CLASSIC ANIMATED ADVERTISING
May 31, 2014 posted by Mike Kazaleh

Red Riding Hucksters

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Ever since the writers in the cartoon business discovered deadlines, fairy tales have been a surefire way to fill up screen time. That goes for commercials too. One of the most frequently used tales has been Little Red Riding Hood. Of course they used Goldilocks a lot too, but that’s another story. Anyways, today we’re going to look at six variations on the same theme. So if you’re ready, let’s all go out for a nice walk in the woods…

Halo

Here’s a strange one from Shamus Culhane productions. Announcer/game show host Jack Narz is the voice of the wolf. I almost used this one for the celebrity impersonation post last week, but I couldn’t figure out if he was imitating Ned Sparks or W. C. Fields. Maybe neither. I was pretty certain he was imitating SOMEBODY…



Snowdrift

Directed by John Hubley and animated by Art Babbitt. This time Herschel Bernardi plays the wolf. There is another version of this spot with a different ending. (alternate version click here)



Alpha Bits

From Format Films. Mostly animated by Robert Cannon who probably directed this as well.



Del Monte

A stop motion epic complete with cheezy Italian dialect. Everybody is crazy for the great taste of Del Monte canned zucchini. Okay, maybe not everybody…



Bactine

I find this spot to be oddly depressing. But I suppose that any commercial for a spray antiseptic is likely to show at least one character sustaining some kind of an injury.



Coca Cola

Theatrical commercial from Walter Lantz Productions, as it actually states at the beginning of the cartoon. Paul Smith and Ray Abrams do the animation here. Music by Frederic Chopin, arranged by Clarence Wheeler.


21 Comments

  • There was an ad that played in movie theaters with a very well animated Red Riding Hood for an online ticket seller (Fandango, maybe) that I really liked.Great artwork, Mike!

    • It was Moviefone,animated by Red Rover Studios-you can see it at http://youtu.be/aKGHP-nUK-o .I know it’s fairly recent(2002) but they did a good job in my opinion.

  • Somewhat as an aside…that opening drawing by you, Mike, has very sharp draughtsmanship; I like it quite a bit.

    • We need more of that around here!

  • The wolf in the last one looks a lot like Woody Woodpecker’s nemesis from “Fair Weather Fiends” and “Who’s Cookin’ Who?”

    • Also to some extent, the wolf in “The Dog That Cried Wolf” from the same year (1953).

  • Wow, that Culhane commercial was truly bizarre. I don’t know if the wolf is supposed to be imitating anyone, but Keith Scott might know. Actually it was a bizarre, eclectic clump of commercials altogether. Richard, it’s the same wolf character, according to Lantz studio documentation—he also shows up in “Dog That Cried Wolf” and “Red Riding Hoodlum”. Concur with the rest, sharp drawing as always, Mike!

    • Wow, that Culhane commercial was truly bizarre. I don’t know if the wolf is supposed to be imitating anyone, but Keith Scott might know.

      I didn’t think it was that bizarre myself, though I suppose a nice twist on the usual story with everyone being happy in the end and there isn’t a conflict at all aside from the wolf barging in on Red’s shampoo deal. A similar ad Culhane also produced had The Three Bears shampooing Goldilocks to convince themselves she was the real deal, yet nobody is quick to be angry in the end as they all break out in the same Halo jingle as before.

      Richard, it’s the same wolf character, according to Lantz studio documentation—he also shows up in “Dog That Cried Wolf” and “Red Riding Hoodlum”.

      A good design that deserved to be used over and over I guess.

  • I’m loving that you’re drawing cartoons to accomply your posts now, Mike. :)

    That Bactine commercial is…something. Wow.

    • “That Bactine commercial is…something. Wow.”

      Kinda has that mellow 60′s vibe going for it (or is it from the early 70′s?) The wolf certainly got this down pat!

  • Is Bill Baldwin doing the tag at the end of the Lantz spot?

    • Yeah, I think that is him.

  • The first person I thought of when I heard the wolf’s voice in the Halo shampoo commercial was Sheldon Leonard as the race track tout from Jack Benny’s radio program.

    • Seems to me Narz is just doing a sort of generic “pitch man” voice, maybe influenced by Sid Stone’s Texaco commercials on the Milton Berle show. (Jack Narz’s brother James was also an announcer and quiz host, under the name Tom Kennedy…and apparently was also Bill Cullen’s brother-in-law!)

  • That’s J. Carrol Naish doing his “Luigi” Italian dialect on the Del Monte stop-motion ad, and all the other voices too!

  • It was Moviefone’s ad.See it here http://youtu.be/aKGHP-nUK-o

    • Thanks for that, I suppose I went out of my way here in looking up Red Rover’s archived page for that ad personally, but glad none the less to see it again.

  • Snowdrift
    Directed by John Hubley and animated by Art Babbitt. This time Herschel Bernardi plays the wolf. There is another version of this spot with a different ending. (alternate version click here)

    I remember seeing that alternate version years ago thinking that was pretty amusing the wolf blew his cover early, but love this version with him getting to enjoy the Snowdrift-baked goodies, and admits he isn’t Grandma at the end (Red seems to take it fine enough though the commercial cuts out very quickly so who knows what’s going through her head, that grin is enough).

    It’s true that there are plenty of ads that take advantage of using fairy tales in their messages (I can think of a good number with Goldilocks/Three Bears and the Three Little Pigs myself), getting back to Red Riding Hood. this live-action puppetry/animated combo for Honey Nut Cheerios is one I recall so well (with Kelsey Grammer playing the wolf).
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kH1FojBjcOA

    Up in Canada (namely in the Saskatchewan area), a telecommunications firm has been using a Red Riding Hood character to promote it’s cellular and broadband services. A wolf character has also been used to promote their no-contract phone plans. Despite being fairly more recent (let alone stray away from the usual story), here’s a few ads to sample.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zd_bIyVhXFw
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JvI2McXLFZ8
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rd6i6gF5cFc
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xN2yAp-TDuw

    Many of these were produced by a studio called House of Cool (formerly Red Rover). Red Rover previously did an ad for moviefone.com I enjoyed for the wolf’s attempt at being grandma down to the balloon breasts! Thankfully this is archived at the Internet Archive.
    https://web.archive.org/web/20070303185242/http://www.redrover.net/content/spots/preview_aol.htm

    Rounding it off, here’s another Canadian ad from 1999 I recall seeing on CBC, in this one Granny saves Red in the nick of time in her Ford minivan.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bcWndSroc9U

    • Thank you for the links! I also liked the alternate version of the Snowdrift commercial.The wolf in the Culhane commercial with his unusual teeth (for a wolf) reminded me of a sight gag in a Walter Lantz cartoon.

    • The wolf in the Culhane commercial with his unusual teeth (for a wolf) reminded me of a sight gag in a Walter Lantz cartoon.

      We do get a wolf with teeth like that in Famous Studios cartoons like this…
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fOQKy5rBnFU

  • I also noticed some animation work from Lester Kline (Granny going to bed) as well as Donald Paterson at the end (or was that just Smith trying to imitate his style?). I also see this is actually the last of 8 spots that YT user CatGoneSplat has uploaded. That’s an impressive discovery for me. I’ve never seen them before, so I’m glad someone actually took time to share them with us.

    And since Goldilocks and the 3 Little Pigs have had mentions here, Mike, I suppose it’s only naturally appropriate that you get busy writing up follow-up posts on Mad Ave.’s takes on both those fairy tales, don’t you think?

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