Monday, January 4, 2010

Pepto-Bismol "Chaperone"

See the commercial here.

Synopsis: A gastrointestinally-challenged junior high school dork who by the apparent intercession of Almighty God managed to score a prom date with Hannah Montana, then unwisely tried to quell his nervousness by scarfing down a bunch of deep-fried burritos, suffers the ultimate humiliation when his smothering, big-mouthed mom calls the Pepto-Bismol Strategic Command Center to loudly report that he's suffering from nausea, heartburn, indigestion, upset stomach, and diarrhea, thereby ensuring that he retains his virginity for the next ten years.

Proper "locked arms, both hands at 12" steering technique

"Hello, I'm not gay, how may I help you?"

Gassy smell actually came from swamp creature outside window

Pepto operators possess highest suicide rate in the nation

Message: Losing control over your most disgusting bodily functions at socially decisive moments is nothing to be embarrassed about.

Why can't I be "insta-cool" ?

Here come the chimichangas ...

Subliminal Message: Wherever you find human misery, Pepto-Bismol is there.

Buying you time to get to a toilet since 1901

Memorable Moment: The Juilliard-trained movie actor / recovering alcoholic who agreed to play the Pepto Guy in exchange for food briefly veers off script to reenact the snow globe scene from Citizen Kane.

Allan recalls early years of youthful, carefree digestion

Spoiler Alert: his boyhood colon was named "Rosebud"

Disturbing Aspect: Mom cheerfully ruins her son's life.

"Do you need a clean pair of underwear, honey? Look in my purse."

Yes, this young man has a bright future ahead of him.

Burning Questions: Why did Mom call Pepto for advice after her son already had taken the tablets? Was it really necessary for the queasy kid to display the Pepto box on his knee for the rest of the trip? How long did it take Hannah to find a dress in Pepto pink?

Hannah is no longer upset about forgetting her diaphragm

"I think he might be dead or something, Mrs. Wagner. "

Overall Loathsomeness: 8.5

Mitigating Factor: Hannah suffered only a few minor cuts and bruises when she jumped out of the moving car.


  1. ::applause::

    Thank you for posting about this Pepto commercial. The first time I saw it, my first thought was it needed to be mocked via blog entry. Masterfully done--especially "Mom cheerfully ruins her son's life." :)

  2. Let's see what we've got.

    - Loathsome mother: Check.
    - Wussy kid: Check.
    - Implausible situation: Check.
    - Ridiculous Concept: Check.
    - Thirty seconds of my life I'll be begging for on my death bed shot to Hell: Check.

    In short, just another ad for an over-the-counter medication.

  3. Leave it to Pepto-Bismol to find humor in humiliation. And isn't it inspiring that society has advanced to the point at which we can now speak openly about the vagaries of our digestive tracts?

  4. I saw this playing in endless loop on a giant screen across from the Staples Center in downtown L.A., thus ensuring that this young man will never date again.

  5. And yet, inexplicably, Jon Gosselin continues to find girlfriends.

  6. On top of everything already mentioned, they are marketing the Instacool to teenagers which is is negligence! Pepto Bismol products with salicylates should not used by anyone under the age of 19 due to the risk of their contracting Reyes Syndrome. I had Reyes Syndrome at age 15 after I took aspirin (another salicylate containing product that can trigger Reyes Syndrome) to lower my fever... Does this marketing program prove that the re-marketing of St. Joseph 'baby aspirin' to children can be too far behind? I contacted Proctor and Gamble and requested they stop this marketing campaign targeting teens and was told that it was being marketed as a 'queasy stomach' solution rather than 'upset stomach' solution, so it didn't apply.
    I told P&G my story and they could not have cared less. I told them that if their product started up new Reyes Syndrome cases due to teens use of Instacool, that it would be on their head. I would be sure to blame them publicly. Here is info on Reyes Syndrome/salicylate link (that P&G is perfectly aware of):

  7. Kelly, that's awful. I've never heard that about Pepto, only about aspirin. That's the kind of thing that should be well publicized, because people use Pepto pretty casually. I remember using it as a teenager, so it's dumb luck that I didn't get Reyes. And I don't see how the distinction between "queasy" and "upset stomach" makes any difference, if the commercial seems to be endorsing Pepto for teens.

    I wonder if this is something that the FTC would oversee.


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