A long time ago I used to have a book about sexual subtexts in advertising; I think it was published in the 1970s. And unfortunately, during one of our bouts of moving house, it got given away. We used to have these ‘let’s really streamline our library’ moods (wonder what sort of music goes with that mood) and I have to tell you, I regret it. Because I really need that book now.
Take a look at Ben Blue and his hot dog….Hmmm. Well, when he doesn’t wrap it in Waxtex it is – not droopy precisely, but sort of wrinkled and…sad. Ben is mildly disgusted by it. I think he should be more worried about the fact that one of his hands – not to mention his hot dog – is a line drawing. And that he himself is a disembodied head.
When he does use Waxtex, he is happy and so is the hot dog. Well, moderately happy. He looks – OK with it. Shouldn’t he look a bit more enthusiastic if he’s doing an ad?
Mind you, maybe he shouldn’t get too excited (ahem). It’s only Waxtex after all.
I almost thought he was Stan Laurel, but Stan would be emoting more. That sad hot dog would make Stan cry! And then Oliver Hardy would get mad and tell him to use Waxtex.
The primary virtue of Waxtex seems to be tightness – air-tight, moisture-tight, flavor-tight; OK, thank you, we get it. You could wrap a time capsule up in that stuff. The ancient Egypians could have had fresh sandwiches right now, if they’d only thought to use it!
Ben Blue (born Benjamin Bernstein in Montreal, 1921-1975) was a movie actor, radio comedian and TV personality whose career began with Warner Brothers short films in the 1920s. He was in The Big Broadcast of 1938 with Bob Hope in, um, 1938. And he had a few forays into TV - The Ben Blue Show in 1950, and a bunch of appearances on Frank Sinatra’s show too. Which was called The Frank Sinatra Show, in the great 1950s tradition of imaginative TV show names.
Speaking of which, they should have called Ben’s show Blue’s Clues! As you may or may not know, there are three things that are drawn on the real Blue’s Clues (I’m including a link for the readers who did not get the great aesthetic pleasure of enduring this show with their kids). Then that striped-shirt weirdo has to guess what his dog Blue wants. (Notice the weird cartoon/real mix on the show, just like in this ad!)
Ben Blue could draw a hot dog and a box of Waxtex. The third thing would be – what? All I can think of is a picnic basket but that isn’t very funny. I’ll bet you can come up with some fun things in the comments!