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Carl

Rio Olympics Commercials

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There have been many moments during the Rio Olympics where I've had to hit pause and go back to see if what I just saw really happened... in the commercials.

Like this one for Xfinity:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20XrECRcPZU

Xfinity is a giant American cable company that everyone uses because there's really no other choice. Their customer service is designed to make you hang up in frustration, thus solving the problem on their end.

This commercial uses "Everything Is Awesome," re-sung with "everything is cool when you're part of a team" altered to "everything is cool when you're watching a screen."

The song is from the Lego Movie, where evil Lord Business keeps the citizens of Bricksburg mollified by making sure this is the only song they hear:

Have you heard the news, everyone's talking
Life is good 'cause everything's awesome
Lost my job, it's a new opportunity
More free time for my awesome community

By promising to transfix us to our screens, Xfinity is making a similar offer. Not sure if they get the irony. If they do and are pushing this anyway, that's scary.


Then there's Brad Paisley and Rachel Platten singing for Nationwide in separate commercials. Each of them gets lots of tight shots and are titled at the beginning, as if the insurance giant is saying, "Yes, really. These people are singing our jingle."

There is a feeling of satire here, with lyrics like (Paisley's version):

Made the most of your retirement plan
So better learn to drive that RV van

It sure isn't Platten's "Fight Song" - more of her "Cash In" song.

 

Just when we get used to "Dream On" in the commercial where the Skittles talk to Steven Tyler, the song shows up again in this very earnest spot for Walmart, where we see hard-working people getting ready for their day.

What are they "dreaming on" about? Apparently, having a job and making enough money to get by. At the end, we finally see how it's supposed to tie in:

walmart_dream.thumb.png.badae8292f07c179
Ah yes. The American dream. Now we get it.


Queen has two songs going. This one reworking the Flash Gordon theme:

 

And this one that plays on our fears of running out of storage space just as we were about to get the perfect shot:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aEK37MBTUPk


Finally, there's this one for the venerable McNugget, which is now well into the second generation:

 

This is beautifully executed, with a great cover of "Time After Time" and a nice reveal as we learn that the guy on the left the girl's dad. It's very sweet, but we still have to wonder what used to be in those nuggets.

"Time After Time" was co-written by a terrific musician named Rob Hyman, who was a member of The Hooters. He told us about the song a long time ago in one of our first songwriter interviews. Always happy when someone like that gets a nice payday.

Edited by Carl

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So that's what I've been missing out on by NOT watching the Rio Olympics. I've looked in for a minute or two from time to time, but continue on to another part of the Interweb in search of miscellaneous information, like who were the "Adderly" actors and what became of them.;) As for TV commercials, I try to forget them ASAP, as "noise" between program segments, and wonder if it's worth it to buy a DVD to escape the deluge of tinny music and hammy hard sell shills. (This means YOU, SyFy channel! And leave those "Sharknado" time/bandwidth wasters in your corporate vaults.;) The Winter Olympics are far more interesting, since advertisers are more creative to keep the attention of a captive audience. So, it's off to another DVD session with "Science Fiction Theatre," a 1950's TV look at the future.   

Now THIS is what I call "frozen fish"!

Edited by Otokichi
All hail Truman Bradley!

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