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February 5, 2013


Tuesdays with Moron: Chatological Humor Update

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About the hosts

About the host

Host: Gene Weingarten

Gene Weingarten

Gene Weingarten is the humor writer for The Washington Post. His column, Below the Beltway, has appeared weekly in the Post's Sunday magazine since July 2000 and has been distributed nationwide on The Los Angeles Times-Washington Post News Service. He was awarded the 2008 Pulitzer Prize for Feature Writing.

About the topic

Every Tuesday, Gene publishes weekly updates to his chats.

- Gene's latest chat

On one Tuesday each month, Gene is online to take your questions and abuse. He will chat about anything. Although this chat is sometimes updated between live shows, it is not and never will be a "blog," even though many persons keep making that mistake. One reason for the confusion is the Underpants Paradox: Blogs, like underpants, contain "threads," whereas this chat contains no "threads" but, like underpants, does sometimes get funky and inexcusable.

Gene Weingarten :

Greetings, update readers. 

Today, as I do each year, I survey all the Super Bowl ads, see the consensus Web picks  for the “best” and remember why the Web don’t know squat.    Mediocre ones are vastly overrated and brilliant ones are often panned.   That happened this year too.  

Here are the five best ads and a mediocre one.   Two of the best were widely dismissed as mediocre.  And the mediocre one has been widely overrated.  See if you can find which are which, in the poll below.

(Note, we are looking for effectively used humor /cleverness.    I am not including the adorable Budweiser pony ad, because it wasn’t trying for funny, nor Paul Harvey on farmers, which was pure poetry.)

Oh, and one final observation: Anyone offended by the VW Jamaican “be happy” commercial is one of those people looking for life to offend them.

After you are done with the polls, scroll down and I will give you the right answers.


Gene Weingarten :

Wish, for Toyota

Space babies, for Kia

The Kiss, for Go Daddy

Love Ballad, for M&M's

Whisper, for Oreos

No Drama, for


Gene Weingarten :

Poll: Best commercial

Poll: Worst commercial

(Warning: Take these polls before scrolling down to see Gene's answers!)















My answers:  The Kiss is the best, because it is, not despite the fact that a lot of people hated it, but because of that fact.  It is unforgettable, and mildly disturbing for reasons we don’t like to think about. Uncomfortable, highly effective humor.  I think it’s ingenious. The second best is No Drama, which has been vastly underrated. Very sophisticated. Third, Whisper. The M&M ad is just stupid.