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Advert memories from 1985

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  • Advert memories from 1985

    It's amazing how watching old 1980s ad breaks on YouTube can bring back something quite vague to the memory - 1985 seemed to be the year when grainy filmed adverts gave way to more VT ads, and so they look a little less dated than the previous ones were.

    For example, I vaguely remembered an advert for a Birds Eye product which used the tune of "Well, Did You Evah!" [sic], (in which Crosby and Sinatra had a go at in "High Society" back in 1956 and was shown famously on the day Charles and Diana for married). Seeing a 1985 STV ad break downloaded, I saw it for the first time in well over three decades, with the late John Hewer (Captain Birds Eye), and some actress sidekick performing it within half a minute, almost like a Worzel and Aunt Sally double-act. It was shown nationally and not just in Scotland, just because it was off-air from STV. I would have said that it was from 1986 rather than 1985, but still...

    It's always the sub-Electro Velvet tune that accompanied their Potato Waffles, or the poor man's Auf Weidershen Pet understudies in a transit van reinventing that old Doris Day hit to which most Thatcher-ised [sic] children remember a lot better. And I also remember Birds Eye garden peas (or was it their petit pois?) which used the Allison's 1961 Eurovision hit "Are You Sure?" in their adverts, but people's video collections don't seem to remember that one?

    Another one was the Philips Ladyshave advert which was doing the rounds towards the end of 1985, probably as inspiration for what Christmas gift someone's wife would like - the spine-chilling music used in the advert made me want to play it over and over again, and it does shout "Nineteen Eighty-Five" in pink and florescent green neon to me a lot more than any other advert from that era did. It reminded me of Kate Bush singing "Running Up that Hill", also a hit in the same year. I had that same feeling about it as a seven year old back then - I have always wanted to know the name of that piece of music as I have never heard it anywhere else.

    The Canderel advert that showed a woman in a white swimsuit next to a swimming pool (reminiscent of Kellogg's Special K adverts, and I promise that I am not confusing them with this), sprinkling low-calorie sugar onto to Corn Flakes, strawberries and a cup of coffee. Cue dolphins playing in the pool, splashing as they did so. A family member had become a diabetic around this time, and so the adverts about NutraSweet was more than apparent, and they often used to appear in ad breaks on TV-am as one may have guessed.

    The brief series of Lyon's Quick Brew with the Giles cartoon characters coming to life come to mind (yes, I have seen the Giles statue myself when I visited Ipswich in 2012). Ovaltine's animated series of adverts with one of them offering an Ovaltine mug which played the tune from the advert when picked up - I should know as my late mother sent off for one. Cue character writing "BEST BEFORE DEC 85" on himself prior to meeting the cauldron.

    I have mentioned the others before: Jif (cue Andy Kim's "Rock Me Gently"); Bio-Tex (cue the Stylistics' "You Make Me Feel Brand New"); the Yellow Pages one with the young lad emptying his piggy bank and cycling to Townsend's toyshop to get a Hornby model railway with an R186 signal box to his Granville-pullover wearing father in the attic, surrounded by more trains than British Rail, etc.

    How on earth did we get past 1985 without going completely sane?
    Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

  • #2
    Re: Advert memories from 1985

    Another advert was the Kellogg's Corn Flakes one from around September 1985 with the plastic model aeroplane kits free in the cereal packets - one had to put it together a la the toys from the Kinder Surprise eggs. Not long before they did a deal with the poor man's Lego manufacturer Tente with some building toys in there. Thames and some other ITV region ad breaks during the movie premiere of Superman from that month have that advert on them. A kid in my class annoyed our teacher when he brought one to school with him.

    And of course, the Radox "Yakety-Yak" one which I mentioned on the relevant thread last year. And that "I wanna be loved by you" French-style perfume ad was around in the autumn, performed by a Monroe wannabe and was usually seen during Monday's Coronation Street ad breaks.
    Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!


    • #3
      Re: Advert memories from 1985

      I remember some of those Cornflake free gifts, and sending off for a Tente set.
      The Trickster On The Roof