International breaks are very hard.
Ramble of the Day
In the United States, we have a channel that is part of very select sports packages called Fox Soccer Plus. I happen to be one of those people who has FSP, and while I enjoy the not-Bayern Munich Bundesliga offerings, there is something else I really look forward to while watching this channel: the Pass it On commercials.
These are commercials that come from the Foundation for a Better Life, funded entirely by the Anschutz Foundation. The head of that foundation is Sue Anschutz-Rodgers, sister of Philip Anschutz, who created the Anschutz Entertainment Group, the group that owns the LA Galaxy. (Philip Anschutz also previously owned the Chicago Fire, Houston Dynamo, San Jose Earthquakes, and the New York/New Jersey MetroStars, currently the New York Red Bulls.) Thus ends the football connections segment of this ramble.
Anyway, these Pass it On commercials feature small skits with bad acting or montages with bad acting, though in one case it was just a montage of scenes of nature. I have never seen them air on another channel, which leads me to believe that they are only on FSP because of the football connections. Then again, all I watch are sports channels and anything else on a basic cable package, so perhaps I am not looking in the right places. (Note: I am not planning on going out of my way to find the other channels they air on.)
They are incredibly hilarious, and now I will show you some. Here is bad acting in the form of a skit:
The first question is always going to be, “What are they fighting about?” However, I like that the commercial leaves it vague. Are they fighting over spilled milk or infidelity? (My younger sister and I have asked this question.) It is up to your interpretation and imagination! Let me ask another question, though: Is that the best way to argue? It seems ... weird to just yell and then slam a door shut just to open it and scream across the hallway again and slam the door shut. Fascinating execution of a seemingly simple subject.
I will only pick out one more since this is already getting somewhat long. Here is bad acting, montage edition:
Some of this acting is pretty bad, but I think the highlight of this particular commercial is the cheesy composition of all of its parts. The mother and the baby scene to start off is no big deal, but you start to notice what you are in for once you see the couple running in an abandoned area while the sun is setting. Other highlights include the couple standing in the kitchen almost sharing orange slices, the seemingly random trust fall simulation, and the couple spinning for no apparent reason next to a fountain. This is all backed up by a cover of Whitney Houston’s “I Will Always Love You” that is integral to the corny storytelling. The part where the singer breaks into the famous “and I will always love you” coinciding with a marriage proposal is as clichéd as it gets.
Others include one child telling another to run away to Uruguay and another where a father watches his daughter grow up in four year increments, but I will leave it there.
tl;dr: I am amused by bad commercials.
Links of the Day
René Houseman, winner of the World Cup with Argentina in 1978, has died at age 64.
Manchester United have terminated Zlatan Ibrahimović’s contract, with his next stop reportedly being the LA Galaxy.
West Ham have issued lifetime bans to their recent pitch invaders.
Today’s longer read: Andy Mitten writes for ESPN on Les Ulis, the semi-professional team in a Parisian suburb with a youth program that counts some of France’s best footballers as graduates