The Drollest Local TV Commercial Series Of All Time
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Bless Your Heart: The Drollest Local TV Commercial Series Of All Time

By Rob Payne | Miscellaneous | May 10, 2013 | Comments ()


Every local television market across the world airs ads of varying degrees of quality from also-local business establishments. You have your "Crazy Eddies" lighting used cars on fire to imply how hot, hot, hot their sales are, or they're sluicing through sofas with freshly-bought chainsaws to illustrate (hopefully not-literally) their new half-off pricing scheme. Some times it's just a small businessman or -woman shamelessly hawking their wares by bringing their own children into the commercial, as if we learned nothing from Sarah Palin's use of her not-ready-for-primetime moppets on the political stage. No matter how poorly shot or ill conceived (and they're all poorly shot and ill conceived), I love local ads. And I love them so much more than their sleek counterparts like Clive Owen schilling for BMW or the E*Trade baby's creepy world weariness.*

But there is one series of commercials that runs frequently on my Dallas-Fort Worth affiliate stations that I can't get enough of. They aren't explosive or wild, and conceptually they're nothing more than the local business man coolly and calmly extolling the virtues of his company to the viewing audience who'd rather get back to watching "The View" or "Modern Family" or Maury. (He's still on TV, right?) It's the way Bob Lovell, president and founder of Home Marketing Services (or, HMS), delivers his lines with an almost-but-not-quite condescension and a tongue-planted-firmly-in-cheek sense of humor. The sheer height of his hair and how he pronounces "roof" might have something to do with it, too. You'll see.

First, we'll take a look at where Bob started, before he found his muse, then get ready for some Sahara Desert levels of dry comedy:

Tired of Renting?

Bless Your Heart

A Connecticut Yankee in Bob Lovell's Court

The True Meaning of Peace

Bob Has Balls for Local "Celebrities" Pugs and Kelly

He's Not Always Funny?**

Even now, after years spent watching and laughing with these ads, I don't really know what HMS does. Of course, I don't really care, either, because being a "home owner" has never once been on my bucket list. Yet every time I see one of these ads, I have the sudden urge to buy a home, fix it up, and then sell it just so I have a reason to call Bob. Then, when I explain what I've done, he could tell me, straight to my beaming face, "Bless your heart." And the hole in my soul would finally be filled.

* No matter how much I love Pete Holmes, I hate, hate, mother flippin' hate those ads.
** Don't sell yourself short, Bob!

(Header Source)

Rob Payne also writes the comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter, tumbls on the Tumblr, and his wares can be purchased here. He used to love "Joe Isuzu," too, but the actor's career post-Joe is kind of depressing.

Recap: NBC "Community," "Advanced Introduction to Finality" | Recap: NBC's "The Office," Episode "A.A.R.M."

Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not

  • What about the flea market guy?

  • ,

    They've gone a completely different direction since, really toned down what made them so much stupid fun, but for awhile we in the Pittsburgh area got to enjoy the horrendous Berger and Green injury lawyers ads, like this one with the flaming ball of background:

    Now we have to make do with the incredibly cheesy Steidl and Steinberg bits:

  • Oh dear God...Berger and Green! I live in Erie PA and I can remember seeing their ridiculous ads since the early 90's. And Edgar Snyder is also very ridiculous

  • T

    Nah, nothing is as awesome as Attorney Edgar Snyder.
    Because he'll get money...
    *finger point*
    for YOU.

  • ,

    I figure that's why B&G and S&S have to try such attention-getting ads, because Edgar Snyder just seems to completely dominate the field around here. I can laugh at the over-the-top ads for the others, but if I wanted to sure somebody, I'd go straight to Edgar.

  • ,

    *sue* somebody

  • My favorite local commercials were the Trunk Monkey ads. Sure, they're not limited to one dealership in one community anymore, and the newer ones aren't as funny, but the first batch was pretty great. They can all be watched here:

  • Cindy

    Point of grammar info . . . one doesn't "hock" one's wares, unless desperate for cash. The thing advertisers are doing is "hawking" their wares.

    I know, I know: Bless my heart. ;-)

    Anyway, thanks for sharing Bob Lovell with us. Here in Houston, the best we can do is Mattress Mac (who "really will SAVE YOU MONEY!")--not a bad guy, but definitely dry and humorless next to Bob.

  • Point of fact: I did have "hawk" first, then it looked wrong so I changed it. Then "hock" looked wrong, too, but then I watched last night's "Community" and my brain died. Anyway, thanks. Fixed!

  • lowercase_see

    Okay, so how long HAS this guy been on the air? I watched network TV for the brief, terrible period that I lived in north Dallas but I saw that light that is Netflix (and Uptown) and haven't heard "Bless your heart" since.

    (I mean, I have. I live in Texas and my sister likes to pretend she's a southern belle. But Dallas. Anyway, I digress.)

    So this guy is just an institution or something? Because his ads are awful and everywhere. Anyway, I always just assumed he was one of those awful people that offers low, low payments at high, high interest rates for the sole purpose of scamming people who can't afford to do anything else.

  • I remember this guy from when we lived in Dallas too. And I would gladly watch him in place of the "Jim Adler, the Texas Hammer" commercials we get down here in Houston. Or "Exclusive Furniture, where low price lives!"

  • TheReinaG

    The TEXAS Hammer! I miss those, I just got a little homesick.

  • selucius

    Do they still have Gallery Furniture down there? Mattress Mack was the bomb. So infectious, I can even still remember the address... 6006 I-45N between Temple & Parker.

  • MissAmynae

    holy cannoli, i remember this guy! Wish we got these in Austin, we're stuck Lorenz & Lorenz, or the Texas School of Bartending.

  • Pants-are-a-must

    This is waiting to become a Will Ferrell sketch.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    Ha, those actually were pretty amusing. I'm guessing HMS gets people into houses they maaaaaybe can't quite afford.

    My favorite local commercials were lawyer Jim "The Hammer" Shapiro's from college days near Rochester, NY.

    Now that I live in Queens I'm stuck with some Guardian Angels trying to sell me cars right before the C block of the Daily Show, and aliens trying to get me to frequent strip club Gallaghers. (I see them so often I'm not even linking to them)

  • AudioSuede

    Those E*Trade babies are so f***ing creepy. I don't know if you have to be a babymaker to appreciate babies making outdated jokes and talking about stock brokers, but I must be missing something from my life, because those commercials weird me out.

  • phase10

    No, we have two kids, and my wife hates anything with babies doing stuff babies can't do.

  • selucius

    I have no feelings for Bob Lovell, but I do miss Pugs & Kelly.

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