Daily Cancer – The Flintstones

Fred Flintstone Smoking WinstonAt first, it’s frightening to see The Flintstones so grossly hocking cigarettes, but consider two things:

1. If you do a little research, you’ll find that The Flintstones didn’t originate as a kids program.  It was primetime television’s first successful animated sitcom… allegedly patterned after The Honeymooners.

2. A generation ago the health risks of smoking weren’t a concern.  Big tobacco is banned from TV advertising today, but was much more pervasive and acceptable just a few short decades ago.

We have vintage ads on the walls at my company Porterhouse Advertising that include cigarette ads… for us it’s in no small part for the irony and juxtaposition. Two that come to mind… one features Rube Goldberg, the other a Norman Rockwell style image of a Pediatrician with a boy and girl matched to a headline that promotes the brand as the number 1 cigarette choice of pediatricians. Brands withheld from this post.

Times may have, thankfully, changed but this is valuable as a social commentary of 1960 America.