No Appetite Is Too Large at Shoney’s

ATLANTA Doe-Anderson broke its second series of television commercials for Shoney’s Restaurants starring comedian Jeff Foxworthy on cable and broadcast channels last night.

Four 30-second spots from the independent Louisville, Ky., agency tout the Southeast restaurant chain’s all-you-can-eat breakfast and seafood buffets.

The commercials, created by art director Scott Troutman and copywriter Scott Boswell, both executive vice presidents and creative directors, extend the client’s tagline, “We can’t wait to have you over,” which launched in October.

Breakfast promos show Foxworthy making fun of his off-camera (and fictional) Uncle Delbert at the buffet, evidently eating far too much breakfast.

According to Boswell, the creative team was asked to write jokes about the food and the promotions rather than the comedian, although Foxworthy does have script approval on all copy.

“We expected him to bring something to the table,” said Boswell. “He’s either going to tell you it’s great or he’s going to plus the gag.”

An example of the add-on ad-lib comes in the commercials’ last line, said Troutman. Following descriptions of the food and a quick shot to Foxworthy looking as if he can’t believe how much his uncle is eating, he adds, “Delbert, that’s got to be all you can eat.”

To the client’s credit, the ad-libs are included, Troutman said. “We get Jeff for a certain time and if he can come up with something, we go with it,” he said.

Seafood promotions revert to the language puns used in earlier spots. In one, Foxworthy jokes, “Aorta charge more for this seafood plate.”

The promotional spots will air through June 15 in markets in Southeast states, Ohio, Missouri and Texas.