By Cory Doctorow at 12:01 pm Sat, Dec 10, 2011
Vintage Ads group contributor extraordinaire write_light's rounded up a collection of "Giant Men" ads from the 1950s, looking like the covers for pulp Ayn Rand fanfic.
Friday '50s: Giant Men
I had no idea that giant, chained, sadomasochistic bears powered our homes. You learn something new every day.
I dare you to pull his finger.
What a bizarre way of visualizing electricity: half-naked giant beefcake with one arm shackled and the other firing out bolts like a hands-on Zeus. It’s not the first image that would pop into your head on hitting the light-switch.
Then again, it was for somebody.
In this, and the others posters at the linked site, I see a lot of pride and hope in the power of human industry (in the general sense of smart people working hard to change the world in awe-inspiring ways). From the fiction of that era you can tell people were at least a little afraid of progress, but that fear seems balanced by this great hope that science, technology, and hard work will improve everything. Can anyone point me to some more current examples of this optimism? Are we all too pessimistic about the economy for this type of THE WORLD IS AWESOME! advertisement to work any more? Or is this style of ad still used and I just haven’t noticed?
BTW, is anyone else having problems posting comments in Firefox and Chrome? Even with all extensions disabled?
I think the kind of optimism you’re describing is still used in advertising (and other things), it’s just not as direct and obvious (at least, not all of the time).
That is LBJ!
Cannot be unseen…
He’s not actually chained. That’s just for grounding.
“I’m crushing your head”
ad Funny illustration Old school
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