Considering the rapturous reaction it provoked, the super-strange short Too Many Cooks seems destined to inspire a wave of imitators in the way that Velvet Underground & Nico did. In fact, the first video that seems significantly steeped in its influence has already appeared–and it’s a doozy.
“Every ’90s Commercial Ever” starts off as an accurate parody of nostalgia-milking efforts from BuzzFeed and the like before veering abruptly into bat country. Created by RocketJump and director Dez Dolly, the video’s first half faithfully recreates the way a certain type of ’90s ad aggressively targeted children. Personally, I was reminded of the old Sunny D ads (“Soda? Purple stuff? Sunny D!!!”) with their overactive kids and primary-colored shirts. As Laughing Squid reports, though, Capri Sun commercials actually had an effect where children turned into globs of Terminator 2-esque chrome sludge after drinking the juice, and teleported to some sort of playdate–all of which happens here.
It don’t exactly pan out the same way, though, and things end up getting rather Cronenberg-ian.
The combination of nostalgia and LSD-dipped surreality has long been a staple of Adult Swim’s playbook, and imitated by others as well. What Too Many Cooks brought to the table was an extreme level of exaggeration, coupled with brutish violence, that made it feel like a brilliant, intermittently funny nightmare. While “Every ’90s Commercial Ever” doesn’t quite measure up to that high watermark, it hints that the coming spate of similar madness will be worth keeping an eye on.
Watch a behind-the-scenes video for “Every ’90s Commercial Ever” below.