Exhibit A: This was a PSA that was shown mostly during Saturday and Sunday morning kids programming during the early to mid 80’s. A boy, wearing a T-shirt with picture of the old Universal Frankenstein on it (I somehow remember this detail), was hiking through a mountain pasture. He comes across a bear, a mountain goat, and some other animal, maybe a beaver, playing loud music on over-sized instruments. Please note these were mascot costume type animals. The kid yells at the animals asking what they’re doing. They answer that they want to start disrespecting nature the way that humans do, like “plaaaayyyiing nooiiissy muuusssiiic.” Imagine that last line being delivered by the crazy eyed mountain goat in a braying voice. The bear then says, “We like to litter” as he empties a trashcan on the kid’s head. The kid then tells the animals they shouldn’t behaving this way. This apparently was a mistake. “Oh, yeah!?!”, replied the bear. There’s a music sting and zoom in on the look of abject horror on the boy’s face. “Let’s get him!!!” And the beasts chase the boy down the mountain. I believe he gets away because the ad ends with said boy looking over hillside while the nice narrator from the National Parks Department, or Dept. of Fish & Wildlife, again emphasizes the importance of respecting the outdoors.
A few things to note: I’ve spent hundreds upon hundreds of hours in the woods as a kid. I’ve had the screech of a mountain lion race up my back from several feet away. I’ve had a nest of yellow jackets swarm up the leg of my Toughskins. I’ve seen Bigfoot. These would all pale in comparison to having three animals, that were clearly against God’s plan, confront me for the ecological sins of my forefathers. And even if they were just “guys in costumes”, who wants to run across that in the forest? I still get that “not right” vibe from Chuck E. Cheese, and he’s in a well populated area.
Does anyone else remember seeing this ad? It may have been a locally produced spot (the Pacific Northwest). My contemporaries have seemed to have blocked it out. And my wife is no help, seeing that Saturday morning television, much like sugar cereal and vacations involving amusement parks, were clearly verboten in her household.
Exhibit B: The second commercial is also from the early to mid 80’s. I believe that this one was for Bic Erasable Pens. A boy, who may have the kid who played Wormser in REVENGE OF THE NERDS, is walking to school talking about the benefits of his new Bic pen, as we all do. He is then confronted by a gang of bullies. He tries to deflect their harassment by informing them of the quality of his Bic. Impressed, the leader of the gang snatches the pen from the nerdy kid. The nerdy kid snatches it back, and with a few swipes, erases the other boy!!! The rest of his gang runs off screaming while Wormser smiles triumphantly at us.
Now what bothered me about this was that I feel I had just witnessed a murder. This is funny and/or supposed to make want to buy pens? Won’t this kid’s parents ask what happened to him? Will any of his friends tell what happened? Is Wormser a diabolical “Wish Child” like BILLY MUMY, or to a lesser extent JEREMY LICHT, from the TWILIGHT ZONE? Yeah, the kid may have been a jerk. But is that reason enough to have his 12-year-old self erased from existence?
Please let me know if anyone else remembers these, or has links to said clips.
UNK SEZ: Dear Spinninmarty, I feel your pain, I have exactly two haunting childhood commercial memories that I have not been able to track down. Referencing them to people only produces the sounds of crickets chirping. In the first, a girl stares blankly out a window at the rain. I think she is crying. Her mother comes up behind her and the girl says, “Mom, why am I so dumb?” and then her mother hugs her. I believe this is a commercial for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The second ad has a bunch of “Honeycomb Hideout”-type kids playing in a tree and they say, “Taking drugs when you’re not really sick…is REALLY sick!” It’s safe to assume that one was an anti-drug spot. I’ve checked youtube time and again for these two commercials but to no avail. Please someone out there in Interwebtown, put me and Spinny out of our misery by verifying the existence of these off-putting television oddities! In the meanwhile, I did find this Bic ad, as I was fruitlessly searching for Spininmarty’s traum-mercials, it will have to suffice for now…
UPDATE: SOLVED! see the amazing animal band HERE!