Bizarre Commercials, Volume 6
Up to this point, we’ve illustrated ads produced with the intention to sell products. However, there are some television spots that are just out to make people aware (and, possibly, still sell sell products, but not in such an obvious manner. They’re called Public Service Announcements (PSAs) and here are a few of the more bizarre ones.
* G.I. Joe on Petting Strange Dogs
The National Child Safety Council created several animated PSAs to run at the end of episodes of the G.I. Joe cartoon series back in the 80s. This one cautions youngsters of the dangers of petting animals you don’t know. Admittedly, this is a fairly innocuous subject for badass military functionaries like G.I. Joe to bring up. Perhaps Mutt really wanted to say “you should never pet a strange dog because it’s loaded down with enough C-4 to blow your fuckin’ ass back to Beirut, numbnuts!”, but standards and practices thought it was a little harsh. Anyway, knowing is half the battle.
* Heavy Metal with a Social Conscience
You might look at the shaggy-headed trailer-park residents with the studded bracelets and brown bag-covered Old Crow whiskey bottles hanging out by the old freight rail station and believe them not be very responsible. However, as a shaggy-headed trailer park resident with the bracelets and Old Crow-in-a-bag, I can tell you that nothing can be further than the truth. Why, ever since Black Sabbath did their first radio spots about responsible freebasing, the heavy metal subculture has had a long tradition of reputable media advocacy. Just check out these power-rockin’ PSAs from about 20 years ago.
I’m glad Rob Halford’s community service is working out so well. However, I do feel sorry for the schoolgirl riding off with K. K. Downing at the end. Still, nothing some tetracycline won’t clear up. So, don’t let the needle tracks fool you–we’re upstanding members of the community under the high-tension wires. In fact, when I get my Ad Council grant, I’m going to do a spot on safe methamphetamine mixing and one on overcoming Aqua-Net addiction.
* Bicentennial Celebration
This spot celebrates 200 years of fuckin’ America, man! Playing over a groovy 70s soundtrack, this psychedelic animated ad commemorates the Bicentennial with strobing stars, swirling stripes, flying hamburgers and bald eagles hatching from red, white and blue-colored acorns. It would seem that the United States Information Agency felt that the best way to observe the Bicentennial was to dose some powerful LSD. Tempting, but acid and Soylent Ape don’t get along too well. (Also, it’s more than 30 years too late.)