TV Review: Pimp my ad



I think Colin Meads is a prostitute. Not just for going and playing in Apartheid South Africa for blood diamonds or slave gold or whatever it was in 1987 – when not coincidentally he says he last felt good according to his sex drug ad testimony on high rotate at Radio Live – and not merely is he an old harlot for queuing up for a mass knighthood of the undeserving and unremarkable when this National government resurrected the imperial-style honours system of yore, he’s also a little concubine’s hussy pants for the more common misdemeanor of commercial advertising endorsement with intent.

Like a stereotyped South Auckland after-dark street scene of lurid acts between desperate and fleeting partners, TV ads recently have featured a disturbingly wide cross-section of local celebrities engaged in the practice. Some ad breaks are little more than a parade of familiar faces of the past, opportunists of all stripes as well as younger victims of the trade. Real celebrities, the A listers, don’t do ads, full stop. The pimps are after them but they are in a position to say, for example, let that guy from Target do it instead.

The fact a brand seeks them and the fact they endorse is no indication of credibility either. Richard Long from One Network News knew as much about finance as Hanover Directors in the end and was damn lucky he was seen as the on-air husband to Judy Bailey, the ‘mother of the nation’, to have avoided prosecution. Kevin Milne could yet get carpet burns as Mike King got porkitis. Once the dumb mug found out how many sad eyes go into that yummy bacon and those meaty chops he was giving a toothy thumbs up to in the harmless appearing cooking ads, and once the dumb mug realised he wasn’t going to have his contract renewed and the free pork packs were cancelled he turned virrulently and publicly on the Pork Board. The campaign couldn’t have had a more terminal atmosphere if you ran Keith Quinn, Waka Nathan and Michael Jones’ individual death insurance ads with John Kirwan’s weird, surreal, anti-depression promo series in a loop.

And speaking of morbid All Blacks the oiks idolise, have you seen the ads from Pinetree – from old log head? One of those ads that the bald head guy has obviously put him up to? He stands next to a white plastic shitbox of a ute, assembled in lucky factory No.8 from sub factories across East Asia and designed by the looks of it on the the back of a crooked napkin at the canteen of the engineering workshop during smoko. It’s an ugly white munter of a thing. Probably made by the same East Asian concerns buying up the farmland in the background. But there’s log brain mumbling something unlikely as it is unintelligible about how great this thing is. The bald guy must just be there to feed him his deer crack because his dead pan slapstick routine is totally lost on TV. Is he adding or detracting? It would be useful to perhaps translate whatever Sir log head said from caveman into English so we can understand. That bald guy should try snorting the Meads mix like the legends do and leave the awkward stoner moments that don’t work to wankers like Newsboy.

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And speaking of wankers… here’s a tip… if you find a smarmy, patronising arsehole around your house telling you how to penny-pinch on your power bill as if he was on a children’s show and you were 5 years old and he kept on appearing on all channels sometimes so that you’d strike him three times in a row because the Energy Conservation Authority – ironically one of the biggest electronic ad spends – has saturated coverage of this little prick everywhere… then do us all a favour and please electrocute him.

”Hey, [turn with blank dead eyes and force grin as speaking] did you know: it’s a solar-powered taser? So, [start walking purposefully around house keeping grin] it doesn’t matter how much the charge is, [turn stiffly, exchange fixed smiles] so let’s try it on max”

… And drop him like the sack he is. The most despised character on NZ television, surely. When this guy was a character on ‘The Almighty Johnsons’ his awful lecturing, hectoring, ads would appear at the time and ruin the illusion of the programme. Oh that’s right, you aren’t really the God, Thingawhosawhatsit, you’re that cretinous prick trying to tell me how to turn off a switch, like I should be taking notes so I don’t forget what a switch is and what off is.

Unfortunately he has an equally evil twin brother who has emerged recently on the evil Telecom account run by an evil ad agency who is determined to at least sink to the same imagined lowest level of audience as the energy ads: a sub 100 IQ with a general knowledge and language comprehension of a 5 year old, ie. the Quinn-Gilmour coefficient.

The Telecom creep is smoother than the energy creep because he too – surprise, surprise – is from TV land, TVNZ land of the clean cut chap. One of the U Youth channel DJ host persons from what little I’ve seen, that is to say been able to stand seeing. He knows his pitch better than energy twerp though and he’s being himself, Christiany type bland, but still himself. Energy dork however is intent to act it instead. He has settled the character as being one’s evangelical greenie friend. *ugh* The overlap with vegan in this scenario is about 90%+ which is about a 9 on the Anal-OCD scale, and crucially he can’t decide whether he’s channeling serious Mr Man from HM Government with important information, or whether he’s being a goofy, comic noddy. He ends up, if you have seen the series of ads, being neither the straight guy or the funny guy, but rather the guy people switch off.

Maybe that was the point? It would be less annoying if he wasn’t there at all and they just had a few 30 second notices read out by an old hand still in the market, a Dougal Stevenson or Philip Sherry, or the Briscoes lady or Vince bloody Martin (it doesn’t really matter as long as it’s not Suzanne Paul) that kindly asks people to turn their TV’s off just before something epically crap begins in the mid evening.


  1. Never trust a “celebrity”, but what creeps me out is the Craig’s add. It is imoral to have CHILDREN–and boys at that–(fishing, equal race opportunity, obviously non-screen addicted–yeah, right) TOUTING Asset Sales share purchases!

  2. Thanks for a hilarious post – I share your sentiments exactly.

    One of the most tragic experiences to behold is witnessing anyone who actually takes any of these characters seriously. Ever experienced the company of someone who views (the much resented) “Energy Creep” as some kind of respected authority on the matter? It’s an insult to the injury of having to watch “Energy Creep”.

    “Telecom Creep” is very annoying and frankly complete nonsense. Remember the old days when buying some electronic gadget it was accompanied by voluminous manuals. Since that is no longer the case demonstrates the ease of use of modern day gadgets. Heck! In the past when purchasing a computer it was accompanied by a couple of manuals thick as phone books, today there’s just a sheet of paper with a quick start up guide that you ignore.

    If anyone is stumped, the internet can provide a quick answer. Who’s going to rely on “Telecom Creep” as a saviour to their smartphone woes while being lectured on the obvious.

    But for me the most annoying are those ads promoting funeral plans – possibly appealing for those with one foot in the grave, though. When considered along with “those depression ads” it suggests; did the crooks running these schemes see an opportunity to make a buck from those here who see no future brighter then dying, all very much aligned with the dead-end decline of this country?

    While you’re struggling to make a living, who cares about footing a bill for your death? I’m not around to worry about it, but someone has to scoop up the rotting carcass to get their hands on whatever assets one had.

    I suppose some people are obsessed with their ego so much they have to take it to the other side.

    With the largely rubbish programming on television it’s easy to oppose any of these advertising campaigns by keeping the television switched off. The power savings is what “Energy Creep” would want, isn’t it?

  3. “Hi there, I used to run a ball around a rectangular field for a living. Please let me remind you that one day you will die. How selfish. Don’t be selfish and buy this funeral plan. Thanks.”

  4. You forgot D-lister Jude Dobson trying to sell worthless crap for the “Family Health Diary”. Hey we all have to make a living, but pimping drugs for Pfizer (which are inexplicably still fully funded by Pharmac even though IDENTICAL much cheaper generics are available) is barely above turning tricks to cover your abusive partners P habit.

  5. Great blogpost, Tim. I’ve been sitting here LOLling like crazy.
    Adding one more item to the list of Energy Creep’s many faults, there’s the fact that he spends/owes a heap of money on consumer items (flash house, flash car, flash golf clubs etc) and then has the cheek to advise us on being thrifty.

  6. too many words upon words Tim, too much TV watching.
    In the first place a prostitute is a person who receives payment for sexual services is called a prostitute or sex worker. Not Colin Meads I don’t think.
    Less TV Tim more purposeful thinking

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