Tag: children

Commercials I love: The Force (Volkswagen)

Commercials I love: The Force (Volkswagen)

Advertising
Another year, another batch of uninspired Super Bowl commercials behind us.  But wait!  There were some worthy ones this year, not the least is this awesome one from Volkswagen called "The Force": This Passat ad already won me over for the Darth Vader costume and awesome John Williams "Imperial March" Star Wars score.  But as the parent of a 10-month-old, I couldn't help but get a little misty at the kid's reaction to the car starting up.  And if you thought this ad was hokey and sentimental, well you're right.  Except that it's awesome at the same time. There does seem to be some debate as to whether or not that's a little boy or girl in the Vader outfit.  The YouTube description says it's a boy, which means he's in his sister's room trying to Force choke her doll or something. 
Retrotisements: Valentine’s Day Edition

Retrotisements: Valentine’s Day Edition

Retrotisements
OK fellas, Valentine's Day is right around the corner.  You know the drill by now so make with the flowers, candy, and assorted frilly things declaring your undying love.  Need some suggestions this year?  Here's some vintage Valentine's Day advertisements to help you get in the mood... for shopping. (Western Union Telegram, 1948) DEAR LIZ SAW YOU IN MALT SHOP, FOLLOWED YOU HOME. PLEASE DO NOT CALL POLICE ON ME AGAIN.  I WAS ROOTING IN YOUR TRASH BECAUSE I LOVE YOU.  YOU WILL REALIZE THIS SOME DAY. YOU CANNOT STOP ME. LOVE, YOUR DESTINY (Baker's Coconut, 1940) Mmmmmmmm!  Nothing says "I love you" like a shag cake from a can. (Columbia Grafonola, 1921) I say this with no sarcasm whatsoever - I would gladly accept any of the items in this ad as a gift. The Grafo
Commercials I hate – Toyota Highlander and that little puke kid

Commercials I hate – Toyota Highlander and that little puke kid

Advertising
Now that the holiday season is behind us and with it, thank God, those headache-inducing Hyundai hipsters, it's time to focus on an even more insidious automotive ad campaign.  You know what I'm talking about - the Toyota Highlander commercials featuring that obnoxious little punk. At least the hipsters were trying to convey a sense of fun and whimsy.  Can anyone explain what the redeeming qualities of these ads are?  I can tell you what I see in these spots: Smart-mouthed little brat?  Check. Future status-seeking jerkoff?  Check. The most rage-inducing child I've seen on my TV since Danny Cooksey?  Check. Little turd who doesn't get the irony of calling his parents lame while wearing skinny jeans?  Check. Ungrateful twerp who should be thankful his folks don't smack t
What’s Hot for Christmas?  Lowered Expectations.

What’s Hot for Christmas? Lowered Expectations.

Games & Toys
I understand the appeal of children's playsets designed to let kids do adult things -- bubble lawn mowers, Matchbox car washes, even the Fisher-Price My First Meth Lab. It's fun to act like a grownup, even if you're pretending to perform the most mundane of adult tasks. But I have to say that the McDonald's Playset just doesn't sit right with me. I remember being a kid and using a broomstick guitar while imagining I was Ace Frehley. I used to run with a Nerf football and imagine I was John Riggins romping over the Miami Dolphins in Super Bowl XVII. I just can't picture my kid playing "McDonald's Drive-Thru Worker" with this set and imagining they would do anything more than peak in high school. Oh sure, you could buy this for your child and boast of the fact that it "teaches math...
Memo to Millennials – You suck

Memo to Millennials – You suck

Rants
I happened to catch a 60 Minutes segment last night detailing a generation of Americans known as "Millennials." I had never heard that term before, but apparently it translates roughly to "entitled, coddled, self-centered punks." According to the report this new generation is going to, like, totally change the way the world works. You know, because life is hard and it's totally reasonable to change things around to make it more comfortable for them. It starts in childhood, when these snots play youth sports and get trophies just for showing up. Because the pain of not winning tee-ball is apparently too psychologically scarring for kids to handle anymore. It gets progressively worse, and reaches the point of parents bitching out college professors for deigning to give little Connor or Sa...
Better living through your children

Better living through your children

Funny Stuff
For proud parents of intelligent or athletic children, there seems to be no shortage of bumper sticker options for displaying said pride. By now we've all seen the ubiquitous "Proud Parent of a Blah Blah High School Honor Student" sticker, or witnessed the proliferation of athletic stickers ranging from the common soccer ball to the newest trend (at least in NJ) of silhouette stickers depicting little Cooper or Taylor playing one sport or another. This is all well and good but, sad to say, not every child can be a SUPERSTAR despite the most fervent wishes of their parents. So should their cars go unadorned with festive and boastful decals? Hell no! Mediocrity and underachievement should be celebrated in our children, just like it is in our adults - how else could we explain Sheryl Cro...
“Boys Beware,” or The Courtship of Jimmy Barnes

“Boys Beware,” or The Courtship of Jimmy Barnes

Movies
Before the salad days when children and teenagers could look to trusted role models like MTV and professional athletes for guidance on how to behave, there were educational films. School kids were treated to lectures in the popular "talkie" format that showed them how to conduct themselves in all facets of life. So after reading, writing and 'rithmetic, Little Johnny got to learn the do's and don'ts of important areas such as dating, hygiene, good study habits, avoiding the pervasive influence of filthy Communists and, of course, our pal the atom! In retrospect, most of these films appear rather quaint and benign, if not a bit creepy. And then there's 1961's "Boys Beware." In just ten minutes, this Sid Davis Production managed to simultaneously entertain, confuse, and frighten a