Today on Weird Commercials from Back in the Day, we travel back to the 1970s, the decade that good taste forgot and ten of the most impressionable years of my life. Being exposed to some of this weirdness has molded me into the warped little monkey I am today.
Green screen technology was invented for the sole purpose of showing a grown man boating in my toilet tank.
Introducing the Pinto
The line “putting a little kick in your life” is quite the understatement.
My first car was a Pinto. Granted, this was in 1988, long after they stopped making it. It wasn’t my choice. Rather, it was foisted upon me by my parents because they had a friend who wanted to sell it. I nearly died from the shame of the stigma.
Radio Shack 8-Track Tape Commercial
It’s more than a…CA-CHUNK!…feeling (more than a feeling)…
Kids, that’s what 8 track tapes did. I am old enough to remember 8 track tapes, but not quite old enough to have actually owned any. I remember seeing a copy of Def Leppard’s Pyromania on 8-track in my local Ben Franklin in 1983, but the only people I know that had 8-track tapes were people my parent’s age, and their 8-tracks consisted of the entire mellow and depressing singer-songwriter genre of the 1970s, plus Blood, Sweat, and Tears.
Ben-Gay is Warmth
“Rembrandt would be proud of your gladiolas…”
Is it just me, or does that sound vaguely filthy?
Apparently, in the 1970s, wearing Levi’s made you high and dacron polyester is a euphemism for LSD. Sometime, try sneaking up behind people and whisper the words dacron polyester at them. It’s fun!
International Ladies Garment Workers Union
If you were alive in the 1970s, then you remember this commercial. You remember the song, too. If only we had heeded the dulcet song stylings of the International Ladies Garment Workers Union, we would be buying clothes made by little old ladies and nerdy guys instead of foreign children in sweatshops!
I have to say that the lady in the beginning of the ad is the ugliest woman I’ve ever seen. Check out the cameo by Bizarre Records alum, Joyce!
“Aviance” by Prince Matchabeli
Oh, if only real life worked like this commercial for Aviance perfume. If only after a day of cleaning up dog hurl, waiting for your two year old to pass the rainbow assortment of Lite Brite pegs he swallowed this morning, and having some bitch in curlers and a muu-muu swipe the last ham right out of your shopping cart, the mere act of blasting perfume in your face would give you the energy for an entire night of 1970s style, polyester pantsuited loving!
This ad is one of a very famous ad series from the 1970s. The actor, Vic Tayback, was also famous for playing Mel in the TV show Alice. In grade school, when someone tried to cut in line, the rest of us would say to them accusingly, “Butter!” Of course, if the person doing the cutting was a smart ass, they would just reply “Parkay!”
Whisk-“Ring Around The Collar”
This ad was part of another very famous ad campaign from the 1970s. Buy Whisk detergent and you can avoid having your shirts mock you relentlessly over the fact that you don’t wash your neck.
Sharp brags that this is the world’s smallest electronic calculator with a price tag to match. If I’m going to pay $345 for a calculator, it had better do windows. I’m guessing it runs on size D batteries, too.