Seinfeld, Gates Tout Microsoft

Bill Gates and Jerry Seinfeld go shopping in the eagerly awaited first Microsoft commercial by Crispin Porter + Bogusky. The scenario takes place at “Shoe Circus,” where the slogan is, “Why Pay More?”

Despite an awkward start, there are a few good Seinfeld-esque gags about “nothing” in the first part of the 90-second spot. Bill G. tries on a pair of sensible, tie-up shoes called “The Conquistador” that are made out of “pleather” — and the fit is a “little tight.” Jerry says he stretches his by wearing them in the shower. The funniest moment comes when Gates shows an I.D. card to earn “Big Top Points.” The photo is a nerdy original of him from the late ’70s. He looks like the “McLovin'” guy in Superbad.

Give Gates extra platinum Big Top Points for being able to make fun of himself (and his reputation for being cheap).

At the same time, the spot shoots itself in Bill’s size 10 Conquistadors several times — and there’s a lot wrong with that.

It will do far more for reviving Seinfeld’s career than boosting Microsoft’s brand image, especially since one of the jokes involves a Latino family standing outside the discount store, their plaintive faces pressed up against the glass, speaking in Spanish with subtitles. Seinfeld famously took place in NYC but rarely showed anyone who wasn’t white, and if it did, that non-white person was almost certainly a caricature.

The family has no idea who Gates is — the dad just knows the “Conquistador” and that it “runs tight.”

Um, sure. Just go ahead and write off the entire Hispanic population of the U.S. They don’t need computers.

The most bizarre though perfectly Seinfeld-ian bit comes in the parking lot at the conclusion, where Jerry asks, “Are they ever gonna come out with something that will make our computers moist and chewy like cake so we can just eat them while we’re working? If it’s yes, give me a signal. Adjust your shorts.”

We are then subjected to something I’d rather not see: the left side of Bill Gates’ ass shaking. That gesture puts a whole new spin on “multi-tasking.”

“The Future. Delicious” is the sign-off, but I am permanently grossed out by the vision of Gates’ ass wink.

Also, why would they want to use the word “Delicious,” when it is a brand of apple? Altogether, beyond bizarre.