Category Archives: commercials

Annette Funicello 1942-2013

April has been lousy with famous deaths, and today we lost another great one. I grew up with Annette Funicello, and no, I’m not that old. In the 1970s, there were reruns of the original “Mickey Mouse Club” on TV every weekday afternoon, and the 1960s Beach Party movies ran quite often on the UHF channels. I was very familiar with who she was, and even dug her when she would appear on talk shows and variety shows, and even Skippy peanut butter commercials, of the era at her current age.

Annette was a regular on “MMC” as well as appearing in their serials and several other Disney television series and movies. Later she moved on to the popular Beach Party films with Frankie Avalon, as well as having many top ten hits as a singer, one of them eventually becoming the theme to “The Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson. She made a comeback in 1987 starring with Avalon in Back to the Beach, a clever homage to the Beach Party movies.

Continuing to sing, act, and make appearances over the next decade, Annette was eventually diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, complications of which finally took her life earlier today in California. We have truly lost another legend today, of many media. Annette Funicello will be missed.


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Avengers Assemble!

Apparently the Superbowl was last night. Some folks were excited about the commercials. Some folks were excited about Madonna. Rumor has it there was even a pretty good football game last night. I didn’t notice, especially seeing how neither the Philadelphia Eagles nor the Dallas Cowboys were involved. But I watched last night’s Super Bowl too, but for none of the above – I watched it for The Avengers!

Yeah, baby! I absolutely can not wait until May fourth! Avengers Assemble!

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Ideal Never Closed

Just a correction to a very popular blog entry I did a year or two back, Ideal never closed, as many of us believed.

They are still open, and still in that Quonset hut on the White Horse Pike in Hammonton New Jersey and still the place for folks with a passion for fashion, and a craving for saving.

Check them out here, and if you’re feeling nostalgic for that unforgettable theme song, click here for the Dumpsta Players doing their tribute to a true South Jersey multi-media and shopping legend.

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Pop Culture Poser

Brad Benson, of Brad Benson Hyundai. This guy bugs me. His commercials appear far too frequently on News Jersey 101.5 FM. He does his own commercials, making pop culture references left and right, and trying to be funny, and one would hope (for his sake at least), selling cars.

The thing that bugs me, other than the frequency of the commercials, and his implied agreement with some of the station’s gay-unfriendly hosts (his ad about the pilots who missed their landing is horrendous and irresponsible, and don’t get me started on Dennis and Michele), is that he often gets his pop culture references wrong.

Now it’s one thing for KYW to pronounce Janeanne Garofolo’s name as “Jane-anne Garroh-folloh” or CNN to have commentators at the Michael Jackson memorial who don’t know who Berry Gordy is, but this falls into a whole ‘nother category.

On the surface, Brad Benson saying Susan Boyle was on the British “American Idol” instead of “Britain’s Got Talent,” for instance, may seem petty, but look at it this way… Have you ever bought a car? Remember the scary and unreasonable amount of detailed paperwork involved in buying a car? Yeah, that’s a lot of stuff, and a lot of stuff to make sure is absolutely right, T’s crossed and I’s dotted.

Do you want a guy who won’t even do a moment’s research on a commercial he’s paying for to handle details on a car you’re paying for? I don’t. I want someone very detail-oriented, someone who won’t make mistakes and just laugh it off. I guess I’m not buying a Hyundai from Brad Benson.

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Super Bowl Aftermath: Commercials

Despite one of the better (or at least more interesting) commercials this year being banned from being broadcast, there were still a few ads that stood out during this year’s Super Bowl.

The main idea is to surprise, entertain, and most importantly let the viewer remember the name of the product when it’s all over. I mean everyone remembers the amazing Big Brother commercial from 1984 – but come on, who remembers what they were selling?

Let’s start with a good one from Doritos that aired early in the game…

Go Veg!

It would seem that so far the coolest and the hottest of the Super Bowl commercials this year, is the one that has been banned from being shown. PETA shoots and scores!

Seinfeld for Microsoft

Now just for the record, I’m a Mac guy, and I’m never going back to PCs. Just not going to happen. But that said, I’m also a huge “Seinfeld” fan. That’s why I just don’t get all the negative hubbub over Jerry Seinfeld’s new ad for Microsoft. I thought it was quirky, cool and funny. I doubt that it will sell computers and Jerry’s looking a bit worse for wear, but I still enjoyed it.

Now I’m going back to working on my MacBook while I watch “Seinfeld” reruns.

Heinz Buckles

This is the commercial that Heinz has removed from the airwaves, in the UK of all places. The UK! Not a redneck red state in the hate-filled south, but the United Kingdom.

Over two hundred complaints were filed, some calling the advert “inappropriate,” “unsuitable” and “offensive.” Wow. I thought the rest of the world outside of the US was a bit more advanced, especially the UK.

“It is our policy to listen to consumers. We recognise that some consumers raised concerns over the content of the ad and this prompted our decision to withdraw it,” said Nigel Dickie, director of corporate affairs for Heinz UK.

So Heinz buckles like a belt. I don’t think I’ll be buying their products any more. How about you?

No More Passion for Fashion?


This one’s for the folks local to the Philadelphia area, and more specifically geared to folks who grew up watching television here during the swinging seventies. We are losing a pop culture icon, Ideal is closing.

For those of you with no idea what I’m talking about, Ideal was a clothing shop down in Hammonton, NJ on the White Horse Pike, on the way to Atlantic City from Philadelphia. Their commercials barely changed over the years but always featured the coolest jingle ever written. The jingle has even been immortalized in the shows of the Dumpsta Players.

Come on, folks, sing along one last time…

“It’s not a fancy salon,

It’s nothing but a quonset hut,

But,

If you’ve got a passion for fashion,

And you’ve got a craving for saving,

Take the wheel of your automobile,

And swing on down to – Ideal!

… and happily repeat until the end…

“The Ideal Manufacturing Company is on Route 30, the White Horse Pike in Hammonton, New Jersey, open every night and all day Sunday.”

We’ll miss you, Ideal!