Comedy writers are always fighting the last war. And
people who book commercials on cable channels don't
pay a lot of attention. Those two universal truths
meant that, as of Thursday, stations were still
running the Sierra Mist ad in which Kathy Griffin and
Jim Gaffigan play airport security agents who pretend
that their handheld metal detectors are being set off
by Michael Ian Black's soda bottle so they can
confiscate it and drink it themselves. "You're just going 'wah, wah' when you put the thing over the soda!" Black protests, as the guard played by Gaffigan adjusts his rubber gloves and threatens, "Just give me the word, Wendy." Now, of course, you try to sneak a bottle of pop past the TSA and
they'll stun-gun the crap out of you.
PepsiCo, which owns Sierra Mist, says the commercial,
which started airing in February, conveniently ended
its official run on Sunday three days before the
foiling of the British terrorism plot was announced and "liquid explosives" became a ubiquitous term.
But cable companies are scheduled to dribble out the
spot ads until Tuesday, and neither Pepsi nor the
normally irony-aware people at The Daily Show which was still airing the commercial as of Thursday
are stopping them.
The terrorists may have come within days of ruining a
very funny commercial, but with one trip to a pet
store they could do a lot more damage to our
entertainment enjoyment: snakes on a plane.