That actu­ally used to hap­pen, you know — soup and other cans were sealed with lead.

One has to won­der if per­haps that wasn’t the sealant used for this prod­uct, espe­cially given the mod­els’ expres­sions of abjectly mani­a­cal glee.

In fact if the prod­uct weren’t vis­i­ble, you’d have to won­der exactly what this woman was doing to make the boy look so star­tled and strangely delighted.

But all of this is just the more baf­fling when you learn that the prod­uct being adver­tised is…


Yep, V-​​8 tomato veg­etable juice, ca. 1948. Via.

Here we see an unusu­ally heavy-​​handed approach to the basic prin­ci­ple of cap­i­tal­is­tic adver­tis­ing: Use hyper­bole to sug­gest unname­able ecstasy (“my heart sings”, the gib­ber­ing mod­els) obtain­able from a con­ven­tional prod­uct — and one which, frankly, no one really actu­ally needs. There are vari­ants, but not many, on this theme; it’s pretty much the main­stay of post-​​WWII adver­tis­ing out­put. And of course it’s ludicrous.

Tomato juice is sim­ply not a panacea, it will not cause any sort of car­di­olyri­cal man­i­fes­ta­tion, and it is absolutely not the cause of orgasm in either house­wives or pre­pu­bes­cent boys. (You know that’s true, or the Fed would have out­lawed it by now.)

The rea­son we lose impact in lan­guage can be par­tially traced to ads such as this one. How many times have we heard adjec­tives such as “deli­cious” applied to things which are more accu­rately described as “nom­i­nally palat­able”? How often are we treated to the sight of some­one being ecsta­tic, or at least danc­ing with joy, over a floor-​​cleaning prod­uct? And who the fuck believes this kind of dip­shit adver­tis­ing is still sell­ing one god­damned prod­uct more than a sim­ple, hon­est pitch would?

Does her heart sing? Does it really?

She needs to get out more often, then.

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