By now, you’ve probably seen the sketchy, and now infamous, images above. The mugshots are of Vince Shlomi (aka: Vince Offer) of ShamWow! infomercial fame and were taking back in Feb. 2009, after an altercation with a prostitute in Miami. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the story, Shlomi was arrested for slapping the hooker across the chops repeatedly, resulting in fractures and lacerations all over her face. The blood on his face corresponds with his claim that the woman had bit into his tongue and that he was forced to lay his goon hand down in an attempt to get her to release it. If you look into Offer‘s past, you’ll see a history of other questionable moves, including a terribly misguided and vulgar comedy movie, as well as three separate, bizarre lawsuits that he tried to file against The Farrelly Bros, Anna Nicole Smith, and the Church of Scientology. For the large majority, who were only aware of Shlomi from his ShamWow! and Slapchop infomercials, the arrest was shocking and extremely incriminating.
After the scandal, the airing of both commercials slowed tremendously. At the end of June, Shlomi‘s arch rival and Oxyclean pitchman, Billy Mays died of complications relating to cocaine use and an existing heart condition. Since then, I began to see Shlomi‘s commercials resurface slowly, but his presence hasn’t ever really been as strong as it was before the release of the mugshots…. until now.
A couple of hours ago, I was relaxing on my couch when I realized that the Slap Chop information was on television. I was a little faded and thought that I was imagining it at first, but something was definitely different. There was a song playing in the commercial that featured a crazy remix of the dialogue, processed through an auto-tuner and mixed over a techno beat.
The video above was created back in April by a Massachusetts DJ named Steve Porter and placed on Youtube. It spread around fast, becoming an internet sensation and, in July, Vince Shlomi made a deal with Porter to turn his “Rap Chop” music video into an official, televised infomercial for the product. The actual infomercial that I saw today was almost identical to the video above, except that there are a few differences. Of course, the commercial was trimmed down slightly due to it’s length. The other issue was with the copyrighted Breakin‘ material, which was replaced with a corny, suburban-looking B-Girl dancing around to the dance mix on a sound-stage.
Shlomi is nothing if not opportunistic and, instead of simply letting his arrest record overshadow his business interests, he made the next obvious move….he used his new found “street cred” and marketed himself as a rapper.
The DJ Steve Porter and Offer collaboration isn’t dead quite yet. Today, Porter made the following statement from his twitter account
“….we have a debut of the Shamwow Jam coming soon to TV’s as well”
Due to the immediate response of the first video, the “Jam Wow” follow-up remix was created for the ShamWow!, back in May. This second video contains even more copyrighted material, this time from The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and the movie House Party, so I’m sure that this is going to have a few re-edits of it’s own.
Check it out, but don’t get too excited. I don’t know what it is exactly but, as ironic as it sounds, something about the sequel just doesn’t have the same “WOW” factor.