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The CD-i advert is a lengthy infomercial that aired throughout the early '90s on basic cable in the wee hours of the night.
The main character is Phil Jakobson, a hapless, middle-aged American who is sucked into cyber-space, drawing parallels to Alice in Wonderland, Tron, or The Nintendo kid.
In the cyber-world, Phil meets Wall, an all-knowing Big Brother-esque disembodied voice that comes from the giant screen that Phil is always standing in front of.
Wall's goal is to amaze Phil with the capabilities of a powerful new technology called the Phillips CD-i, under the guise that he will tell Phil the meaning of life if he listens to the whole sales pitch. But, often, Wall overwhelms Phil to the point where he cries out "help!", which always summons a new presence to the view screen; an emotionless women in a white lab coat named Help. Help explains to Phil in great detail how to load the CD tray and is unresponsive to Phil's advances.
In the middle of the infomercial, Wall is interrupted by his secretary Gladys, who informs him that he soon has to return Phil to the real world and that "Daryl is in the system again". After a few more seconds of Wall showing Phil another awesome CD-i title, the view screen becomes all fugly and then we see Daryl on screen. We learn that Daryl is a rogue CD-i games designer that hacked the system so he could communicate with Phil. Daryl assures Phil that new CD-i titles are still being made. Phil asks Daryl for the meaning of life. Daryl tells Phil that Wall will reveal the meaning of life to him if he buys a CD-i system from Wall. Phil then summons Help and asks her how to load the CD tray.
When Wall finally regains control of the screen Phil challenges him by saying "I bet you don't even know the meaning of life!". Wall punishes him for impudence by making him play CD-i's flagship action title, Link: Faces of Evil. Phil summons Help to ask her how to eat an Octoroc, but of course, she only tells him how to load the CD tray. Wall then shows Phil the meaning of the word life from a dictionary. Phil summons Help and asks her for the meaning of life. Help shows him how to load the CD tray. Wall finally convinces Phil to buy a CD-i system and Phil is returned to his reality; CD-i in hand and $500 poorer.
- A CD-i disc can hold 250,000 pages of text data. or 7,000 image files.
- CD-i plays "full-length feature Hollywood movies"(with purchase of add-on cartridge)
- Hundreds of fully interactive titles.
- Plays music CDs.
- The CD tray can be opened using the controler.