Monday, March 21, 2016


Really stupid


SOME COMMERCIALS ARE WORTH WATCHING. Some commercials simply ruffle my feathers.

I'm told that in Germany, tv is "mostly" commercial free. "Mostly" because during certain evening hours there are nothing BUT commercials.

Because of this, and this is only second hand information, German commercials are said to be worth watching.

FREE TV in the Several States is commercial tv. Actually, pay tv - History Channel, HBO, etc. - also carry commercials. Even so called "public television" that was SUPPOSED to be commercial free now has blatant commercials. Life goes on.

I like come commercials. A local supermarket chain has great, touching, commercials similar to Coca-Cola's winter commercials. I like the Publix commercials, but then I grew up with Publix supermarkets,

Some of my least favorite commercials are from Liberty Mutual Insurance

Turns out I'm not the only one who thinks Liberty could do better. Tom Partland, writing on the Garage Blog, has an entry called Liberty Mutual's Commercials Have Reached Peak Stupid

Liberty complains that if the insured has special insurance, it won't raise the insured's rate after the first accident.

MOST insurance companies save the rate hikes until the second accident; GEICO simply passes the client to its high risk group.

There's one insurance commercial where the guy complains that he can't negotiate terms of the contract. Nonsense. All auto insurance companies - and home insurers as well - allow negotiation. Want a lower rate? Decrease coverage or increase deductibles. Simple. Insurance companies are in business to make money for their stockholders (and to pay mega-bonuses to the Top Brass at the end of the fiscal years). And you thought they were on your side.

There is one insurance company with commercials I enjoy: Farmers.

For many years risk management was what I did. Farmers Insurance focuses on risk management, as do many companies; Farmers just happens to have really good ads. I always watch Farmers commercials.

Screen capture

Another insurance company that had - I haven't seen any recently - good commercials was Aflac and its saucy duck.

Progressive's Flo (Stephanie Courtney) and GEICO's gecko are OK in small doses, but although there are many commercials for each, they are run and rerun until they annoy.

Ooma, a VoIP (internet) telephone product has a commercial I found tasteless; a sexy female voice tells a man to dial a number; as he presses the digits the female voice sounds as if she is about to have an orgasm. A commercial best left for late night tv.

Anytime someone offers me a "free gift" I'm ready to hit the mute button. By definition, a "gift" is "free" making "free gift" redundant.

Then there are the pitchmen (and women) who tell me their product is the "most" unique - or any other modifier for the unmodifiable word. I also take umbrage to "over" used when "more than" is meant. I'm a grammar pedant - a nice way of saying "pain in the posterior" to those who abuse the language. I'll always remember the Winston cigarette commercial: "Winston tastes good AS a cigarette should." Correcting an in-house adman's grammar led to my being escorted out the door by HR many years ago.

Now in the silly season of politics I confess to cringing at negative ads from any candidate, even the one I favor.

I like memorable ads; memorable for their class or comedy rather than for the level of insult to the tv viewer.

I guess I DO like watching tv ads - if only to complain about the quality of the "creative" people. Make that "absence" of quality.

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