What can you say about the 70’s that hasn’t already been said? Inflation was up and employment was down. Cheezy bad taste was considered to be tops in entertainment.
The playground that was animation was shrinking and expanding at the same time. Advertising people were using a lot of animation in their commercials, and there was still room for creativity, at least sometimes. We’ve featured ads from the 70’s in this column before, but today we are devoting the entire post to them. So pull up a bean-bag chair, but don’t sit too close to the screen…
With the voices of Joe Flynn and Paul Frees. Produced by Jay Ward but subcontracted to Quartet Films. I think these characters would have been good for a TV series. Too bad the commercial campaign didn’t last long. Who was to blame for that? If King Vitaman were here he’d say, “Not me! The cereal!”
W. C. Fritos
We have another W.C. Fritos spot for you that comes through the courtesy of Buzzco Productions.
Animated by Martin B. Taras. Soft pasta in runny tomato sauce so tempting that even herbivores can’t resist it. I think this was the decade where consumers really began to embrace the idea of tinned, frozen, and fast food.
Amazing spot based on the drawings of Robert Osborn.
Another trend of the 70’s was that large corporations wanted to “diversify.” Often this was accomplished by purchasing some other existing company. Sometimes these new ventures would go south pretty quickly owing to mismanagement from the parent company. Good thing things are different now, he said. In this spot we discover that AMF added the Almighty Himself to their portfolio, and that allowed them to create the 6th and 7th days.
Arm and Hammer
A very virile Frank Buxton voices the hero here. Baking soda is genuinely useful stuff, and it can neutralize excess stomach acid, clean car battery terminals, and make the Arm and Hammer company enough money that they can spend it airing animated commercials like this one.
The quality of Hanna-Barbera’s series animation was going downhill in the early 70’s, but during that same period they produced some very lush looking spots at their commercial department. Here’s a Pebbles spot directed by Art Babbitt and mostly animated by Irv Spence and featuring the voices of Alan Reed, Mel Blanc, and Paul Frees.