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Best Infomercial Of All Time

July 16, 2009

I’ve only posted the first 10 minutes here. You’ll have to search for the rest … and you will. It’s a cheese-TV addiction you won’t be able to quit. This is the music of AM radio in my childhood; while my mother was playing Beatles and Zeppelin LPs (and my funky grandma was indulging her Jim Croce fixation), everywhere else played this music. I hated it at the time, but I’ve grown to like it.

The sad part? I own this collection. I bought it after seeing this infomercial night after night for about a year. Something about this show just sucked me in. Let me list 10 reasons why:

  1. It’s hours long. No lie. When I first moved here, I got home from work at 4 a.m., and didn’t have cable TV. The only channel I could pick up showed this for hours, until the morning news. I can recite its dialogue.
  2. It’s hosted by Air Supply. Air Supply! “In the 1970s, a fresh new sound came out of Southern California.” And Air Supply ignored it!
  3. One of the Air Suppliers’ first names is Russell, and the other one’s last name is Russell. That’s just funny.
  4. This commercial helped me discover Chicago. I thought Chicago was a schmaltzy pop band, but seeing this helped me realize they made some progressive jazz-rock in the 1970s.
  5. Canadian pop star Gino Vanelli had the Biggest Big Bad Hair of all time. He’s my hero.
  6. The Doobie Brothers appeared on an episode of What’s Happening once when I was a kid. I liked how the guy with the cane used it to scare off a gang of concert bootleggers.
  7. Steal Away by Robbie Dupree is one of the great underrated pop songs of all time.
  8. Beards were cool.
  9. Angela is a really bad actress. When she says “I have all your albums,” you can actually hear her saying “Who are these guys?”
  10. I don’t know what that sax riff is that plays during the segues, but I think it’s from the Flashdance soundtrack. Also, it played over and over again on a loop when I worked at Burger King in 1986. I hate that sax riff. It makes me want fries.

Infomercials are underrated as entertainment. I love watching the original Slap Chop ad, and I’ve just discovered Billy Mays. However, these full-length shows are the 21st century equivalent of the late-night video shows I watched as a kid.

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3 comments

  1. the sax riff is from a song called Baker Street by Jerry Raferty.


  2. Thanks, Russ. In related news, the first person to comment on this post is also named Russell. This is synchronicity.


  3. Gerry Rafferty’s first solo hit was “Baker Street” but most people know him better from Stealer’s Wheel and their single “Stuck In The Middle With You.”

    Air Supply also cracks me up. When my wife and I started dating, their “Here I Am” (just when I thought I was over you…) song somehow became “our song.”
    That’s probably just balance in the force. Terrible song; wonderful marriage. I’ll take it.



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