Monday, January 17, 2011

Top Ten Best Shitty "Celebrity" PSAs!

Throughout the years, minor to major celebrities have sometimes confused themselves for role models.  Others just have really expensive rent to pay.  When one or both of these situations collide, the world is gifted with what is known as the "Celebrity Public Service Announcement" video.  These usually consist of  television stars, movie stars, musicians, professional athletes and some times even cartoon characters teaching kids about a range of important lessons including staying in school, avoiding drug addiction and how to properly french braid their hair.  You know, for those times when Dad is too uncomfortable talking to his kids about AIDS, so Paula Abdul and Kirk Cameron lend a hand by rapping about it to them on tape. 

Possibly poignant at the time they were conceived (but probably still awkward to watch), these gems of wisdom, cheesy religious-ridden and often hypocritical forms of celebrity advice along with now dated questionable fashion choices are thankfully forever preserved on video cassette.  So next time you reach a touchy subject you're supposed to talk to your kids about, but have better shit to do, pop in one of these turds and the job is done, interaction with your own child not required!  Get prepared to learn a thing or two about a thing or two Enemaniacs, it's the Top Ten Best Shitty Celebrity PSAs!

10. When Mom and Dad Break Up (1987)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): Alan Thicke, Orko

Mostly known as the Dad from every body's favorite family fun sitcom, Growing Pains and the host of the 90's game-show Pictionary, Jason Seaver Alan Thicke uses his trusting demeanor and calming sweaters to talk your kids down from the shit storm that is divorce.  Not only does he have his radio voice and a boring set to aid him in being the bearer of bad news, but also a cartoon co-host in the form of Orko, the weird-faced wizard thing from He-manRANDOM.  Sing-song happens, feelings are shared and a very thought-provoking balloon metaphor is used.  Also, freckles make a cameo.  Come on, who better to explain that you still love your children and just hate their gene pool rather than a former game show host that's been married three times and a cartoon wizard with no mouth or legs?  Just remember kids, we've got eachother, sharing the laughter of loooove...except with your Mom.  She is a total cunt.  Check out a clip from the beginning below.

9. Straight At Ya (circa 1980's)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): Kirk Cameron, cartoons

Speaking of Growing Pains, not to be outdone by his T.V. Dad, 80's heartthrob turned closeted gay evangelical Christian Mike Seaver Kirk Cameron has a PSA of his own.  No, it's not about how evolution is a silly billy fairy tale (although I'm sure that exists), it's about drugs and how doing them ain't cool dude.  In this short video, Kirk is in a classroom with a bunch of junior high kids who are being forced to watch an out-of-date video about the dangers of drug use.  Kirk decides this is a grip of bullshit and interrupts the video to do some real-talk.  How ironic that this scenario might happen now if someone put this video on and a guy from Gossip Girl was in the room.  This could be a never-ending saga like a painting of someone painting a painting or something!  Anyhow, with the help of some straight talk and cartoons one in awhile, Kirk attempts to turn kids away from dope and instead reach for the stars.  Or else they will all burn in hell.  I'm pretty sure that's how it ends.  There is no footage of this online for some reason, but check out a short quasi-related PSA below.

8. How Can I Tell If I'm Really In Love?: Straight Talk For Teenagers About Dating and Intimacy (1987)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): Justine & Jason Bateman, Ted Danson 
TABOO-TOUCHY SUBJECT: Teenaged sex and dating

Do you ever worry your kids are totally boning other kids?  Not only that, but they might be doing it for really retarded reasons like they think they're in love?  Thankfully, you're not alone.  A whole butt-load of parents unable to communicate worried about this and in response to the huge demand for this information to be made public on video cassette with your teenager's peer group finally having a forum to speak the unspeakable, this happened.  Justine Bateman, the boner-inducing cast member from Family Ties and her equally boner-inducing real-life brother (AWKWARD) and star of the lesser hit Hogan's Family, Jason Bateman host this video designed to help your kids understand what intercourse and feelings are about.  Just in case your kids get creeped out at the experience of brother and sister discussing sex in front of each other, they throw Ted Danson, star of Cheers into the mix just to add that necessary cringe-worthy feeling you get when your dad says penis or vagina.  If you're already bored, don't worry, because there are also a slew of acne-ridden obnoxious teenage assholes that suck a dick at acting share their questions and thoughts on the subject too.  Throw in a creepy easy listening soundtrack, some random-ass clip art flying at the screen and Ted Danson uttering the line, "...Don't worry, I'll pull out..." and you've got yourself some sex-ed kids can finally relate to!  But seriously guys, what's the deal with french-kissing and why are boys soooo weeeird!  In case you can't wait to feel uncomfortable, this gem is available in parts on YouTube.  Check out the first part below.

7. Time Out: The Truth About HIV, AIDS and You (1992)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): Arsenio Hall, Magic Johnson, Sinbad, Malcolm Jamal Warner, Paula Abdul, Color Me Badd, People from Beverly Hills: 90210 and MORE!

There used to be a time when everyone was pretty sure you could get AIDS from a toilet seat.  It was a dark time in our culture when everyone was scared of HIV/AIDS, famous people like Easy E and Terrence Trent Darby were dropping off like flies from the disease and no one knew what to do.  Then one day, 90's talk show host and Dog Pound owner, Arsenio Hall asked shitty comedian Sinbad to put on a condom costume and Vanilla Ice to write a rap about safe sex and everything changed.  Thanks to TIME OUT, Color Me Badd did something other than whatever they did then.  Also, Arsenio and friends taught kids some shit about AIDS.  Also, it was presented in a totally hip way so as not to bore kids when discussing wearing "jimmy-hats" over their "johnsons" and stuff.  Paula Abdul dancing about wearing condoms aside, I have to applaud celebrities for talking about AIDS  at the time since it was still a pretty taboo subject.  Thankfully, in a time when the AIDS epidemic carried a rather homo-phobic and classicist stigma, some well-respected hetero and rich public figures fucked around and got it so we could care learn more about it.  Thank you Magic Johnson's Johnson.  Because of your decision to rawdog it to a hooker, homophobe idiots can't keep referring to AIDS as a "gay plague."  Also, remember when Paula Abdul could open her jaw all the way when she talked?  That was pretty cool. 

6. Cartoon All-stars to the Rescue (1990)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): A Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, The Muppet Babies, A.L.F., Alvin and the Chipmunks, The Smurfs, Bugs Bunny, Winnie the Pooh and MORE!

Financed by McDonalds, this animated anti-drug special starts with the mystery of a little girl whose piggy bank is stolen.  A gaggle of Saturday morning cartoon characters jump out of comic books, records and electric devices in order to secretly help the little girl to retrieve it, only to find out it was swiped by her drug-addicted older brother who is massively feigning for some more weed.  I know.  Heavy stuff.  The characters follow him to the arcade where he scores some crack (natural progresssion of things) and then attempt to scare him straight with the help of fun-house mirrors, roller-coaster metaphors and a skateboarding accident all the while competing with a James Woodesque purple drug cloud that encourages him to do more drugs.  Here's the rub though, without drugs, would this kid have seen these cartoons and excepted their existence to help talk him out of doing them in the first place?  The entire thing is available in part on YouTube, but I suggest you take a taste of part 1 below before deciding to do so under the influence.   

5. Corey Haim: Me, Myself and I (1989)

TABOO-TOUCHY SUBJECT: Corey Haim's Doucheyness/Drug Addiction

Fresh off of the first of what would become his FIFTEEN stints in rehab, 80's teen star Corey Haim's agent or some other asshole commissioned this straight-to-video short "day-in-life" turd to try and re-capture his initial wholesome image/convince his horny fans he wasn't a fucked-up crack head.  Unfortunately, all the tennis playing and fancy car driving in the world couldn't cover up the sadly obvious high-as-shit monologues by the late actor scattered throughout.  Although this video was technically released a a self-promotional short documentary, it's truly one of the best anti-drug PSAs ever made.  R.I.P. Corey Haim

4. Angela Lansbury's Positve Moves: A Personal Plan For Fitness and Well-Being at any Age (1990)

ADVICE GIVER(S): Angela Lansbury
TABOO-TOUCHY SUBJECT: Fitness, Dieting and Lifestyles of Old People

Technically this is considered a work-out video of some sort, but I'm adding it to this list for three reasons.  One, Angela Lansbury despenses advice taken from her own life experiences about diet, excercise, beauty, self-esteem/awareness, sexuality and old people hobbies.  Two, the workout bits mostly consist of stretching and prancing about.  Three, this video is incredibly charming.  Even when Angela is rubbing lotion onto her old people legs (more like Boner She Wrote, right you guys?) or thrusting her old lady pelvis in the air while wearing a jump suit tight enough that she has camel toe, it's a very British, sophisticated and charming camel toe.  Angela is as adorable as that little chubby teapot she plays in Beauty and they Beast, but you know, without all the unsightly fat.

3. Shattered: If Your Kid's On Drugs (1984)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): Burt Reynolds, Judd Nelson 

As part of NBC's "Get High On Yourself Week,"  a section of prime-time programming dedicated to the Reagan-era war on drugs, this hour-long PSA aired.  Narrated (sort of) by the incredibly random pairing of Brat-Pack star Judd Nelson and Playgirl model/Bandit Burt Reynolds, Shattered tells the story of two teenagers played by Megan Follows (Anne of Green Gables) and Dermot Mulroney (Young Guns) struggling with common problems of suburban teens, crack addiction and whoring yourselves out to pay for it.  In between watching the struggles of these two and their parents "tough love" EVENTUAL involvement, we are treated to random observances from Burt Reynolds/Judd Nelson hanging out in their sweet car and obviously fulfilling their community service requirements after their respective drug busts.  One of the best gems of dialogue?  Megan Follows cutting lines in a van and saying, "...coke makes everything better."  Touche.  This video which you are more than welcome to make a drinking game out of (I prefer chugging every time you are hypnotized by Judd Nelson's nostrils) is available in parts on YouTube.  Check out Part I below.

2. Strong Kids, Safe Kids (1984)

CELEB ADVICE GIVER(S): Henry Winkler (The Fonz), John Ritter, The Smurfs and a dude singing in overalls
TABOO-TOUCHY SUBJECT: Child Molestation/Abduction

I'm not sure where to start with this spastic, bizarre and down-right awkward video.  Henry Winkler playing both his nerdy Jewy self and his "cool" Italian Happy Days counter-part, Fonzie, attempts to educate cats kids about the dangers of dirty touching.  Also, strangers.  Also, people.  Also, guys in overalls.  In some of the worst video editing I've ever witnessed, Winkler attempts to give advice to kids about what to do if they are approached by strangers who want to give them candy or puppies and people who attempt to touch them where their swim suit covers.  Like in the weiner or the virginia.  In case nerdy Winkler and his sweaters creep your kids out, he includes shots of himself interrupting himself as the Fonz, working on a bike and "actual" child abuse experts, a sex educator, John Ritter, The Smurfs and bunch of kids screaming shit.  If that's not enough, a dude in overalls shows up on a slide singing songs with an acoustic guitar that have lyrics like, "...girls have a vagina and boys have a penis..."  Seriously.  I don't know about your kids, but after watching this thing, I felt a little molested.  Thankfully, the ENTIRE video is available here.  If you don't want to dedicate an entire forty minutes to feeling uncomfortable, than just check out the clip below.

1. Mr. T's Be Somebody...Or Somebody's Fool (1984)

TABOO-TOUCHY SUBJECT: Kid Self Esteem, Fitness, Education, Mother Appreciation and Rap Ability

80's and gold-lover's icon Mr. T hosts this video attempting to be a hip way of teaching your kids that fitness (I mean, they gotta be able to lift ghetto blasters, right?), eating right, harnessing their kid anger, being bullied, being able to rap, respecting their moms and most importantly, being able to pose for fashion shoots is key to not being somebody's fool.  This is done through sing-song, picnics and fonts coming at the screen.  Of all the celebrity PSAs from the 80's and 90's, this is hands-down the BEST piece of can't-take-your-eyes-away-unintentionally-hilarious-entertaining-random-brilliance/bullshit you WILL EVER SEE.  Watch it with friends.  Watch it alone.  Even watch it with your kids if you want, but seriously.  Watch it.  If it doesn't inspire you to be a better person (which it probably won't), it will definitely remind you why some of us still secretly miss the 80's (and some of us, not so secretly).  In the clip below, you will not only learn to love yourself, but Mr. T's kid friends will teach you some pretty sweet break dancing moves as well.


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