Monday, April 5, 2010

Dunk on the moon.

I'm still am not sure that I entirely believe that this is a real product or a real commercial. Despite all logic, someone at the Power Bar company apparently decided to create a product called Power Bar Energy Blasts which are essentially Gushers, the childern's candy gummi candy where the center is filled with liquid corn syrup. As a child I didn't know anyone who didn't think these were gross, but Power Bar apparently now makes them for adults. I assume the main thing distinguishing these from Gushers is that the Power Bar candy will be much worse tasting because they are made by Power Bar, and I have never had a Power Bar product that doesn't taste like asphalt.

So how does one advertise such a product? Obviously by having a doll version of Los Angeles Lakers' forward Lamar Odom eat one of these Power Bar Blasts and then slam dunk on a basketball hoop which is attached to the moon.

This commercial is pretty stupid, but then again its obviously intentionally stupid, and Odom announcing he is going to dunk on the moon did make me laugh. To paraphrase Roger Ebert's review of the film FX2, "There should be a special category for movies that are neither good nor bad, but simply excessive." This commercial was memorable enough for me to be inspired to post it, and it succeeds at what it set out to do. But since its goal was to sell Power Bars by showing an toy version of an NBA player dunk on a hoop attached to the moon. I think the only part of it I can definitely make a yay or nay judgment on is the guy who is not Odom saying at the end of the spot, "I'm gonna do a slama jammer on pluto." This line is terrible. While the rest of the commercial is dumb and ridiculous, try to think of a better way to do any other part of it. The cheap doll with the rocket pack is much funnier than an attempt at realism with a graphic of Odom doing his moon jump. The ending line on the other hand is groan inducing, they should have ended the commercial with Odom landing with the basketball hoop still in his hand, or with the line after where the other guy says he wants to try some.

Despite the commercial succeeding at being the FX2 of Food ads, this is still a commercial for a Power Bar gummi candy. This commercial could be scripted by Kia's ad agency and directed by Michael Bay and I still wouldn't have any interest in Power Bar gummy candies. Power Bar even seems to admit this at the end where the advises you to go to their website to receive a free sample. Ending the commercial by essentially saying, "Hey we know these sound disgusting and awful and you would never be willing to pay for them, so want not have us send them to you for free to your house so you can give them away to people you dislike?"

The commercial tries to sidestep this issue by showing the product out of its container at little as possible, but that doesn't really work because the candies still sound gross once we finally figure out what they are.

That is all I have to say that is actually on topic but i would like to point out that I just discovered the film FX2 which spawned that fun Roger Ebert quote was apparently directed by Richard Franklin. Who is Richard Franklin you may ask? Unless you clicked the link on his name which went to his imdb page, in which case you are saying, "I have never heard of any of the movies this guy directed."

Franklin is an Australian director who made OZploitation films in the 1970's and 80's. He is one of the many people interviewed in the excellent Australian documentary Not Quite Hollywood, which discusses the history of these Australian genre pictures. I can't recommend that movie enough. I enjoyed it so much I netflixed several of the movies mentioned in it and Road Games directed by Richard Franklin is definitely the best one so far. I wanted to include the trailer for Not Quite Hollywood embedded here, but I can't find a version that doesn't contain lots of violence and nudity (now you can see why I like this movie, it has so much violence and nudity that they couldn't even find 2 minutes of the movie without it to use in the trailer), and wants blogs that post such things to be listed as restricted content. So instead here is the trailer for Road Games. I realize all of this is only tangentially related at best to Power Bars, (actually its completely unrelated I just really wanted to use the word tangential here, and its my blog so I did), but I really wanted to point out how awesome Not Quite Hollywood and Road Games were.

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