- a stop motion puppet animation spot for Fruit Stripe Gum that
elicited this response:
that Beech Nut gum commercial sent chills down my spine. I remember
as a 5-year-old living with my family in Hollis, Queens, NY (not
far, by the way, from the old Ideal toys factory) being engrossed
by that gum ad whenever it came on.
39 now and throughout my life, every couple years or so, that
"Buy Beech-Nut, Buy Gum" jingle would bubble up from the deep
recesses of my brain for no apparent reason before I'd push it
back down. So to see that spot only reminds me that TV advertising
can be insidiously memorable, even if it doesn't prompt one to
buy the product immediately. (I just might go out and buy some
- Leroy W
the late-Sixties Frankie Valli and The 4 Seasons starred in this
memorable Beechnut Gum commercial,
a reworking of one of their biggest hits.
Bunny was the character associated with this instant orange drink
throughout the Sixties and he sold a lot of powder. This commercial
is from early in the Sixties, before Tang became known as "the
drink of Astronauts".
this spot, Bugs tricks Daffy into taking shots at his own relatives
for a taste of Tang - it's that good, apparently!
spot is promoting a contest sponsored by Post that gave away the
most popular toys of the day like Spider bikes, the cool Vvvroom
Motors (a noise contraption that attached to your bike) and Baby
First Step Dolls.
is some great subliminal advertising going on here.
WHAT THE YOUNG GIRL
IN THIS COMMERCIAL HAS TO SAY:
was extremely surprised to find my commercial, Post Cartoon Contest,
on the TVparty website.
ad only ran about six weeks, timed to coincide with the time Post
was taking contest entries in their national coloring contest.
The contest featured images of popular Post cartoon characters
of the time, such as Sugar Bear and the AlphaBits postman.
production company for the commercial was located in my home town.
A scout was sent out in July of 1965, looking for children who
looked like "real" children. I was five years old and
attending day camp when I was scouted to attend an audition. One
of the other campers was cast as my "brother" in the
ad. (My own brother also tried out, but the producers didn't think
we looked enough alike, and he did not have red hair or freckles.)
this was a black and white ad, redheaded children were already
in demand for television. My hair is red, and the boy who played
my brother is a strawberry blonde. We both had tons of freckles!
after my sixth birthday, we shot the ad. It took two days of filming.
Commercials were sixty seconds in those days. We had an outdoor
scene and an indoor scene, and did many takes of each camera shot.
(It seemed like sixty of each shot, but that may have been my
hyperbolic childhood memory.)
the required breaks that were part of child labor laws at the
time, we were exhausted. My mother says she had to "carry
me to the car" each night, and that was probably right. We
were supposed to look like we were walking to school in September.
However, filming was in August, and it was extremely hot. To make
me look dressed for fall, I had to wear a sweater over the itchy
"good" dress that had been chosen for me to wear.
were surrounded by a dozen 1000-watt TV lamps at all times. After
every take, we were mopped by production people running in with
towels, milk and juice. During breaks, the audio tape would be
run through each take again, I assume in a search for the best
audio quality that could be used with the video. We heard our
voices over and over and over, saying the same things: "Hey,
I want one of those!" "Hey, I want one of those!"
The production company also had a man on set who seemed to be
there just to entertain us kiddies. He kept pulling wiggly rubber
toys and other surprises out of his pockets.
recollection is that there were four key scenes. The first was
standing outside on the sidewalk, watching the bicycle with the
Vroom motor whiz by, and commenting on the various toys that were
prizes in the contest. These shots were done on the first day,
the outdoor day of shooting. The rest of the scenes were indoors.
we colored the contest entries. I liked this. Then we were turning
around the cereal boxes, which had been stacked one upon the other
so that all the different types of cereal in the contest could
be shown to viewers who might want to enter. There is a screen
capture of that scene, with my face between the boxes.
we had to sing the little Post jingle. At that time, every Post
cereal ad ended with the red Post logo flipping up, and people
(or cartoon characters) from the commercial would be standing
there, singing the jingle "Post Cereal makes breakfast a
little bit better." I liked to sing, so I enjoyed that part.
ad ran during the contest duration, mostly during Saturday morning
cartoons, but it also ran on Lassie, Sunday nights on CBS.
This was an extremely popular program with a valuable advertising
after the ad ran, I found my royalty pay stubs. Lassie paid much,
much better than the other shows I was on! Benton & Bowles was
the advertising agency. Though I didnšt have to visit the agency
in New York in connection with this commercial, I was invited
there later for a few other auditions. My parents did not like
the idea of "professional children," and were horrified
at the way the other children at the New York auditions were gussied
up. They looked just like JonBenet Ramsay at a beauty pageant,
and these casting calls were at 8 am. (I showed up in shorts and
sneakers, looking like a "regular" kid.)
a few of those auditions, my parents decided not to audition me
for any more TV work. The boy who played my brother in the ad
did an ad a few months later, for AlphaBits.
That ad ran for ages and was very well known. The kids spelled
their names in their spoons. That ad, though, involved a lot of
eating, which the Cartoon Contest ad had not. The kids were getting
sick, eating twenty bowls of AlphaBits in two days of shooting,
and their moms had to stop feeding them anything else while the
ad was shot!
really enjoyed the experience of shooting the commercial and have
always been glad that I was able to do it.
the jingle, "McDonalds is our kind of place?"
the fast food chain starting becoming a national phenom, they
decided to target kids. After all, this was the baby boom generation
and, for the first time in history, children had some say in what
the family purchased.
before coming up with their Ronald McDonald character, they were
extremely successful in their first attempts - like this contagious
musical number, one of the infectious tunes ever written.
TVpartyer writes: "I got a big charge out of your old TV
ads, but something in one of them bugged me. I remember Mcdonalds
having signs that said "over 50 Million served", which were updated
each year as part of their PR campaign, and only in the last 10
years or so it became the more permanent "billions and billions".
on your clip with copyright 1967, it says "billions and billions
served ". How can this be? My younger brothers noticed this discrepancy
also. Are these the actual clips from the earlier times or reenactments?
authentic - sounds like wishful thinking (that came true) on McD's
knows that Trix are for kids. They should, after thirty years
of the same slogan. That's what you call staying on message!
is the first appearance of the Trix rabbit from 1960, who was
always trying to get the fruit flavored cereal from those darn
kids! The original voice of Trix the Rabbit was done by Delo States, the voice of Stanley Livingston in the Underdog Show/Tennessee Tuxedo & His Tales.
a cereal commercial today, you couldn't have the little girl saying:
"When I grow up I gonna have a whole house full of Trix."
the 70s, they had an election -- as to whether or not the cruel
Trix-withholding children should, in fact, give the Trix rabbit
some Trix. I remember voting -- kids all across America did --
and, in fact, the Trix rabbit did win the right to have a box
of Trix. (The post-Nixon era 70s was a time of sweeping reform....)
aired a commercial in which the Trix rabbit ate his box of Trix.
And then realized that he would never, ever, get another one.
only thing more existentially disturbing is the way kids used
to torment Sonny the Cuckoo Bird with his obvious psychological
addiction to Cocoa Puffs."