Honest Marketing: The Wheel With Handles

Skepchick reader Ooxman sent us this video as an example of that rare beast, the totally honest ad for those who are skeptical of health and exercise marketing. Bonus: it’s hilarious. I hope the Wheel With Handles makes this guy millions of dollars.

Have you seen any other recent examples of ads that don’t insult your intelligence?

Rebecca Watson

Rebecca is a writer, speaker, YouTube personality, and unrepentant science nerd. In addition to founding and continuing to run Skepchick, she hosts Quiz-o-Tron, a monthly science-themed quiz show and podcast that pits comedians against nerds. There is an asteroid named in her honor.

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  1. I wouldn’t trust them. The price does not include “shipping and handling” and there is no indication how much that might come to. The phone number and mailing address don’t lead to any company info on Google. The name “Johnny Workout” leads only to more copies of the video. Seems a bit shady to me.

  2. Hi everyone, first time posting here… but you knew that already.

    KK, so first detail… do you really want to have abs so muscular that you look preggo? Lol, I am a bit of a fitness geek, more so after my first child and anyone who knows a little something about fitness knows that you do NOT concentrate too much on your abs. At least they didn’t show a before (potbelly) after (rock-hard abs) pics.

    KK next. The shipping and handling comment is a valid point. Not mentioning any cost prevents a lawsuit when they turn around and charge $30, $40 maybe $50 to your credit card… that you naively gave them, so now they can do whatever they want. They’ll even be so kind and put it on the bill of sale (to make you feel like an idiot). It will also state in very fine print (that you need a microscope to read) that all sales are final.

    Besides, I can make this same thing for under $5.

  3. hehe great spoof. Reminds me of the P & T episode on exercise products and also the Mitchell & Webbs sexist advertising sketch you guys posted here a few weeks ago.

    Since someone else has done a shameless plug here, I will as well, as it’s also relevant. Just started a blog on skepticism and comedy:

  4. I’ve never seen anything like this. I am mesmerized. I’m going to watch this 10,000 times. It’s kind of like a mid ’90s SNL thing.

    There may be other ads like this but my brain is immune to ads these days, it

  5. This reminds me of those Cinemark things they show before the movie; they always say, “25 years of movies and magic.” And I’m always like, “What? Seems to me it’s been 25 years… of MOVIES. That’s all. You can’t just throw magic in there and expect us to be okay with it.”

  6. My grandmother has an older version of this. I mean as a tool for doing planks it works out pretty well.

    But as many have pointed out they may not be outright lying but there is a lot of omission in this commercial.

    However, I would argue with @Cidella while ab exercises don’t do much for you. You also won’t end up looking pregnant usually. I mean even if you overwork the muscles women don’t put on muscle mass easily.

  7. Omission indeed. This thing will not work alone to give you the body shown. First off, you can only get a six-pack if your body fat is reduced enough that it will show. 5 minutes a day of planks is not enough to reduce fat unless you’re also on a diet. Too much dieting and you’ll lose muscle, so no abs.

    Muscle tone increases your metabolism, which helps you lose weight. But even the most bulging abs are a fairly small muscle group.

    Can you tell I live with a total jock?

  8. For some reason I’m struck by the old Carvel commercials, the one with the founder doing the voices so badly. I mean… they were pretty straight up. It’s an ice-cream cake. You eat it. Then you get a sugar buzz. And kids do love dolls, ice cream, and cake.

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