Friday, July 31, 2009

Time Travel in Commercials

Time travel references always show up in the strangest places including television ads.

One of my favourites from back in the day was a Pepsi commercial that featured some intrepid inventors preparing to test their time machine and send an individual back to 1885. The time traveller accidentally takes a Pepsi he is drinking with him into he time machine. When they realize he error the one scientist exclaims to the other "This is catastrophic - it could change history!" The other scientist tries to reassure him "Relax Smith, you don't think one can of Pepsi can alter 100 years of history do you?" As the pair leave the lab, a Coke machine with the banner - 100th Anniversary disappears as does a transport truck emblazoned with Coke disappears as well a factory for Coke.

So, what are you trying to say with this commercial? That your product, Pepsi isn't good enough to beat the competition, so you need to go back in time and eliminate Coke? I am surprised they went with the "Back to the Future" ripoff and not a "Terminator" spoof. Despite being primarily a Coke drinker most of my life, I still love this commercial.

Watch for a young Bruno Kirby as one of the scientists that send the kid back to 1885.

Our second time travel commercial for today is more recent one for Bacardi Mojitos. The premise is simple but well executed both from a visual time travel experience and from a marketing one as well. A guy at a night club finishes his very tasty Mojito and decides to head to he bar to get another. As he crosses the club he passes through a variety of decades, 1960s, 1950s, 1920s, and finally the 1860s. The guy retrieves his drink and the voice over says - "Since 1862 the best mojitos have always been made the same way. Bacardi. The Original Mojito"

It reminds me a bit of Will Smith's 1999 video Will2K, but better.

Do you know of any other commercials that use time travel?