And now for some goofy ads

Here are two ads that if I had not been told otherwise I would have thought were parodies. The first was put out as a public service ad by Ventura County, CA about what you should do if there is a nuclear explosion nearby.

I have got to admit that I did not see that plot twist in the middle coming. One has to give credit to a county health department that would treat the somber issue of radiation sickness in such a light-hearted manner.

And here is a campaign ad by Dan Helmer who is running for Congress in Virginia.

Helmer explains the reasoning behind the ad.

Helmer claimed that part of the purpose of the ad was to demonstrate that “there is too much shouting and yelling in American politics,” and that he’s a “goofy but serious guy” who has served in a number of countries but also likes to sing both in advertisements and in the shower.

“Yes we know the singing is bad,” a spokesperson for the campaign dryly told The Daily Beast on the phone.

As for future spots, Helmer, a self-declared fan of classic rock, suggested that “Hooked on a Feeling” would be a good song to turn into a campaign ad. He’s just not so sure if it’s a great idea to do it so soon after this last one.

“I don’t know if I want to punish the voters of America by continuing to sing to them,” Helmer said.

If the aim of an ad is to draw attention, then both these ads succeed.


  1. jrkrideau says

    Boy, it looks like Ventura County knows how to hold a party. Should I bring my own bomb?

    It is so bad it cannot be a parody.

  2. Holms says

    Video 1:
    The lack of sound delay for the explosion destroyed my suspension of disbelief; I am beginning to doubt that that was a real nuclear blast.

    Video 2:

  3. Mano Singham says


    Thanks for that link. I had heard about but never seen these old films about nuclear preparedness. It is frightening and funny at the same time.

  4. sonofrojblake says

    I’ve seen US nuclear preparedness videos before. You might like to check out the UK equivalents, with their voiceovers by the peerless Patrick Allen. He was, for my generation, the voice of the apocalypse.

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