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Welcome to I'm Not Buying That, the blog where we dissect the woeful mistakes of the advertising industry. I'm your host, CJ Garrett, and I view terrible ads so you don't have to.

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Friday, October 1, 2010

Marlboro: Historical Edition!

You know what's so funny you'll laugh until you pee? Really old ads.

You know what'll make you stare in dumbfounded horror that anyone thought this was a good idea? Really old ads.

I think someone at Marlboro was smoking something a little more illicit in their usual nicotine fix when they put this delightful campaign together. Behold!


Yes, children, Mommy needs to light up a cigarette to keep her nerves under control, because women have been hysterical lunatics since forever and need chemicals to make them rational! (Image courtesy of the fabulous BlogHer)

Let's ignore the fact that smoking is actually really bad for you, and for kids. Back in ye olde mists of time, they didn't know all the horrible stuff we know today about these little cancer sticks. Just check out the advert itself:

  • Bad typeface. Cutesy, yes - readable? Not so much.
  • The colors, seriously. Menstruating red and toxic pink are not working with the grays there. I guess this was a first foray into the use of colour...
  • What the hell does 'over-smoked' mean? Google doesn't seem to know. And the hat on the baby on the left seems very random. Confusing ad is confusing!
  • This ad pretty much says outright that it thinks women are insane. Maybe it's the effect of the 21st century looking back, but the babies' attitude seems totally patronizing. Is this really the kind of image you want to project to your target customers?

Yeah, we tend to get all nostalgic for the old days. You know, back when the '50s were all about apple pie, white picket fences, gingham skirts and all that stuff, before we had the Internet and America fell into moral decay... Just remember, folks, the adverts sucked back then, too.

CJ, over and out

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