Side effects include FUN
January 21, 2013 10:22 AM   Subscribe

Combining the only two things that women in commericals can talk about in groups, it's Dannon Birth Control on the Bottom. From Yahoo sketch comedy show SketchY, starring twitter queen Megan Amram and a very angry Weird Al.
posted by Potomac Avenue (42 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite

 
Actually, there may be three things that women in commercials can talk about in groups.

Yes, you can do a google search for "women talking in groups in commercials youtube" just to make a snarky comment on mefi and find one of the first hits is damn near perfect for the job!
posted by HuronBob at 10:31 AM on January 21, 2013


Actually, there may be three things that women in commercials can talk about in groups.

Pretty sure condoms are a form of birth control, dude.
posted by Sys Rq at 10:32 AM on January 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


Don't women in commercials also complain about idiot husbands? No, I guess they just eyeroll towards the camera about that.
posted by DU at 10:33 AM on January 21, 2013


Wait...it's a vibrator made by a condom company. My bad!
posted by Sys Rq at 10:34 AM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


The great thing about this product is that if you leave it opened in the refrigerator for a few weeks, it turns into a morning after pill plus laxative.
posted by three blind mice at 10:37 AM on January 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


Would the birth control help calm the wild hip gyrations normally caused by probiotic yogurt?
posted by Kabanos at 10:45 AM on January 21, 2013


Well, women already love yogurt, the Official Food of Women, so this was pretty much inevitable.
posted by Miko at 10:48 AM on January 21, 2013 [6 favorites]


I get a message saying the video is currently not available - maybe a US only thing?
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:48 AM on January 21, 2013


Naah, I could watch it in *.nl.

Went on for about 21/2 minutes too long and misses out on the third thing women in groups talk about: how to tennis in white shorts when you're not feeling that fresh down there.
posted by MartinWisse at 10:56 AM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Down where? In Australia? It's so beautiful there, though. Is it the jet lag that people feel not so fresh?
posted by boo_radley at 11:07 AM on January 21, 2013 [10 favorites]


Best part of the clip? Learning the ASL sign for "constipation" at 2:00.
posted by benito.strauss at 11:10 AM on January 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


Not nearly enough maniacal, near-ecstatic giggling and laughing when they're eating.
And Weird Al seriously needs a haircut. Bad.
posted by Thorzdad at 11:12 AM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


We also talk about germs and bacteria a lot. I think I speak for all women of all colors everywhere when I say: We <3 anti-bacterial wipes! And soap! And sprays! And wipes!
posted by DarlingBri at 11:14 AM on January 21, 2013


Video counter said it was 2:57 long. Went to 3:08 and quit (just after Weird Al's appearance).

Gosh, I sure missed you, Yahoo...
posted by kuanes at 11:30 AM on January 21, 2013


Oh, and orange juice.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:30 AM on January 21, 2013


Weird Al seemed sad, not angry.
posted by mrnutty at 11:39 AM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Funny idea, but the pacing seemed a little slack, perhaps due to repetition and trying to cram in too many gags. Also, why do so many commercial parodies run 3 minutes long when real ads usually are :15, :30 or, at most, :60 seconds in length?
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 12:00 PM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


It's not exactly subtle is it? It's actually condescending when parody hits the viewer over the head because it implies that we're not as able to recognize advertising's absurdity as well as the authors. Put the archetypes in a closer-to-reality situation, and let it play out. There's no need for the overt, smug pointing out of the conceit.

Are you trying to entertain, or are you trying to educate, SketchY? You can probably do both, but please remove all the flashing arrows that you've placed around the jokes. This feels like a rip-off of Sarah Haskins' "Target Women" for the CBS sitcom demographic and that's just gross.
posted by Mayor Curley at 12:04 PM on January 21, 2013 [7 favorites]


Annuale: Birth control for women on the go.
posted by Room 641-A at 12:14 PM on January 21, 2013 [4 favorites]


Room 641-A, how did I miss that skit? Not only did I laugh so hard that I cried I also had to bite my finger to avoid causing a scene.
posted by khedron at 12:27 PM on January 21, 2013


Not only did I laugh so hard that I cried I also had to bite my finger to avoid causing a scene.

I take every opportunity that I can to shit on Saturday Night Live, and I just watched that and laughed. The first half has exactly the kind of restraint that's warranted for parody of something that's self-evidently stupid-- I have very incidental exposure to those types of ads, and still I understood the trope of "warm, concerned narrator directly addressing women with conspicuously middle-class concerns."
posted by Mayor Curley at 12:43 PM on January 21, 2013


It's not exactly subtle is it? It's actually condescending when parody hits the viewer over the head

Hey, maybe some people need seven reminders of how deliberately racially diverse the group is.
posted by UbuRoivas at 12:48 PM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


A sledgehammer isn't the best way to get your parody across. Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner's comment about making it commercial length should have been noticed by the team that produced this.
posted by arcticseal at 12:49 PM on January 21, 2013


Also this was the ad I got before the SNL skit, which I thought was relevant.
posted by boo_radley at 1:03 PM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nah. Al's definitely got the scowl on at the end. Cracked me up, too.
posted by Jubal Kessler at 1:37 PM on January 21, 2013 [1 favorite]


People can complain that this is longer than a normal commercial, but the whole thing is worth it just for the term "butt-period."
posted by koeselitz at 1:46 PM on January 21, 2013


Hold on to your fucking hat... :) Also, my pre-Annuale commercial was for Yoplait.
posted by doctoryes at 2:24 PM on January 21, 2013


Obviously, I agree with arcticseal - there's a real skill to crafting a tight commercial message than can make an impact in less than a minute. And while that skill frequently is used for "evil" by the advertising industry, I wish the makers of this parody spot had a bit more of it.
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 2:36 PM on January 21, 2013


Obviously, I agree with arcticseal - there's a real skill to crafting a tight commercial message than can make an impact in less than a minute. And while that skill frequently is used for "evil" by the advertising industry, I wish the makers of this parody spot had a bit more of it.

Totally outgunned. Advertisers can explore our desires and insecurities in 30 seconds, so subtley that we never notice. I don't imagine that they're worried that you'll miss the point. Sketch comedy's only going to be that effective when the dollars-per-second match.
posted by Mayor Curley at 2:47 PM on January 21, 2013


Have you guys seriously ever seen good sketch comedy that came in 30-second slots? I don't think it's actually possible.
posted by koeselitz at 3:00 PM on January 21, 2013


Robot Chicken might be the closest to it.
posted by Drinky Die at 3:22 PM on January 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


The Annuale skit was certainly no less dumb than the Dannon Birth Control on the Bottom skit. Partly because the PMS gag is old and tired; partly because the premise is already behind the times with actual birth control options.
posted by eviemath at 4:15 PM on January 21, 2013


Amusingly, given the Dannon skit, the ad that came up before the Annuale skit for me was for Starbuck's Blonde Roast, for people who don't want their Starbucks to be too dark... speaking of (upper-) middle class concerns?
posted by eviemath at 4:18 PM on January 21, 2013


We also talk about germs and bacteria a lot. I think I speak for all women of all colors everywhere when I say: We <3 anti-bacterial wipes! And soap! And sprays! And wipes!

The chipper but exasperated housewife in an old lemon Pledge ad put it best: "My family touches everything!"
posted by killdevil at 4:31 PM on January 21, 2013


eviemath: "The Annuale skit was certainly no less dumb than the Dannon Birth Control on the Bottom skit. Partly because the PMS gag is old and tired; partly because the premise is already behind the times with actual birth control options."

I think the Annuale spot was taking aim at those actual birth control options, not at PMS in general.
posted by Room 641-A at 4:41 PM on January 21, 2013


I think the Annuale spot was taking aim at those actual birth control options, not at PMS in general.

Yes, it was indeed; by implying they would cause mega-PMS. But given that women have been using IUDs, implants, or just skipping the placebo week of their pills for years without such effects, and in fact in cases by doctor's prescription in order to even out moods, it just comes across as kind of ignorant and dumb. Throw in the sexist punchline, and it's akin to a fat joke that portrays some folks who have abstained from chips for a while eating a bag, and then experiencing mega- and super-fast weight gain and going overboard on stereotypical fat person behaviors from just the one bag of chips. The joke only makes sense if you misunderstand menstruation and think that, I dunno, uterine lining just accumulates more and more without periods, and the hormones blamed for PMS are somehow correspondingly stockpiled, and then all released in one big torrent. Admittedly, many people (male and female) are quite confused about those sort of details, so I'm probably coming across as a humorless pedant. I probably wouldn't even laugh at jokes about people in Australia walking on their heads, and especially not similar jokes about sub-equatorial Africa that might have some racist component. Ah, well.
posted by eviemath at 5:15 PM on January 21, 2013


it's akin to a fat joke that portrays some folks who have abstained from chips for a while eating a bag, and then experiencing mega- and super-fast weight gain and going overboard on stereotypical fat person behaviors from just the one bag of chips.

That would be awesome! I'm so sick of those ads where the omnipresent narrator talks to the fat people who are doing stereotypical fat people things and promises them a new kind of chip that will change their lives. Those ads are totally unrealistic despite their prevalence, and someone should skewer them!

Admittedly, many people (male and female) are quite confused about those sort of details, so I'm probably coming across as a humorless pedant.

Some people have a decent grasp of biology and are willing to suspend disbelief for the sake of a narrative. You clearly feel strongly about the context of the depiction here, and obviously you're absolutely within your rights to feel that way. But it's not becoming to broadly ascribe ignorance to everyone who disagrees with you.
posted by Mayor Curley at 6:07 PM on January 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


Yogurt is not just for women! (See #14 and 15.)
posted by eviemath at 6:10 PM on January 21, 2013


This isn't a deep cut, but Kate Beaton does a good parody of the targeted yogurt ads ("Women Fuel") in her "Strong Female Characters" series.
posted by mcoo at 6:19 PM on January 21, 2013 [2 favorites]


I love/hate that I just got served an ad for muffin mix pre-Annuale skit.
posted by joannemerriam at 7:17 PM on January 21, 2013


The joke only makes sense if you misunderstand menstruation.

Admittedly, many people (male and female) are quite confused about those sort of details


I'm having a difficult time reconciling having these criticisms applied to an Amy Poehler/Tina Fey sketch. I'm not saying you have to find it funny, but I think the bit is smarter than you are giving it credit for.
posted by Room 641-A at 9:34 PM on January 21, 2013


Mayor Curley, I take your point about there being a big mismatch between high-budget TV commercials and low-budget web videos.

In this particular case, however, the genre of spot - featuring mostly a bunch of people sitting around talking - should (in theory) be easier to parody on a low budget than one with expensive production values, like a zillion jump cuts, lots of CGI effects & specialty makeup, etc., or involving a stunt like airlifting a pickup truck to the top of Mt. Everest.

And you're right, koeselitz - offhand, I can't think of too many successful commercial parodies that are as short as real commercials, though maybe there are some SNL parody spots somewhere in the back catalog that might qualify. (Some, like the famous Bass-O-Matic sketch, seem to owe as much to longer-form informercials, though I realize those were in their infancy in the 1970s.) I just have the feeling that I'd have liked this particular bit twice as much if it had been half as long.
posted by Nat "King" Cole Porter Wagoner at 9:48 PM on January 21, 2013


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