The 10 Best Terrible Local Commercials

Filmmaking September 2, 2018 3 min read

A little while back, we shared a post called Why Do Local TV Commercials Suck? The point was to explain how local commercials often fall short and the reasons why. It was meant to educate video producers, editors, and graphic artists on ways to make the most of tight timelines and small budgets for local commercials.

But as bad as some of these local commercials can be, they can also be pretty great too. Many times they are great because they are so bad. But either way, we might as well enjoy them for what they are.

Here are 10 of the best terrible local commercials we could find on the internet.

1. Flea Market Montgomery

First off, there’s nothing better in a local commercial than a song. Sure, it’s usually one of those songs that will get stuck in your head and drive you bonkers, but if that happens, it must be working. You’ll never forget it.

This commercial for Flea Market Montgomery takes the jingle spot to a new level. This is 2 full minutes of 80’s style R&B goodness. They even try to turn it into a dance. “It’s just like, it’s just like, a mini mall.”

2. Rug-It-Riders

It’s hard to say for sure, but this commercial may have been the inspiration for Ang Lee’s cinematic classic Brokeback Mountain.

Featuring two cowboys having a little too much fun in the water, this commercial is surely something to remember. Hopefully, that one guy didn’t drown during the making of this one.

3. Eagle Insurance (Eaglewoman)

You know what will guarantee that you take your insurance company seriously? A bizarre mascot that drops rates on your head attached to eggs.

Perhaps that best part is when you notice Eaglewoman only has half a body as the matte breaches the edge of the frame. Then again, you can’t beat those sound effects or props either. All around, great stuff.

4. Town & Country Discount Furniture

The creative meeting must’ve gone something like this. First guy, “We need to find a way to cleverly show that we are beating the competition.” The other guy, “How out if we destroy some of our inventory with a baseball bat?” First guy, “Great idea!”

Frankly, I’d be scared to walk into this place and meet that guy, but it probably worked for someone.

5. Christopher Knight for School Board

Clearly this guy spent his entire advertising budget on the amazing special effects for his Star Wars-inspired commercial. You can hardly tell the difference between Knight’s commercial and the movie. And I’m sure he cleared the rights with Lucasfilm before making this gem.

Unfortunately, even with this masterwork on the air, Knight only managed to place 8th out of 16 candidates for the board seat. But perhaps a future in Hollywood is coming his way.

6. Delicious Tamales

If Jim Henson hadn’t made it big with the Muppets, perhaps he would’ve made commercials like this for local businesses.

Honestly, these little stop motion tamales are pretty cute. It’s more the crazed look in everyone’s eyes and the weird way they lick their lips that scares the pants off of anyone watching this one.

I am a little hungry though now.

7. Butt Drugs

Full disclosure here, this local commercial for Butt Drugs was created by famed YouTubers Rhett & Link. So, it’s bad, but it’s bad on purpose.

Regardless, Rhett & Link have mastered the art of the bad local commercial, and they landed on a gold mine when they found Butt Drugs. I mean, it’s Butt Drugs. Need we say more?

Rhett & Link did. They found every angle to exploit the unfortunately named pharmacy, and the result is comedy gold.

8. Arrowhead Clinic

Time for another jingle commercial. This time, it’s Arrowhead Clinic trying to tap into the popularity of modern rap music.

They may have thought they’d ride the wave of the Beasley Boyz on the way to the top. Unfortunately, it looks like the Beasley Boyz never made it to the top.

Perhaps it was because they tried rhyming words like “first” with “deserve”. Kids these days.

9. Ieuter & Secor Insurance Agents

Sometimes the best way to save a local commercial from disaster is with good acting. Luckily Ieuter & Secor decided against that, so we could enjoy this after school special of a commercial.

Really the best acting here is from “Suzy”. But we do have to wonder why when her house was on fire she didn’t get out of it, and why she opted to call the insurance agency instead of the firefighters. It sounds like an inside job to me.

10. Bang Bang Lady

Let’s end this thing with a Bang! One of our favorites in the world of local commercials is the Bang Bang Lady, and of course the Boom Boom Lady too. These gals know how to sell some fireworks. 

They are 100% attitude and they represent the best of local commercial personalities. Even though these spots make us laugh, I think they know they make us laugh, and that’s kind of the point.

What will they think of next?

Have a favorite bad local commercial that you want to share? How about commercials from other countries? Let’s see those links pile up in the comments below.