navy: Cheap crap with our name on it for people who think New York hip means incoherent kitch.


The ad that annoys me is the Neulasta commercial (“I’m ready to start my chemotherapy”)

They make having cancer and being treated with chemo will be a cake-walk thanks to their drug that helps build white blood cell counts. Ask anyone who has had Neulasta injections (me) and we’ll tell you that it causes the worst bone pain you can imagine!

And they never depict women who are actually undergoing chemo (bald, swollen, pale) – they always use women who have long finished treatment.


Seems like another campaign to ratchet up the fear in people….get us all irrationally afraid so we’ll be easier to govern….


The latest Old Navy ad is extremely creepy. Everyone’s out playing in the snow. With winter warm clothes on. And they all still manage to look like the anorexic version of the visitors from the end of Close Encounters.


The point of the VW ad is to scare you for a split second and then give you an instant sense of safety by cutting to the calm, quiet shot of the vehicle in front of a white background. “My how that V-dub makes me feel safe,” you’re to think.


Of course, the “Lunesta” sponsor spots where the lulling voice tells us why they sponsor closed captioning, “so..the…hearing..impaired..can enjoy..the programs..we..all..enjoy…” It’s the corporate approach to soothing the public into a gigantic chemical screwing….

On the plus side, here’s a classic! European, of course, but a favorite, for K-Fee (Yes, this is on youtube as an edited bit, but the original was for Kfee:

Not for the faint-hearted!


Ah, so many people miss the real power of the VW ads. They quite successfully target the impulse and instinct parts of the brain, rather than trying to appeal to the logic portions.

For most people, logic is rarely involved in a purchasing decision, particularly an automotive one. So, VW is smartly targeting the impulse buyer in everyone. is a collection of Audio commercials mutated for reprogramming. The Below link is on medical side effects in commercials.

other bad commercials : “Hey Kids, Make your parents..” commercials.

Other fun things to do. Watch what ever show that was where They had the five Main “announcer/voice-over” people open for the oscars or something, And they kept talking back and forth in their Voice over voices? Well watch that about 3 or 4 tymes and then send yourself back to TV land. Makes it all more sureal.


Earthlink – the same fucking ad for what seems like decades now. If they can’t make a new ad every once in a while, how often do they update their software?


I love these commercials, and if this makes you think “VW = accident” versus “VW = safe in accident” that seems more a disconnect in your head than their advertisement. However, no ad is going to resonate with 100% of the public. Fortunately, I think you are in the minority on this ad that I find not only effective, but important.


I don’t want to know that driving is hazardous, just let me keep my stupid, air-filled head in the sand and don’t talk to me about reality, I have to go to church right now.

That is what I am hearing from you kids who disslike this ad.

Stay in your delusional , consumer bubble world, idiots. The ceiling is about to come crashing down!


Also, I haven’t seen these for a while, but those ads for a brokerage firm or something which began, “Why do we work?” Whenever I saw those, I felt like throwing something through the screen.


Fuck man, you think that driving a fucking SUV is cooler than not dying in a fucking jetta? I just lost a lot of respect that I previously had for you.

BunBun vonWhiskers

I have to say that I hate the corporate sponsorship commercials that appear on the Sunday morning chat shows. You know, the ones that don’t actually advertise any product that you could conceivably see yourself buying? If I was in the market for a jet engine, I doubt I would be swayed by a thirty second commercial anyway.

The real purpose is that is pre-emptive bribery. If a corporation went to a TV station and offered them money to bury a story, that would look really bad. If they go to a TV company they give money to and say they won’t be able to advertise on that station if they run the same story…


And, of course, those coal industry ads with kids. How much more cynical can they get?


I memorized this a while ago and forgot what it was from…

‘Find some widespread unconscious fear or anxiety. Then find a way to relate this fear to the product you have to sell. Then build a bridge of verbal or pictoral images over which your customer can pass from fact to compensatory dream, and from dream to the illusion that your product, when purchased, will make the dream come true.’


It’s not a good ad but whoa, whoa, whoa.

The BIG message I get from this is that you are not going to walk away from a frickin’ gas-guzzling, completely useless-to-most SUV. Those things are death traps as far as I’m concerned.

There are plenty worse ads than this including the crap from big pharmas.


um, like, how do i, like, answer the, like question…
god – this ad sucks for the singular reason that the passenger has detestable communication skills. anyone who says ‘like’ that many times in a single sentence ought to suffer more than just a few airbag burns.


Yeah, I hate those ads too. Thanks for making me watch 5 of them. Jerk. Can I have your job? I can conjure up a couple sentences (or one) to put between the media segments.


I’ll jump on the bandwagon. The ads scare the piss out of me.


Your inability to appreciate trans-human rights makes you vulnerable to ads like those.


The latest Gap ad. “Peace, love, The Gap” rap. I swear I hear “champipple” in there.



Did the VW Jetta just crawl out of the woodwork for some people? I’m sorry, but how can you not know about the VW line of cars without having your head in the sand?

Does every single commercial have to be about what you think it should be about?

Personally, I think this VW commercial is one of the more poignant and realistic spots on TV right now. Maybe you think it’s more important for a car ad to lie to you, pretend you’ll be sexier driving something, or appear smarter driving something else. But, to many of us, that is the exact opposite of what we want and the new VW ad is infinitely better.

Maybe you nedn’t be watching so much TV, and lay off the sports.


I like the caveman ad (geico) when he’s in the airport and while that nice lil ditty is playing he goes by the ad that disses his cro magnus, does a double take, then gives a really cool shrug and sigh.


The New Orleans Times-Picayune ran this editorial cartoon today:

A woman is consulting with her 5 year old son’s pediatrician:

Woman: What makes you think he’s being harmed by inappropriate ads on TV?

Doctor: He asked me if I thought Cialis was right for him.


I loathe those Lexus-with-a-big-red-bow ads they run every Xmas. Right…. let’s all buy our significant others a fucking luxury car. What a cute stocking-stuffer!


Most hated ad:

“Say Hello to Bob. Why is Bob smiling? It’s because he takes Enzyte, the once-daily tablet for Natural Male Enhancement”

That one and the “Girls Gone Wild” / “Guys Gone Wild” ads also annoy the hell out of me.


I hate ads when they’re run constantly. There was a Carl’s Jr. ad out here in California for a pastrami burger that featured a waitress with a really grating voice. The problem was, it was run at least 3 times per hour, but more like 5. It seemed non-stop. I started changing the channel when it came on, as I do for the Volkswagon ads.


Wait, so let me get this straight…

You all hate ads, but you’re acting like someone is forcing you to watch them?

I hate ads with a passion, so I don’t watch television. It’s actually very simple, and has nothing to do with playing the victim. You’re just playing into advertiser’s hands and doing yourself and everyone else a disservice.

You want to hit them where it hurts? Put your television out on the curb.

“But… flat plasma tv’s!”

Yeah, more marketing so they can justify making you pay for more hi-def equipment. THAT particular marketing ploy was so successful (because of the people that complain they HATE HATE HATE it) that radio has decided to join in their footsteps by offering ‘hi-def channels – hear the channels in between the stations, oooo!’ IF you buy a hi-def reciever.

They’re not doing it TO you, you’re LETTING them do it to you.


>I like the caveman ad (geico) when he’s in the airport and while that nice lil ditty is playing he goes by the ad that disses his cro magnus, does a double take, then gives a really cool shrug and sigh.

It’s a follow-up ad to an earlier GEICO commercial. The ad guy uses the
line, “It’s so simple [to switch] a caveman could do it.”

Cut to Adman apologizing “I didn’t know you guys were still around.”

Pan out to cavemen, insulted, sitting at a restaurant table in Southern California. And They’re pissed. One orders an expensive-assed meal, the other says he’s not HUNGRY while glaring at Adman.

So the message here is that his buddy sold out (the one who ate).



I, too, watch only Lost and sports, along with “The Daily Show” and “The Colbert Report.”

This Yoplait ad, if not the worst, is possibly the strangest:

Woman #1 (white) and Woman #2 (black) lounge in robes, in a swanky spa.

Woman #1: Whoa, chocolate Yoplait! This is like zen-wrapped-in-karma dipped-in-chocolate good.

Woman #2: Mmm. Getting a foot massage, while shoe shopping…

Woman #1 …for chocolate-covered heels good.

Woman #2: (Laughs) Of course!

Announcer: Yoplait’s oh-so-indulgent chocolate mousse Whips! It is so good.

A tall man in white walks by.

Woman #1: This is like dating a masseuse good.

Woman #2: Shhh!

Announcer: Indulge in three new Yoplait Whips! Dolce de Leche, Chocolate Mint, and Creamy Latte.

I just got’s to know if Woman #1’s last comment is part of the Homosexual Agenda, or did the ad writer not know that a masseuse is a woman?

Also, though I’m not one to worry about sacrilege, upon hearing the zen and karma schtick, I have to wonder if it would it be any more gauche if the character said, “this tastes like the Crucifiction wrapped in the Resurrection”?

As to car ads, if I suddenly leave my wife, it’s because I’ve met up with the brunette in the Ford ad, the young woman who treats the next guy at the drive-up dry cleaner to some, you know, free laundering (he’s not bad looking either, if you’re into Yoplait). Her little Ford looks like an absolute piece of shit, but those eyes!


As I’ve said elsewhere: I wouldn’t mind the VW ads so much if the car they collided with was a Nissan driven by “Marc Horowitz”.


I believe these are good ads, but they’re not targeted at the single young adult demographic despite the actors in the commercial. They’re targeted towards young affluent families, but there’s no way they could get away with putting a child in a car accident commercial. The shock value makes you remember the commercial (like it or not like it if you remember it it’s successful) and the people standing around *alive* after such a seemingly horrible accident reinforces that VW are safe. A simple message and you won’t forget the commercial, that’s a success at *any* ad firm. Btw, you should get out more, these commercials have been running for almost a year if not more.


i hate the whole campaign. but i also hate ads for horror movies that show incredible violence. i don’t choose to go to movies like that because i’m waaaay to sensitive to the violence, so why should i be subjected to it unexpectedly when i’m watching the news or some puffy sitcom while i’m working out?

and, if you’ve ever been through a similar violent crash it triggers some pretty bad shit…

ptsd anyone?


how bout that carls Jr ad where the guy says he likes to let Carls smoke his sausage?

cuz he likes getting his sausage smoked.

Thanks Carls Jr…. good times. egad.


I usually hate commercials, but I was really impressed by these for exactly the reasons you hated. I’ve enjoyed all the reasons people come up with to explain it, but I’m not buying any of them. The problem is that they took a scene resembling our everday life and confronted us with what we’re risking. If it disturbs you, that’s good. Unlike the other commercials, the scene is actually relevant to your life.

Ever since my brother and hero was just as suddenly taken from my life in a car accident, this is what cars represent to me. A lot of commercials mention airbags in a long list of standard options. We’ve seen them deployed on inanimate crash test dummies. We’ve close calls. But be honest — for saftey minded consumers, this is far more effictive.

I still remember Volkswagon being the only regular sponsor to stick with Ellen when she came out. That pissed a lot of people off as well. Like then, there is more to this commercial than targetting the most consumers with the least common denominator.


But to answer your question, any consumer marketing of prescription drugs pisses me off more than any other. It really should not be allowed.


“Diet Dr. Pepper tastes more like Dr. Pepper.” Than what!?! Monkey piss? Using a comparative without actually comparing it to something is ludicrous. Between AOL speak, Fox News, and commercials, no wonder the “utes” seem uneducated and illiterate.


I have to start by saying that those VW ads are the only television ads I like. I’ll never buy a VW, and these ads don’t make me more or less likely to change my mind. I just think it’s a cool ad. The ads I hate are those for prescription drugs where the potential side effects sound worse than the symptoms treated by the drug.



Loaded for Elephant

I like the old ads, hey VW fire those hacks you have now and go back to these guys:

(I like the part where he is mad at the train.)


Hey, if you don’t watch, you don’t get desensitized to the violence.


The little girl in the Volvo commercial who is talking on and on and on is adorable. She is the cutest little girl I’ve ever seen. She is my daughter-in-law, as a child as well as an adult. I absolutely LOVE her.


Hay Hay dag nabit the rabbit, well I am a little drunk here to night so bear with me ok. well I use to jack off lisoning to the Commercials and I thoght I heard pussy cow to! thats what made it sooooo gooood, ask terri anderson. dam she was nice, big round ass well I not going to ramble on here but those were the years, It’s saturday night live. Ha shit did I just say what I thought I just said. I’m so imbarrissed. Well its time I said good by all, don’t let those dam bedbugs bite Ha Ha.


This is just a note about how HORRIBLE the Volkswagen ads are for people that have been in an accident. We should sue those bastards for mental abuse. Are you with me? If not, you are ignorant and need to get smacked in the face with a moving vehicle, then you will have an informed opinion. Go to their web-site and bitch a little.


(comments are closed)