Herman Cain got high praise from "J. Edgar" director Clint Eastwood, who told the Los Angeles Times Monday that the presidential hopeful has qualities that set him apart from everyone else who's vying to be commander in chief.
Herman Cain got high praise from "J. Edgar" director Clint Eastwood, who told the Los Angeles Times Monday that the presidential hopeful has qualities that set him apart from everyone else who's vying to be commander in chief. REUTERS

Herman Cain's unconventional and sometimes perplexing campaign released an ad that is raising more eyebrows.

The ad starts off seemingly innocuous, though by no means a slick, well-produced political ad. Cain's chief of staff, Mark Block, touting Cain's candidacy and his private-sector experience. He asks for support to take this country back.

The video takes a turn to the bizarre when Block stares into the camera taking a drag of a cigarette while a patriotic rock song plays.

I smoke. It's a choice. It's Block being Block, Cain's chief of staff told CBS News.

While the ad is certainly the strangest of the campaign cycle, but by no means the weirdest of all.

Intriguing Campaign Ads

Here are the funny, bizarre, unique and political videos of past election cycles that drew all the wrong kinds of attention.

Carly Fiorina, a former Hewlett-Packard chief, may have lost her 2010 U.S. Senate bid against incumbent U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer, D- Calif., but the campaign produced one unintentionally funny ad.

The 3:22 minute ad, dubbed Demon Sheep, is an epic video that looks more like a satire of political ads. The music, narrator's voice and imagery are over-the-top and dramatic, with tongue planted nowhere near cheek.

The ad is an assault on her GOP rival's conservative cred, calling him a Fiscal Conservative In Name Only and portraying him as a demonic wolf in sheep's clothing. Though widely mocked, Fiorina crushed her fellow Republicans in the primary in 2010 with more than 50 percent of the vote.

Mike Gravel's Rock

Mike Gravel was a crotchety former U.S. Senator who ran in the 2008 Democratic presidential primary. But one of his campaign ads in which he stares blankly into a camera before tossing a rock into a pond looked like an idea from an intern who majored in film.

Actually, Gravel told MSNBC in 2007 that two teachers from southern California asked his campaign if they could film the candidate.

The end result was a metaphor for Gravel's campaign. Not the rock Gravel tosses in the pond, but the ripples it causes.

The ripples represent his accomplishments as an ordinary citizen who's trying to make a difference by doing something and it causes ripples in society, he told MSNBC.

Louisiana Coroner's Race

When you are a candidate trying to unseat a long-time incumbent coroner--an actual elected position in Louisiana's Orleans County and others throughout the U.S.--painting your opponent as a mad scientist who sells body parts might be the best line of attack.

Igor! Igor, the mad surgeon portraying Orleans County Coroner Dr. Frank Minyard, cries out to his assistant. We need a heart a spleen and a liver for tonight's sale.

Yes, Dr. Minyard, Igor replies.

The candidate behind the ad, Dr. Dwight McKenna, based the ad on old lawsuits accusing Minyard of selling organs. Minyard said that his office was part of a program that collected pieces of bone and corneas from bodies, according to the Times-Picayune.

Worse Than Hoover?

When the son of former Vice President Dan Quayle ran for U.S. Congress in Arizona in 2010, he released an ad with some tough rhetoric.

Barack Obama is the worst president in history, says Ben Quayle, who now represents Arizona's Phoenix suburbs in Congress. Somebody has to go to Washington and knock the hell out of place.

Fiery remarks for sure, but Quayle delivers them in a bland and staid voice while blankly staring into a camera.

The contention is a certainly a stretch, given that Obama had been in office less than two years. Besides, were those two years as bad as Herbert Hoover during the Great Depression or James Buchanan, who did nothing to stop the United States from falling apart before the Civil War?

Mike, Mike, Mike Weinstein

Mike Weinstein looks as mild-mannered as any other local state representative. But at least he has his own theme song.

Written by his son, the music sounds most appropriate over a montage in a 1980s teen movie. The video shows a band playing Weinstein's theme song, with clips of hip hop dancers and pictures of Weinstein peppered throughout.

The chorus is particularly catchy: Mike, Mike, Mike Weinstein, working hard for you and me. Representing District 19, Mike, Mike, Mike Weinstein.

Jerry Springer for Governor

Before Jerry Springer was the ring master of a day-time talk show circus, he was an Ohio Democratic politician. He was mayor of Cincinnati in the late 1970s whose local political career almost ended when a check he wrote to a prostitute was discovered.

He survived the scandal and ran for governor in 1980. With a surprising amount of candor for an campaign ad, he admits that he spent time with a woman I shouldn't have. And I paid her with a check. I wish I hadn't done that.

The simple spot is far from bizarre or silly. But how many politicians would have the nerve to not only run for governor after getting caught with a prostitute, but discuss it in a campaign ad?

Springer tries spinning his past indiscretion into a positive, telling viewers that as next governor, he can face some hard truths.

I'm prepared to do that. This commercial should be proof, Springer says. I'm not afraid, even of the truth and even if it hurts.