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Power Poll: Awesomely Bad Local Commercials

7:01 PM EST on December 17, 2007

A while back, I was driving along in my car listening to a local radio station when they cut away to a commercial break. Considering that non-satellite radio spends approximately 75% of their airtime playing commercials, I have become pretty good at tuning them out and using the time when no music/sports talk is happening to actually, you know, focus on where I'm steering the car. On this day, however, I was drawn back in when Wes Lane's voice began broadcasting over the air.

Any loyal LostOgle fan is very aware that I have a sick fascination with Wes Lane commercials...how else would I learn that the Playboys I perused as a teen would turn me into a serial killer? (Note to self: bury bodies in garage when ice thaws.) Anyway, my focus on the road was quickly shifted to the radio, but to my surprise the familiar voice was not Wes Lane. It was just some guy who sounded exactly like the ex-District Attorney hawking boner pills.

Clearly, it was not a great commercial by any means. For one, it was as if my spam email box had come to life and begun speaking to me through the sound system of my car. But the thing is, I now look forward to this ad to come on even though I still cannot tell you what product they are pitching. I think it is listening to a man with a doppelganger voice of the Burbridge Foundation spokesman talking about pleasing a woman.

This got me to thinking...there have to be other commercials that are bad but have redeeming qualities that make them, to steal a term from VH1, "Awesomely Bad" (option two for labeling this genre of commercial was "Craptastic"--you can use whichever you prefer). With careful research, I learned that I was right. After the jump, see a ranking of the "best" our market has to offer.

7. "Generation Cox--Pauley Penguin"

Note: Honestly, this ad probably deserves to be on a list of "Actually Good" local commercials, but considering it would just be this and some "Real Men of Genius" ads, I doubt that article is ever happening. So, rather than disqualifying it, I will instead give it a low ranking.

What's to Like: This ad has everything. Penguins, a kid freaking out when coming face-to-face with it's idol (any parent whose toddler has encountered the six-foot tall Mickey Mouse at Disney World has to enjoy this portrayal), penguins, good production value, and did I mention penguins? I have a disturbing fascination with penguins. I'd explain more, but it will probably come up again.

What's not to like: Digital Max

6. Fowler Dodge

What's to like: I said once, in an article that was only slightly different than this, that I never knew the difference between the car lot ads. That isn't the case with this one. The booming voice yells out "FOW-ler DAHjuh!!" or "five hUNdred dollars" as if he's taking a really difficult dump as he recites his line. It's awesome and I can't help but imitate him every time I hear his ads.

Also, it isn't Chad Stevens.

What's not to like: I can't help but imitate him every time I hear an ad. It comes on so often that my chest often hurts by the time my commute is over.

5. Shoe Gypsy

What's to like: Coming to the realization that the people who run this ad have a shop in Nichols Hills.

What's not to like: It reminds me of the time after I had my wisdom teeth removed and took too much codeine. I ended up watching television, and I'm pretty sure this ad was the only thing on. It just cycled until my mom pointed out that the TV wasn't powered on.

4. Sports Animal Alerts

The ad begins with "Did you hear Houston Nutt has been fired at Arkansas?"

What's to like: Brutal honesty. This ad is a perfect portrayal of what "Animal Alerts" have to consist. Just like how behind their website is on sports information, you would have to believe that their text messaging service would have to be nothing more than outdated information and by the time this ad started running not only had much bigger news taken place, but this wasn't even the biggest news related to Houston Nutt (who immediately got a new job at Ole Miss).

What's Not to Like: The fact that someone might actually sign up for "Animal Alerts".

3. DMAC Cars

What's to like: Seeing Kriss Kross make a comeback.

What's not to like: Realizing that the kids in this video might be one of the five best rap groups to come out since I graduated high school.

2. Sells-U-More

What's to like: Confession time. When I was in middle school, I actually bought a cassette single for Jordy a three year old (not three years in the profession, three years on the Earth) rapper. I had blocked that memory from my brain until I heard a youngster free styling, "I'm the little kid you see on the T.V." If it had not been for this commercial, I might have forgotten to train my meal ticket, ClarkPupp, to work on his rhyming skills when he starts learning to speak.

What's not to like: The Dru Hill wannabe belting out "Sells You More".

1. Mr. Spriggs BBQ (thanks to reader "JW")

What's to like: A lot. First, the singer is actually pretty good. Also, all the questions the commercial brings up: The guy lip syncing while waiting in the drive thru line: How do you think they convinced him to participate? Did they offer him a free side of coleslaw? Did he think he was going to be the next Milli Vanilli? Then, there are all the customers they being white. Is that an accurate depiction of their client base? If so, why is their advertising directed at a different demographic?

What's not to like: That I only knew about this ad because of a reader comment to another article. Mr. Spriggs needs to open up his wallet for the advertising budget.

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