As television became a fixture in the American household, it was no longer necessary for the medicine man to ride his wagon across the country and give his pitch one town at a time. He was suddenly able to be in millions of homes at the same time, selling his wares with the help of motion pictures. Often animation was part of the spiel. Sometimes it was just a hammer hitting the anvil in your brain or letters swimming down the alimentary canal, but often there would be a suffering cartoon character who would be back on his feet an instant after using some pill, liquid, or spray.
Remember, this was in the old days when it was illegal to advertise prescription drugs on television, so you won’t hear any “ask your doctor if Hadacol is right for you” or “side effects include headaches, nausea, ingrown toenails, and sudden loss of life” disclaimers in these spots, just some good old fashioned hyperbole and prevarication.
Mostly live-action with some animation by Ed Love. Cartoon vocal by Mel Blanc.
More animation from Ed Love. These Bactine ads always say the stuff doesn’t sting. I’d ask for a second opinion on that one.
Animated by Art Babbitt. Narrated by Cliff Norton.
Animated by Bill Littlejohn. Voices by Shep Menkin and Paul Frees. From Playhouse Pictures. 1956.
The turbaned narcoleptic is voiced by the ubiquitous Allen Swift. We also have a 20 second cut-down version in color, but the little faker has taken a vow of silence in that one.
Late sixties spot from MGM Visual Arts. Directed by Abe Levitow and animated by Hal Ambro. Featuring the voices of June Foray, Mel Blanc and Daws Butler. This was a tie in with MGM’s Saturday Matinee-type show, “Off to See the Wizard.”
Speedy Alka Seltzer
From the Swift-Chaplin studio. Speedy voiced by Dick Beals