Friday, April 24, 2015

Stan Freberg

Stan Freberg
Comic genius Stan Freberg recently passed away.  His multi-faceted career included Radio, Records, and Movies.  But his most successful venture was advertising.  He was the man who introduced humor to commercials.
I'm not sure if he ever  tried selling ice to Eskimos, but he was very successful selling prunes.

Freberg figured that one selling point was the fact that Sunsweet had already removed their pits.  His ad proclaimed that another improvement was on the way:  "Today the pits, Tomorrow the wrinkles!"

And, of course, the famous ad proclaiming that "Nine out of 10 doctors prefer Chun King Chow Mein.  Then the camera pulls back to show nine Asians in White Doctor Coats..........and one white guy  (Stan Freberg himself)

You probably remember his 1951 soap opera parody "John and Marsha" in which the two actors only utter each others first names...each time feverishly emoting.  Yes, that was Freberg.

And the 1953 take off on Dragnet, titled, "St. George and the Dragonet."

However, none of his "failures" were mentioned. He didn't have many, but one was pretty spectacular;  his campaign for Pacific Airlines.

Freeberg convinced the airline CEO that a lighthearted spoof of the public's fear of flying would be just the thing to convince people to "Fly Pacific Airlines."

This first thing he did was take out a full-page ad saying:

"Hey there! You with the sweat in your palms. It's about time an airline faced up to something. Most people are scared witless
of flying. Deep down inside, every time that big plane lifts off that runway, you wonder if this is it, right? You want to know something, fella? So does the pilot, deep down inside."

Flight attendants passed out "survival kits," which consisted of a lucky rabbit's foot and a security blanket.

  • Freberg
At the end of each flight, the attendant would get on the PA system and say,  "We made it!  How about that!"

Freberg had plans to paint the planes like trains, and play train noises over the loudspeakers, but he and the CEO of the company were fired before that could happen.

Shortly after that the airline went out of business and sold out to Air West.

Freberg passed away in Santa Monica, California at age 88.

His motto, printed on his business cards read,
Ars Gratia Pecuniae,  Latin meaning "Art for money's sake."