This commercial is the single greatest ad on television. It’s from a series of Orkin pest control ads that feature walking, talking, and disturbing realistically textured pests trying to live in an unlucky family’s home. Instead of cartoony good guys and stereotypical bad guys of past ads of this type, these pests want nothing more than to live their victim’s house. That’s it. They don’t want to kill them, they don’t want to eat their kids or destroy their lives, they just want to live with them and nothing more. They fully capture the mentality of the real life counterparts to these little monsters by not making them outright malicious, but by just wanting to impose their presence where it is unwanted. These ads are very good at making it clear why someone would absolutely not want to have these pests anywhere near their home even if they aren’t strictly “evil” due to how god damn gross they appear. These commercial villains are closer to commercial anti-heroes if you ask me.
What makes the rat commercial in particular so great is the way they paced it. Family comes home, finds rats playing Rock Band, rats want the kid in the family to play on drums, rats get chased out by Orkin dude. That sounds okay on paper, but the way they executed it was perfect. Every look from the rats is beyond creepy, every pause is suspenseful, every twitch from those ugly rat faces is terrifying in its own unique way, and every line from these cretins is laced with unsettling double meanings (“we could use the boy… on drum”). Every time I watch this commercial it’s like I find something new to be freaked out at, I love it. I can’t help but feel sad though when they are forced off the property; they were just chilling and playing some video games. It’s all so sad. But then I remember the first thing the rats said was “You… were not supposed to be back until Sunday…” and then I shudder.
The other commercials for those interested:
Quote of the Day:
“The Naked Mole Rat. God’s disgusting mistake.”
Gina Linetti, Brooklyn Nine-Nine