Friday, 11 June 2010

Three adverts from 1927 editions of The Strand Magazine

The Bovril ad is wonderfully absurd and clearly fits into the aspirational market: can you imagine the types who went to country house fancy dress balls, supping on Bovril in little branded mugs? Oxo are a bit more sensible, showing a girl who could be anything from a flapper who's got up late after a hard night's partying to a student nurse. The Birds Custard one is cute, but shows the clumsy 'sells' which seem typical of the time. The main catchline is oddly inappropriate. OK Birds Custard is great, we get that, but how is the saying relevant to small boys in Indian playsuits? Hedging their bets, they then shove in the standby line for mums, implying that custard is somehow good for growing kids. I've noticed that Super-Kreem toffees and Roundtree fruit gums, both of whom advertise regularly, try the same dodge. They wouldn't get away with such nonsense today.

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