Is This the Best Infomercial Ever? (Note: Yes [Part II])

 

Alright, back to the tireless process of breaking down this inexplicably long infomercial! Wait, I said timeless in the beginning, right? Nevermind, it’s time to charge ahead.

0:02 — We’re right back to the action! Hazel complains: “Heh, yeah, dinner’s always a production.” I love how that’s phrased in the script, like having this chain-smoking older woman who speaks like she’s a 60-year old Jewish mother was definitely the right way to sell this product. Also, call me crazy, but I think she’s still smoking that same cigarette:

 

HazelCig1

 

1:37 — We spend one-and-a-half excruciating minutes watching two pasta sauces being made, but the payoff is hey, five second pesto pasta! Mick sells it as being “made from scratch in less than 10 seconds” – pretty amazing how this one machine boils and seasons your water, throws the pasta in, cooks it al dente and drains it for you! Oh wait, it doesn’t do any of that because he’s just talking about the sauce. Every other aspect of this dinner: still a production.

 

2:15 — These are the reactions we get to pasta sauce being poured over cold, pre-plated noodles:

WhoaPasta

Quick everyone, react like you’ve never seen pasta before!

 

2:18 — Apparently all that’s missing is fresh-grated parmesan cheese. I actually agree with this part, until Mick says “Now watch how fast it grates even hard cheeses, with no trouble at all!” Did uh…did you forget that everyone saw you make TWO sauces with parmesan cheese in them just a minute ago? I’m starting to suspect this Magic Bullet might be a little one-dimensional.

 

2:35 — We are treated to a little recap of the last 2.5 minutes:

 

Woman: Wait a minute! You just made two completely different pasta dishes in less than two minutes?

Other Woman: It takes me longer than that to make the phone call to order a pizza.

 

So thanks, first woman, for recapping something we’ve all been clear on so far. And second woman, I don’t even mind how making pasta and ordering delivery pizza are viewed as equivalent activities here, but how does it take you longer than two minutes to order a pizza on the phone??? You’re telling them what kind of pizza you want and where you live, not teaching them how to defuse a bomb.

 

2:59 — Mick starts prepping a mousse for dessert and he goes “Now I’m gonna screw on the flat blade. That’s the whipping blade — you remember that, Berman? Right?” This sentence is GREETED BY LAUGHTER. Is there something we’re missing? Is he implying Berman is still drunk? Or maybe he has that amnesia like Guy Pearce in “Memento” did? Maybe Berman’s a totally unabashed sadomasochist and this whole group is one really, really depraved orgy that needs quick meals so they can get back to the action faster? These are the questions that get asked when you introduce weird comments like this, guys.

 

3:38 — Mimi starts working on her own dessert, which we later lean is a sorbet. She adds orange juice to the base, but suggests that “you party animals” can add a splash of “your favorite liqueur” — knowing the context and what we’ve learned about our characters, guess who everyone looks at right away?

 

AlcoholicsFTW
Bingo.

 

WE GET IT. From literally the first two seconds of the infomercial, we’ve gotten it. Jesus, did you guys go to the Romantic Comedy School of Character Depth? Is this whole thing an adaptation of a Nicolas Sparks novel?

 

4:08 — Mick offers us a helpful recap of what’s been made so far, emphasizing how versatile the blender is and how many things are “COMPLETELY DIFFERENT” than one another. Hey, man…I don’t want to be a dick here, but I can think of at least one similarity they all share: THEY’RE ALL BASICALLY LIQUIDS. Smoothies, omelette ingredients, muffin batter, salsas, pasta sauces, mousse, sorbet…it’s about as useful as a guy who sits around critiquing a decade-old informercial in his spare time. I know it seems like an impressive amount of variety when it’s laid out like this, but a predominantly liquid diet would get old suuuuuuper fast. What’s next, some sort of weird cheese sauce?

 

5:24 — Aaaaand we have nachos with liquid cheese sauce. Outstanding.

 

5:36 — Mick says: “Hey, you know what else a party needs?”

Lots of booze? Cool music? A hot tub? Costumes? People who have better things to do than to stare at a blender for half an hour?

“Dips!”

HOW ARE YOU PEOPLE STILL HUNGRY??

 

6:08 — He pours out a homemade guacamole and boasts “I didn’t even use a knife!” To make….guacamole. Also:

Yep, clearly not a one.
Yep, clearly not a one.

 

6:14 —

Mimi: But the bullet fast magic that we like best —

Mick and Mimi, Unison: Frozen drinks!

 

Ah, the big finish! You mean to tell me that all this time, I could have been using this blender as a blender?!

 

There’s technically more at the end, but it’s primarily spent showing off a blender attachment that actually makes this a full-size blender – way to drive it home, guys. 100% unironic job you’ve done here.

But the point remains the same: this is still easily the best, most ridiculous, most awkward and wonderful infomercial of all time. We get caricatures of people who are meant to be relatable, we get pointless bits of backstory and character development, we get hilariously unrealistic reactions to a blender and we get some of the worst acting ever committed to film. Seriously, I couldn’t really make it come through in the text, but the performances these guys give really just brighten up the whole thing. Please, whatever you do, watch the whole thing – I know taking time management advice from a guy who just wrote nearly 3,000 words about it might SEEM like a bad idea, but I assure you it’s worth it.

 

-jsg

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Is This the Best Infomercial Ever? (Note: Yes [Part II])

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