Dear reader, life is too short for crap books.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

"It's Toasted": The 60s Ad Campaigns Behind Mad Men

There's no denying that the writers and researchers at Mad Men do their homework, incorporating meticulous period detail as well as some of the most famous advertising campaigns of the 1960s.

I picked up a few books on advertising history, and while some titles were more informative than others, Taschen's The Golden Age of Advertising: The 60s is by far the glossiest, packed with page after page of the most enduring, most beloved, and most horrifying ads of the decade.

It's fun to see where the fictional world of Sterling Cooper crosses paths with history. There's a throwaway line in "For Those Who Think Young" about Freddy Rumsen's work on the Maidenform account (though it seems that will be visited in more detail later this season). Here's one of the ads from Maidenform's famous "I dreamed I was... in my Maidenform bra" campaign. Nice work, Freddy!:

The scan turned out badly, but I thought these were reminiscent of the scrapped Bethlehem Steel ads from "New Amsterdam." Similar concept, though I preferred Sal's WPA-style art:

And remember that Volkswagen ad that Don Draper hated so much in "The Marriage of Figaro?"

Well, turns out not all of those VW ads were so cute after all.

1 comment:

Andrew Clarke said...

If you like books in which justice is won, may I suggest a title to try? "Outcasts Of Skagaray" was written because I felt strongly about the way a harsh judgemental society treats and rejects some people, children or adults. So I wrote my own story in which the 'outcasts' won out. If you want to preview it, there are sample chapters on Should you decide to read it I will be delighted and interested to hear what you think. Best wishes, anyway.