9. Atlanta (FX): I forget about this show for long periods of time and then I see an ad and don’t recognize it until the end of the commercial. I don’t really know what is going on with this show but it’s probably really good from what I read.
10. Severance (AppleTV+): Much like Ted Lasso last year, it’s mostly here because there has to be one streaming service that I don’t subscribe to.
You remember the way I like trailers almost as much as movies? Ads are even more intriguing. One, there are fewer actual old-time commercials anymore and for fewer and fewer products. Two, where do you even sit still for them anymore? For me, it’s mostly during sporting events or the moments before the movie starts in the theater but even then I usually have to see them in another setting to know to watch them. So many ads are unimaginative and derivative. It might be Toyotathon or Lobsterfest and that’s important but not creative. Best Ad of 2021: Geico “Scoop There It Is.”
BEST ADS OF 2022
1. Gatorade “Love Means Everything”: “Always love being you.” I usually like putting something clever and funny as my favorite ad of the year. It’s hard to ignore how important Serena has been to women’s sports and women’s pride in general. Add Beyonce’s narration and it’s double the power. I love the message and it deserves to summarize the best parts of 2022 when love was everything.
2. Oreo “The Note”: More like a two and a half minute film. The director, Alice Wu, has great instincts for how to talk about this “rehearsal” for a son’s “coming out” conversation. And in the end, it’s applicable to many conversations that need love and courage.
3. McDonald’s “Cactus Plant Flea Market”: I just have so many questions. And I’m not sure where this nightmare fuel is coming from.
4. Flock Freight “Quantifying A Load”: Steve from Blue’s Clues reenters the entertainment scene by helping us answer an age-old question, “How much is a fu$#load?”
5. Twix “Camping”: Twix and Skittles have consistently led the candy aisle for the most unconventional ads. This one is simple and effective and had me giggling this year.
6. PETA “Octocurse”: So much different a tack that they usually use in their ads. I love this 1970’s Sci-Fi / Horror angle. “Stay human!”
7. Realtor.Com “Big Boi House”: For when it’s time to find your Big Boi house. I’m just happy to hear this tune and his voice again. Things like “Big Boi waterfall shower” are just a funny bonus.
BONUS #1. Budweiser “The World Is Yours To Take”: The Budweiser sponsorship of the World Cup took quite a hit at the last second. I don’t know much about a Lil Baby but I approve of his Tears For Fears sample. I hope there’s a good video of highlights from the Cup set to this song pretty soon.
BONUS #2. Sinyi Realty “In Love We Trust 2”: Last year in this spot, I talked about the power of love in “In Love We Trust” ad from Sinyi Realty. Once again, this director captures the realities of mature love as the young couple moves towards being parents and navigating a full time relationship. There’s another full movie here in just eight minutes. Amazing.
- Last year’s “In Love We Trust” in case you want to remember why they fell in love.
BEST TV DEBUTS OF 1972
Television in 1972 was simply ABC, CBS, and NBC. For the first time, over half of households have a Color TV. The Tonight Show has moved to Burbank. Most nights still had at least one channel airing a movie. Shows like Marcus Welby, M.D., My Three Sons and Gunsmoke are still running but there is a transition to some of the more important shows of the decade and shows that still entertain today. Best Debut of 1971: All In The Family (CBS)
1. M*A*S*H (CBS): What a one-two punch for CBS. One year they debut All In The Family and the next they adapt a 1970 film into what will become a ratings monster for a decade. This show will go a long way to redefine what a comedy is on television. It is still hilarious today because it touches upon such universal themes.
2. The Bob Newhart Show (CBS): Like The Mary Tyler Moore Show, this has a great title sequence that sets the tone for the show. The show was odd in that the title character was the straight man for an every increasing set of supporting characters. Bob is awesome but it’s the other cast members that drive this show.
3. Sanford & Son (NBC): NBC got a bonafide hit thanks to a Normal Lear adaptation of a UK hit, Steptoe and Son. Boosted by an awesome theme song by Quincy Jones, Redd Foxx and another show that paid off running gags and an expansive recurring cast.
4. Maude (CBS): Another Norman Lear creation made a huge impact on popular culture. This All in the Family spin-off often reflected current events and featured dialog heavy scenes. It took me until I was an adult to really appreciate this show.
5. The New Scooby-Doo Movies (CBS): The first Scooby-Doo series defined the basics of the series. This second series created the template for what would keep the series going for over 50 years.
This concludes the second part of the year-end finale. Next week, we ring in the new year by celebrating all of the odds and ends that didn’t make the first two parts. Thanks for keeping your focus this far, faithful reader.
“If you don’t like where you are heading, there’s no shame in going back and changing your path.” – Chuck McGill, Better Call Saul.