That Was Then, This Is Now (TM)
May 15, 2015 9:38 AM   Subscribe

With the final episode of Mad Men about to air, Consumerist takes a look at 72 real-life brands featured on the show, how they were depicted, how they were really advertised then (and how some real ads were fictionally credited to Don Draper) and how their advertising (and ownership OR existence) has changed in 5 decades...
posted by oneswellfoop (56 comments total) 26 users marked this as a favorite
 
For reference, nobody drank the Heineken we bought for our first-season finale party.

For, like, a YEAR.
posted by St. Hubbins at 9:42 AM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]




Oh, this is very cool.
posted by zarq at 9:52 AM on May 15, 2015


In reality, there was no such endorser or slogan. Instead, the company was known by its red-cheeked cartoon girl with a red bow in her hair reaching into a package of chips (we couldn’t find much else in terms of advertising).

Does Utz advertise? I've never seen one outside of a display in a gas station maybe once or twice -- its appeal is always " It's in basically every store in the tri-state area" and " It's a dollar cheaper"
posted by The Whelk at 9:53 AM on May 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


Cash4Lead: Related: Ken Cosgrove's short story in the Atlantic Monthly.

I'm ashamed to admit I read that this morning without ever noticing the byline. Subtle.
posted by zarq at 9:54 AM on May 15, 2015


Also, this site for the next few days
posted by The Whelk at 9:54 AM on May 15, 2015 [8 favorites]


this site for the next few days
"I don’t even know why I do these things"
...because somebody has to.
posted by oneswellfoop at 9:59 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


The Whelk: "Also, this site for the next few days"

(ten minute supercut of Mathowie drawing out "yeahhhhh..."s in the podcast)
posted by boo_radley at 10:04 AM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Does Utz advertise?

I've seen billboards for the Crab Chip along 95 and 895 in Baltimore, but other than that I don't know if I've ever seen anything.

Side note: my favorite t-shirt is from my bus-driving days and was designed by a friend; it's the Utz girl holding a bus steering wheel and underneath it says "UTS: Crisp All-Natural Transit Service." This is utterly irrelevant to anything at hand but I did just find the shirt again last week, so . . .
posted by thecaddy at 10:07 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Now-obiligatory related link to Clickhole's parody Mad Men oral history. I may or may not have been exclaiming "I'm Dick Whitman, yowza!" at odd intervals over the past few weeks.
posted by yellowbinder at 10:08 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Ocean Spray used to make a cranberry and prune juice thing?

also is this an okay place to mention that I met the two guys from the ocean spray ads and that the younger guy is really kinda hot?
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 10:13 AM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


This is not good enough for a FPP, but I'll put it here instead, because it's worth it for the lols. Mad Men Characters, Ranked
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:20 AM on May 15, 2015




Our wedding invitations featured the Utz girl and the Natty Boh mascot (You can guess the city)
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 10:32 AM on May 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


i think one of my favorite things about Mad Men (other than the not-quite-so favorite but really uttery eerily accurate LSD scene) is some article where they interviewed some women and men who had worked on Madison Avenue near the end of the 60s.

when asked about the smoking, drinking, and sexual harrassment, the one woman laughed and said the tv show was nothing - it was way worse, that everyone smoked, drank, and harrassed much, much, much more.

i just left kinda surprised civilization has carried on because damn.
posted by sio42 at 10:36 AM on May 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Related: Ken Cosgrove's short story in the Atlantic Monthly.

It would have been hilarious and awesome if they had actually built the character around a real author of a short story in an early-60s Atlantic Monthly.
posted by cosmic.osmo at 10:39 AM on May 15, 2015


90. Weiner dedicates the final hour to a Diana standalone, exploring her journey from Midwestern housewife to New York waitress. Because, screw you.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 10:40 AM on May 15, 2015 [11 favorites]


HOW IS BOB BENSON 35/42 CHARACTERS

NOT GREAT
posted by St. Hubbins at 10:45 AM on May 15, 2015 [6 favorites]


More rankings. I think my favorite is:
Weapons used:
  • Betty’s BB gun
  • John Deere riding mower
  • Pete’s rifle
  • Peggy’s bayonet
  • Lane’s fists
  • Lane's father's cane
  • Joan's vase
  • Duck’s fists
  • Pete’s fists
  • Chevy exec's shotgun
... though the rifle, while much discussed, is I think overrated. I refused to go to bed last night until "Guy Walks Into an Advertising Agency" was done -- this final marathon's been deadly for my sleep schedule.
posted by rewil at 10:46 AM on May 15, 2015


If I didn't already have a username, I'd start rocking Philip K Dick Whitman (or Tiger Millionaire).
posted by drezdn at 10:46 AM on May 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


101. Don reaches California, where he begins writing for TV. Final shot is of him starting work on a spec script for a show called "Mad Men: Advertising in the 1960s". After a few moments, he pulls the sheet of paper from the typewriter, crumples it, throws it in the garbage. "No one would believe that shit anyways," he says. Pouring himself a drink, he starts work on "Columbo".
posted by nubs at 10:48 AM on May 15, 2015 [10 favorites]


Weapons used:
• Betty’s BB gun
• John Deere riding mower
• Pete’s rifle
• Peggy’s bayonet
• Lane’s fists
• Lane's father's cane
• Joan's vase
• Duck’s fists
• Pete’s fists
• Chevy exec's shotgun


I should think that, given the way he wielded it, Don's penis should be on that list, too.
posted by Thorzdad at 10:51 AM on May 15, 2015 [5 favorites]






As a copywriter, I salute the original Clearasil ad. Starting with the user testimonial where she says 'I just sort of gave up'. How could you not read on?

Then check how it tells us pimples are simply 'floated out', the first time using quotation marks, but then a sentence later the pimples are just floating out without quotes around the same words.
posted by colie at 11:06 AM on May 15, 2015


There has to be some horrible, unexpected violence, of course.
posted by mitochondrial midichlorian at 11:08 AM on May 15, 2015


*checks the Boy's Life website for a story written from the perspective of a hunted bear*

If The Atlantic had to do a story, I would have rather read the one about the miniature orchestra.

102. Ken sitting with Pete's gun, holding Pete and Roger hostage, reading them his stories before pushing them out the window. Last one he reads is "The Punishment of X-4".

(sadface)
posted by tilde at 11:11 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Mad Men's theme music continues to be my absolute least-favorite thing about the show.
posted by invitapriore at 11:12 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


NO IT'S THE SHITTY FONT ON 'THE GIRL WHO NEVER QUITS' AD IN THE TITLE

THIS HAS BEEN ENRAGING ME FOR YEARS
posted by The Whelk at 11:14 AM on May 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


Weapons Used

• Alva, Oklahoma Phonebook

posted by JoeZydeco at 11:24 AM on May 15, 2015 [6 favorites]




Weapons Used

• Don Draper's fists (on Jimmie Barrett / force open apartment door)
• Stairs from 26th Floor at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce (See Pete's butt)
• Pillar in Pete/Harry's office (See Pete's nose)
• Stapler (see little girl left alone in a mid town office building)
• Pencil (drunk and high writers and artists in the Creative Lounge)
• Plate of Spaghetti (Megan Draper)
posted by tilde at 11:31 AM on May 15, 2015




Stairs from 26th Floor at Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce (See Pete's butt)

Don't forget Don's use of the stairs at the original Sterling Cooper building as an emetic on Roger.
posted by invitapriore at 11:36 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Ah, oysters for lunch.
posted by rewil at 11:38 AM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


They don't talk about current agencies at all. I've worked on several of these brands (Hilton, Vicks, Madison Square Garden).
posted by sweetkid at 11:52 AM on May 15, 2015


Bryan Batt's classy send off of Art Director, Sal Romano.
Man, I missed me some Sal; the past few seasons REALLY could have used some of his special brand of spice.
posted by Major Matt Mason Dixon at 12:03 PM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


"I'm Dick Whitman, yowza!" at odd intervals over the past few weeks.

YES SAME
MY LADY IS SO TIRED OF IT
posted by Greg Nog at 12:06 PM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I never meet guys with the genius of Draper in advertising any more. I used to when I started out in London 20 years ago. Is it just me?
posted by colie at 12:21 PM on May 15, 2015


From the Sal sendoff:

On Mad Men, what you think is going to happen doesn't happen, but what does happen is wonderful in a sad way. It's never really a happy ending.

That's what's coming Sunday night for the real-time watchers. Monday night for me.
posted by tilde at 1:01 PM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]




Come on, we know what's coming: Don, sitting in some Podunk VFW hall, drinking himself blind, gets up to leave, brushes past a younger man in uniform coming in who bears an uncanny likeness to young Dick Whitman, they mumble pardons and Don stumbles out the door into the afternoon glare. We hear the car star and the crunch of gravel as it pulls away. The radio starts and plays for a few bars, then a screech, a sickeningly real crunch of metal on metal, then silence except for the song. Lights down. Goodnight.
posted by Chrischris at 1:14 PM on May 15, 2015


If in the last minutes of the last episode, Don ends up in a diner eating onion rings, we would all be justified in storming the AMC network headquarters and throwing all the executives out of their highrise windows (although it would be interesting what song is playing on the jukebox). Ditto for anything involving a snowglobe.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:27 PM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Does Utz advertise? I've never seen one outside of a display in a gas station maybe once or twice -- its appeal is always " It's in basically every store in the tri-state area" and " It's a dollar cheaper"

Utz has (had?) a massive sign in Yankee Stadium. When the Red Sox were visiting, I would see that sign on TV as a child. Utz had no presence in northern New England at the time, and the sign offered no real clue as to what the product was. It was a childhood mystery.

Imagine that you have no prior associations and say the word to yourself. "Utz." It's an ugly word. It rhymes with "butts." The logo, in 1980s standard definition, featured the word and a dead-eyed girl. What could this product be?

"What's 'Utz'?" I would occasionally ask my dad after a shot of center field. He never knew. I began to imagine that Utz, whatever it was, was either something very wonderful or very sinister.

Eventually, I noticed bags of Utz chips at an out-of-state gas station and felt pretty cheated.
posted by Mayor Curley at 1:34 PM on May 15, 2015 [7 favorites]


New-England-to-New-York person here. Utz actually looks like a somewhat cheap brand when you first see the packages in stores here, and I avoided them as a result at first. But they are indeed less expensive locally, and I started getting them as a result, and - eh, unless you have weird fussiness about fried slivers of potato they're fine.

They do also make a "Crab Chip" that's a regular potato chip seasoned with an Old Bay-type thing.
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 1:39 PM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]






Everyone knows it ends with Don looking out the window, sighing, saying "Computer ...end simulation" as his pitch perfect peroid surroundings begin to flicker out of existence.

(and not just cause I wrote that into a short story once no siree )
posted by The Whelk at 2:25 PM on May 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


yes, but if it DOES end that way, will they owe you money?
posted by oneswellfoop at 2:48 PM on May 15, 2015


FOR THE RECORD, I did NOT see the video roomsthreeseventeen linked to before making this comment. It's just that great minds think alike. And lame pop culture commentators ALL think alike, y'know? (I should've suggested that Don catches up with the One-Armed Man...)
posted by oneswellfoop at 3:05 PM on May 15, 2015


Everyone knows it ends with Don looking out the window, sighing, saying "Computer ...end simulation"

More like:
"Oh no, I don't like this. Help Mr. Wizard!"
"Drizzle, drazzle, drozzle, drome. Time for this one to come home!"
posted by JHarris at 3:16 PM on May 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


It's all been a tv series pitch by a now-30-something Sally Draper.
posted by Thorzdad at 3:19 PM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Sally was born in 1954, right? She'd be past 60.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 6:23 PM on May 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Kindofaderail, but...
There seems to be a Convergence of Mad this weekend, between Mad Men, Mad Max: Fury Road AND the birthday of Madeleine Albright!
I think I'm just going to read Margaret Atwood's MaddAddam Trilogy... or Mad Magazine... or just work on Mean Absolute Deviations or Mutually Assured Destruction... and take some time to visit San Luis Obispo's big tourist hotel... the Madonna Inn.
posted by oneswellfoop at 8:31 PM on May 15, 2015


If I didn't already have a username, I'd start rocking Philip K Dick Whitman (or Tiger Millionaire).

Come on, we know what's coming

Indeed. It will be a masterpiece because not only will it be a series finale but it will also be a series pilot for an as yet unrevealed but controversially titled series staring John Hamm, who plays the protagonist of every single Philip K. Dick short story each week.
posted by juiceCake at 10:59 PM on May 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Sally was born in 1954, right? She'd be past 60.

Well, I didn't say "now" was our "now".
posted by Thorzdad at 4:33 PM on May 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


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