Great Moments In Commercial History: Crazy Eddie

If you ever wonder who people are making fun of when they say things like, “His prices are INSANE!” or “We’re practically giving these away!” it’s this guy. Megan writes:

Any NYC Tri-State area person would remember this (infamous) wacko. I couldn’t decide which I liked better – the candy cane weapon or the magically appearing Christmas tree, so here’s both.

Thanks to everyone who nominated Crazy Eddie, there were a lot of you. More Crazy Eddie inside, should that be your heart’s desire.

If you’d like to nominate a commercial for our weekly series “Great Moments In Commercial History” send us an email at tips [at] consumerist [dot] com. Be sure to put “Great Moments In Commercial History” in the subject. To see other commercials that have been featured in the series, click here.

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  1. jurgis says:

    Wasn’t that company shut down due to some laundering scandal?

    I do remember the commercials though. I think we bought an Atari from them.

  2. Ben Popken says:

    His rhetorical style for the President’s day sale seems to channel a certain famous German with a funny mustache.

  3. voltronguy says:

    Ah, Crazy Eddie, fond memories of childhood. Let’s not forget the massive fraud charges brought against him, and his flight to Israel!

    (To be clear, that’s not Eddie in the commercial)

  4. Falconfire says:

    @jurgis: Huge one, involved the entire family. They figured out they could make more money cooking the books than they ever could as a legit business, and had they not gone public they would have never been caught.

    And yes thats not Eddie, thats Dr Jerry, a disc jockey who does the commercials.

  5. MercuryPDX says:
  6. Felix the Cat says:

    Yeah it was a hired actor. I knew ‘Crazy Eddie’ briefly, he and his brother hit the bucket for bilking his own family company that went public. He fled to Isreal but he told me he returned to be at the bedside of his dying son. I don’t know how much time he got with the boy because he was at the MCC in NYC without bail as he was a flight risk. I think a number of us told him he was ‘insane’ to have returned as he was 100% safe if he stayed in Isreal.

    Easy enough to google his name and find out what happened in the end. I seem to recall he eventually beat the charges on appeal or most of them. I’m just not that interested to go do the research, maybe some other poster will take out 20 min. and update us.

  7. gwong says:

    Thanks for the memories, Consumerist!

  8. GitEmSteveDave says:

    These and anything for ::maniacal laughter:: RACEWAY PARK which had nitro fueled funny car action-action-action, remind me of watching WWOR9 with my grandmother while waiting to hear Llyod Lindsey Young’s weather for cast featuring “thunder-bumpers”

  9. crankymediaguy says:

    @bunkl:

    If there’s a place you don’t want to spend any “quality time,” it’s the MCC. Long story, but I got to spend an evening there once back in the ’90’s.

    If by some chance, you should find yourself there, skip the bacon at breakfast. To crib from an old National Lampoon joke, it’s about U.S.D.A. Okie-dokie grade. Literally more fat than meat.

  10. Falconfire says:

    @GitEmSteveDave: Holy crap does that statement bring back memories. Man that reminds me of the days I used to watch 2 60’s Batman shows and a Star Trek TOS on Channel 11 at like 4-5 o’clock when I came home from elementary school.

  11. banderlin says:

    Yay! I had almost forgotten about Crazy Eddie. Flashback city… he’s INSANE. Thanks Consumerist!

  12. mr.b says:

    Sam Antar, aka Crazy Eddie, now runs a blog covering white collar fraud from the perspective of a former white collar fraudster. It’s actually pretty interesting and somewhat inline with the general purpose of Consumerist…
    http://whitecollarfraud.blogspot.com/

  13. GitEmSteveDave says:

    @Falconfire: Yes, back when WPIX used the World Trade Center towers as their logo for 11. Don’t forget Phil Rizzuto doing the Yankee play-by-play. And when the game was over at like 12 am, you could always cach the Honeymooners.

  14. Stan LS says:

    That brings back memories… They had a Crazy Eddies on Coney Island ave in brooklyn

  15. SamEAntar says:

    For more information about Crazy Eddie’s legendary advertising campaign go to:

    http://www.whitecollarfraud.com/1338552.html

    Respectfully,

    Sam E. Antar (former Crazy Eddie CFO & convicted felon)

    PS: While the ads were great, it should be noted that our success was built on deception and fraud.

  16. riverstyxxx says:

    I remember this store. I was very young at the time, but I had a hat that my dad brought home from the store.