The 90s were a time of economic prosperity and unbridled excess. So naturally, there were some really great commercials. Here is a selection of my personal favourites:
Before Mentos was dropped into Coke Bottles to make mild explosives, it was the Freshmaker!
CATCH DE TASTE!
Seven year old me loved two things: The Toronto Blue Jays and Juice. Needless to say, McCain fruit punch made its way on to my family grocery list every week. In fact, I loved these “Catch de Taste” ads so much that they have since become the name of my softball team. We actually had a chance to meet Roberto Alomar a few years ago to get our Jerseys signed. He asked if he could have one, we gladly obliged.
No one has ever made painting a fence look this fun. I particularly enjoy how heartfelt the “RIGHT OVER THE RUST” line is sung. I’d also recommend taking in some of the City Pulse episode that comes after the clip.
Ok, so this one is more of a PSA than a commercial but that doesn’t make it any less incredible. Created by War Amps for their PLAYSAFE campaign it features an acrobatic robot named Astar, from the Planet Danger, who can re-attach its own limbs at will. Three important questions immediately come to mind:
- What is Planet Danger?
- Where is Planet Danger?
- Why is Planet Danger?
I can’t be sure what product this ad is actually for but I think we can all agree that “some people say I eat too many chocolate bars” is one of the most iconic lines of any TV ad from the 80s or 90s. My favourite part is how uncomfortable he looks at the end.
If Hal Johnson and Joanne MCleod told me to eat dirt, I’d probably do it. I wonder if that fax number still works…
I could probably write a whole separate blog about 90s Toy ads because they were all so perfectly persuasive but Mouse Trap had to be my favourite. LOOK AT HOW MUCH FUN THEY ARE HAVING. Also worth noting is that the actual Mouse Trap game was impossible to set up and broke immediately, placing it alongside “The Grape Escape” and “13 Dead End Drive” in every garage sale ever.
Honourable toy ad mentions include: Creepy Crawlers, Simon, Sockem Boppers, Bop-It, Don’t Wake Daddy, anything NERF.
While we are on the subject of 90s nostalgia, Microsoft did a great job rehashing the classics in this spot: