Slogans used by fictional businesses tend to be bad. By that we mean, of course, very, very bad.
They come in many flavors, including:
- Self-referential: "Alice's Groceries. We have a slogan!"
- Unintended second meaning: "Bob's Engine Repair. We'll clean out your tailpipe!"
- Too honest: "Chris's Deli. Now transmitting salmonella to only 5% of our customers!"
- Captain Obvious: "Dan's Pizza Delivery. We deliver pizzas!"
- Complete Non Sequitur: "Elaine's Dance Studio. Because everyone loves pineapples!"
- Suspiciously Specific Denial: "Frederick's Ovens. Absolutely no chance of catching fire after using our products!"
- Self-Deprecation: "Our slogan is terrible."
Compare and contrast What Were They Selling Again?, when a slogan or ad is so good that it fails by detracting from the more important message "Buy our product." See also Our Product Sucks, when this is invoked intentionally for Reverse Psychology, and Asbestos-Free Cereal, when they try to imply the competition's product sucks.
- The Far Side: I cuss, you cuss, we all cuss for asparagus!
- Marvel's Roxxon Oil corporation, in the 1989 "Marvel: A Year in Review" (which was written as an in-universe magazine), had a big ad where in parody of the Exxon Valdez spill, their slogan was "There's plenty more where that came from."
- Walter Moers has an entire strip about a creative company owner losing his knack for catchy slogans as he grows old and senile, to the point that everyone is hugely relieved when he finally dies. Unfortunately he has willed that all of his remaining slogans must stay in use... or all the money goes into the Invented Just To Annoy My Inheritors trust. The marketing department is forced to run each slogan above a foot-high disclaimer asking the reader to consider the mental state of its author.
- "America's Best Comics! Where 'quality' isn't just a motto — it's a slogan!"
- In Batman: Dark Detective by Steve Englehart and Marshall Rogers, The Joker ran for Gotham City Mayor under the slogan, "Vote for Me or I'll Kill You!" Given that this was the Joker, at least he was being honest.
- In one Judge Dredd Megazine strip, a character's run-down apartment includes a box of cereal with Not Tony the Tiger saying "It's okay!"
- The Bolt Chronicles: Played with in "The Coffee Shop." Penny's mom jokingly refers to a pair of coffee shop franchises with slogans that are clearly not official in-universe.
She much preferred [Queequeg's] to their chief rivals, Dippy Donuts ("Their motto should be 'Our coffee's stronger than a brown crayon dipped in hot water — but not much stronger'," she liked to joke) and Joe Orton's (a brew she thought best suited to the Jolt Cola crowd, or as she would quip, "Hammer down a cup of Joe's").
- Turnabout Storm has Phoenix blaming the slow business on the stupid slogan his assistant Maya came up with for his law office: "Wright & Co. Office: Defending you like it's nuttin' baby!". Later on this becomes the least of his problems.
Phoenix: That silly slogan Maya came up with must be what's making business this slow. I should really have it revised... Scratch that, I NEED to have it revised! Who are we trying to attract, grade-school students?
- After Phoenix returns home, he tells Maya about her silly slogan, but Maya just thinks Phoenix isn't telling it with enough "oomph!".
- The slogan they used at the end of the trailer for Bébé's Kids was "It's animation..." Yes, it even sounds like it trails off. Apparently not even the trailer had faith on the movie.
- A slightly longer version gives the correct slogan: "It's animation with an attitude." It's unclear where the truncated version came from, but it became infamous after being mocked by The Nostalgia Critic.
- The Dudley Moore vehicle Crazy People concerned Moore as an adman who went a bit crazy, telling people "the truth". Real products were used, such as: "Metamucil. It helps you go to the toilet. If you don't use it, you'll get cancer and die." "Jaguar — sleek and smart. For men who'd like handjobs from beautiful women they hardly know." "Volvo — they're boxy but they're good." and finally "Sony: Because Caucasians are just too damn tall." A scene that features a slew of the aforementioned slogans and others features a rather blunt slogan in a campaign for the Greek tourism bureau: "Forget France. The French can be annoying. Come to Greece — we're nicer!"
- Idiocracy: "Brawndo. It's got electrolytes!" Also: "Carl's Jr. Fuck you, I'm eating."
- In Kicking & Screaming, Buck's sporting goods store uses the slogan "He's Got Balls!" It adds "...and vitamins!" at the end when Phil joins his father's business.
- The "Ocean Breeze Soap" slogans in The Muppets Take Manhattan — "Ocean Breeze Soap: For People Who Don't Want to Stink"; "Ocean Breeze Soap: It's Just Like Taking an Ocean Cruise Except There's No Boat and You Don't Actually Go Anywhere" and the winner "Ocean Breeze Soap Will Get You Clean". It gets funnier when one of the other frogs says, "You mean, just tell people what the product does? No ones ever tried that."
- In Bill Murray's Scrooged, his television network has the cringe-inducing Christmas slogan "Yule love it!" ABC's slogan during the 1985-1986 season (when Scrooged was being filmed) was "You'll Love it!"
- Cult film Putney Swope is this and then some, showing an advertising firm after the Token Black gets control and steers the entire company into most unusual waters.
- Hellzapoppin' includes a film studio called Miracle Pictures. Slogan: "If it's a good picture, it's a Miracle!" (This gag was later reused by ˇThree Amigos!, Joe Dante's Hollywood Boulevard, and a Real Life record label.)
- Johnny and the Dead: "If it's a boot, it's a Blackbury!" Later on, the company who wants to destroy the graveyard has the slogan "Forward to the future". Johnny says it makes the boot slogan sound good in comparison.
- The Sheriff of Yrnameer has a Running Gag with the Firestick weapon marketing department and the tendency of their slogans to increase the size of the resulting holes in proportion to the model number of the firearm in question.
- An Azazel story features the slogan "Shrink the Stink!" which is then inexplicably successful.
- In Soul Music, Plugger the shoemaker comes up with "PLUGGERS. They've Got Soles. FEEL THE NALES."
- The Compleat Ankh-Morpork City Guide comes up with a lot of these, including Bucket's Mostly Cheese Spreads "They really spread!" and Higgs and Meakin chocolatiers "For chocolate that melts in your mouth, not in someone else's".
- The Ankh-Morpork Post Office has the classic "Neither rain, no snow, nor gloom of night..." posted on their building...followed by a list of things they refuse to deal with like "Any black dogs with orange eyebrows" and "Mrs. Cake". And the slogan was missing letters for many years because someone stole them to advertise a hairdressers.
- The advertisements at the back of the Thursday Next novels. Why not holiday in the People's Socialist Republic of Wales, slogan "Not always raining"?
- Dave Barry Slept Here points to the failure of advertising campaigns like these to recruit new sailors:
BE ALL THAT YOU CAN BE!
Become a Hardy Mariner
"Get Lost and Die."
- Relativity takes place in the (fictional) city of Gale City, Indiana. The city's slogan is "You are here."
- The Smile Syndicate's slogan from Dan Shamble, Zombie P.I. is "We hope your day is a sunny one" ... which might not be so bad, except that they continue right on using it at subsidiaries inside the Unnatural Quarter, where much of the populace happen to be vampires or otherwise nocturnal by nature.
- They're still doing better than weather wizard Richard Thudner's campaign slogan: "Be a Dick supporter."
- In Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Cabin Fever, a box of Bac'n Snax has the slogan "Made with REAL animal by-products" printed on it.
- In 30 Rock, the Sheinhardt Wig company has the slogan "Not Poisoning Rivers Since 1997", as well as "You Can Always Tell A Sheinhardt" (a terrible slogan for a wig manufacturer, specifically).
- On Better Off Ted, a running gag was commercials for the company. They would always end with a slogan. Some were only funny in context, but others fit this trope, including:
- "Teamwork — it keeps our employees gruntled"
- "Virtual Dynamics — because you can't spell INDIVIDUAL without VIRIDIAN. And U.(pause) And an L."
- "Food. Yum."
- And, after the show was preempted for a Presidential Address — "When presidents talk, Americans get hurt."
- The Wesayso Corporation on Dinosaurs: "WESAYSO: We'll do what's right, if you leave us alone," "WESAYSO: We don't like to have our feelings hurt" and "WESAYSO: We know where you live."
- Dinosaurs also featured parody of the then-current Bud Dry commercials, whose slogan was "Why ask why? Drink Bud Dry." The Dinosaurs version: "Why ask why? Drink...alcohol."
- The Goodies:
- A faux commercial has a spot for Bristo's gravy in which "Tie Me Kangaroo Down" songwriter Rolf Harris (Graeme Garden) comes home for dinner at his mum's (Tim Brooke-Taylor), takes a bite of his dinner with the gravy and keels over dead. The tagline: "Bristo's...gets rid of Rolf Harrises fast!"
- And "Might As Well Be String" is full of these, e.g,:
Harvest MoonThe scent that lingersBuy someOr I'll break your fingers!
- Monty Python's Flying Circus:
- The "Conquistador Coffee" sketch. An ad writer comes up with campaign slogans such as "Conquistador Coffee brings a new meaning to the word vomit" and "The tingling fresh coffee which brings you exciting new cholera, mange, Singapore ear, dropsy, the clap, hard pad and athlete's head. From the House of Conquistador".
- The Whizzo Butter animated segment:
Uncle Sam: Yes, mothers! New Whizzo Butter, with 10% more less, is completely indistinguishable from a dead crab! Remember, buy Whizzo Butter, and go to Heaven!
- My Name Is Earl: In the backstory Earl and Randy went to the Right Choice Ranch for troubled youth, which went through a series of Accidental Innuendo slogans that imply pedophilia: "Touching Bad Boys Since 1963", "Bringing Boys to Their Knees Since 1963", and "Forcing Boys to Turn Around Since 1963". In the present day they appear to have given up and settled on outright stating "We Don't Do Anything Inappropriate to the Boys", which itself just sounds like Suspiciously Specific Denial.
- Saturday Night Live:
- The entire "Nut-rific" skit is about a candy company trying to get their ad agency to come up with a jingle that isn't terrible, and failing. They start with "Nut-rific, it does nut taste good!" and just get worse.
- The classic is a parody of the Smucker's Jam slogan "With a name like Smucker's, it's got to be good." Each pitch person comes up with a more and more revolting name until the last one is so repulsive even the pitch people couldn't bear it.
Woman: "Ten Thousand Nuns and Orphans! What's so bad about that?"Man: "They were all eaten by rats!"
- Most (if not all) of Saturday Night Live's fake commercials (and sometimes, the station IDs to real cable networks they parody, i.e., "You're watching The Food Network. Porn for fat people," or "You're watching A&E, which means you're old or you fell asleep on the remote.") will have this.
- During the 1992 campaign Phil Hartman's impersonation of Bill Clinton talked this way about Arkansas: for example, re: toughness on crime, "Clinton" claimed Arkansas had passed Florida to be number two in lethal injections, and first in crushed by heavy stones!
- "Shaun Mondavi Vineyards" ends with the narrator reading the tagline, "For when excellence and burnished fineries need to gently visit the warmth of your tablery," and then wondering aloud, "What the hell does that mean?!"
- The Thin Blue Line's town had the slogan "It's not as bad as you think".
- That Mitchell and Webb Look:
- One featured an advertising company which specialized in creating slogans that simply described what a company did in a slightly irritating way. Problems arise when the slogans being produced aren't up to spec. And it turns out all the workers are evil bastards who enjoy how terrible their work is.
- This gets called back to in a later Captain Todger sketch that episode, where it turns out this company has given the police the slogan "The people who arrest people".
- The fake ad for Cressps, an apparently healthy deep fried crisp/chip substitute.
Robert: Once you cressp, you just can't splessp!David: That doesn't make any sense!Robert: (spits crisps out) Oh, GOD, they're horrid!
- One featured an advertising company which specialized in creating slogans that simply described what a company did in a slightly irritating way. Problems arise when the slogans being produced aren't up to spec. And it turns out all the workers are evil bastards who enjoy how terrible their work is.
- WKRP in Cincinnati:
- Most businesses that advertise on the title radio station have hilariously bad slogans. Standouts include "Hutchins' Community Hospital: Where malpractice is rapidly becoming a thing of the past!" and the bait-selling business "Red Wigglers: the Cadillac of worms!"
- They did an entire episode about trying to get rid of a sponsor (Ferriman Funeral Home). They attempted to do a commercial so outrageous that he'd tear up his contract in disgust (a singing commercial with a bouncy tune: "It ain't no use to deny it / one day you're gonna buy it"). The client loved it.
- The Colbert Report's fake medicine company "Prescott Pharmaceuticals":
- "What doesn't kill you makes you part of our class-action settlement."
- "Now with more side effects! Collect 'em all!"
- "We have a medicine for any ailment caused by our previous medicine."
- "You might have gone blind even without taking our product."
- "See what everyone's suing about."
- "We'll put a smile on your face. And sometimes your spine."
- "Your body will thank you, because your torso has grown a mouth."
- "If you've never heard of us, we may have caused your memory loss."
- "One man's medical malpractice is another man's anatomical skeleton."
- "Quality pharmaceuticals since 1989. Established 1910."
- "We never settle for less. We settle out of court."
- Colbert also does this with parodies of Enforced Plugs for real companies, such as "Mazda: It's not your father's Oldsmobile. (Beat) Because it's a Mazda."
- The Daily Show often used terrible slogans to comedic effect when titling segments. Often they have a joke about pedophilia.
- For a children's interest segment: "Jon Stewart Looks at Children's Things."
- A segment with cartoons: "Jon Stewart's Story Hole! Remember, it's our little secret."
- A segment on the negative influence of Twitter: "Jon Stewart Looks at Kid's Junk."
- For a segment on finding a job, the writers hit an increasingly exasperated Jon with more and more overtly sexual slogans. It goes from "Jon Stewart Fills the Openings" to "Jon Stewart Puts You in Unusual Positions" to "Jon Stewart Gives You a HAND and a JOB."
- The League of Gentlemen's Legz Akimbo theatre troupe display their slogan on their van: "Put yourself inside a child". The town of Royston Vasey itself is "You'll Never Leave!" which has omninous undertones.
- Home Improvement had a couple of these with Tim plugging Binford Tools on his Show Within a Show.
"If it doesn't say Binford on it, somebody else makes it.""If your tool says 'Binford' — GET OUT OF THE HOUSE! TOOLS AREN'T SUPPOSED TO TALK TO YA!"
- On The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin, Reggie puts together a company to make and sell useless items. In keeping with this theme, he hires his incompetent son-in-law to create slogans for the firm.
Tom:: "Go to Grot Shops and get an eyeful/of Perrin's products with a wide range of goods that are really pretty awful."
Reggie: It almost rhymes and scans properly, that's the important thing. This is exactly what I'm paying you for.
Tom:: Thank you. Well, I'll just give you one more, perhaps: 'Grot is the ideal place for gifts/ because they're all on one floor/ so there aren't any lifts.' They aren't all of that standard, of course.
- On April Fools' Day 1975, most of the products in The Price Is Right's gag Showcase were described in a satirical manner. The cheap "organ" note was described as "Guaranteed to make you popular... unless people don't like you!"
- In an episode of A Bit of Fry and Laurie that was supposedly Product Placement for "Tidyman's Carpets," Hugh delivered their slogan: "The deep shag that really satisfies."
- Parks and Recreation being a mockumentary about a town in Indiana, had a whole collection of bad slogans that were used throughout the history of the town. Highlights include: 1974-1976 slogan "Entering Pawnee, Engage with Zorp" after the town was taken over by a cult, the 1977-1985 slogan "It's Safe to be Here Now", and their current slogan "Pawnee: First in Friendship, Fourth in Obesity". Find them here.
- Dalton Humphrey's less than inspiring "We got stuff...maybe buy some" on The Red Green Show.
- Starbix in The Hitch Hikers Guide To The Galaxy 1981 (the breakfast cereal that the Guide cribbed all that "Space" stuff from the back of) has the slogan "Nasty ... but nourishing", a parody of the National Dairy Council's contemporary cream cake adverts, which had the slogan "Naughty. But nice".
- Corner Gas: The talent show in the episode "Cousin Carl" is sponsored by Chuck Dragner's Pre-Owned Farm Equipment. Wanda, acting as MC, reads his slogan, "If you can't trust the Chuck you're talking to, you're talking to the wrong guy named Chuck," then tells Chuck that he needs a better slogan.
- Los Espookys: Renaldo's business card for Los Espookys, a group that uses special effects to fake supernatural phenomena, features the slogan "We're not ghostbusters... It's different."
- The Annals of Improbable Research ran fake ads for HMO Black (later HMO-NO), which advertised its avaricious health care plans with the too-honest slogan: "Because we care about you, and your pocketbook."
- In a Capitol Steps pre-song sketch, Pat Buchanan invites the audience to chant his new campaign slogan: "We Can't Stand Pat!"
- Not just a Freeze-Frame Bonus, but an enhanced zoom one, Hooper's Store Marmalade◊ in Sesame Street has the slogan "If you've tried the best ... then it's time to try ours!" It's also "Made exclusively from free-range fruits and barks!"
- French Canadian Francois Perusse's radio skits Les Deux Minutes du Peuple frequently feature those. Notable example includes community radio CDKC (loosely translates from french to "broken CD") that uses a different one with every station ID and the man calling various businesses over the phone, each one answering with their slogan.
- "CDKC, one antenna, one listener. And sometimes just one antenna."
- The D Generation's spoof radio ads usually ended with one of these, such as "The Slag Club! Not just a nightclub, but a cheap hotel someone slapped a coat of paint on and renamed!".
- John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme: One sketch has a school trying to come up with a motto. They don't have a lot of luck.
- According to The News Quiz, Leicester now plays on its royal connotations with the slogan "Leicester: We found a skeleton in a carpark once". This replaces the previous slogan "Leicester: At least it's not Derby".
- Tom Petty claimed his SiriusXM Buried Treasures show was recorded at Rick's Airport Recorders, offering the best sound in the Los Angeles Airport area.
- In Of Thee I Sing, the various campaign slogans waved in "Wintergreen for President" range from basic ("Win With Wintergreen") to idiotic ("A Vote for Wintergreen Is a Vote for Wintergreen") to dubious ("Wintergreen — The Flavor Lasts") to cynical ("He Kept Us Out of Jail").
- Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street: When Todd first enters Ms. Lovett's business she sings a whole song that works as a terrible slogan: "The Worst Pies in London".
- The Disney Theme Parks ride Star Tours II: The Adventures Continue uses Obi-Wan's "wretched hive of scum and villainy" description as an actual slogan for the cantina.
Jerk: You might as well make a tourism video that said "Detroit! It's a Shithole Full of People Who Steal!"
- The products advertised on GTA Radio have this come up a lot. For example, one of the taglines for Giggle Cream: "It's completely legal thanks to a loophole at the FDA!"
- In the Zork universe, Frobozz Electric, the evil technology conglomerate which replaced Frobozz Magic in the wake of the Magic Inquisition, has numerous such slogans in their public address announcements in Zork: Grand Inquisitor. Among these:
- "Frobozz Electric: We are the boss of you"
- "Frobozz Electric: We bring bad things to life" note
- "Frobozz Electric: We bring good things to ourselves" note
- You will see those often in the first two Oddworld games.
Scrab cakes: it will cost you an arm and a leg!Soulstorm Brew, new recipe: twice the bones, twice the taste, twice the price!
- In Megatraveller, SMIRC (The Spinward Marches Interplanetary Raiding Corporation, aka organized space pirates) have the slogan "We have what it takes to take what you have!"
- The default slogan for the Liberal cause in Liberal Crime Squad is "We Need A Slogan!" Squad members can intimidate Conservatives by shouting the slogan or use the slogan as their last words.
- All over the place as flavor text in Penny Arcade Adventures:
- "Jim's Unguents: We Mix'Em Thick"
- "Perceival's Paints Can Be Applied To Surfaces"
- "Mediocre Pies: They're Just Alright"
- "Hats Now!"
- "What Makes It Grandma's Best Tea? All The Crushed Beetles"
- Mann Co. "We sell products and get in fights!"
- Later expanded to "We make Hats, Guns, Bats, Bombs, Bazookas, Camera Beards, Comics, Magazines, Portable Baccarat Detectors, Banners, Swords, Shields and get in fights! Non-employees welcome for gorilla-wrestling Fridays."
- Mann Co Corpse-Grade Quicklime "Just Add Body!"
- The slogan for EarthBound (the actual one, used for marketing) is "This Game Stinks," as part of an odd campaign involving scratch-and-sniff cards sold alongside the game. They were aiming for Toilet Humor, despite the game itself not having much of that. Yeah, that's probably why the sales went badly.
- The sponsors' advertisements from the beginning of Runner2:
"Schlörtz Premium Malt Fluid: It's wet!""Shorty's Milk Brine: It could be worse!"
- Fallen London:
"Best wares. Best prices. No spiders."
- The Echo Bazaar has some normal-sounding slogans, but the one for Nikolas Pawnbrokers is a little unsettling:
- Meanwhile, the one for Merrigans Exchange is just silly
"Celebrating Twenty Years Without An Apostrophe"
- In Wario: Master of Disguise, one of the antagonists is a Corrupt Corporate Executive named Carpaccio. His company's slogan is "We're hard at work watching your back... That way it's easier to pick your pocket!"
- In Undertale, the slogan for the Spider Bake Sale:
"Made by spiders, for spiders, of spiders."
- And for Spider Cider, an item in the game:
"Made from real spiders. Not just the juice."
- And for Spider Cider, an item in the game:
- According to a commercial in Resident Evil: Revelations 2, TerraSave's slogan is "Because 'Terr' doesn't have to end with 'rist.'"
- Mass Effect 2 has Tupari Sports Drink, whose bizarre slogans include "Tupari, brings your ancestors back from the grave"note and "I knew a man who didn't drink Tupari sports drink for three days, he got hit by a shuttle!"
- The Outer Worlds has a number of examples. You get the feeling that marketing is one of many places where the shoddily-run corporate dystopia that is the Halcyon system has cut corners:
- The Spacer's Choice company, whose product line is deeply unreliable, poorly made knockoffs sold at discount. Their slogan "It's not the best choice, it's Spacer's Choice!" pretty much admits this.
- C&P Boarst Wurst. "It's not the wurst unless it's boarst wurst." Boarst wurst is actually pretty decent by most accounts, if you can get past it being made from cysts that slough off genetically engineered pigs.
- Rizzo's, a manufacturer of candy, soft-drinks, and other foods, produces such gems as "Rizzo's Lemon Slapp! Slapp your whole family tonight!"
- Paper Mario: The Origami King: Overlook Tower's slogan is "The tower with a gift shop." The Toad who tells Mario about it assures him it's still being worked on.
- The Jackbox Party Pack: Predatory Loans in Bidiots is a loan company with a number of musical jingles that tend to be about what a bad idea it is to borrow from them.
Pred-a-tor-y Loans! We really hope you don't read the fiiine priiint!
- Saints Row 2 has some of the radio ads you can hear while driving.
- "Bling Bling: The term may be outdated, but our marketing department doesn't care!"
- "Brass Knuckles: because sometimes you really wanna beat the hell out of people!"
- Then there's "Ship It", a boat selling business. Their ads feature a russian guy named Vladimir doing stuff like admiting their boats are used in human trafficking or threatening to kill you if you don't buy from them, much to the chagrin of the director.
Ship it: Bad at marketing, great at boats!
- Barn Finders: The slogan for the company M.I.K.K.O. is "M.I.K.K.O.! It should work!".
- Evil Genius: The slogan of De Laager's Diamond Mining Corporation is "We turn rocks into gold, metaphorically speaking."
- Cragne Manor: According to real estate agent Bethany, the slogan of the town of Backwater is "Backwater: You Get Used To It."
- Subnormality — ZAP Protein Snack: "Don't buy it — it's a ripoff!!"
- Awkward Zombie has this little gem: "Luigi's Vacuums! We suck!"
- A prison tattoo artist in Something*Positive uses the slogan "Come see Edna, you won't get hepatitis!"
- Girl Genius: Mamma Gkika's bottle of Jäger battle-draught claims it is "Slightly Better than Death!" on the label.
- The Girl in A Girl and Her Fed drinks at a bar called Captain Tony's: "We Will Get You Drunk".
- The Idoru robot store in Questionable Content advertises the latest AnthroPCs with the slogan "Guaranteed not to go insane and kill your loved ones!"
- In xkcd, the xkcd Phone has the meaningless slogan "Your mobile world just went digital!®"
- xkcd Phone 2: "A phone for your other hand®"
- xkcd Phone 3: "We made another one®©™"
- xkcd Phone 4: "Did you know '4' is 'IV' in Roman numerals?®©™"
- xkcd Phone 5: "We're trying to catch up with Apple but refuse to skip numbers®™"
- xkcd Phone 6, VIII, 10, X, 26, and 1876: "We didn't start this nonconsecutive version number war, but we will not lose it.™®©°"
- The Adventures of Dr. McNinja: "We don't hire night janitors"
- Ozy and Millie: The local grocery store is Pay 'n Pay "Where freshness is a possibility."
- Precocious: Do-Dah's, known for making mediocre ice cream has "Look, it's ice cream. Isn't that enough?"
- It later gets replaced with Pooters Ice Cream, which despite apparently being health code compliant, always get accidental Toilet Humor into their advertisements. Their slogan is "It's Country Kindness Y'all!"
- BIGTOP BURGER: The "Hot Tires...Hot Burgers" slogan plastered on the side of the van has little to do with the food truck's theme, and it's rather nonsensical on its own.
- Homestar Runner loves to make these. Here are some examples:
- "Homestarrunner-dot-net" "Psst. It's 'dot-COM'." "Homestarrunner-dot-net. It's dot-com!"
- "Bubs' Old Pizza: It's-a Really Old!"
- "Cheat Commandos. Buy all our playsets and toys!"
- Fluffy Puff Marshmallows: "They're fluffity, they're puffity, one-two-three-four-five."
- And for the Halloween-colored "Malloweens": "They're orange, doot doot. They're black, doot doot. Look for the one with me on the bag. Dressed as a vampire."
- "They Taste the Same, but Look Different!"
- "Hollerin' Jimmy's Hobby Kit: We have no idea what's in this box!!" and "Hollerin' Jimmy's Hovercraft Kit: There is no way this thing really works!!"
- "Styles upon Styles. Steep Prices and Trees!"
- "Blubb-O's. You guessed it, we're called Blubb-O's."
- "Pistols for Pandas. This good cause is good! ...'cause!"
- "Videlectrix. We use computers... to make video games!"
- From an Easter Egg on sbemail #98: "The Cheatcakes: Only liars and thieves eat Grumblecakes, and those people go to prison! Just ask The Cheat!"
The Cheat: (subtitled) Those people go to prison!
- "Hot Pooey: Oh dear God, what have we done?"
- "The Strong Mad Oyster-Smoothie-Breath-Caked-Armpit Latte: Oh my sweet Jennifer, there's no coming back from this one."
- "JoshCO: Makers of funny products and funnier slogans", and their only known product, "The Stab Yourself: Try NOT to stab yourself!"
- "SteaKasTle: We Put Two Steaks in Our Name!" (One is the word "steak". The other is the letter T.)
- The Onion: In this article, an ad agency finds out the hard way that the slogans "Merit—Makin' You Feel All Small 'n' Flaccid" and "Merit—Love That Limply Dangling Taste" do not encourage 35- to 50-year-old males to buy cigarettes. In the wake of this marketing failure, the agency prepares to roll out its campaign to sell tampons with slogans like "Tampax—For Those Awkward Bleeding-From-Your-Crotch Days."
- The second of Mike Polk's viral "Hastily Made Cleveland Tourism Videos" includes the slogan "At least we're not Detroit!"
- Some of the short videos created by Steam Powered Giraffe are ads for the fictitious company, Walter Robotics. Their slogan is simply, "Walter Robotics: We Make Robots." And G.G. the Giraffe outright points it out at the end of one: "That is a terrible slogan. You should have me write it next time."
- Brainscratch Commentaries' playthrough of Mario Party 4 gives us one. A minigame called Order Up has you find food items on a conveyor belt as Toad calls them out. After one game, Ted coins the slogan 'RNG Café: You may like it'.
- Subverted in Being the Elite. During The Elite's attempt to include public service announcements, there was the slogan "BTE is drug free, and that's the way to be!"
- In the Animator vs. Animation series video Animation VS Youtube, two such examples are shown via Youtube ads, both of which are about vacuums:
- We-Suck Vacuums: "We suck more than any of our competitors."
- Drag Vacs: "Life... is a drag."
- Subverted and discussed in RWBY. Emerald and Mercury enter 'Tukson's Book Trade' pretending to be customers to murder the owner. Emerald asks for different books before she catches one they don't carry and makes Tukson recite the slogan — "Home to Every Book Under the Sun". The two point out the catchphrase is untrue, and when Tukson tries to brush it off, Mercury dramatically accuses him of false advertising and they drop the charade.
Tukson: It's just a catchphrase.
Mercury: It's false advertising!
- The All Grown Up! episode "Tweenage Tycoons" had the gang try to get money for a concert by selling products that Dil Pickles comes up with, with Angelica and Harold attempting to do the same by selling knockoffs of Dil's products. At one point, they sell a knockoff of Dil's shillows (pillows worn as shoes) called "poos", with Harold giving the slogan "There's nothing better to have on your foot than a nice soft poo."
- Possibly not meant to be the official, maker-approved slogan, but the supermarket PA system in the Arthur episode "D.W. Gets Lost" advertises a sale on chocolate-covered cabbage, "the dessert that makes you go 'Bleagh!'"
- Unintentional example: in The Backyardigans episode "Chichen-Itza Pizza", the slogan of the titular pizzeria is "We deliver".
- Big Hero 6: The Series has Alistair Krei's line of automated garbage trucks, which can't even actually pick up garbage by themselves: "The future is garbage!" It sure is.
- The Boondocks proposed a number of slogans for BET: "BET - it's what's on in the background," "BET - tell it to someone who gives a fuck," and "BET - 'cause you niggas got nothing better to watch."
- In one episode of Chowder, it's mentioned that the catering company's motto used to be "Mung Daal's Catering; it's better than eating out of a dumpster".
- Craig of the Creek has the breakfast cereal Sensible Oats, whose mascot is a very bored looking gorilla with glasses, and the slogan "They're sufficient."
- Elliott from Earth has an alien junkfood called "Kretzels". The slogan on the bag is "Now banned in 4 galaxies!"
- Family Guy
- When Peter advertises for a car dealership, the slogan is "At Wilkins Hyundai and Subaru, we have Hyundais and Subarus!"
- "Lifetime: Television for idiots."
- Tasty Juice: drink it then convert it to pee.
- Hurry Up Shrimp, Hurry Up Shrimp, Hurry Up, Hurry Up, Hurry Up Shrimp!
- "Sorry: The board game that teaches you to be a dick!"
- "Nickelodeon: casually ask your daughter what that girl's name is then take your laptop into the bathroom."
- The Freakazoid! episode "Mission: Freakazoid!" is sponsored (in-universe) by Anubis Markets (A division of Osiris Foods) — "For food so good, you can eat it!"
- "Slurm! It's highly addictive!"
- Continuing the reversal above, the slogan for heroin and crack vending machines is simply "Refreshing!"
- Gunderson's Unshelled Nuts. They're nut so good!
- Fishy Joe's: "Come for the food then get the hell out."
- Bachelor Chow: "Now with flavor."
- The Cygnoid pizzeria: "You've tried the rest! Now we're open!"
- Fronty's Meat Market: Not a Front Since 2997!
- "Thank you for using Stop & Drop, America's favorite suicide booth since 2008!"
- Gravity Falls
- In "Dipper vs. Manliness", the slogan on Greasy's Diner is "We have food."
- In a flashback in "Dreamscapers" we see Stan selling vacuum cleaners door-to-door.
Stan: Stan-Vac! It sucks more than anything. (door slams) Gotta work on that.
- Stan's flashback in "A Tale of Two Stans" shows a few more products with terrible slogans Stan tried to sell for a living, including the Sham-Total ("It's a total sham!") and Rip-Off bandages ("They WON'T give you rashes!").note
- Hamster & Gretel: Frank's Discount Costumes: "You'll Get Something in a Box" and "They May Smell Like Onions".
- In House of Mouse, one of the types of cartoons is "Mickey, Donald and Goofy run a business. Hilarity Ensues." Often, their business's name is something straightforward that just says what they do (though "what they do" is often absurdly specific or otherwise implausible), and the tag line Mickey answers the phone with is just a repetition of that. For example, "Organ Donors. We donate organs!" (as in musical instrument) or "Roller Coaster Painters. We paint roller coasters!"
- Kim Possible: One of Dr. Drakken's schemes to Take Over the World is to distribute a shampoo containing mind control serum. He brands the stuff "Dr. D's Brainwashing Shampoo and Cranium Rinse", and gives it the slogan "Lather, Rinse, and OBEY!"
Shego: Aren't you being a little too upfront here?
Drakken: Truth in labeling laws, Shego. I'm a supervillain, not a corporate shyster!
- In The Powerpuff Girls (1998) we get to see a septic tank truck that reads "Bob's Septic World - We're full of it!"
- In Rejected, the segments for "Johnson & Mills" feature slogans that veer between this trope and Surreal Humor.
Johnson & Mills Fish Sticks: "Now With More Sodium!" "Sweet Jesus!"
Johnson & Mills Kelp Dip: "I Am a Consumer Whore!" "And How!"
- in one episode of Rick and Morty, Jerry proposes the advertising slogan, "Hungry for apples?"
- Every single organization in The Simpsons has such a slogan. From Springfield Prison — "If you were a murderer, you'd be home by now!", to Costington's Department Store — "Over a Century Without a Slogan".
- Monstromart: "Where shopping is a baffling ordeal"
- "Stinking Fish Realty. With a name this bad, we've gotta be good."
- Springfield Heights Promenade, a shopping district catering to upper class shoppers: "Our prices discriminate, because we can't."
- SpongeBob SquarePants:
- In "Chum Bucket Supreme", Plankton tries to come up with a slogan for the Chum Bucket. He originally uses "Chum is Metabolic Fuel", but Patrick changes it to the even more nonsensical "Chum is Fum", at which point the Chum Bucket business booms.
- In "Goodbye, Krabby Patty?", Mr. Krabs buys a frozen dinner called "Lonely Crab Dinner for One": a graphic on the box reads, "Now 20% lonelier!"
- Steven Universe: In "Last One Out of Beach City", we see a sign for Ocean Town (last mentioned as the site of some kind of riot in "Political Power") that bears the slogan "No Longer On Fire".
- Wiener Burger in multiple episodes of Tiny Toon Adventures has "Wiener Burgers are so much fun to eat,/If you look real hard, you might even find some meat!"
- For a surprisingly long time, Tisdale, Saskatchewan, had the slogan "The land of rape and honey"; referring to "rapeseed", the original name of canola plants. They eventually changed it to "Opportunity Grows Here".
- An inordinate number of car dealers who got the short stick on locations away from a visible highway try to make the best of it by mentioning they're 'cleverly located behind the mall' or 'a little gem hidden four blocks from the highway'.
- Buffalo, NY car dealer "Mike Barney Nissan" has the slogan "Awesome Cars, Great Dealership... Lousy Jingle".
- Slogan of 105.9 WCKG, then a classic rock radio station in Chicago: "Of all the radio stations in Chicago... we're one of them." (during a time when it was a confused hot talk/classic rock/sports hybrid). It's now a simulcast of all-news WBBM, so you can see how well that worked.
- The webpage banner for the Pokémon fansite The PokéCommunity commonly displays a sentence (or a slight variation of it) above the forums, which states "We Are STILL Working On A Better Slogan." The website's FAQ states that this is the official slogan.
- The launch ad campaign for the 2012 Toyota Yaris: "It's a car!" (To be fair, that's pretty much the vehicle's best selling point.)
- A local Atlanta furniture dealer, Sofa King, has billboards touting "Our prices are Sofa King low." (Think about that a second.) The campaign got banned in one country, and an SNL parody.
- Atlanta sports talk radio station WCNN (680 "The Fan") had a series of spots for morning host Christopher Rude's show "The Rude Awakening" which touted him as "the least interesting man in Atlanta radio" (apeing Dos Equis beer's The Most Interesting Man in the World). Among the attributes: "He doesn't look for Waldo...Waldo looks for him," "When he takes his shirt off, kittens die" and "His vomit is used as soup in fine French restaurants."
- Carlton & United Beverages ran an advertising campaign for Carlton Draught lager, with the slogan "Made From Beer". The ad campaign parodied old-fashioned Australian beer advertising of the '70's and '80's, using cliche images such as draught horses working in golden fields and phrases such as "Pulled By Horses".
- Also from the '70's in Australia, the prosaic slogan from a famous ad for a non-alcoholic beverage called Clayton's — "The drink you have when you're not having a drink". This became so popular (the ad and slogan, not the drink) that "Clayton's" became a standard colloquialism for "ersatz", "fake", or "inauthentic".
- A Pittsburgh-area restaurant chain used this ambiguous slogan: "Winky's makes you happy to be hungry!"
- The New Orleans-area River Parish Disposal (a garbage collection service) has had the same slogan for years. "River Parish Disposal: Our business stinks, but it's picking up!"
- In Kansas City there's a local gardening business called The Grass Pad. Their slogan is "The Grass Pad is high on grass."
- Some septic system and pet waste-removal companies claim to be "#1 In The #2 Business."
- Various plumbing companies also have "You Dump It, We Pump It."
- "You shit it, we git it."
- "Septic tanks emptied. Swimming pools filled. Not same truck."
- Spokane Pump Incorprated, a company in Spokane, Washington that specializes in repairing industrial pumps, has the knowingly outrageous slogan, "We fix things that suck!"
- The Beer Store in Ontario used to have the slogan, "The Beer Store. It's where the beers are."
- In a similar vein from Hobart, Australia we have The Paint Shop "It's where you buy paint."
- Fluke, makers of electrical measuring instruments, used to use the slogan "If it's a good measurement, it must be a Fluke."
- Similarly, Fluke Transportation, a Canadian trucking company, uses "If it's on time, it's a Fluke".
- Like the above example, CHARM Scientific makes various testing instruments for the food production industry. Their slogan is "Nothing works like a CHARM", which kind of accidentally implies that their instruments don't work very well at all...
- In the 1970s, radio station KOME in San Jose, CA (98.5 FM, now KUFX) had slogans which played with the sexual connotations of its call letters, such as "Don't touch that dial, it's got KOME on it!", "KOME all over your radio dial", "You've got KOME oozing out of your speakers", "Wake up with KOME in your ear" and "The KOME spot on your dial". How they got these past the FCC is a Riddle for the Ages.
- A photograph◊ that has gone viral in spanish-speaking communities shows a window repairing service that reads "Bidrios" instead of "Vidrios". The slogan underneath says "We wrote it wrong, but we place them right!"
- Des Moines-based automechanic shop Bill's Whitewall's radio jingle is, "We got tires and shit," (with the shit bleeped) to suggest the business is more interested in auto repairs than catchy advertising.
- All of the Canadian provinces and territories have different slogans on their licence platesnote . Most of these brag about some part of the province (Friendly Manitoba, Beautiful British Columbia), a reference to their history or culture (Prince Edward Island's Birthplace of Confederation, Quebec's Je me souviensnote , Alberta's Wild Rose Countrynote ), or are inviting to visitors (Ontario's Yours to Discover). All of them are quite good... except for New Brunswick, who decided to go with Be...In This Place. To make things worse, since New Brunswick is the only province that has both English and French as their official language, they write it in both languages, "Be... in this place ᐧ Être... ici on le peut", apparently just so they can confuse people in two languages instead of just one.
- The short-lived Miracle Records label, one of the more obscure Motown imprints, had for slogan "If it's a hit, it's a Miracle!", reportedly coined as a joke by Motown publicist Al Abrams. It ended up being prophetic, as the label only had one hit ("Greetings [This Is Uncle Sam]" by the Valadiers, a #98 hit) in its single year of operation in 1961.
- The Rax restaurant chain adopted the slogan, "You Can Eat Here". Alongside this was the introduction of Mr. Delicious, an aggressively off-putting and unlikable mascot that uttered baffling and sometimes disturbing non-sequiturs that were somehow intended to be enticements to eat at Rax. This attempt at hipster-like irony did Rax's dwindling profits no favors, and the chain went bankrupt only three months later.
- "HeadOn, apply directly to the forehead." Eventually, The Powers That Be realized how annoying it was and started running commercials where someone would interrupt the slogan to complain about it.
- Philadelphia-area car dealership Barbera Autoland had a wide-ranging radio commercial campaign with the slogan, "Is Barbera's the best? Yeah, I guess!" It was intended to be I guess! as in, "Yes, indeed" (that very current slang), but when read with insufficient pep, it becomes a verbal shrug of mediocrity. Later they changed it to the slightly more enthusiastic "Boy, I guess!", but it's not much of an improvement.
- Schaefer Beer's slogan "Schaefer is the one beer to have when you're having more than one" has prompted a lot of jokes over the years — most of them about the implicit suggestion that Schaefer is what you drink if you mainly just want to get blitzed and taste is unimportant.
- "Weird Al" Yankovic's Jackson Park Espresso coffee bears the slogan "Our coffee's so good you'll want to drink it!"
- A foam rubber seller in Lynchburg, Virgina, which has an entrance at the back of the building, features a large sign out front that reads, "Shepphard's Foam Rubber: Cut to size. Apply in rear."