1988 Countdown: Commercial Break #19

Once again, we visit the Duke.


For the fifth time, we see the hourly promo spot for the “Big Bang ’89” broadcast. Lots of quick video clips: Robert Plant points to the sky. Bret Michaels flails his arms around. Kip Winger bashes out a chord. Larry Blackmon rocks the codpiece. Daryl Hall grabs a handful of air. The guy from Escape Club strums his guitar. Bobby Brown adjusts his wireless microphone. The chick from Vixen carries around her microphone stand. Sam Kinison glares at the camera. Sandra Bernhard twitches her upper lip.


The January Man. Again. The second name in the cast (after Kevin Kline) is the late Rod Steiger. Steiger made dozens upon dozens of movies in his storied career; checking IMDB, it seems that I have seen exactly two (On the Waterfront and Mars Attacks!). It looks like The January Man was far from the weakest entry on his resume.


Michelob Dry: this spot. This commercial is scored only with percussion–it sounds like one guy, going to town on a bucket.


Gillette, specifically the “Atra Plus System”: a replay of this spot, I think. I can’t help but notice lots of big patches of white in this commercial: white t-shirts, sea foam, a bride in her wedding gown. The implication is that the world is filled with blobs of shaving cream that you can wipe away.


Our final ad: a black and white screen with the MTV logo, the words “PROMO” and “FAVORITE MUSIC,” and a bar code. We hear the following dialogue:

Bored nasal woman with Brooklyn accent: “Hello, phone sex.”

Heavy-breathing man: “Let’s just say my name’s Big John.”

BNWWBA: “What do you like to do, Big John?”

HBM: “Oh, I like to watch.”

BNWWBA: “Watch what, Big John?”

HBM: “My favorite music, morning, noon, and night.” (That’s odd–I could have sworn MTV played videos only between 2 and 6 am, and sometimes not even then.)

BNWWBA: “Long gasp, I’m so excited.”

HBM, getting loud and overstimulated: “Especially when I’m strapped to the ceiling with a gag in my mouth and I’m–”

She hangs up on him. The screen goes black. She says, “It’s a strange world.”

posted 10 June 2010 in 1988 and tagged , , , , , . 4 comments

4 Comments on 1988 Countdown: Commercial Break #19

  1. Chris M. Says:

    Love that Cameo still. What’s that from, the Big Bang promo?

  2. Gavin Says:

    That’s right. I was wondering when “Word Up” might appear on this countdown–the answer is that it doesn’t, because it hit the charts in 1986.

  3. Tom Nawrocki Says:

    “The Pawnbroker” and “In the Heat of the Night” are re probably Rod Steiger’s most famous performances, and are both well worth seeing. “The Pawnbroker” was also, I believe, the first mainstream American movie to show a woman’s bare breasts. So there’s that.

  4. vinyl Says:

    pls tell me you have that ‘phone sex’ promo. I got is big trouble for repeating it during woodwork class in school. If you have the video or audio, please please please post it, I’ve been looking for it for years.

Leave a Reply

Keep up to date with new comments on this post via RSS.