Wednesday, March 25, 2020

YouTube Spotlight: Alex Karras endorses The Transformers

"Folks, these robots are hot."

This great Thanksgiving-ish ad for the Transformers toys (part of our Transformers episode playlist) features NFL'er/actor Alex Karras, but not in his 1970s best mode. No, this is the kinder, gentler 1980s Karras, the Uncle George of Webster.  In fact, his calm, measured tones, though perhaps inappropriate for conveying the urgency Hasbro wants parents and grandparents to get, makes me surprised he doesn't turn to his right and say, "Don't worry, Web, we'll get one for you, too."

"Go now while stars have a good selection," is a reasonable message, yes, but it's not exactly a Crazy Eddie ad. I'd like to think Karras worried that if he unleashed his full pitchman charisma, department and toy stores across the nation would make Black Friday a bloodbath of stampeding toy-crazed consumers.

And how about that surreal moment in which Karras mouths the "more than meets the eye" tagline!

My favorite part, though, is the gentle wonder with which Karras opens the ad: "It's a working microscope!" Gee whiz. What will they think of next?

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