This Sega Corporate Training Video Is the Most 90s Thing to Ever Happen
Part documentary with weirdly staged scenes and part training session, a recently unearthed 1996 instructional video for game testers at Sega is the banquette your 90s nostalgia has been waiting to fingerboard into -- all gloriously shot in washed-out Hi8.
Titled "This is Sega Test, a trainumentary by Stanley Coenberg" (Yes!), it's more 90s than Collective Soul soundtracking a Crystal Pepsi commercial starring Jaleel White.
The resulting footage looks like what would happen if you threw corporate training video failures into a blender with an early 90s issue of Alternative Press. Just hitting the highlights means skipping over other golden moments, like when Dave pointlessly drops an entire binder full of papers in the hallway, or when a letter-jacketed game tester does stretches during his smoke break. There simply isn't time to focus on all of it.
That's not even mentioning the too-long shot of someone flattening a dollar bill against the side of a vending machine, or the office-spanning tracking shots that would make Aaron Sorkin's stonewashed Silvertabs tighten. No, on to the absolute best parts.
Montages of first-person shooter games set to Pearl Jam's "Alive," guys eating goldfish crackers to The Black Crowes' "Remedy," and the team talking about their ambitions over Tears for Fears' "Everybody Wants to Rule the World"? Yes.
We're one Fastball's "The Way" away from a Spotify playlist the entire coffee shop will enjoy.
Also, this guy was clearly into Screaming Trees.
There's an entire section of the "trainumentary" about the "Smoke Break." If you've started a new job any time in the last decade, you might be more familiar with this as a "break." You can smoke on "break," but there aren't many jobs where the training program actively encourages you to get out there and burn 'em if you've got 'em.
The interviewer actually asks one tester what she does to relieve stress. The answer, replete with freeze frames to maximize the cool: smoke break.
The best bits of nostalgia might come in the form of employee flair. The posters are magnificent. One guy, the jock doing stretches on his smoke break, loves Street Fighter so much that he has two Super Street Fighter III posters at his desk. Some other dudes just really enjoyed The Fugitive.
There are also posters for Seinfeld, Darkman, one just generally in favor of Shaquielle O'Neal, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm and a couple Bruce Lee posters. You can almost hear a game of pogs being played on the other side of the cubicle.
There are so many shots of vending machines. And also, Jolt Cola. Oh man, we loved Jolt Cola in the 90s. How much? Enough to just be getting down from the caffeine high in 2016.
You're about half way through getting trained when it becomes apparent that the 90s version of Michael Scott directed this. That realization happens right... here.
Yup. Just two guys partaking in parking lot karate on what must be their smoke break.
Even better? In the credits it's revealed one of these jokers doesn't even work at Sega.
Set to The Smashing Pumpkins' "Today," the credits are a wonderland of corporate training video easter eggs.
It features some lady just randomly talking in the background over other people, John Jansen's credits for directing, editing, shooting and producing the video (who is Stanley Coenberg from the opening credits!?), and the credit above.
It's not totally clear who The President is. Was he the guy in a button-down shirt? Is this office so tubular that they had to fly in a guy who owns a button-down shirt and gets his hair cut by a barber? This job is even better than you thought.
Yes. This is half an hour long, but it's worth every moment. It's exactly what would happen if Michael Scott was alive in the 90s and super into both Mudhoney and Sonic the Hedgehog.
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Dustin Nelson is a News Writer with Thrillist. He holds a Guinness World Record, but has never met the fingernail lady. He’s written for Sports Illustrated, Men’s Journal, The Rumpus, and other digital wonderlands. Follow him @dlukenelson.