ABC develops Geico Cavemen sitcom

Discussion in 'TV Shows' started by Greg_S_H, Mar 2, 2007.

  1. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Producer

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    My first thought was - Yes. There was a British comedy series (that was pretty dire) called "The Baldy Man" based around a character from some commercials. But I have just looked it up, and it seems the character was first in a sketch show called Naked Video, and was then used in the commercials (for Hamlet brand cigars, apparently) which was where the character became popular.

    So the show revolved around a character that became popular in commercials, but the character already existed in another show.
     
  2. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    There were several toys in the 70s and 80s that started with normal advertising and then had shows that were basicaly half hour commercials created to sell them. In some cases there is a real chicken-and-egg problem where the show and the toy went through parallel development processes and it is hard to tell which part of the beast influence the other. There was a public backlash against the practice and it faded.

    The grand-daddy of these things, although in this case the original toy long predated the series, was G.I. Joe. There were several other toys that later got "narrative" style commercials which established characters and relationships and which still later became commercials, if I recall, but all this was happening when my nieces and nephew were getting over Saturday morning TV, so I was only peripherally aware of what was going on with these things.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  3. Robert Anthony

    Robert Anthony Producer

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    Not counting the 30 minute cartoon toy commercials (Transformers and GI Joe probably being the most famous of the two, followed by He-Man, Care Bears, Strawberry Shortcake, etc.) of the early 80's, there's been

    Max Headroom (Coca Cola)
    Baby Bob (Quizno's baby)
     
  4. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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    I'm pretty sure Max Headroom was developed as a character before Coke got to him.
     
  5. Robert Anthony

    Robert Anthony Producer

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    I thought he was thought up by the ad company that Coke hired. Although I might be wrong, I'm not a Headroom historian [​IMG]

    Let's hit the wiki here:

    "Max Headroom is the name of a fictional artificial intelligence, known for his surreal wit and a stuttering, distorted, electronically sampled delivery. The character was created by Peter Wagg, Annabel Jankel and Rocky Morton and performed by Matt Frewer.

    The Max Headroom character originated in 1985 as an announcer for a music video programme on the British television channel, Channel 4, called The Max Talking Headroom Show."

    Well damn, whaddya know. You're right, he pre-dated the coke ads. I don't know why I remembered it the other way around.
     
  6. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    The California Raisins got a show. I think there were a few others, but I can't think of them.
     
  7. Bryan Toth

    Bryan Toth Stunt Coordinator

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    Personally, I find the ads hilarious... for some reason (even though I've seen them a zillion times now) I still crack up every time I see them. I think my wife thinks I'm insane, but I just can't keep from laughing at them.
     
  8. Michael Harris

    Michael Harris Screenwriter

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    Nope. I remember it well too.
     
  9. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    I'm waiting for Victoria's Secret: The Series. [​IMG] Hey, if they've gotta do this stuff, I say go for the gusto! [​IMG]

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  10. Zack Gibbs

    Zack Gibbs Screenwriter

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    Has ABC realized that the entire premise of the commercials is based on bigotry? Sure there aren't any real cavemen to offend, but it doesn't take a genius to see they're just surrogates. A few commercials can get away with it, can a weekly show? It won't be too long before one of the uncomfortable "cavemen" situations hits too close I would imagine.
     
  11. chuck_b

    chuck_b Supporting Actor

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  12. Zack Gibbs

    Zack Gibbs Screenwriter

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    I never knew WSJ had such a sense of humor, albeit dry. But once I read this remark I knew the article had to be a farce;

    "One of the most aggressive has been Burger King Holdings Inc. The chain has focused over the last year on lifting the profile of its "King" mascot, a mute character best known for his creepy smile. The burger baron recently starred in a series of videogames, and the company says it has lined up a studio and distributor for a feature film. Russ Klein, Burger King's president of global marketing strategy, won't reveal the studio's identity or the likely plot. But he says the movie could appear as early as the end of this year, with the film aimed at "creating a back story for the King."
     
  13. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  14. Joseph DeMartino

    Joseph DeMartino Lead Actor

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    I'm sure they have, but given that the commercials are pretty clearly anti-bigotry, I don't see the problem and don't think ABC does, either. [​IMG] Preachy "can't we all just get along" stuff is a mainstay of most TV drama as it is anyway (and most sitcoms about two or three times a year, come to think of it) so this is hardly a minefield they're blundering into. If merely touching on an uncomfortable topic were enough to doom a TV show, Law & Order would have been cancelled years ago.

    Regards,

    Joe
     
  15. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    If we all are descendants of cavemen, then how can we show bigotry or racism against them? [​IMG]
     
  16. Johnny Angell

    Johnny Angell Played With Dinosaurs Member

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    Actually, this makes me realize there will be a large segment of society offended by the very idea of cavemen.
     
  17. David Deeb

    David Deeb Supporting Actor

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    I think everyone is clamoring for more shows based on commercials.

    Think of the possibilities - comedy shows based on erectile disfunction, tampons, deodorant, mufflers, etc.

    How about "Dancing with the Spokespeople". You could have dancing contests with the Caveman, Mr. Clean, the Taco Bell Dog, Ronald McDonald, the former fat guy from Subway, etc.
     
  18. logikreader

    logikreader Extra

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    ...or how about:

    The Snap, Crackle, and Pop Laugh Hour

    Great Cooking with Pine Sol Lady

    Whassuuuuuuuuuuuup? and Friends

    Where's the Beef? starring Tony Danza

    Who Wants to Be an Oscar Meyer Weiner?

    The New Adventures of the Silly Old Rabbit

    As the Mentos Turns
     
  19. Rhett_Y

    Rhett_Y Screenwriter

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    LMAO.... Where's the beef..... ahhh wipping the tears away...

    I think the commercials are freaking funny.. I really like the "I think someone got up on the wrong side of the rock" commercial. The cavemans face and reaction is priceless..... I laugh everytime..

    I also like the facial expressions when he is on the walk way and sees the poster on the wall of "even a caveman can do it" it kills me everytime....
     
  20. Jeff Jacobson

    Jeff Jacobson Cinematographer

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    I just read about an old '60s cartoon called Linus the Lionhearted which starred Post cereal mascots.
     

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