The Exploding Fried Turkey Footage Contest: Day 2

That's William Shatner beneath those computer-generated flames.

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Millions of Americans will deep-fry their Thanksgiving turkey this year, but only one video of exploding poultry will be good enough to be win The Atlantic Wire's award for holiday public service announcements. Like some manna from local television news producing heaven, the phenomenon of deep-fried turkey combines delicious with blazing fireballs of danger. And to celebrate this confluence of factors, The Atlantic Wire is looking for the most alarming deep-fried turkey tutorial of the year. Every day between now and Thanksgiving we'll be rating a clip on a scale from 1 (a pretaped, offsite how-to without no explosions) to 10 (a raging greasefire, live in-studio). Enjoy, and remember to leave your score, pass along any clips we might have missed in the comments section, and check out all the previous installments.

Today: William Shatner for State Farm...

Rating: 8.3. Unlike local news stations that only have the resources to put a field reporter or morning show at risk for the sake of their turkey fryer tutorials, State Farm is the world's largest insurance company, which means it can afford to enlist William Shatner and the Illinois Fire Service Institute to appear in two PSAs illustrating go wrong when you throw -- literally throw -- the remains a twenty-pound bird into a steaming vat of oil. The first spot is Shatner-centric and self-aware, but we still jumped when the actor was engulfed in computer-generated flames. The second is much more alarming, with Shatner just appearing in the opening seconds, before throwing it over to Eddie Bain, an unnervingly soft-spoken fire safety expert who who shows policy-holders what can happen if they overfill their frier (kablamo) or try to put a grease fire out with something other than a fire extinguisher (double kablamo). So why don't the clips get a perfect score? First, they didn't happen on live television. Also, it's pretty clear, based on the jarring editing at key moments, that Shatner didn't do his own frying.

After two days, a look at the leaderboard:

  1. William Shatner for State Farm: 8.3
  2. KXRM Fox 21 (Colorado Springs): 7.1
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.