Friday, February 17, 2006


"Seeing a murder on television can help work off one's antagonisms.
And if you haven't any antagonisms,
The commercials will give you some."
Alfred Hitchcock
'Alfred Hitchcock Presents'

The Debit MasterCard ad featuring 'MacGyver' was the only blipvert during the Super Bowl to have a direct link to a TV series. But there were a few others that could be connected hypothetically... with only a few slight twists of pretzel logic to make them work.

Perhaps as a preview to 'Eureka!', this summer's series on the Sci-Fi Channel, a company called PS gave us the "Best Defense" spot in which all the residents of a small town went about their everyday activities clad in bio-hazard suits.

Since Eureka is a town in the Pacific Northwest that is populated by scientists working on secret projects for the government, maybe something went wrong that particular day......

Nationwide's spot featuring Fabio as a gondolier? To me, that was the kickoff for an episode on sci-fi shows like 'The X-Files', 'Doctor Who', the short-lived 'The Chronicle' or the upcoming 'Torchwood': in various places around the globe, people are suddenly aged rapidly and that's when the titular strike team leaps into action!

Or it could have been the payoff ending to an episode of 'The Twilight Zone'...... Maybe that woman in the gondola fed off Fabio's life force in much the same way as movie star Pamela Morris did in the episode "Queen Of The Nile".......

For their pain medication, the only one for such a product to run during the game, Aleve instead went behind the scenes of a TV show and delivered a Zonk! with the help of Leonard Nimoy.

We learned that had it not been for the pain reliever, Nimoy's arthritis would have made it impossible for him to give the Vulcan salute of greeting to a convention hall full of 'Star Trek' geeks.

Somewhere in that audience sat the cast of 'Dweebs', I'm sure of it!

The "Crime Deterrent" ad was already perfect, but in trying to imagine it in terms of TV shows, I can see Barney and Marshall from 'How I Met Your Mother' playing those roles instead. Barney is just the type to whack a friend in the head with a cell phone. And Marshall is just thick enough to fall for it twice.

Their other commercial with that odd, Russianesque fellow so in love with his phone's tunes for every occasion suddenly turned into a tribute to 'The Benny Hill Show'. In a way, it was almost comforting to me, as Benny Hill's erudite straight man Henry McGee passed away only the week before.....

One of their many ads (ten in all, I believe) dealt with two hikers in a confrontation with a very angry, probably very hungry bear. Trapped against a rock wall, one of the guys uncaps a bottle of Bud and offers it to the bear. Momentarily gratified by the offering, the bear becomes enraged once again as the other hiker races in and steals the beer before racing down the trail.

The timing of this commercial's premiere was somewhat unfortunate as a documentary by Werner Herzog was broadcast around the same time on the Discovery Channel. "Grizzly Man" was the true story about an amateur bear enthusiast and his girl-friend were mauled to death by bears in Alaska.

Not sure how many people saw that documentary in comparison to those who saw the commercial during the Super Bowl, but I think the truth about such encounters takes the humor out of the spot.

This neatly ties in with 'Dinosaurs!', which also postulated that cavemen were already in existence while the great thunder lizards still roamed the Earth. It also ties in with 'Hitch-Hiker's Guide To The Galaxy' and 'It's About Time' in that these grunts somehow knew and understood the futuristic concept of Federal Express. How else could they have known about that if not for a splainin from Arthur and Ford or Mac and Hector, respectively?

And yet.... with those rrrrrridges around their eyes looked like somebody from the now disbanded 'Star Trek' make-up department found a new use for their talents. Maybe these were two aliens trapped in Earth's past, trying to cope with the lack of services they were using in Earth's present.

How did they get stuck back in the past? Maybe they went to Kinko's and tried photo-copying a mirror. 'Not Necessarily The News' warned such a result would occur......

Stay tuned.......


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