This is a commercial for Jublia, a prescription medicine used to treat toenail fungus. It stars Mario Lopez. Perhaps you’ve seen it. If not, please take a moment to watch it. Actually, even those of you who have seen it already should probably watch it again. Really soak it all in. This is really something.
The plot, if I understand it, is as follows: An actress exits her limousine and steps onto the Red Carpet of what appears to be some sort of high-end awards show — Oscars, Emmys, etc. Mario Lopez, there in the Seacrest role, starts to introduce her only to immediately abandon all rules of professionalism — and polite society, in general — by turning to the camera and shouting “Toenail fungus?!” when he notices the large graphic appear directly above her feet. Let’s briefly pause here to note Mario Lopez’s delivery of this line. It is incredible. I choose to believe they made him audition against other E!-type hosts and this line reading is what got him the job. Kelly Osbourne ain’t giving you that performance. Believe that.
Moving on. After the toenail fungus shows up, a giant anthropomorphic foot that is wearing a purple fedora and bow tie on his big toe, which is also his face, dramatically removes his sunglasses and springs into action, throwing the Toenail Fungus graphic down the Red Carpet and effectively removing it from the proceedings. Mario Lopez, impressed, exclaims, “Oh, epic move, Big J,” and then poses for cameras with the heroic fedora-wearing foot while suggesting the home viewers talk to their doctors about Jublia. Please accept this screencap as proof that none of us are hallucinating right now.
All of this — and I do mean all of it — raises a remarkable amount of questions. I’m sure you have some. God knows I do. Let’s tick off a few of the biggies.
Is… is the foot famous?
That appears to be the implication, yes? That in the universe of this commercial, the fedora-wearing foot with a face on its toe is some sort of movie star? Because at the beginning of the commercial, he is standing on the Red Carpet, inside the ropes, schmoozing with the fans and photographers, and that is something only a celebrity would get to do. And there’s also the thing where Mario Lopez refers to him as “Big J,” which seems to indicate a familiarity of some sort. The foot is almost definitely famous.
Was… was the foot nominated for something?
Because that’s the next logical step here. If the foot is a celebrity, and has been invited to the type of awards show that a network would deploy Mario Lopez to for the purpose of live on-air Red Carpet footage, then he must either (a) have been nominated for an award that night, or (b) have been invited to present an award. And in either scenario, that means he has some sort of body of work in Hollywood. This leads to a near endless run of sub-questions. Is he an action star? Does he stick to thought-provoking dramas? Is he a leading man or a supporting actor? Does Quentin Tarantino always write part for him and then make it all weird on the set? Are you not now dying to see one of the foot’s movies, just to see if he deserves all this acclaim? Are there other talking foot actors out there? Do they all show up to the same audition all the time and make jokes about how the part “stinks?” And so on. I must know more.
Or… no. No, can’t be. Is… is the foot someone’s date? Did someone bring a famous foot as their date to a big fancy awards show. Was it a human? Oh God. Oh no. Now I’m picturing the foot having sex. Oh my God. This will not do. I take it back. I must know less.
Did the actress have toenail fungus already, or did it attack her when she stepped out of the limo?
Because if she did, then Mario Lopez turning to the camera and shouting “Toenail fungus?!” becomes 1,000 percent funnier, because it means he just called her out, on television, for having fungus-encrusted feet. Imagine this happening in real life. Imagine, say, Cate Blanchett stepping out of her limo at the Golden Globes and then Mario Lopez shouting “Toenail fungus?!” at her. This would derail my entire life for a week.
And if it’s the latter scenario, where she was attacked, it means that the universe where this commercial takes place is some kind of nightmarish hellscape where toenail fungus is just flying around waiting to strike and people’s only defense is a single famous five-foot tall foot who wears a purple fedora to formal events in 2015. Why would anyone even leave the house?
Why does the foot that is protecting people from toenail fungus have toenail fungus itself?
Look closely at that screencap. See the little smudge of green under the fedora? Yup. Our hero — and if I may zip back over to the real world for a second, the spokesman a pharmaceutical company (a) chose for a product that removes fungus from toenails, and (b) named after the product — in fact has a wicked case of toenail fungus himself. This literally makes no sense. None. Why would I use the product if the foot can’t even get rid of his own fungus? And why isn’t Mario Lopez grossed out by this, only moments after he shrieked at the appearance of fungus like 20 feet away? What’s going on in ANY OF HERE?
And finally, do you think it was unprofessional for Mario Lopez to stop his Red Carpet broadcast after the fight to shill for a pharmaceutical product?