Sunday, July 31, 2016

When Wrigley's got in a mountain of trouble (Bubble Gum Weekend)

Back in 2002, Metamucil ran a TV commercial in which a park ranger poured the product into Old Faithful to help the geyser stay regular. The National Park Service just about pooped a hole in its pants, since they feared the ad would encourage people to throw objects into Yellowstone's thermal features. Wrigley's made a similar gaffe in 1980 in a commercial for its famous spearmint gum.

The difference between chewing gum and bubble gum is beyond the scope of this entry. It may be moot here, since nobody bubbled in the commersh.

In this ad - which I remember because it aired during soap operas that my mom watched - a man in a hang glider perched atop a jagged mountain crams a pile of Wrigley's Spearmint Gum into his cavernous maw. Then he majestically flies away, soaring over clouds and a river - while the singers stirringly chant the Wrigley's Spearmint Gum jingle...

Quite a bit of controversy erupted over that commercial. If you look closely, the man appears to be littering as he deposits the gum wrapper onto the mountain. This resulted in Wrigley's yanking the ad.

Also, I used to parody the voiceover man's opening lines: "Fresh. Clean." Whenever this ad came on, I would say, "Stale. Dirty." Just because I was 7 and thought that was really funny.