There’s an old saying in the advertising industry that if you want to create an ad that will be a surefire hit, make sure to include babies and/or animals. Nothing tugs at the heartstrings of viewers more than a cute kid or a fuzzy little ball of love. The proper casting can make a commercial the talk of the nation, even if the rest of the ad around it is incredibly stupid.
Cats and dogs and camels have been the spokesanimals of choice for almost as long as television has been around. However, there has been a recent trend towards more ads featuring squirrels creating their lovable brand of mischief. We at The Nest would like to believe we had something to do with that in our two plus years of operation… and since Retro Ad Tuesday coincides with National Squirrel Appreciation Day this week, let’s take a look at some of the best, and worst commercials featuring our fine, fluffy friends…
Trident Gum (2003):
Trident had long made the silly claim that 4 out of 5 dentists recommended their patients chew Trident gum for its magical gummy cavity fighting powers. So what was that fifth dentist’s problem?
Ohhh, so Dr. No, DDS didn’t reject Trident because it’ll get stuck between your teeth. He was just reacting to the squirrel that crawled up his leg and flossed with the dentist’s nuts!
While 4 out of 5 squirrels do not recommend actually biting into a man’s scrotum to maintain healthy gnawers, we at The Nest do give this ad 4 out of 5 acorns!
Who hasn’t been driving along the road, minding their own business while shamelessly
twerking singing along to “Blurred Lines” on the radio, when all of a sudden out of nowhere darts a crazy kamikaze squirrel…
Ah… who knew? The squirrels are creating accidents intentionally!
But wouldn’t that mean they are creating insurance fraud… and if they were, why would Geico be hiring them to star in their commercials? At least this ad came before Geico became the most ADD company out there as far as trying to juggle anywhere from three to five different ad campaigns at the same time. And of course, before that damn you know what showed up…
Still, we give this ad three acorns…
Bud Light (2007):
Super Bowl commercials jumped the shark about a decade ago, but there probably hadn’t been one with a squirrel in it until this ad in 2007. Meet Walter, the Bud Light guarding squirrel…
Heck, I can’t even get the squirrels in the backyard to pose for my camera! Granted, I have no training in animal training… but even someone who did would probably have a hard time convincing a squirrel to watch over a Bud Light…
But even more unbelievable is that the squirrel in this ad uses one of the lamest submission techniques outside of a Three Stooges short, with bad sound effects to go with it. Walter…. WTF, man!?!? You’re an embarrassment to the bushy tail…
We appreciate the attempt at slapstick, but we gotta hang our head in shame and give this one just two acorns…
Speaking of Stupid Bowl ads, here’s one for the Toyota Rav4 that aired during last year’s game in which a pair of talking squirrels get a cameo…
This ad has only two things going for it…. the squirrels, and the fact that it ends with one of the greatest damn songs of the entire 90’s… Skee Lo’s “I Wish”. Other than that, the rest of it is a complete mess. Never confuse being imaginative with just plain fucked up. This commercial is definitely the latter…
Ugh, these ads are steadily getting worse! 1 acorn for this stinker!
Bridgestone Tires (2008):
Bridgestone got a lot of bad press in 2000 over claims that too many of its tires on Ford vehicles were literally coming apart at the seams while on the road. As the company tried to emerge from the murkiness of that controversy, it turned to one loud, annoying squirrel during Super Bowl XLII…
Yeah… that’ll get customers back. Show them that your tires can safely swerve out of the way of a squirrel in the headlights without running off the road and killing everyone on board as well as a few possums hanging out in the ditch… but do it with a prolonged parade of shrill screams that would put even a
Squirrels Girls Gone Wild tape to shame…
We’ll applaud Bridgestone for using a wide variety of wildlife in this ad, but that’s just enough to get it up to two acorns…
My family has had cable since 1984, and I hooked up when I moved into my own place in 2009. I’ve never had a silly dish on top of any roof I’ve ever lived under. While I may not particularly care for DirecTV, I do have to give them props on their clever ads. They used a bunch of squirrels in this commercial from last year that probably demanded a lot less compensation than the Manning Brothers…
Not only is this a great concept, but it gets a huge boost by not being like the ridiculous sister campaign DirecTV runs where cable going out lead to A, which leads to oddly specific B, which leads to even more insanely specific C… etc.
The Nest wholeheartedly approves of this ad… even if we don’t give a shit about the Sunday NFL Ticket… 4 acorns!
About half a century ago, Sears was in the lofty catbird seat of retail that Mecca now claims. They’re not going down without a fight, however… and while Bob Vila is apparently too old to still do commercials for them, they decided to try a little squirrel power to drum up their customers’ spending power…
You know, in this age of retail being taken to task for selling too many products made by little kids in China, do you really want to evoke the image of a sweatshop in any of your ads?
Squirrels cutting coupons en masse is really a pretty dumb idea. Though you do have to give Sears credit for creating an awesome scene of squirrel mayhem! However, for those who think my comics I post here are a bit risque and preverted… catch what the guy says at about the 0:28 mark…
Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwwwwwww. What would Alvah Curtis Roebuck have to say about that? In the name of good taste, we can only give this ad 2 acorns…
Pepto Bismol To Go (2013):
Finally… we have a company that has devoted an entire ad campaign to a squirrel! Now it doesn’t matter where you get nausea, heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach or diarrhea… wherever you are feeling yucky, you can take some Pepto To Go and feel bright eyed and bushy tailed again! And to drive that point home… a squirrel who emerges from a medicine cabinet in all kinds of weird places and speaks like the wiseman in Kung Fu…
That ad just sums up the premise of this creative and hilarious campaign, though… here are some of the individual ads where Pepto Squirrel meets up with folks who get into digestive trouble away from home:
Bravo! Bravo!!! We finally found a squirrel commercial worth the prestigious 5 out of 5 acorns!
On this most glorious National Squirrel Appreciation Day, we here at The Nest would like to take this time to give a 21 nut salute to the ingenious advertising execs out there who turned to cute and quirky squirrels to sell their company’s wares. Whether it’s beer, insurance, tires, or pink bismuth… the bushy tailed rodent will help make your product a tail flipping success! You can take your nuts to the bank on that one…
Snorticles. Oh my – I have forgotten about all of these squirrel commercials. The two squirrels fist bumping – OMP (oh my pig). That was my mom’s favorite for the longest time. It’s hilarious and never gets old with her. The Pepto Squirrel though does the complete opposite. She said that one looks evil – snorts. Thanks for the laughs my friend and Happy National Squirrel Day! XOXO – Bacon
I have it on good authority most squirrels considering being called evil a compliment, and I’m sure Pepto Squirrel would agree… and pop out of an imaginary medicine cabinet for her wherever she was if she ever needed him! 😉
I’m sure they do take that as a compliment now that I think of it. That Journalist Rocky the Squirrel – he has some evil ways that he just doesn’t show ya’ll. Now on the other hand, that Pepto Squirrel. I would pay money and set up a movie camera hidden in our bathroom to see it jump out at mom in the middle of the night. I think she would do a jig that would be hilariously outrageous! XOXO – Bacon
oh and PS – come check out my blog today. I left you something my friend 🙂 XOXO – Bacon
I will be sure to check it out shortly!
What will these fellas not do for the spotlight?
Thank you! Happy SAD sounds so paradoxal….
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If I didn’t know better I’d say there was some sort of squirrel conspiracy causing them to be cast in all these commercials. At least I’d rather watch them than those Geico cavemen
I wouldn’t put it past squirrels to be involved in any conspiracy. And you are right about those damned cavemen… was I the only one to think they were inspired by Johnny Damon circa 2004?
I never realized how many commercials squirrels were in!! Hated those Toyota Genie commercials too!!
I didn’t think there were that many too (and I’m sure I missed a few!)
This is absolutely a five acorn post 🙂
Thank you! I wanted something good for the big day!
Hahahahaha…so funny and EEEEWWW.. He’s mating with my mouth?!? So after nine minutes of gestation does something POP out? Yuck.
I’ll bet it would pop out of his stomach like in “Alien”… I’m surprised that got on the air!
Love the Geico fist-bumping squirrels. Still one of my all time faves. Now if we could just get Mayhem to team up with squirrels I’d be set for life.
Mayhem and squirrels united just might take over the world!
I liked the squirrel attack one. Forget the zombie apocalypse. Squirrels is where it’s at!
This is why we should keep feeding them… I want to be in their good graces when the inevitable comes!
Happy Squirrel Appreciation day! 🙂
Thank you, Aunt Sharon! I wish there were squirrels in your backyard for you to appreciate!
If a squirrel handed me some Pepto…I would shit myself. 😉
Then he would hand you a moist towelette…. 😉
How do very polite.
I just wish they would have consulted you and me on what constitutes cute in the world of squirrels. Most of the squirrels in the recent commercials look like amateur-hour taxidermy projects. Hodge and Podge give them no nuts at all.
Good point! I love Pepto Squirrel’s sense of humor and creepy ability to be everywhere at once… but he does look like he belongs in a B horror movie…
Ha Ha! Loved the post. That Toyota Advert takes the cake though! So what could the next genre of advertisements be based on?
Possums are the next big thing!