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Super ‘wide-angle’ Italian lobby cards for ‘Easy Rider’
08.17.2017
09:26 am
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I haven’t posted much about lobby cards on Dangerous Minds. They can be cool but basically it takes a lot to impress me. Most lobby cards are just random stills from the movie with some text underneath (or in the corner). It’s not often that someone in the process goes the extra mile to make them really interesting.

For some reason the Italian lobby cards that were produced for Dennis Hopper’s 1969 directorial debut Easy Rider are little short of breathtaking. Apparently the movie was called Easy Rider: Libertà e Paura (Liberty and Fear) there, and a fair bit of artistic ingenuity and creativity went into these excellent images that are in fact, strikingly, even wider than the movie’s aspect ratio of 1.85:1. They aren’t merely stills but instead are conceptual collages that create fascinating and wholly imagined tableaux that never actually appear in the movie at all. They’re overstuffed and provocative and full of life and all I can say is “Bravo!” (or “Brava!”) to whatever individual or group of individuals was responsible for them.

In case you didn’t know, there’s only a tiny handful of movies that can be said to have kicked off the bracing, vital American cinema of the 1970s, and Easy Rider‘s on the short list for sure. Among its other virtues, the movie brought into mainstream cinema frank content about drug use.

But forget all of that and take in these marvelous bits of advertising which can be appreciated by all who’ve seen the film, and even those who have not.
 

 

 
See the rest after the jump…...

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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08.17.2017
09:26 am
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Fruitopia commercials scored by Kate Bush and the Cocteau Twins
08.16.2017
08:12 am
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If I say the word “Fruitopia” to you, there’s a decent chance you’ll respond with some comment about the 1990s—the savviest among you might even say “1994” specifically. Fruitopia was the brainchild of a marketing head at Coca-Cola named Sergio Zyman—he also brought the world the overt GenX pandering elixir OK Cola right around the same time. The fruit-flavored tea concoction was a clear attempt to move in on the territory staked out by Snapple, and while Fruitopia had its day in the sun, as is often the case the first product to define a niche gets to own that niche.

Fruitopia is remembered today for its neo-hippie trappings. The flavors had names like The Grape Beyond, Tangerine Wavelength, Citrus Consciousness, and Raspberry Psychic Lemonade, and the marketing consisted mainly of trippy and “deep” kaleidoscope commercials featuring cosmic music scored and performed by Kate Bush and the Cocteau Twins and the Muffs, among others.
 

 
Marty Cooke and Andrew Chinich of Chiat/Day oversaw the campaign; they reached out to Bush and were delighted when she agreed to do nine spots for the drink. According to Cooke, Bush indicated that “she was interested in providing a lot of variety, from Japanese drummers to Moroccan music ... and she came through in spades.”

In Graeme Thomson’s book Kate Bush: Under the Ivy, we get this:
 

[Bush] accepted a commission to write several brief pieces of music to accompany the $30m US TV ad campaign for the launch of Coca-Cola’s ne fruit drink Fruitopia…. It seemed an incongruous move. Bush had consistently turned down advances of this nature….

The motivation for her changing tack wasn’t clear but was probably varied: far from the commercial ingenue she sometimes appears, certainly the financial rewards would have been extremely significant; perhaps she liked the tone of the ads, which were relatively innoative and visually stimulating and over which she was given complete artistic control. She may also have recognised an opportunity to cast the net of her music a little wider, while also finding a home for all the melodic waifs and rhythmic strays that had never quite found a home in her “proper” songs. ... [each melody hinted] at a longer piece, several reminiscent of the kind of odd, rhythmic, electronic pop she was making around the time of The Dreaming.

 
Here are the ads—in some of them, Bush supplies identifiable vocals, as in “Fighting Fruit” in which you can hear her chant “Hey hey fruit!” and “Skin,” in which you can hear her uttering a sort of “bol,” or Indian rhythmic syllable, that sounds like “digga dha.”

Kate Bush, “Fighting Fruit”

 
Much more after the jump…...
 

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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08.16.2017
08:12 am
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Hip Smirnoff Vodka ads from the 60s with Groucho & Harpo Marx, Woody Allen, Eartha Kitt & more


Julie Newmar, 1966
 
Everyone gives George Lois huge props for his attention-getting use of celebrities and his sharp eye for an arresting image, but he wasn’t the only one in advertising or publishing treading that terrain. Through the late 1950s and the 1960s, Smirnoff Vodka had a well-known series of ads that used some pretty hip people, from Vincent Price and Langston Hughes to Woody Allen and Eartha Kitt.

Smirnoff was intent on pushing the Moscow Mule during this phase, so it comes up in a lot of the ads. Kitt and Allen both pose with the same wooden donkey to drive the point home, and a few of the ads feature the distinctive copper cup intended to be used for Moscow Mules.

The campaign used a great many African-American celebrities, which may have been forward-thinking at the time, but it also may have pushed the ball forward on homosexual imagery to some degree. In 2000 the Advocate singled out the Joseph Cotten ad below as an example of a subversive advertisement reaching out to homosexuals in a coded way.

These ads all reek of Sterling Cooper, and Robert Morse is among the celebrities just to make it that much more of a Mad Men kind of post.
 

Woody Allen, 1966
 

Woody Allen, 1966
 
Much more after the jump…...

 

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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08.09.2017
11:25 am
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Amazing fashion knitwear sold as a tie-in to Stanley Kubrick’s ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’


 
I’m a big fan of Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, so when I caught wind of this amusing archive find over the weekend, I knew I would have to pass it on.

Dave Addey runs the brilliant website Typeset in the Future, which looks at typefaces in sci-fi movies. He is currently turning the content on the site into a book for Abrams. On Saturday he tweeted an amazing find he had stumbled across, namely an advertisement in Seventeen magazine an ad from Seventeen magazine, promoting 2001: A Space Odyssey tie-in knitwear. The date of the issue is August 1968, the movie came out in April of the same year.

Here’s the entire spread, it’s absolutely awesome:
 

 
I hunted around on the Internet for a while and came up with very little. I’d love to see more of these, so please do write in if you happen to see one!

I did find this black-and-white advertisement in the August 21, 1968, edition of the Ukiah Daily Journal, which served the good people of Ukiah, county seat of Mendocino County, California:
 

 
Pretty much impossible to read any of it, but the text repeats language found in (and also mentions) the Seventeen ad—underneath the picture you can make out the following text:
 

OUT OF THIS WORLD KNITS
FOR JUNIOR PETITES
INSPIRED BY 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY

 
While we’re at it, here is some design art from Brian Sanders pertaining to the stewardess outfits in 2001: A Space Odyssey:
 

 

Posted by Martin Schneider
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08.07.2017
10:34 am
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Friend or enema: Japan’s latest supercute mascot goes where the sun don’t shine
08.04.2017
10:19 am
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Adorable mascots are an ingrained part of Japanese culture in a way that isn’t true in the U.S. or Britain. According to the 2011 book Fuzz and Fur: Japan’s Costumed Characters, the Japanese term for such entities is kigurumi, which means something like “dressing up as a stuffed toy.” In America, sports teams are the primary sponsor of such characters, although you do see them sometimes advertising a car dealership or a tax return office in the U.S.

Even though he was never affiliated with the San Diego Padres or any other team, the San Diego Chicken remains the defining exemplar of the genre.

In Japan, many companies and products have a signature mascot intended to draw the attention of consumers. Most Japanese mascots are forgettable enough, but every now and then one comes along that is different from the rest. Such is the case with a mascot unveiled by the Ichijiku Pharmaceutical Company earlier this week. The mascot’s named is “Kan-chan” and she (yes, she) made her debut on Twitter with two poses in front of the Tokyo Skytree Building.

What sets Kan-chan apart is Ichijiku Pharmaceutical’s stock in trade, which is the retail enema. And Kan-chan definitely was designed to resemble that product. Indeed, the resemblance is unmistakable when you look at the product and Kan-chan next to each other:
 

 

 
Somewhat ridiculously, Ichijiku Pharmaceutical apparently has insisted that Kan-chan is a penguin, even claiming that the pink nubbin on the top of her head is not an enema cap but is rather a “hair accessory,” whatever that means. But this seems unlikely, if you consider that Kan-chan’s very name is a shout-out to Ichijiku Pharmaceutical’s signature product—the Japanese word for enema is kancho.

More after the jump…

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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08.04.2017
10:19 am
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Bizarre vintage ads for life-sized inflatable sex dolls

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Let’s imagine it’s 1973. I have my bachelor pad, my 28” color TV, swivel chair, hi-fi stereo gear, fondue set and my corduroy bellbottoms. I live in a Space Age world. I have everything I ever wanted. But somehow I feel empty. I feel I’ve mortgaged my happiness on things I don’t really need. I have a lifestyle but no life. There’s something missing. I’m lonely. I’m missing that certain someone special to share all this luxury with.

But relationships are messy. They’re downright difficult. And I don’t know if I’m ready to commit, you know what I mean? I really need someone who is always ready to please, always ready for me and what I want. When I want it. But where can I find such a person? Do they even exist? 

I flick thru the latest issue of Man’s World where I find an ad for a life-size inflatable doll…

Just add air…Life-like in every detail…Snuggle up to your own Love Maid.

Eight dollars ninety-five. It all seems too good to be true. But I know nothing about “Love Maids.” I know nothing about inflatable love dolls…but maybe I might know a man who does. Bryan Ferry. He sang about inflatable dolls. He’s the man to ask. Maybe I should call him up?

Bryan, I live in this perfect world, all mod cons, everything I need, but why, why do I have this utter sense of loneliness?

Bryan (for it is he….): In every dream home a heartache… And every step I take. Takes me from heaven.

What do you mean by “heaven,” Bryan?

Bryan: The perfect companion. Deluxe and delightful.

You seem to know a lot about this, brah. Way too much…

Looking for a playmate? Well, here I am. I’m Lori, the latest, wildest, party-time sensation and I’m ready for action…

Bryan: Inflatable doll. Disposable darling… My breath is inside you… I dress you up daily. I blew up your body… But you blew my mind.

Ew. Too much information, man…

The earliest sex doll is credited to Dutch sailors in the 17th century, who used a dame de voyage—a masturbatory doll made of cloth for relieving sexual stress on long voyages. In 1908, the first recorded “manufactured” sex doll made its appearance in psychiatrist Iwan Bloch‘s The Sexual Life of Our Time. Bloch described this doll as “Vaucansons” intended for fornicatory purposes. These were made from:

...rubber and other plastic materials, prepare entire male or female bodies, which, as hommes or dames de voyage, subserve fornicatory purposes. More especially are the genital organs represented in a manner true to nature. Even the secretion of Bartholin’s glans is imitated, by means of a “pneumatic tube” filled with oil. Similarly, by means of fluid and suitable apparatus, the ejaculation of the semen is imitated. Such artificial human beings are actually offered for sale in the catalogue of certain manufacturers of “Parisian rubber articles.”

During the Second World War, it was long rumored but never actually proven that Nazi leader Adolf Hitler ordered sex dolls to be supplied to German troops fighting on the front line. The real change in sex dolls took place in the 1960s with the development of the vinyl inflatable doll with realistic “openings.” These became very popular in the 1970s, as can be seen by the following selection of bizarre adverts. Click on image for a closer look.
 
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More ads for inflatable bachelor companions, after the jump…
 

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Posted by Paul Gallagher
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06.08.2017
01:54 pm
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Of hippies, ducks and capitalist pigs: Jefferson Airplane’s acid-drenched Levi’s commercials
06.07.2017
03:51 pm
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In 1967, Levi’s had a new line of white jeans it wanted young folks to know about, so they sought out three groovy acts from the West Coast and had them record free-form radio spots about the new white jeans as well as the revolutionary (har) stretchy qualities that made the jeans such an impeccable fit. The bands were the Sopwith Camel, Jefferson Airplane, and a Seattle group called the West Coast Natural Gas Co.

The Airplane had been together for less than two years by this point, and their breakthrough album Surrealistic Pillow had just come out. “White Rabbit” hadn’t been released yet, but “Somebody to Love” had been. They were basically in the act of cresting, and now they were appearing on the radio selling Levi’s jeans. 
 

 
The bands were given creative control over the spots, of which there were nine in all. They’re pretty amusing—you can almost imagine the Smittys in Mad Men pridefully taking credit for the idea. Four of the tracks are by the Sopwith Camel, and four were by Jefferson Airplane.

More after the jump…

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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06.07.2017
03:51 pm
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Horrible political figures star in tacky prostitution advertisements
06.05.2017
12:26 pm
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If you have any trouble remembering, 2016 was the worst year of our lifetimes, as it featured the deaths of Prince, David Bowie, Merle Haggard, Leonard Cohen, and George Michael but much more pertinently, a victory for the “Yes” vote in the U.K. Brexit referendum in June as well as the election of the worst human being we could possibly find to be U.S. President in November. It was a tumultuous year to be sure, introducing U.S. observers not only to the concept of Donald Trump as an undeniably important political figure but an entire panoply of abhorrent political figures in Great Britain, including anti-Europe demagogue/liar Nigel Farage and current PM Theresa May.

When the debate is dominated by scuzzy vulgarians like Rupert Murdoch and Boris Johnson, their opponents will be obliged to resort to satirical measures that are less than…. dignified. Not that satire is usually very august or lofty, but these nitwits and assholes call for special tactics.

This will probably work better if you’re in Britain, but if you want to put up a fake prostitution advertisement in your town square, only featuring the comely/disgusting image of David Cameron, Donald Trump, or Theresa May on it, I urge you to visit the Wankers of the World website, where you can get any of these six posters for fifty pounds each. That’s a little pricy, sure, but for just 10 pounds you can get the “Political Whores Flyer Pack,” a full set of all six flyers that even comes with “a ball of Blu Tack so you can stick them up in your local phonebox or work toilet.” 
 

 

 

 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Martin Schneider
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06.05.2017
12:26 pm
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Zoë Mozert: The pinup model and artist who painted actress Jane Russell’s most iconic image
05.31.2017
10:44 am
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Artist Zoë Mozert painting actress Jane Russell for the iconic image used for the 1941 film ‘The Outlaw.’
 
Zoë Mozert was not only one of the most well-known pinup model painters of her day, she was also a pinup herself and her work and image have appeared in hundreds of magazines and on film posters. Though there was no shortage of female models willing to pose for her, Mozert often used herself as a subject and why not? Mozert was gorgeous—the perfect embodiment of the quintessential blonde bombshell—and her successful modeling career helped to fund her art school education at the Philadelphia School of Industrial Design. Mozert would later head to New York City to start her long career as an artist.

Mozert’s work was unquestionably on par with her male peers. She would go on to become part of an exclusive all-girl artist “club” that included two other prominent female artists—the creator of the “Coppertone girl” Joyce Ballantyne and Pearl Frush whose photo-realist paintings broke sales records due to their popularity. In the early 30s, Mozert’s work was everywhere including ads for popular products like Kool Cigarettes and Dr. Pepper. She scored a lucrative long-term contract with Brown & Bigelow, who in the 1940s were the largest publisher of calendars in the world.

Mozert would also work as an artist for Warner Brothers where her art was used not only for movie posters but for props that appeared in the films themselves. Her artwork associated with two films that would add more noteworthy credits to Mozert’s expansive resume: the poster artwork for Carole Lombard’s 1937 film True Confessions and the notorious image of Jane Russell for the 1941 film The Outlaw. The sessions with Russell were thankfully photographed for prosperity (pictured at the top of this post).

I’ve included a mix of Mozert’s stunning work as well as a few photographs of the artist in action below. Some are NSFW. Just like Jane Russell and a gun.
 

Mozert’s portrait of Jane Russell that was used for the movie poster for ‘The Outlaw.’
 

 

The gorgeous and talented Mozert modeling for fellow pinup artist Ed Moran.
 
More after the jump…

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Posted by Cherrybomb
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05.31.2017
10:44 am
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Unhappy meal: McDonald’s ‘Free Razor with Breakfast’ 1978 promotional campaign
05.26.2017
09:40 am
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In the mid-1970’s disposable razors hit the market and were all the rage which led to a very bizarre tie-in with USA’s largest fast food chain restaurant. In 1978 (and then again in 1986) McDonald’s launched a nationwide “Free Razor with Breakfast Entree” promotional campaign. Apparently back then it never occurred to anybody that eating and shaving are two things that should never be combined.
 

 
With the launch of their very first breakfast menu in 1985, Wendy’s jumped on the razor bladewagon as well. They offered the exact same “Free Razors with Your Breakfast” promotion, although they exercised a bit more caution: while McDonald’s gave the razors to any kid who was accompanied by an adult, Wendy’s required all customers to be over eighteen. Naturally, lawsuits followed, many customers attempted to sue the fast food chains, and over the years dozens of customers alleged to have found razors inside of their Egg McMuffins.
 

 

Posted by Doug Jones
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05.26.2017
09:40 am
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