Your Gonna Love My Nuts! The Wacky World of Infomercials Brought to You By Dennis Miller
If you are anything like most of the population, you may suffer from insomnia, myself included. Nothing like waking in the middle of the night to the strange barrage of things people are trying to peddle in the middle of the night. Just last night I woke to a strange infomercial for cooking knives that came with a bonus samurai sword! What, am I slicing watermelon in my kitchen with a sword? Only John Belishi made that look easy!
Lucky for all of us, if you want to re-live these middle-of-the-night selling bonanzas, comedian Dennis Miller has a new show on the FOX News subscription service FOX Nation that will cater to this called The Infomercials That Sold Us. The three-part series looks at some of the highest-selling gadgets and the heydays when they were lucrative and when every celeb wanted in on the action. Included are interviews with some of the most notorious players like the late Suzanne Somers with her last in-depth interview before she died in October 2023, Tony Robbins, Brooke Burke, Melissa Rivers, Leeza Gibbons, Billy Banks, Vince Offer, and many more.
Miller stated, “I am very proud to be a part of this project. It’s easy to dismiss the Willy Loman’s who hawked products on late night TV as nothing more than easy punchlines. But ‘The Infomercials That Sold Us’ shows us the humanity of these pitch people; who came from nothing and, armed with self-belief and perhaps a fine mop, made themselves wealthy and famous. It’s the ultimate American success story.”
Episodes at a Glance:
Episode 1: The Innovators
In 1984, after the FCC lifted a rule limiting the amount of commercials that stations could run in an hour everyone started hawking items from exercise equipment, self-help tapes, and mops to quick-get-rich schemes. Some of the biggest names from that era; like Tony Little, Anthony Sullivan, and Tony Robbins share their stories from the early days of the infomercial.
Episode 2: Shining Stars
By the early 1990s, scammers were starting to flood the airwaves and Greg Renker, an infomercial pioneer vowed to Congress to step in and clean it up As a second wave of infomercials started to form celebs were starting to cash in on the craze. Early pioneers like Leeza Gibbons and Suzanne Somers describe how their gambles opened the door for huge names from George Foreman to Cindy Crawford in the late ’90s.
Episode 3: Internet Killed the Infomercial Star
By the early 2000s, late-night airtime was getting expensive, and the airwaves were being dominated by big-budget stars. Brooke Burke, Billy Blanks, and Vince Offer, better known as the ShamWow Guy, share their incredible get-rich stories. By the early 2010s, the golden age of infomercials was coming to an end with the rise of social media. Plus see what some of them are up to now
The Infomercials That Sold Us is streaming now on FOX Nation.