Infomercials cure TV boredom

Though at times it has its drawbacks, there are definitely some perks to being the Entertainment Editor. I can watch the latest batch of junk that television has to offer and claim to be working.

Yet ever since the mass movement towards “reality” shows, television has become more depressing. There are definitely still some shows worth watching, but for the most part it just doesn’t feel like networks are trying anymore. Where’s the fun? Where’s the creativity?

Good news: it’s not gone, it has just been hiding. In order to get the entertainment you’ve been seeking, you either need to tune in really late or really early, depending on how you look at it.

But what am I talking about? Where can you find this magic that is worth staying up or waking up for? Well, a lot of places, actually. In fact, multiple channels are host to this visual wonder. I’m speaking, of course, about infomercials.

While many TV shows have lost their charm, infomercials have upped the ante by becoming more ridiculous and hilarious than ever before. The products are zanier, the dialogue is worse and the music is more inappropriate. Infomercials have completely catered to my it’s-so-bad-it’s-good entertainment needs.

Here are, in order of appearance, the infomercials I recently witnessed: a taser approved by World’s Wildest Police Videos’ John Bunnell, a workout plan that is delivered to your house on what seemed to be roughly 187 DVDs and finally, a sexual enhancement lubricant.

Unfortunately, I only caught the backend of the taser infomercial, but I saw enough to know that you need one. John Bunnell is worried about your safety, but now thanks to this amazing new product, you can finally protect yourself.

The taser has refillable cartridges (I can’t tell you how many times I’ve needed to shut down multiple nervous systems), and it is still effective through up to two cubic inches of clothing. This is particularly important for those scientists in Antarctica who have to wear thick coats but still want the opportunity to shock their friends. Scientists can be jokesters, too.

Next was the workout infomercial. Apparently after just 90 days of this rigorous program, you too could become a (wo)man-beast. The secret to the workout was “muscle confusion.” I’m not kidding. That is apparently the scientific term they have given the program.

The key to muscle confusion is that the program alternates every so often to work different muscles, thus “confusing” them into growing to watermelon-sized proportions. It clearly works, so start training using this method to gain muscles thick enough to stop John Bunnell’s taser.

Lastly, we come to the sexual enhancement lubricant. Sporting a slogan of “More than a lube, it’s love in a tube,” how could you possibly go wrong? By making the cheesiest infomercial with the most stereotypical “sexy” music and some of the worst writing this side of The Hills, you have provided glorious entertainment for me, the viewer, but you probably aren’t going to convince me that your cream, goo or ooze will cause euphoria.

I just feel sorry for the poor saps who give their testimonials about using the product. It was different for the people in the previous infomercial; they were ripped and able to point out how they were in much better shape than I was. I agreed with them.

Here we had people sitting around talking about their experience using the love sludge, looking distant and likely wondering where their check was. As you can imagine, the discomfort both they and I were feeling made for absolutely top-notch television.

What is it about infomercials that make them more entertaining than most other things on TV? Effort. Even when the product, idea, presentation, actors, writing and directing are absolutely horrible, it is still obvious that they tried. These people are trying to sell you something, and they are trying hard. But a tiny budget can only take you so far, and we the consumers rake in the resulting enjoyment.

So if you’re tired of watching House hobble around the hospital, if J.J. Abrams’ newest thriller just didn’t cut it or if Dwight and Jim’s banter is growing stale, don’t fret. Take solace in infomercials. Their ridiculousness and profound ineptitude will be sure to brighten your morning, even if it is still dark outside.