Throwing In The Towel

Can you direct me to the cheap shit, please?

Can you direct me to the cheap shit, please?

tuesday tvLife’s messy.  And whether those spills occur in the kitchen, the living room or the bedroom, we need something fast and strong to ensure the unwanted residue is gone before it just evaporates away.  One of the best inventions in the history of good housekeeping has been the almighty paper towel.  For the price of just a few states worth of lush forests, Americans have a ready cleaning aid they can reach for to take care of anything from spilled soda pop to a mountain of cat puke.  When it comes to making sure our homes stay OCD clean, the environment can go get itself fucked with a punctured aerosol can…

Beat it, fairies!  I've got wood to chop and spills to clean up!

Beat it, fairies! I’ve got wood to chop and spills to clean up!

Thanks to the incredible powers of consumer brainwashing that mega-conglomerate Procter and Gamble possesses, Bounty is considered to be the top of the line in the spillwipe department.  While desperately trolling YouTube for a classic commercial to mock this morning, I came across this 1992 ad for the quicker picker upper featuring the world’s most inept cowboy outside of a Mel Brooks movie…

In the same year that Dan Quayle and Murphy Brown made family values a trending hashtag national buzzword, Bounty gave us this adorably cute, family friendly advertisement for its product that could put a smile on a misanthrope’s face.  Of course, even the most innocent and innocuous commercials we see on our televisions are immensely fucked up beneath their namby pamby exterior.  And pointing out the flaws and bullshit in advertising is the main reason you all subscribe to The Nest in the first place!  Right?

sometimes you're the unicorn and sometimes you're the possum

I guess some of you may be here for the unicorns and possum killing.

The ad starts with our little cowpoke entering Mom’s Saloon through the swinging set of half-assed doors that were a staple of just about every spaghetti western ever made, but probably weren’t often found in many suburban kitchens.  Seriously, who designed the house this commercial was shot in, Louis L’Amour?  Just like those doors didn’t keep rattlesnakes out of the watering holes of the old west, neither were they likely to keep the dog or the baby from getting into the kitchen to play with all of the sharp knives…

Give that baby a Safety Unicorn Award!

Give that little rugrat a Safety Unicorn Award!

To show exactly why mom needs to rip out the swinging gates and have a vault door installed instead, her little dude takes only about three seconds to turn her kitchen into a giant fucking mess because he left his toy moo-cow on the counter…

I hope this family qualifies for FEMA assistance.

I hope this family qualifies for FEMA assistance.

Our rough and tumble cowboy prepares to face the music like a true man of the west…

Would you like a tissue, Tex?

Would you like a tissue, Tex?

I guess you can’t blame him for getting a little worried over what mom, aka The Law West of the Hallway, might do to punish his clumsiness.  While the days of publicly lynching children for spilling juice had long since ended by the early 90’s, it was still a time when nobody would have said a word had you taken your little outlaw back to the woodshed and tanned his hide for ruining the linoleum.  Fortunately for Spilly The Kid, the matron of this here establishment is a complete pushover for sad eyes…

He's still gonna be living in the basement when he's 35... I just know it.

He’s still gonna be living in the basement when he’s 35… I just know it.

So Mommy proceeds to clean up the spill for her little buckaroo, who will probably never have to do a single thing for himself in his life.  Bounty uses this example of shitty parenting as an opportunity to show off what you can do with just a single sheet of its spongelike paper.  There’s just one small problem…

I'd worry that spill was actually The Blob!

I’d worry that spill was actually a coalescing Blob!

That is most definitely NOT an entire pitcher of Smurfberry Kool Aid like we saw cascading onto the floor just a few seconds ago!  Unless that flooring has some kind of magical absorption powers, about 95% of that spill has just turned up missing.  A Bounty intern probably had to use half a roll of paper towels in between takes just to clean up enough of the red river flood to make mom’s single sheet be able to handle the rest of the mess.

Bounty’s not done assaulting your gullibility with stupid advertising tricks, though…

A National 2 Ply Paper Towel would make a hell of a generic brand name.

A National 2 Ply Paper Towel would make a hell of a generic brand name.

Next we see Bounty taking on the cheapest paper towel the prop man could find at the local Mecca at cleaning up two identical toilet overflow spills.  It could be an illusion of shitty 20th Century video technology, but those paper towels look thicker than the napkins at a real restaurant.  There are Niagara Falls flow maxi pads that don’t have the level of thickness that Bounty towel seems to have morphed into.  Oh well, just like in sports, if you aren’t cheating, you aren’t trying hard enough…

Now we know where the grapes of wrath are stored...

Now we know where the grapes of wrath are stored…

To demonstrate just how durable Bounty puppy pads paper towels are while they are wet, two staffers show off Bounty’s amazing ability to hold up one fourth of the Fruit of the Loom team even while the towel is being soaked in water.  For those in the viewing audience who have trouble comprehending the effects that water has on paper towels, a handy “WHEN WET” caption is included for the criminally stupid.  Naturally, Bounty doesn’t even give time for the water to soak in to the towel before they quickly cut away to Calamity Jane and her dust storm of a kid enjoying some post-disaster family bonding… leaving us to all believe those grapes didn’t actually end up in the garbage disposal after just a couple seconds of Bounty water torture…

And thus how the California Raisins were born...

And thus how the California Raisins were born…

If you were to take this ad at face value, you might wonder why Bounty isn’t used to clean up our toughest messes, like oil spills.  The next time Joe Hazelwood crashes into a BP oil well in the Gulf of Mexico, just drop a big sheet of Bounty 50-ply paper towels on that slick and watch it soak up the floating oil like Prince’s hair.  The waterways will be open for drug smuggling traffic again in no time!

oil spill squirrel

Throw in a few drops of Dawn for the wildlife, and Procter & Gamble just might save the world.

Whether it’s cleaning up the sarsaparilla spill from a drunk cowboy, or wiping away the after-effects of food poisoning from a patron in Rosie’s diner, it’s good to know we can turn to the Thicker, Quicker Picker Upper when we need all of the absorption power of a Shop Vac and all of the deceit of a televised political debate.  So today The Nest gives a sloppy salute to Bounty paper towels for making our homes a little less messier and our commercials just a little more unbelievable.  The next time we sit down to a good bowlful of greasy chileh, we’ll be sure to keep a sheet handy to clean up after ourselves for both the chileh ingress and the chileh egress…

Grapes not included.

Grapes not included.

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About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
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20 Responses to Throwing In The Towel

  1. I wonder what grapes they used… maybe there was one (the guy in the green shirt or the possum) who had to hollow out every single grape for the commercial?

  2. Trisha says:

    I’ve always considered myself immune to the tricks of advertising but I didn’t notice how phony that spill looked or how the paper towels suddenly became 50 ply. And, the shelves in my garage are stocked with several rolls of Bounty paper towels. Wow. I wonder how many other ways I’m being brainwashed?!?!

    • I don’t know where I read about it maybe 20 years ago, but the advertising trick that has always stuck with me is the use of the word “virtually.” Every single time I see that word in advertising, I remember learning that the word is completely meaningless, and that any claim that follows the word “virtually” can be totally disregarded and even assumed to be untrue. Evil Squirrel’s Nest’s new and improved humor has been clinically proven to be safe and effective, while virtually removing all of your troubles away!

      • Trisha says:

        Hm, I’ll have to watch for the word virtually! I would imagine it’s used a lot in those “wait, but there’s more – buy now and we can double your offer” infomercials. I bet it was used somewhere in those “affordable” health care commercials too.

  3. Quirky Girl says:

    Those advertising executives obviously haven’t seen the colossal messes my boys are capable of making. So it probably goes without saying that the self-proclaimed “thicker, quicker picker-upper” doesn’t cut it in my house. No, we are forced to pull out the “good” towels on many occasions that aren’t even remotely good-ish. C’est la vie…

    • Yeah, as one of five kids, paper towels didn’t cut it when I was growing up either. Anything that would soak up spills was used early and often… sometimes even one of the pets!

      • Quirky Girl says:

        Hey, there’s no shame in (gently) mopping the floor with Fluffy in desperate situations. Studies show that pet fur is 1,000% more absorbent than the leading paper towel. 😛

  4. draliman says:

    I’ve never managed to get paper towels to do what the adverts claim either. Absorb, wipe and it’s all gone? As if.
    She should’ve got him to vacuum the spillage up with his stupid fake-crying mouth. I mean, kids’ve gotta learn, right?
    In other news I’ve been turned down for foster parenting yet again. What’s that all about? 🙂

  5. I have often felt that Bounty are the “overkill towels” of choice. When you need to use a single sheet of paper towels to clean your entire kitchen? Really? Does anyone do that? I might use a WHOLE ROLL of papertowels, but one? Sheet? Really? Yes, sad but true. We buy the cheap shit.

    • I compromise and buy the cheap name brand shit… except the one time we had a bunch of 2-roll Bounty towels on massive clearance. Because our regional HO is based in Chicago, we get a lot of Chicago Bears licensed crap, despite the fact that we’re in…. er, make that were in Rams territory. So if it sits around long enough (And it usually does), I can get some good deals on regular items with Da Bears logo plastered on it. My stockpile of Chicago Bears printed Bounty paper towels is still going strong… and they aren’t any better than the regular Sparkle I buy.

  6. Ally Bean says:

    I remember the commercial with the green grapes on the sturdy paper towel suspended dramatically over the sink, but that’s all I remember. I didn’t watch much TV growing up, and when I did I read books or magazines during commercials. However thanks to you I’m getting to see what I missed.

    • The grapes over the sink was a standard I think. I don’t recall this exact commercial myself, but remember all of the gimmicks it contains. I wasn’t observant and cynical enough back then to realize how full of crap they all were, though…

  7. Why are moms on TV commercials always so happy when their little brats make a mess? I swear, most of them just smile and clean it up. What kind of drugs are these women taking? And why are the kids always such smug little brats?

    A friend of my nephew came over to my mom’s house one day and peed all over the bathroom. She gave the little monster a roll of paper towels, a spray bottle of Simple Green and told him to clean it up or there would be big trouble.

    • Oh, how much I wish we could make the customers clean up their own messes at work. I swear we are overrun by people who were born in a barn…

      And then there are the co-workers who empty the ice cube trays in the break room and don’t fill them back up because Mommy’s not there to do it for them. Grrrrrrrr……

  8. They really liked the formula – Little Ninja in 1993 and Little Explorer in 1998 – same format, only grape tomatoes instead of grapes, because we wouldn’t notice…

    • Someone must’ve eaten the regular grapes and they had to find a replacement at the last minute. Or maybe the advertising team needed to make some wine to help them think up more ways to totally misrepresent their paper towels…

  9. Only in the world of advertising do these things happen. It’s like it’s a parallel universe or something.

    • Yes… the same parallel universe where the products actually work like they’re supposed to. Somewhere out there… super glue actually sticks things other than your fingers together!

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