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November 18, 2011 6:19 AM   Subscribe

Bert and Ernie recording their voices for TomTom. This is perhaps the funniest viral ad for a product that I've seen. TomTom in-car navigation systems offer custom voices to read out directions, and their latest additions are from Sesame Street. This is the promotional video, showing what the recording session was like... [SLYTPB]
posted by Slap*Happy (33 comments total) 29 users marked this as a favorite

 
Watching SS recently I noticed they seem to have mostly phased Oscar out. Presumably because he was so crabby all the time and was a bad role model or something. I'm glad they've left Bert and Ernie alone, even though Ernie always teases Bert and Bert is almost as grouchy as Oscar.

Also, "drive straight for 60 centimeters".
posted by DU at 6:24 AM on November 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


There are many more of these skits
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:26 AM on November 18, 2011


The fuck? Recording engineer is James Kirkland. I totally know that kid.
posted by nathancaswell at 6:28 AM on November 18, 2011


"Oh, shit, Ernie, the road is ending, the road is ending, which way do I go?!"
"Sorry, can't hear you Bert, I've got a banana in my ear."
"AAAAAAAGGH!"

[Sounds of wrenched metal, shattered glass, flames]
posted by Horace Rumpole at 6:37 AM on November 18, 2011 [7 favorites]


OMG BRIAN BLESSED BRIAN BLESSED BRIAN BLESSED
posted by scolbath at 6:38 AM on November 18, 2011 [11 favorites]


Last night after hearing that Miss Piggy was going to be a guest on a talk show to promote the Muppets, my boyfriend told me the tale of an acquaintance who was a stylist for the stars and had worked on some show where Miss Piggy had been a guest and how it was expected that the interviewer (and to some extent backstage folk) interact with her as if the puppeteer was not there.

And I realized that not only would I have no problem with this, but I would probably do it naturally because, to me, Miss Piggy is such a fully realized character that it would be weird to not treat her like she was "real"; in fact, if anything, I would just be tongue tied and awkward like one might be around a celebrity, especially one from my youth. Then, probably since I had come home having had a few cocktails, we spent the next 30 minutes* in bed talking about why this was and for which Muppets it was true for.

Ernie and Bert were considered "probably" on the list and now it's pretty definite.

* We didn't spend the whole 30 minutes on that discussion because there was a long tangent why I had to explain my feelings -- both to him and to me, as I was surprised to realize I felt this way -- that The Great Muppet Caper was an equal to The Muppet Movie.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 6:42 AM on November 18, 2011 [4 favorites]


I personally love Tom Tom's Hungarian Grandmother navigation voice.
posted by phirleh at 6:44 AM on November 18, 2011 [7 favorites]


Don't buy a voice you love, because you will end up cursing it out on a regular basis. If I ever meet Billy Connolly, he is going to regret it and ever doing that TomTom voice.
posted by theredpen at 6:58 AM on November 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


DU: "they seem to have mostly phased Oscar out"

That might be because Caroll Spinney is 77.
posted by theredpen at 6:59 AM on November 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Last night after hearing that Miss Piggy was going to be a guest on a talk show to promote the Muppets

Yes, Kermit and Miss Piggy were on Late Night With Jimmy Fallon last night. (He's had various Muppets on frequently since the start of his show.)

Here you can watch them play Password with Martin Short and Michael Stipe.
posted by hippybear at 7:14 AM on November 18, 2011 [5 favorites]


This is excllent, but DH says we can't buy it because the celebrity voices don't do the street names. :(
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:13 AM on November 18, 2011


The Darth Vadar one is hilarious! Of course the actual experience should be quite threatening if you don't turn when he tells you to....
posted by leslies at 8:24 AM on November 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


OMG -- Darth Vader singing his own theme song is priceless. I wish I knew how to make this my ringtone!!
posted by blurker at 8:28 AM on November 18, 2011


Roundabound has me in fits!
posted by Iteki at 9:02 AM on November 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


I feel so old... Ernie just does not sound right to me. Needs more Henson.

I have Homer Simpson on my GPS, and always wonder why he doesn't comment every time I drive through Springfield, MA.
posted by kinnakeet at 9:12 AM on November 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


Also, I wish they had Brian Blessed for USA. *pouts*
posted by kinnakeet at 9:14 AM on November 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


I feel so old... Ernie just does not sound right to me. Needs more Henson.

My thoughts exactly, kinnakeet.
posted by doctor_negative at 9:27 AM on November 18, 2011


Yes, Bert & Ernie sound very wrong to me too. Not Bert-and-Ernie-ey enough.
posted by Gordafarin at 9:58 AM on November 18, 2011


Brian Blessed and Darth Vader are messing with me--I prefer Garmin GPS, and find many of the Tom Tom functions (like searching for restaurants, etc. nearby) counter-intuitive.

But these voices really up the game. First, the voice talent is awesome. And I can't help but like that Tom Tom is listening to what the fans want while still not taking the brand too seriously, leaving room to joke around with this stuff and produce great videos like these.

I may have to rethink my entire Garmin vs Tom Tom position now.
posted by misha at 10:02 AM on November 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


And I can't help but like that Tom Tom is listening to what the fans want while still not taking the brand too seriously

When they're not selling your data to the police.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 10:05 AM on November 18, 2011


Cool, they also demo the Top Gear edition.
posted by ZeusHumms at 11:05 AM on November 18, 2011


I may have to rethink my entire Garmin vs Tom Tom position now.

Bert & Ernie (as well as a few others) are available for purchase for newer Garmin devices, too.
posted by timing at 11:26 AM on November 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


OMG -- Darth Vader singing his own theme song is priceless. I wish I knew how to make this my ringtone!!

A little comment stalking tells me you have an iPhone, so I've turned the final 10 seconds into an iPhone ringtone for you.
posted by RichardP at 1:01 PM on November 18, 2011 [7 favorites]


So what's the cheapest GPS I can buy that will allow me to purchase these voices?
posted by NoraReed at 1:51 PM on November 18, 2011


Oh, man, it's clearly the season of giving. Thank you SO MUCH, RichardP!!


Dum dum dum dum da dum dum da dum...
posted by blurker at 1:58 PM on November 18, 2011


I have Homer Simpson on my GPS, and always wonder why he doesn't comment every time I drive through Springfield, MA.

Or past a Dunkin' Donuts!
posted by ghostbikes at 5:48 PM on November 18, 2011


For years I have wanted to be able to make my own voice sets for TomTom. Mr. T and T.I. would be two good ones.
posted by rhizome at 7:04 PM on November 18, 2011


roundabound
posted by blue_beetle at 7:46 PM on November 18, 2011


TomTom for Rhode Islanders - "OK. You go two blox ova deya, wheya da Dunkin Donuts usta be, an taka right, to wheya da Dunkin' Donuts is, an past dat to wheya da udda Dunkin' Donuts usta be, afowa dat one time when it burnts down. An den youse tak anudda right. Dat ain't it. Keep gowin."
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:18 PM on November 18, 2011 [2 favorites]


Keep gowin awwwwwwww da way down. Can missit.
posted by Slap*Happy at 8:21 PM on November 18, 2011 [1 favorite]


k: I have Homer Simpson on my GPS, and always wonder why he doesn't comment every time I drive through Springfield, MA.
g: Or past a Dunkin' Donuts!

If you live in Massachusetts, that would get old fast.
posted by maryr at 8:48 PM on November 18, 2011 [3 favorites]


Bert and Ernie sound different to how they used to sound.
posted by rubber duck at 12:24 PM on November 19, 2011 [1 favorite]


Well, you would know.
posted by Horace Rumpole at 3:44 PM on November 19, 2011 [3 favorites]


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