Come to where the barf is. Come to Barfboro Country
July 14, 2010 10:44 AM   Subscribe

In 1984 Philip Morris created the Marlboro Adventure team to promote their flagship cigarette. DOC (Doctors Ought to Car), an international organization of health professionals, was founded to counteract the promotion of tobacco advertising. In 1993 as an effort to undermine the Marlboro Adventure Team US debut the DOC repainted a VW van as the Barfmobile, hired a handsome comedian [pdf] as Barf Man, printed thousands of Barfboro Barf Bags (imprinted with the words "DOES CIGARETTE ADVERTISING MAKE YOU SICK? US TOO!"), and created the Barfboro Barfing Team.

DOC pioneered the use of humorous ads to undermine tobacco advertising. When a cigarette company put up billboards in Houston, Texas advertising Dakota cigarettes, DOC produced an ad that read, "Dakota, DaCough, DaCancer, DaCoffin. [pdf]" When the Virginia Slims Tennis tournament was increasing in popularity, DOC physicians made public appearances calling the tournament Emphysema Slims with the tagline "You've coughed up long enough, baby."
posted by wcfields (40 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Lawyers ought to boat.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 10:51 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Shouldn't that be "Doctors Ought To Van?"
posted by Floydd at 10:52 AM on July 14, 2010


I think it was "Doctors ought to car-pool"
posted by HuronBob at 10:53 AM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


It's "care," in a pirate accent. Carrrrrrrrr!
posted by Admiral Haddock at 10:53 AM on July 14, 2010


Doctors Ought to Scar
posted by DU at 10:54 AM on July 14, 2010


I'm unclear on the message. What are they trying to really say?
posted by Skygazer at 10:54 AM on July 14, 2010


Doctors ought to BARF is what it's supposed to BARF.
posted by Mister_A at 10:59 AM on July 14, 2010


There's a distressing lack of barfing videos in this post about Barf Man and his Barf Van. WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO HIDE?
posted by Greg Nog at 10:59 AM on July 14, 2010


Wow. That Marlboro Adventure Team campaign is stylistically almost identical to the Nike "Just Do It" ads. That can't be accidental.
posted by Sys Rq at 11:01 AM on July 14, 2010


After reading all these links in their entirety, I must say that the comedian ain't that handsome.
posted by Mister_A at 11:02 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'd be interested to learn how many of these doctors are still kicking, personally.
posted by kittens for breakfast at 11:04 AM on July 14, 2010


(Also, the announcer's voice is so gravelly from smoking. It's like they wanted Harvey Fierstein, but had to settle for second best.)
posted by Sys Rq at 11:05 AM on July 14, 2010


In related news:

One woman said children as young as 10 working in the fields developed red rashes on their stomachs and necks as they harvested tobacco for use in cigarettes made by Philip Morris. ... Human Rights Watch, the group best known for documenting governmental abuse and war crimes, plans to release a report on Wednesday showing that child and forced labor is widespread on farms that supply a cigarette factory owned by Philip Morris International in Kazakhstan, in Central Asia.
posted by Joe Beese at 11:17 AM on July 14, 2010


I was coming in here to make fun of the car/care typo. Has anyone done that yet?
posted by mreleganza at 11:21 AM on July 14, 2010


Well if you read the article, Joe, you'd know that
Philip Morris International is firmly opposed to child labor...
I mean duh!
posted by Mister_A at 11:22 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


"flagship cigarette"? Huh.

Philip Morris
Dick Morris
Philip K. Dick
posted by Eideteker at 11:22 AM on July 14, 2010


Ha! Saw the van yesterday on the way home from work and wondered what on earth was up with somebody copping Marlboro's look like that.
posted by kipmanley at 11:26 AM on July 14, 2010


Philip Morris
Dick Morris
Philip K. Dick


Dick York.
Dick Sargent...
Sergeant York!
posted by drjimmy11 at 11:27 AM on July 14, 2010 [3 favorites]


This brings back memories! I was the newsletter editor for the chapter of DOC at the Medical College of Georgia in the 1980s. We had a speakers bureau that would send medical students out to various schools in the area to talk about AIDS and safe sex, nutrition, and of course smoking. We also sponsored our own local Emphysema Slims Tennis tournament each year. We were perhaps best known for one of our faculty advisors, Dr. Paul Fischer, a family physician. He gained some notoriety in 1991 when he published a study in JAMA showing that Joe Camel was more recognizable to young children than disney characters. RJ Reynolds responded by suing to get the names of participants in the study in violation of patient confidentiality. The story can be found here, among other places. Unfortunately their tactics were successful in forcing Dr. Fischer out of academic medicine and into private practice.

Over the years it seems that DOC has faded away on our campus. A quick google shows that there are active chapters elsewhere, though.
posted by TedW at 11:33 AM on July 14, 2010


In 1993 . . . the DOC repainted a VW van as the Barfmobile

Saw the van yesterday on the way home from work


Kip, where do you work?
posted by yhbc at 11:34 AM on July 14, 2010


Ha! Saw the van yesterday on the way home from work and wondered what on earth was up with somebody copping Marlboro's look like that.

Saw it on my way to work a few days ago which prompted the fpp. I wonder why the Barfing Team is in Portland, OR?
posted by wcfields at 11:45 AM on July 14, 2010


Today I saw a classic VW Van completely covered in Natty Light images and logos. That's another kind of barfmobile entirely.
posted by rlk at 11:48 AM on July 14, 2010


Philip Morris International is firmly opposed to child labor...

But in those areas where it's legal, lets hope those kids have the freedom to spend their hard earned money on soothing, satisfying Marlboros...
posted by PeterMcDermott at 11:49 AM on July 14, 2010


Gee, what subtle, low key humor.

HAMBURGER.
posted by bearwife at 11:58 AM on July 14, 2010


The thing is, they're FIRMLY opposed. The dude didn't say, "Philip Morris is kinda provisionally opposed to child labor."

They did issue this odd statement a while back, though: "Philip Morris is, in many cases, opposed to satanic ritual murders."
posted by Mister_A at 11:58 AM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


Just watched the Adventure team vid...
[bart] god i could really smoke some Marlboro right now [/bart]
posted by marienbad at 12:02 PM on July 14, 2010


I am shocked, shocked that this wasn't a Simpsons episode.
posted by tommasz at 12:08 PM on July 14, 2010


Shouldn't it be "Doctors AUTO Car"??

[/several hours too late]
posted by chowflap at 12:12 PM on July 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


That Marlboro Adventure Team video is part of the The UCSF Tobacco Control Archives Multimedia Collection, which contains more than a thousand videos that were made available after the Minnesota v. Tobacco lawsuit.

It is hard to believe that in the 1960s, the Flintstones and other cartoon characters were marketing cigarettes to kids.
posted by rajbot at 12:16 PM on July 14, 2010


Go Team Marlboro!

*Twins raise V'd fingers together with a smoke nestled in each V *
posted by Babblesort at 12:31 PM on July 14, 2010


BARFMOBILE?

"Barf" doesn't connect for me in terms of how smoking affects the body.
How about the Tear-Your-Chest-Cavity-Open-And-Piss-On-Your-Blackened-Lungs-Mobile?
That'll scare the little shits out of starting in the first place.
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 12:34 PM on July 14, 2010


"Barfboro"?
Maybe they ought to stick to doctorin'.
posted by madajb at 12:42 PM on July 14, 2010


"Barf" doesn't connect for me in terms of how smoking affects the body.

Oh, really? Then perhaps you should talk to this child, who was a pack-a-day smoker for twenty-four years.
posted by Greg Nog at 12:48 PM on July 14, 2010


I used to hate cigarettes for my two decade addiction, but then I realized that like radioactive waste in an origin story, cigarettes had transformed me into a superhero!

Once I quit, I could bound up stairs, and smell things from a mile away.

So thank you Marlboro Adventure Team! You made a hero out of me!
posted by quin at 12:59 PM on July 14, 2010


Oh, really? Then perhaps you should talk to this child, who was a pack-a-day smoker for twenty-four years.

Oh, puleeze! Where's the yellowed fingers and the thousand yard stare?
posted by KevinSkomsvold at 1:18 PM on July 14, 2010


If you look real carefully at the vomit, you can see some of those yellowed fingers mixed in there
posted by Greg Nog at 1:28 PM on July 14, 2010


and smell things from a mile away.

I quit about 6 or 7 months ago, and this is NOT a benefit. Particularly if you ride public transit. People on the bus need to learn to brush their teeth and shower before going to work, cuz man.

It reminds me of when the smoking ban in pubs and restaurants was first introduced. As a smoker, I was obviously in the "if you don't want to inhale smoke, don't go to a pub" camp, but my commitment to the cause swelled significantly when I realized what a pub actually smells like in the absence of second hand tobacco smoke. The funk of 20 years of blood, vomit, piss, and spilled food and drink mashed into carpet stained and matted beyond recognition. Talk about BARF.
posted by Kirk Grim at 1:45 PM on July 14, 2010 [2 favorites]


Go Team Marlboro!

*Twins raise V'd fingers together with a smoke nestled in each V *

posted by Babblesort at 4:31 AM on July 15 [+] [!]

That's more or less the reason I came into this post.

The Marlboro Action Team sounds like an old 1980s cartoon. I can see them springing into action, chasing the bad guy for about a quarter mile, doubling over in breathlessness, lighting up, and sitting down, smoking and staring off at nothing.
posted by gc at 2:45 PM on July 14, 2010


Reminds me a bit of the anti-tobacco campaign the State of Arizona had going for a while, spawning the catch-phrase, "Tumor-causing, teeth-staining, smelly, puking habit."

One of my favorite commercials featured a couple in a movie theater, engrossed in some nail-biting horror film. The boyfriend was dipping and spitting into a cup. The girlfriend, not paying attention to anything but the screen, reaches for the cup of what she thinks is Coke, and takes a big slurp. Cue Bride of Frankenstein scream on the screen.
posted by holterbarbour at 4:47 PM on July 14, 2010


It was called B.U.G.A. U.P. when I was little, back when you still used dots for acronyms ["bugger up" = slang for "break" or "make a mistake"].

I remember driving past one large cigarette billboard near the beach that was changed from TASTES LIKE SUMMER to TASTES LIKE SEMEN.

Me: "what's semen?"
Mum+Dad: [silence]

And I'll be buggered! They're still around. http://bugaup.org/
posted by uncanny hengeman at 7:34 PM on July 14, 2010


« Older Last week, Gizmodo asked their readers to submit w...  |  The thrills of drilling, the h... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments