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Nominees for the “Worst TV Commercials Ever” Awards

We can't look away either.

I saw on a recent (by recent I mean within the last month) Conan O’Brian show, he had a segment about local TV spots. Of course we’ve known for a while about the glory that exists on local TV as far as commercials are concerned, but every now and then a few gems shine brighter than others.
Here are just 2 of the ones we’ve found.

What strikes me the most about these is the principle that the worse they are, the more we remember them, which makes them more effective. Which begs the question, does it matter how bad the ad is if it gets you the publicity you need?

This next one I found on the adgoodness blog:
I dare you to try and forget it once you’ve seen it. Evidently it’s been featured on the Ellen Degeneres show for the same reason we’re putting it up here.

What about you guys? Send us some links to your favorite worse ads.

Andrew Davies

Drew's degrees in Illustration, 2D animation and Broadcast Design, and his volleyball skillz mean he can get your design done and play well with others at the same time. He’s the Creative Director at Paragon and will call you out if you start hanging out with shady-looking fonts and messing around with whacked-out color palettes.


7 thoughts on “Nominees for the “Worst TV Commercials Ever” Awards

  1. This is a great topic, and reminded me of a brief blog post I read @ “Under Construction” while doing some foresight scanning research for Paragon. The post is entitled “Pizza Flyers: The Height of Good Graphic Design?” The title just about tells you all you have to know, but the article can be found @


  2. MiniMUM says:

    I can think of so many local candidates that run on cable channels – sadly there is noonline footage to be shared with out-of-towners… But the Joket Comedy Store series spring immediately to mind.

    Rapping furniture man is awfully likeable, though, don’t you think? I mean – that is one LONG commercial. Two minutes?!?! I’d totally be ready to just buy something the minute I arrived. We’re practically related after that routine.

    On a national level, I’m almost afraid to say it, but Head On… Their strategy seems to be to irritate the hell out of the viewer. As you say, I’ve often wondered if this isn’t considered a legitimate tool in the advertiser’s arsenal. Considered legitimate by advertisers, that is. A sort of grown up version of the ‘pester power’ strategy used to send shopping parents over the edge lest they buy the Sugar Bomb breakfast cereal their kids are wailing for…

    And while we’re talking ads… Just one more thought. As someone who didn’t grow up here… I’m always a little disappointed at how very literal most American ads are. Advertisers here seem to consistently play down to their audience.

    Oh. Oh. That Canon?Nikon? Commercial where the turtle burst into dance and song… Wha? Contrast with THIS:

  3. MiniMUM says:

    Ah phooey – it didn’t embed…

  4. Drew says:

    That last link was hilarious! were you nominating it for a worst commercial or an example of hat they should aspire towards?

  5. MiniMUM says:

    Aspire! Aspire!
    And compare to that really bad… Canon, I think commercial, where some stupid turtle starts dancing and singing….

  6. David Airey says:

    I’d seen that second, superb example on AdGoodness. The first was new for me, and I think it’s the two kids at the end that truly make the ad.


  7. MiniMUM says:

    Nikon…. Here it is… Awful bloody thing:

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