This commercial is going to haunt me while I sleep, I think.
What makes it so weird? Maybe it’s:
– The way star-of-stage-and-screen Andy Devine’s face seems to solidify from the ether, as though the viewer were awaking from anesthesia to find his gap-toothed eminence standing over the bed.
– The way Devine’s voice decays at the end of the phrase “ … like Big Ralph, the Sunkist dinosaur.”
It’s reminiscent of Dana Carvey’s dissolute, amoral Jimmy Stewart voice on Saturday Night Live.
– The phrase “Now you can get a Little Ralph for one dollar.”
(Last time I got a Little Ralph for one dollar, I was in a rathole taqueria in Michoacan. On the bright side, I wrestled at 140 for two whole months afterward.)
– The addition of “…and a piece of orange peel that says ‘Sunkist’ on it!” to the list of things required to procure a Little Ralph.
Did the kids of America really mail in chunks of tattooed citral dermis in exchange for a puppet? The Post Office loved that, I’m sure.
Also, even though I know I’m watching a Sunkist promotion, it seems strange to mentally put that extra item in the envelope. Naturally it sets my imagination off and running.
I imagine a beaming Devine enthusing: “Now you can get a Little Ralph for a dollar, a piece of orange peel that says ‘Sunkist’ on it, an expired municipal bus pass, two Canadian nickels, a kick up the arse and a bowl full of plasma.”
– The way Devine trips on the phrase “order blank.”
(He sort of crinkles up around the eyes afterwards, as if to say, “Yeah … there’s gonna be another take, right? Right?”)
– The unnecessary line of professional narration at the end. What, Andy couldn’t’a done that?