While Wil Anderson and the (frankly lightweight) Gruen Transfer sweep all before them on Aunty ABC, we here at Mr Trivia are also willing to put advertising under the spotlight and smack it around with a telephone book.
Has there ever been a more misleading piece of marketing than the famous SEA MONKEYS print ad? Well, yes. When they described George W. Bush as a “compassionate conservative” in the lead up to the 2000 U.S. Presidential election. But I stoop to conquer, yet again.
Here in Australia, this kind of ad could be found in a number of American comics. I recall seeing this one in the back of Archie Comics along with the rather frightening “real submarine” for kids (yikes!) and the opportunity to make money by hawking GRIT – America’s Fastest Selling Newspaper.
Anyhoo, suffice to say, “Sea Monkeys” are actually brine shrimp and are in no way humanoid in appearance. They are not the representatives of 1960s middle America that they seemed to time-shifted Australian children in our distant, wide, brown land. Daddy Shrimp isn’t an architect. Mom isn’t just back from the beauty parlor, ready to fix dinner. The kids haven’t been at school practicing their “duck and cover” moves. Disappointing, huh?
For more on this nostalgic piece of well-crafted deception, check this neat-o article on this phenomenon. It’s from pop-cult.com.
Elevate the Insignificant,