So I was dicking around on Youtube earlier tonight and I ended up in another vintage Star Wars commercial vortex. It started with this 1977 Burger Chef ad in which the restaurant is apparently just floating around in space:
A large drink for only forty-nine cents?! You can’t buy a goddamn straw for forty-nine cents these days. Oh, how I long for the days of Jimmy Carter. Sure, the economy was in the toilet, but at least soda was still reasonably priced.
I like how the Jawas are losing their shit over the Chewbacca poster. They’re probably excited because it’s another fabulous piece of crap they can sell to some dumb farmer on Tatooine.
Lucasfilm initially pimped all the weird Star Wars creatures and sets out to almost anyone who asked. That’s how we ended up with stuff like this classic 1979 drunk driving PSA:
That’s something I never really thought about before – the Mos Eisley cantina is unusually busy when Luke and Obi-Wan roll up in the first movie. It’s gotta be, what, one, two o’ clock in the afternoon? I guess all those aliens live by the motto it’s five o’ clock somewhere (just like my mom).
By the time Return of the Jedi came out in 1983, companies were lucky if they got tiny snippets of film to use in their ads. Burger King did for their commemorative drinking glass campaign, but they sure as hell didn’t get the rights to John Williams’ famous score:
Notice how this one ends just like the Burger Chef ad, with the restaurant’s logo glued on top of a space ship. Lazy-ass Burger King – come up with your own ideas!
There were a couple of Star Wars-related food items that defined my youth in rural 1980s Connecticut. One was Pepperidge Farm’s line of Star Wars cookies:
I guarantee you that kid’s excitement and satisfaction is not feigned. Those cookies were hands down the best tasting cookies I have ever eaten in my life. They were rich and creamy without being too heavy, crispy and crunchy without being too dry or brittle. In a word, delicious. And they were shaped like fucking Star Wars characters! I ate so many chocolate Admiral Ackbars I almost died!
The Pepperidge Farm store in my hometown closed years ago; many a night, I’ve contemplated buying a twenty year old unopened bag on eBay just to get a sweet fix of sugary nostalgia. On par with these cookies was Kellogg’s most important breakfast creation, C-3PO’s:
This might be the greatest vintage Star Wars commercial of all-time. It implies an epic saga surrounding C-3PO’s, one in which our beloved golden rod had to smuggle his tasty interlocking Os across Tatooine while being hunted and shot at by evil breakfast overlords. Finally in safe harbor, Threepio dons an apron and declares that this newly discovered food will bear his name. For once, R2-D2 does not argue. Later, we see C-3PO’s have pleased an obviously powerful and extremely influential alien. The galaxy will once again be safe for robot-based cereals.
I remember loving C-3PO’s and being very upset when they disappeared from grocery store shelves. They were just sweet enough to be really tasty. Again, I will admit that I have trolled the Internet searching for preserved specimens of this forgotten food item. I have also drafted numerous letters to Kellogg’s calling for C-3PO’s return to the market.
One more and I’m done for now. I don’t remember ever hearing anyone say “nagamaro” at any time during Star Wars, but the kid at the beginning of this commercial says it anyway:
What a weird place indeed. Did they really need that shot of the other kid confirming that his pal “got” Hammerhead? That was kind of creepy.
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