The Creepy Commercials Countdown!
For 10/22/12; Published 1/17/13: “Pepsi & Doritos Monster Party!” (1992)
I’m posting this on 1/17/13, to keep a promise made during the Halloween Countdown. Incredibly, a few people actually remembered and reminded me about it. If I was more in the mood to write about old Halloween commercials in the middle of January, I’d thank them!
Maybe I didn’t save the best for last, but this is definitely a GOOD one, for reasons obvious and reasons abstract. The “obvious” reasons are, uh, obvious. Just watch the video. It’s Frankenstein carrying a Pepsi truck over his head, and Dracula being snippy because he forgot the dip.
Most abstractly, it’s commercials like this that paved way for my lifelong fascination and BELIEF in Halloween parties loaded with junk food and soda and people in impossibly good costumes. I’m not sure how to put this in a way that makes sense. I’m hoping you’ll just “get it.”
I’ve hosted a few Halloween parties over the years. Nothing huge, and never with many guests. I’m not saying that there wasn’t alcohol, and poker games, and things five rungs down the ladder from those, but make no mistake: There would always be soda and chips, and I’d always be proudest of those. I will dress them up to get by, but if I throw a party, it’s just an excuse to pretend I’m throwing one for my seventh grade class. Which makes zero sense, since I hated my seventh grade class.
Yeah. Hoping you’ll just “get it.”
In the commercial, it’s Halloween night. We know this because there’s a kid dressed like a giant flower, and children aren’t enough into horticulture to do that without a candy reward.
Frankenstein stalks the streets while carrying a Pepsi truck, and I have to wonder what happened to its driver. Did the guy run away, or did Frankenstein’s Monster beat him to death? Therein lies the problem with thirty second movies. You get the meat, but there’s just no exposition at all.
As things turn out, Frankenstein really did have a reason for stealing the Pepsi truck. He’d been put in charge of stocking Dracula’s Halloween party with food and drink. Arriving at Dracula’s house with Pepsi and Doritos, the vamp scolds our hero for forgetting the dip.
So poor Frankenstein heads off on a second store run, and the commercial ends there. We’ll never know if Frankenstein found that dip. Even assuming he did, we’ll never know what kind of dip.
That’s important. Dracula wasn’t specific. You can trust Frankenstein with many things, but I wouldn’t count “dip selection” among them. “Crab and artichoke” has its fans, but you don’t pick something that polarizing when you’re feeding an army of monsters.
I bet Frank picked the crab and artichoke.
This commercial needs a sequel.
Happy Halloween in January!