Everyone loves a heady blend of nostalgia and a good mullet, but when you throw in weirdly awkward voyeurism and cringe-worthy special effects, it makes for some rather amusing viewing. Check out this short video presenting five incredible adverts from yesteryear.
In a suitably dry tone, YouTuber, photographer, and amateur historian Azriel Knight has sifted through the archives to dig out a collection of his favorite clips, each giving an indication of how advertising has evolved and how certain elements have stayed the same. In the early 1990s, tennis player Andre Agassi was at the top of his game and offered advertisers a perfect combination of athletic success with just a touch of bad boy styling — enough to give a product a rebellious, punk vibe but simultaneously safe enough for a brand as conservative as Canon. Tapping to the notion of the rebel as a means of marketing mainstream products is a tried and tested strategy, an approach that has fared much better over the years compared to headbands and white suits.
The slightly gratuitous and weirdly voyeuristic nature of the adverts for the Minolta X7 and Olympus OM-10 date from the early 1980s and show how the Japanese manufacturers were evidently targeting a very specific demographic. If you’ve ever seen anyone use a water fountain quite so provocatively, please let us know in the comments below.