The year's best and worst TV commercials -- Find out which pitchmen made the winner's circle (yay, Sheens!) and which we'd rather not remember (ick, Kirstie Alley!)
NIKE PRESTO A man flees an angry chicken; another scales walls to save a hot chick’s barrette. Oh yeah, and it’s dubbed. Bizarre and chic, in a French sort of way.
THETRUTH.COM’S ”BABY INVASION” The anti-tobacco folks strike again, this time with hundreds of crying-baby dolls crawling on a city street. A deceptively simple representation of the victims of secondhand smoke, packing a huge, creepy punch.
IKEA UNBÖRING Spike Jonze’s ingenious spot tricks you into pitying a lamp by showing it abandoned in the rain for a newer model, then makes you laugh at yourself when the Nordic announcer intones, ”Many of you feel bad for this lamp. That is because you’re crazy. It has no feelings.”
LEVI’S ”CRAZY LEGS” Jonze scores again with a digitally enhanced soft sell, as a headphoned dude in low-rise jeans ”pops” through city streets on Plastic Man-like legs.
VISA CHECK CARD’s ”SHEENS” Winning the best-use-of-related-celebs award, Charlie Sheen waits so long for ID verification at a store that he ages into Martin Sheen. Plus, both father and son are rejected by women. What’s more rewarding than seeing famous people get dissed?
OLD NAVY’S ”PAINTER’S PANTS” The formerly goofy (in a good way) ads have become as tired as this edition’s tacky farm set, with Morgan Fairchild singing some lame jingle to the tune of the ”Green Acres” theme. Sorry Morgan, you’re no Eva Gabor.
T-MOBILE GET MORE Catherine Zeta-Jones proves even more annoying hawking mobile phones to the great unwashed than she was playing a bratty celeb in ”America’s Sweethearts.” Which was the tougher acting job? It’s a toss-up.
PIER 1’S ”NO RUNNING” Kirstie Alley, the once charmingly abrasive television star, tyrannizes cringing shoppers as an assaultive, ”madcap” pitchwoman. Somehow we don’t think frightening viewers was part of Pier 1’s business plan.
BUG LIGHT’S ”ZAPPER” In the watch-and-hurl category, a woman compliments a party host on the crunchy toppings in the dip. Turns out said dip is just below the bug zapper. The puke prompter: Her smile is filled with dead insects.
VERIZON WIRELESS’ ”FERRET” What could be more disturbing than a ferret biting a man’s tongue? And what does this have to do with cell phones?