Last week, I entered a recoring studio expecting to do one radio spot and ended up doing twelve. “A campaign?” I greedily wondered. Not quite. Indeed, a campaign, but not like my last, true love…
Today, I went into a studio to do three more spots for a McDonalds breakfast campaign. See? I said “campaign” again. And, sure, it’s considered one, but there’s that wistful memory of my old GEICO campaign, “z” snapping in my face, telling those other so-called “campaigns” to “step-off!” (Yes, I imagine my GEICO campaign as being a twenty-something, hip-hop hottie – amazed we got together, but I know deep down that it was about money…)
Other voiceover actors will tell you — GEICO campaigns run forever and pay perversely well (ask the cavemen guys). Indeed, my two consecutive national campaigns (14 commercials in all) helped me get a house [bless you, Martin Agency]! I’ve never had a run like that before. And I do know it can happen again. (GEICO campaign hottie gives me the “whatEVer” sign.)
So why write about it now? Am I “drunk-blogging” about an ex-campaign-hottie? No, but good guess. Actually, I still get a lot of emails about the work I did on it. (And some think I’m that freakin’ little gecko – I am not! I bought a house, not a mansion.) Since I started this blog well after those wonderful years, I thought I’d find a place for my GEICO memories within these pages.
Let’s start with my favorite: being the announcer on a commercial that features the Voiceover God himself – Don LaFontaine.
My second favorite: Joan Rivers!
I didn’t see this one a lot on TV, but I’m a fan of 60’s sentimentality. Burt Bacharach!
And this lovely and slightly creepy one with Peter Graves…
And what’s life without The Pips?! Pipless, I would think.
How about a little “coochie coochie coo?” Does Charo ever age?
I’ll just finish this trip down memory lane with the most clever one – Mrs. Butterworth! Her voice is provided by the wonderful character actress, Edie McClurg! As I was walking out of the studio I bumped into her as she was preparing a bagel to take into her session. I squealed with joy that she was Mrs. Butterworth. She replied in that sweet, off-kilter tonality of hers, “Yes. The original actress killed herself, so I get a job.” She smiled broadly and went into the booth. (Apologies to Mary Kay Bergman‘s estate.)
I don’t know if these will stay in the cultural landscape of history, but I’m pretty sure I’ll be comparing all my future campaigns to my GEICO hip-hop hottie… And maybe, just maybe, one day I’ll find that perfect campaign that I can live happily ever after with, with residual checks rolling in long after I’m dead…
[This is part of a series – Love Letters]
Even after the events of April, 2010 – I still love GEICO and these two campaigns.