What Goodby unveiled at the Crowne Plaza was unlike anything Kalinske and his colleagues had ever seen before. Quick cuts. Crazy zooms. Wild camera angles. It felt less like watching a regular commercial than like fast-forwarding through one on the VCR. Loud punk music. Intense lens flares. Aggressive close-ups. It looked sort of like a music video, but only if that music video was suffering from manic-depression and had just ingested a cocktail of heroin, cocaine, and speed. Weird lighting, unpretty actors, nonlinear storytelling—the whole thing was off-putting, migraine-inducing, and offensive to the senses, but it was absolutely incredible. And to tie it all together, at the end of every spot some maniac shouted, “Sega!” “And just remember,” Goodby said as the video presentation came to an end, “we’re only a short drive away.” He then played a short video clip of himself, Silverstein, and a few other guys whacking golf balls off the roof of their office building. Except whenever they hit the ball, the real reaction shot was replaced with footage of golf balls hitting Sega of America headquarters. During the ground-shaking applause that followed, Nilsen subtly elbowed Kalinske. “What did you think?” Kalinske blinked for a second, then replied, “I think vidspeak just became a dead language. Sorry, hedgy wedgy.” He was practically in a state of shock. This was it—everything he had wanted. The tone was edgy, but not too sharp. It cut, but only deep enough to leave a cool scar.
Blake J. Harris (Console Wars: Sega, Nintendo, and the Battle that Defined a Generation)