The Product: CarMax

The Premise: A man whose decision to use CarMax is met by a slow, rousing round of applause.

The Punchline: Some unexpected clapping from a bear, a lawn cherub, and a cameo from “Rudy” actor Sean Astin, is barely enough to keep our attention.

The Verdict: As a cinematic device, the slow clap to the tune of a triumphant orchestral swell is rather tired. But a merely meh commercial is transformed into a better one by — what else? — puppies. CarMax’s online-only commercial is a shot-for-shot remake that subs in dogs for humans and barking for clapping, and is even more entertaining.

Correction: A previous version of this post misidentified “Rudy” actor Sean Astin, who has a small cameo.