Saturday, May 20, 2006

Mmmmm! Tastes like Randy.

The graphic above was sent in by a sadvertising reader. It's a breakfast cereal named, (a-hem) "Good Friends."

Somewhere out there, this little box of roughage is giving a stand-up comic an hour's worth of one-liners.

"Hey! Who ate all my Good Friends?!"

"Those are my Good Friends. If you want Good Friends, buy your own!"

"Cut up'a little bannana, some whole milk, pour it over some Good Friends...MmmMMM! That's breakfast!"

"I'm outta Good Friends. Gonna'have to pick some up after work."

And of course, there's the obvious referrences between Good Friends and the potentially unfriendly effects of "33% fiber", but after the previous blog post, I'm trying to avoid scatological humor.

Although the health-food industry seems to want to make their cause more palatable to a broad market, they just can't seem to bridge the gap from fringe to mainstreamYou can't have good friends and eat them, too.

Pass the Grape Nuts™ - no grapes, no nuts, no friends. Just breakfast.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Into the Bounding Surf for You!

The above image is another from my collection of vintage ads - this one is an ad for "Sal Hepatica" laxative from Life Magazine, July 23, 1944.

It's a wonderful ad with evocative illustration and engaging copy - just look at poor Al; ratty hair, furrowed brow, the look of despair - you just KNOW he can't poop.

But thankfully, Al's wife has a glass of Sal Hepatica handy (or maybe rocket fuel?!). Whatever's bugging Al is going to get blown away by that stuff!

Anyway, here's the actual copy:

6 A.M. First day of Al's vacation - and what a start! Al is sluggish, headachy...full of constipation symptoms. But smart Mrs. Al suggests a sparkling glass of Sal Hepatica - right now, before breakfast. And then -

8 A.M. Into the bounding surf! Is Al grateful...

I have to stop there - there's this vision of Al running pell-mell into the ocean, then...kind of...stopping...and just kind of...stopping....and Mrs Al daintily bounces into the surging sea and Al screams, "DON'T COME IN THE WATER!" Then, sheepishly pleads, "Just leave me alone for a sec, okay?"

Mrs. Al - knowing the power of Sal Hepatica, puts one fist on her hip and wags her finger, playfully scolding her relieved husband, then giggles and scampers off to the dry, clean towel underneath their beach umbrella.

Later, Al and Mrs. Al have a great time playing on the beach. But they know better than to go into the ocean. For a while, anyway.

He he. A big toast of Sal Hepatica to the writer and illustrator of this excellent, classic example of advertising.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

We're such wimps nowadays.

The above graphic is another scan from one of my old magazines, circa 1968.

"Are you miserable with pain and aches of leg ulcers, swelling, itch, rash due to deep venous congestion or leg swelling of the bulged veins or injuries?"

Nowadays, if anyone is "...miserable with pain and aches of leg ulcers, swelling...venous congestion...bulged veins or injuries," they'd better be in ER.

But back in 1968, you grit your teeth and sent away for a "FREE BOOK" to learn more about the subject.

"Kids! Shut the screen door - you're letting the bugs in! You know what happens when flies land on your father's leg ulcers!"

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Things that make you go, "Uh...uh-oh."

The above ad was scanned from my collection of old print ads - it's an ad for a toilet that "flushes up."

It had to have been an exciting time for Old Man McPherson when his imagination fertilized the idea that toilets could be unplugged from the forces of gravity.

It had to have been especially thrilling to witness the first success - oh man, you KNOW people were happy when the test sample went up, up and finally, away... Especially Mrs. McPherson!!

And when those first ads hit - the powerful surge of human affirmation must have been spine-tingling: "Honey! Look'it this ad! See?! Someone's actually gone and done it! Now we can finish that basement!"

And soon, handy-man dads were proudly explaining to their families, "...and then, the bad stuff goes up this pipe, high up over our heads...," while Mom and the kids anxiously eyed the path of the black pipe up, up and up, instinctively backing away...

Here's to you, Mr. McPherson - (toast). To great ideas, to bold vision and to the vain attempts at harnessing nature.

Napalm of the Vanities

The graphic above is a screenshot from the website of The Telegraph.

The headline reads: "Amoured suits are 'too goofy' say US troops"

It's one step away from, "Camo makes our butts look big!"

I don't believe The Telegraph sourced actual U.S. Army soldiers. The soldiers that Wily knows know the difference between being a fashion victim and a victim of enemy fire. They'd all choose "goofy" over "bloody" any day of the week.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

It Came From the BOG!!

(UPDATE 5-19-06: A sadvertising reader has pointed out that Wisconsin produces more cranberries than the northeast. I hope that my mention of the Northeast did not lead any other sadvertising readers to overlook the value of Wisconsin. Without Wisconsin, not only would we suffer from a loss in cranberries but Minnesota would also tip over, spilling thousands of Minnesotans into Iowa, Illinois and Lake Michigan.)

The above graphic is from the back label of a bottle of Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice.

Cranberry Juice is great and Ocean Spray is the undisputed ruler of the market. About the only thing they could ever do to screw up their business is to replace cranberries with cat pee.

Anyway, you have to wonder about that last line on the label - whenever you see a trademark symbol, (™), you know it's important enough to get the lawyers involved.

"Straight from the Bog!"™


Instantly, my fond memories of sparkling, tart cranberry juice cascading down levels of clinking ice is replaced with one of fetid biological muck and rubber waders. At least that's what comes to mind when I think of, "Straight from the Bog!"

"Cranberry bogs" are a Northeastern thing and usually not-at-all unsightly or gross. But to the rest of the country who grew up on late-night horror TV, "Bogs" are places where teenagers get eaten by fish-beasts.

That probably explains why "Straight from the Bog!" is on the back label and in small print. I can well imagine one of Ocean Spray's founders getting glassy-eyed and emotional talking about 'the bogs' that fostered his fortune. He probably insisted on the trademark. But as a marketing word, "Bog" is blech. That's why it's not on the front of the label, in bold print.

Ocean Spray makes delicious juice - from rich New England fields, morning mists that blanket the berries with pure dew...and acres husbanded by generations of wholesome, hardy folk who always tell the truth, make their own furniture and smile with the radiant glow that comes from years of tingly cranberry juice.

Not bogs.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Ah'dun drah'v a Duhhhdge!

The above graphic is from Dodge's website - it's promoting their new vehicle, the "Charger."

"Attitude d'jour" graphics, interactivity, compelling product - what more could this website need?

Oh, well of course! It needs a computer! Or, "broadband." Either one will do.

Got "broadband"? Good! Then you can see the snazzy "Flash" presentation. But if you don't have broadband, Dodge recommends that you use a computer to view less complicated graphics.

Wait - don't have a computer? Then this website won't work.

Either Dodge knows something about its customer's intelligence or it doesn't have a clue about its customer's intelligence.

PS - maybe it's me, but it sure looks like that Dodge Charger is leaking transmission fluid and oil all over the web site. But, what do I know? I'm not a Dodge customer.