Whoever told House Democratic candidate Dan Helmer this ad was a great idea should reevaluate whether negative attention could be considered good attention.
The candidate is challenging incumbent Rep. Barbara Comstock, a centrist Republican in Virginia’s 10th congressional district.
Inspired by Top Gun, “Helmer Zone” really should have been called “Danger Zone” because then viewers would know they were about to watch a disaster.
There is no aspect of the ad that gives it hope. It opens with Helmer riding up to a bar on his motorcycle in a bomber jacket and, of course, aviator sunglasses. Gotta have the complete ensemble if you’re going to reference the movie.
Helmer then meets with a woman, played by his wife Karen Helmer, who suggests he cannot get Rep. Comstock to hold a town hall. The candidate not only accepts the challenge, but he says, “Town hall? I can do you one better than that. We’ve lost that loving feeling.”
“No, Dan,” his wife tells him. Listen to your wife, Dan!
Helmer grabs a random microphone in the bar and starts singing an awkwardly re-worded rendition of “You’ve Lost That Loving Feeling.”
If all of this looks familiar, that’s because they stole the scene from Top Gun. But it was much more endearing when Maverick and Goose serenaded Charlie:
Maybe Helmer should have taken note from Stinger:
Helmer is not the first House campaign to remake Hollywood for an ad. Archie Parnell spoofed House of Cards when he was running for the South Carolina’ 5th district, a.k.a. Frank Underwood’s seat.