Stupid Tuesday Questions: End of an Era Edition
There are certain ads you would see on the New York City subways. You would see these ads all the time. You would see these for decades.
Dr. Zizmor‘s medical practice was one of these ads. He was just a dermatologist. His ads were horrible and never changed. They always contained an MS Paint Rainbow and Dr. Zizmor used the same photo of himself for the last thirty or forty years.
I can’t think of a time on the subway without seeing a Doctor Zizmor ad but he is no more. He decided to retire suddenly, sell his home, and study Talmud. He is seventy years of age. He probably deserves it, but I feel a little sadder knowing that Dr. Zizmor’s cheesy ads will no longer grace the subways.
Next, they will tell us that Dan Smith will no longer teach you guitar.
What are the local advertising legends from your childhood and twenty somethings? Whose retirements have marked an end of an era in your life?
Moving away from the Midwest, I now miss the upbeat jingle of:
Save Big Money at Menard’s!Report
Every once in awhile, my wife & I will wander into a local hardware store and comment on how much we miss Menard’s.Report
We have a local personal injury lawyer, very successful, who has been around forever and has the typical types of ads you see everywhere. He also happens to be an alumni of the same prep school I went to. I always thought he was a little silly based on the ads but I recently served on a committee with him and found him to be bright, articulate and a very caring person. It completely changed my opinion. Now when I see the ads I want to call him and tell him he should just be himself.Report
Hard to be yourself in a 30 second spot.
Harder to make greedy people want to show up at your door, if you’re just acting like yourself.Report
Well there were the gravely voiced ice cream ads for Carvel from back east. In the west there was Cal Worthington. Praise be to the holy mute button and not listening to his folksy drivel anymore.Report
Stupid Tuesday Questions!!! Oh how I’ve missed you.
I recently visited my hometown for the holidays. My birthday is inconveniently close to Christmas and so my sister took me out to lunch before I drove home from our holiday extravaganza. I got to pick the restaurant, because, well it’s my birthday, duh. So we went to a local seafood place that is in between the harbor and the local beach best known for the kite festival and surf competitions. It was lovely to be surrounded by water while having some amazing fish tacos, but what was even better was the advertisement pamphlet on the table. Almost every restaurant in my home town has a laminated little book of advertisements, jokes, and pop quizzes you can do while you wait for your food. I don’t know why, but everyone has one, and they never change them! I feel like the one I read two weeks ago was the same one that was there when I was ten!Report
When I was a kid, there was a shoe store with a couple locations in Nashville (Green Hills and Hillsboro Village, for my fellow Middle Tennesseans) called The Family Booterie. They were most famous for having a fluoroscope that they used to show you your feet inside the shoes when you tried them on, which was probably not a particularly healthy thing for either their customers or their employees, but what everyone remembers them for was their ad, which was on constantly for a few years in the 80s. The jingle said, “Two for the price of one plus a dollar,” and to this day — to this day, god… damn… it — that damn jingle still gets stuck in my head.
And I’m not alone. A few years ago I was in a bar in Franklin and made made a joke that something was two for the price of one. The woman at the bar behind me said, presumably reflexively, “plus a dollar!”Report
Also, “See Rock City.”
That ad was so successful that I have a Christmas ornament that is a red barn with a black roof with the words “See Rock City” in white. Ruby Falls is worth visiting, though.Report
Zizmor has been missing from the subway for a few years now, if not longer.
This ad: http://images1.villagevoice.com/imager/u/745xauto/7483348/doctors-plastic-surgery-ad.jpg is fairly ubiquitous and as evidenced by the stickers ‘defacing’ it, it is not very well received.
The Kars For Kids radio ad is probably the Zizmor for the new generation… assuming this generation actually listens to the radio.Report
On occasion, you can still see ads for local businesses on TV, although its much rarer now than it was during the 1980s and 1990s, and they are still as cheesy. I really don’t understand this. I’d assume that you could create a decent but not great ad with somewhat quality acting for that much money because of CGI and the fact that struggling actors can’t be that expensive to hire for a commercial. Local TV ads should exist at a higher level of commercial perfection these days.Report
(This one is better than the first one I put up because it has the jingle)
Cal did a lot of things with “his dog Spot,” who was quite a lot of different animals over the years. My favorite when “Spot” was the giraffe.Report
Wow, those cars are really cheap!
Car commercials are still that bad. At least the ones for the dealerships I work at are. 🙁Report
You make me feel young again. These were (and perhaps still are) a fixture watching Dodgers games on TV. I can also still hear in my mind Vin Scully doing spots for Union 76 gas, and the Union 76 station in the stadium parking lot. Oh, and Farmer John sausage, “Easternmost in Quality, Westernmost in Flavor.” I never quite figured out what that meant.Report
Casino Taxi had a jingle programmed into my brain by music.
If you’re a person on the go write down this number; it’s the key for travelling quick.
It’s Casino Taxi’s number: 429-6666 or 425-6666! *da da da-da daa*Report
Cal Worthington (and his dog spot) have already been mentioned, but others I remember from my time in Southern California are Jack Stephanovich (It’s Stephan, Jaaack Stephan) and “I’m Larry Parker…”Report
Ah, Larry H. Parker. “I’ll fight for you!”
Here is the Baltimore equivalent:
They have updated their slogan. It now is “If you’ve got a phone–or a computer!–you’ve got a lawyer.”
I know a guy who is an associate there. Great guy, and a good plaintiff’s lawyer. That being said, I would worry about taking a large case there. The outfits that advertise tend toward a mindset of high volume of quick settlements. But for the right kind of case, I would happily go to this guy.Report
That’s a damn scary commercial.Report
Saiontz, Kirk and sometimes Miles.Report
They had a falling out a few years back. I have never heard the details, but I gather the split was not amicable.Report
I was shocked when I visited SoCal this Christmas and heard the Toyota of Orange commercial that was the exact same as the one from my childhood. “You won’t get a lemon at Toyota of Orange”Report
“I wouldn’t have got a lemon?!”Report
Can’t beat Crazy Eddie. (esp now that PPACA would give him the medication he needs, making his prices rational. Thanks, Obama)Report
Man, I know someone who worked for Crazy Eddie.
(That’s not the fun part… the fun part is how he got hired, which involved farts and birthday cakes)Report
The Saskatchewan pork marketing board or council or whatever they were, ran a billboard campaign with the slogan “Pork. The one you love.” Always showing a happy loving couple, preparing or eating pork.
I’m not sure how long it actually ran, but it’s in my memory like it was fairly long.Report
You always wonder if people recognize the full implications of their ads.Report
I think, uh, that one was intentional. Maybe “Oh, we never thought of that. Funny we only bought 50 billboards, and now they’re on TV and in newspapers and whatnot.” intentional.
The people who put out the Lolita beds certainly didn’t!
(the MILF sale, otoh, was totally trolling)Report
The Christmas season in Oklahoma does not officially start until you have heard this. It has been running since 1956 [youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5LJBB65r-9o&w=420&h=315%5DReport
I still know the street address of Pete Ellis Dodge (1095 West El Camino Real, Sunnyvale) due to their jingle.Report
Local business where I grew up weren’t creative enough for their cheezy commercials to stick in my head years later.
But as far as Icons go, Willie Romero’s Barber Shop has been on the streetcorner by my grandparents house for my entire living memory. With a classic red-and-white barber pole that I’ve never seen used by any other actual place that cuts hair. It will be the end of an era when he closes up shop.Report
We lived out in the boondocks and got our TV on a satellite receiver. Not one of those cute little DirecTV dishes, but a full-sized one, seven or eight feet across. You probably could have cooked with it on a hot day.
Anyway, where you guys got local commercials, I got test patterns and snow. Every time I flip past channel 1, I get hit with a wave of nostalgia.Report
You probably could have cooked with it on a hot day.
The movable kind, so you could point it at different satellites to get a variety of channels? If you point one of those at the sun, you will very quickly fry all of its electronics (the satellite being carefully designed to focus the signal at them.)Report
Yeah. One of those. Changing channels took several seconds, unless they were on the same satellite.
Well, now I’m glad I never tried to cook with it.Report
A friend of mine used to have one like that. He lived in what passes for the boonies around here (rural Sonoma County.) This was in the days before the networks encrypted their feeds, so you could see stuff like newscasters sitting around waiting for their shows to start, smoking, buying stuff over the phone, telling dirty jokes, etc. There’s a wonderful Atlantic piece about those long-gone days here.Report
“Nobody bothers me” is the classic DC area commercial (and was featured on “The Americans”)
Any Chicagoan would recognize this one. Check out the watchband on this guy.
The Miller Lite commercials starring retired athletes. This was one of my favorites: