The second-worst fast-food commercial in history

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/10/09/807750.html

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Here’s the thing, this comes from an era when management was honestly trying…failing…but trying to do something. This was before the MBA swarm invaded and killed creativity, pre-surveillence society. From that perspective, it was cool. I remember some awesome, awful (even at the time) commercials on my local TV channels. Today we live in a world where everything looks the same…all cars are the same, all TV ads are the same, etc. This shit was fun

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Never heard of this, but Mr. D reminds me of the Carvel commercials of my childhood with the gruff old announcer hawking his Cookie Puss cakes. Oh yeah, and the special release Cupie Puss cakes for Valentine’s Day.

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Well done! We haven’t had nearly enough commercial spokes-person introspection. Here’s a suggestion for a more modern one, for SimpliSafe home security devices

Meet Robbert Larson™ the home security expert, full-time burglar and part-time con man.”

Ok we get it, a ‘Robber’ would know what makes a good security system. But he’s a self declared “con man”; so he’s obviously conning you into buying crap security, so he can rob you, yes? Why include the bit about being a conman?? ah well… back to suicide food spokes…things.

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One of my teenage jobs! Came to work one morning and the door was locked??? Sign said closed and instructed employees when to pick up their last check. As a young adult I thought the food was good!

Seems like the commercials were speaking to people that were tired of a loud, child packed mcdonald’s, but I always felt Rax’s real competition was Arby’s. Rax was a clone that never differentiated itself.

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I love the way Mr. D’s plaid coat moves (doesn’t move?) when he walks across the screen. I mostly in the mid-west during the 80s. I don’t remember this chain at all. We had a Roy Rogers.

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Yeah, I really don’t see these ads as being particularly unrepresentative of their time. Mid 90s pop culture was full of shit that would blend dry humour with the weird and the stupid (Beck, Daria etc). If I had’ve seen them I probably would’ve dug them, but not found them especially different to other things that were going on.

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“Rax, you can eat here” is like Wilmington DE’s motto “Wilmington: a place to be somebody”, so bland it sounds like a joke.

That was actually Tom Carvel himself, original owner of the franchise, and I think the inventor of soft serve ice cream. There are still some Carvel shops, but mostly they seem to be a brand that offers their ice cream cakes in supermarkets.

Carvel ice cream cakes rule.

[BTW: here’s Tom Carvel, if you need a face for the voice. . . he even looked like a cartoon character.]

[ETA: so now I’ve been thinking about Carvel all day. It might be the only one of these franchise/chains from my childhood that I still have fond memories of. I’m sure part of it is just standard childhood nostalgia, remembering dad bringing us to Carvel after ball games or swimming lessons. I remember watching all the Carvel stores close up one by one around here.]

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i barely remember Rax. i guess this is part of the reason why.

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Wow, that might actually be worse than Burger King’s Herb campaign. Might, mind you.

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With both this and Arbys being founded within a few years of each other in Ohio, I wonder what made it the epicenter of the fast food roast beef industry.

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That’s the most postmodern fast food commercial I’ve ever seen. Mr. D is fantastic.

I want more.

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I honestly don’t think I would have any idea what Carvel is if it wasn’t for the references to them in 30 Rock and Archer. It’s all Dairy Queen around these parts.

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spill it Beschizza, what was #1?

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Never heard of them, but the weirdness of Mr. Delicious… l liked it.

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I don’t remember Rax from the West Coast, or even my days touring. Depending on what comes out of Washington DC today though, this may be my whatthefuckwasthat moment of the day.
Mr. D?

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I watched this video of Mr. Carvel a few months ago. https://youtu.be/HFBFEEUD3x8

(My wife thought he pronounced his name CAR-vul like James, who I once saw in a Men’s Wearhouse in Alexandria, VA where I was buying a last-minute-oh-shit-i-forgot-to-pack-a belt. But that’s a lame story for another time. So I went looking for Carvel commercials from the 80s and stumbled on this, which satisfactorily scratched a nostalgia itch i didn’t know I had. Literally started remembering old WPIX reruns and promotions from his voice alone. Amazing thing that: memory.)

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I have to but I am still a bit baffled by what the target market was supposed to be. Philandering businessmen from the 1950s?

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I remember Rax but I don’t remember these commercials at all.

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I only have vague memories of the Roy Rogers near where I grew up south of Cincinnati, it folded up shop when I was still a kid in the 80s. I was astounded to find one hiding out on the Pennsylvania Turnpike of all places when I drove to Philly back in 2002. Arby’s really seems to have driven out all of the other roast beef-related competition somehow.

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