2007, $2.24, at Goodwill Superstore on San Fernando

First Impression: “Finally, you can stop killing yourself at the gym!”

Second Impression: Um, actually, she just wants to be allowed to put her shirt back on?

This workout proclaims, “all it takes is one, 15-18 minute session twice a week” to get a perfect body, “all in as little as six weeks.” Huh.

Also, here is a magic potion that will cure warts, restore youth, sprout a luxurious crop of hair (but only where you want it,) energize you, give you restful sleep, and make your children behave. Enter our snake oil salesman, instructor Michael Thurmon.

Notice he is clad in Quarantine Chic of collared shirt on top, track pants on bottom, the sort of outfit that is never in style, and therefore, can never be completely out of fashion. Timeless.

He also has the smug, shiny face of that substitute gym teacher that makes everyone uncomfortable, even though no one can articulate exactly why.

Even as he enthuses about the effectiveness of his brief workout, his self-doubt reveals itself via some decidedly awkward body language, as he ventures to put his hands on his hips, then decides against it. The camera cuts mercifully away.

Then, quelle surprise, our fearless leader throws shade at people who’ve lost weight, but still aren’t toned. Maybe they are working on it, Michael! We’re in the middle of a pandemic, for crying out loud! My dinner tonight – and this is absolutely true – was a sensible salad, followed by five dark chocolate Milano cookies. Everyone is doing the absolute best they can, so knock it off with the body shaming, you athleisure-wearing monster!

It soon becomes apparent that I’m lacking two things necessary to complete this workout…

…a kicky hairdo that just won’t quit, and this bungee thing with a ball on one end, that keeps your stretchy band from slipping out of your door frame.

Eric and Alisa help demonstrate the exercises that Michael refuses to do himself.

If they work hard every day, and truly believe, one day they will become real.

We start off with Alisa helping to demonstrate a Chin Lift, because God forbid your face actually reveal the effects of gravity and time.

“You can do this while cooking those delicious diet meals,” prods Michael.

Ugh. You know what, you failed middle school coach? I am done. I don’t need to be subjected to your body negativity, not even for 18 minutes. So I switch to another DVD that to my delight, involves punching things! I’ll be reviewing that one next week, so I’ll see you then, Loyal Readers! Until then, eat as many Milano cookies as you want.

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