Randy Octopus!

January 19, 2010

A frisky octopus attacks a houswife in this Japanese TV commecial from 1980.
I think it’s for some kind of anti-fungal ointment.
Warning! Contains tentacles.

Ex-Celebs in Old Japanese Commercials

February 2, 2009

Japanese drinks corporations, most famously Suntory Whisky, are known for paying vast sums of cash to international superstars such as Harrison Ford to add a little glitz and glamour to their products by appearing in their TV commericals. The companies agree not to show the ads outside Japan, to avoid damaging the stars’ classy reputations by exposing them as shameless sell-outs.
However, when profits are low and booze companies and forced to make cutbacks, they have to hire the likes of Jan Michael Vincent instead, (who must have thought all his Christmases had come at once when Suntory waved the cash in front of his face. “Holy shit! Where do I sign?! Somebody get me a pen before they change their minds! Quick!” He probably sneaked a few of those bottles of whisky into his bag after filming when no-one was looking, too.)
In these times of global financial crisis, Screech from “Saved by the Bell” must be sitting by the phone just waiting for that call from Suntory Whisky.
Here are a selection Japanese booze ads featuring cut-price celebs who were probably pleased to get the call. I don’t blame them (hell, if anyone from Suntory wants to put me in a commercial, I’d be more than willing.) At least they actually need the money, unlike Harrison Ford.

Actually, I feel bad putting Phoebe Cates in there, since she looks phenomenal and I worshipped her as a kid, in Fast Times at Ridgemont high and Gremlins. I’m guessing the rights to the Elvis Presley song cost more than her fee, though!

I’m off!

Boy George’s Bizarre Chu-Hai Commericals

December 14, 2008

Ever wondered what Boy George got up to in those wilderness years between between releasing “Do You Really Want to Hurt Me” and being arrested for handcuffing and whipping a Norweigan male prostitute?

He was in Japan (where the androgynous man is king) and appearing in these odd-ball commericals for Takara Chu-Hai (which is apparently laced with LSD, if the commercials are anything to go by!)
I somehow doubt that Takara will be asking him back for their next advertising campaign. Not because of the rent-boy scandal, but because he got fat.

John Travolta’s Groovy Chu-Hai Commercials

December 14, 2008

Ever wondered what John Travolta got up to in those wilderness years between between making “Saturday Night Fever” and “Pulp Fiction”?
He was strutting his funky stuff in these commericals for Takara Chu-Hai! (Chu-Hai is a fizzy alcoholic cocktail in a can.)

Travolta might be embarrassed by these ads today, but compared to the films he was making at the time, like “Saturday Night Fever 2: Staying Alive” and “Look Who’s Talking Too,” they were an artistic high point!

Lee Van Cleef Peddling Whisky in Japan

November 17, 2008

Thanks to his appearances in the amazing Spaghetti Westerns, I can forgive Lee Van Cleef a multitude of sins. Cleef is a powerful presence, but even he struggles with the ridiculous script for the Suntory Whisky commercial below.

-“Friends? I have a lot of friends.”
-OK, don’t get defensive. I just mentioned that you seem to be living alone in an otherwise deserted farm.
“Children… and grown-ups.”
-Er…, Lee, you’re about 70 years old, so you should have mostly grown-up friends by now.
-“Male… and female.”
-Glad to hear it. I was beginning to have my suspicions about you.
-“Violent and gentle.”
-Violent? OK. I’ll shut up now.