Jon Bon Jovi presents....Advil
I used to know about things. At least, I thought I knew about things. If you’d have come across me in the eighties I could have spent many hours educating you on the Way. Things. Were. I mean it. I could have held court on stuff like style (neon duds, off-the shoulder shirts for girls, and big, big hair). I just knew they would be tagged as our generation’s fashion.....forever. Television shows (who shot JR on Dallas, 21 Jump Street with that smoldering rebel Johnny Depp and rocking cool Magnum PI). Heck, even politics was no mystery to a wunderkind like me. Reagan was clearly in over his shoeshine black head and would obviously be remembered as a fool and a schmuck forevermore while our guy Trudeau was so hip it was only a matter of time before they created new money to put him on. And rock and roll? Please! The insanity that rained down upon us thanks to the likes of Poison, Twisted Sister and even the boys from Jersey known as Bon Jovi? Without a doubt the world I lived in was crystal clear and I knew absolutely everything about everything. Period.
Now, as I survey the landscape from 40 years plus I see what should be familiar sights but that are oddly tinted instead. It looks like the stuff I knew but in reality it really isn’t. Neon it seems is actually coming back for a new generation and so too with off the shoulder shirts and mountains of big hair – this time for boys and girls. Dallas too rides again this summer, and they even hired (found? resurrected?) Patrick Duffy and Larry Hagman to reprise their original roles. 21 Jump Street is now a movie and Depp is a megastar. Even Magnum PI is back as the top cop on Blue Bloods. Reagan’s been lionized as one the greats and Trudeau now seems more and more like a twitchy coot who was no more progressive than most other big time pol. What’s going on? I knew this stuff...at least I thought I did. It’s so confusing. And rock and roll? That must be pure right? God help us but Bret Michaels from Poison and Dee Snider from Twisted Sister just competed on TV for the chance to kiss Donald Trump’s hideously gilded ass. And they did it so they could be chosen as an in-house lackey. Is that rebellion? It’s almost – ALMOST - too much to bear. In the end though, I think the final straw for me was this: Jon Bon Jovi....for Advil. The eagle has landed ladies and gents....and this time it’s for good.
The new spot is pretty much what you’d expect. JBJ sits in a tastefully appointed coffee shop and calmly discusses how things like pain are not on his busy schedule. He reminds us that most folks only see one side of his life, and that there is far more to him than just being the rock star god we know and love. He’s a husband, a father, a songwriter, a philanthropist and more. But even poor Jon is troubled by aches and pains so thankfully Advil is there to help. Watching this ad just caused my teen years to officially implode.
Remember when it was Al and Tipper Gore putting warning labels on records and wagging their fingers at Dee Snider for being a bad role model for kids? Guess who’s divorced now and was accused of some pretty freakin’ bizarre encounters with massage therapists? Amazingly, it ain’t Dee Snider. Bret Michaels never even took drugs for Heaven’s sake. And Bon Jovi? I find out now the closest he ever came to actual bad-boy scandal was when the band hired a publicist who decided they should snap some wild pictures of Jon on a bed with topless chicks. Thing was, Jon got cold feet. Not only did he feel bad about the stunt but he asked that the pics get burned before he went and told his girlfriend (now wife) all about it. That’s right – crazy handsome rock star boy, who’s been married for decades, has four kids and now soberly pitches for a pharmaceutical company, really is as boring as an insurance salesman. I think I’m the one that’s gonna need some Advil.
Was I just completely wrong about everything back then or is it something more? Did the rules of the game change or did our ever increasing life expectancy just force everyone to grow up more? Is anyone even buying what we used to fall for back then? Does anyone really think 50 cent is more of a businessman than the bad MOFO (excuse me) that he plays at being? Is everyone just that much smarter now that we can allow such opposing (and ludicrous) realties to share space in our heads? Could be – but I have to say that I am now certain I know way less now than I ever did. And if that isn’t reason to go get some head meds nothing is. I wonder if Bon Jovi gives out free samples?