23 votes

Sexist and offensive vintage ads that would never fly today, 1940-1980

16 comments

  1. [5]
    stu2b50
    Link
    Reminds me of this Gameboy ad, which can charitably be interpreted as a BDSM session interrupted by an addiction to Tetris, and less charitably interpreted as someone who kidnapped a woman but got...

    Reminds me of this Gameboy ad, which can charitably be interpreted as a BDSM session interrupted by an addiction to Tetris, and less charitably interpreted as someone who kidnapped a woman but got addicted to Tetris midway through.

    1997, though, so not as vintage as the rest.

    10 votes
    1. [3]
      Adys
      Link Parent
      I remember that one. It might be the "modern" outlook on it but the way I interpret it, they interrupted their BDSM session, the guy had to go to the bathroom, he had his GBP with him and forgot...

      interrupted by an addiction to Tetris

      I remember that one. It might be the "modern" outlook on it but the way I interpret it, they interrupted their BDSM session, the guy had to go to the bathroom, he had his GBP with him and forgot about the girl since.

      It's a great ad. I think it's hilarious it's an officially Nintendo-licensed one, too. Would indeed never fly today.

      10 votes
      1. rogue_cricket
        Link Parent
        There was a whole "edgy" aesthetic thing in general around that time in gaming. I read recently about the infamous Daikatana ad line, "John Romero is about to make you his bitch", which was both...

        There was a whole "edgy" aesthetic thing in general around that time in gaming. I read recently about the infamous Daikatana ad line, "John Romero is about to make you his bitch", which was both very much a product of its time (2000) and even for then a bit over-the-top. Mr. Romero is apparently embarrassed about it to this day.

        10 votes
      2. hamstergeddon
        Link Parent
        Side note, the GBP was so awesome. I had a black one that kicked off my obsession with all black handhelds/console that went unbroken until the x360 only came in white at launch (sigh). It's a...

        Side note, the GBP was so awesome. I had a black one that kicked off my obsession with all black handhelds/console that went unbroken until the x360 only came in white at launch (sigh). It's a shame we (those outside of Japan) never got the GB Light, which was a pocket with a backlight. That's the ultimate Gameboy right there.

        3 votes
    2. kfwyre
      (edited )
      Link Parent
      I feel like that type of advertising was really common in games in the 90s. Lots of overt sexualization, often with misogynistic/objectifying overtones, and often depicting something with no...

      I feel like that type of advertising was really common in games in the 90s. Lots of overt sexualization, often with misogynistic/objectifying overtones, and often depicting something with no connection to the game/product being sold. I remember seeing these ads for Forsaken over and over again in my PC Gamer and Electronic Gaming Monthly magazines, and despite them triggering nothing in me (one of the early-in-life tells that I was definitely 100% gay), I still felt like I had to hide them from my parents lest I get in trouble.

      EDIT: Found a collection. I definitely wasn't misremembering, and it's a sad comment on the staying power of advertising that I remember a lot of these.

      Klonoa deserves so much better.

      8 votes
  2. teaearlgraycold
    Link
    Yikes. Reads like some kind of incel-penned erotic fiction.

    Though she was a tiger lady, our hero didn't have to fire a shot to floor her. After one look at his Mr. Leggs slacks, she was ready to have him walk all over her. That noble styling sure soothes the savage heart! If you'd like your own doll-to-doll carpeting, hunt up a pair of these he-man Mr. Leggs slacks.

    Yikes. Reads like some kind of incel-penned erotic fiction.

    10 votes
  3. [6]
    post_below
    (edited )
    Link
    We undoubtedly have equally idiotic perspectives and norms now, as seen from the future... though any culture looks extra dumb through the lens of its marketing.

    We undoubtedly have equally idiotic perspectives and norms now, as seen from the future... though any culture looks extra dumb through the lens of its marketing.

    8 votes
    1. [3]
      corleone
      Link Parent
      I'm pretty sure at some point the entire notion of advertising itself will seem quite bizarre.

      I'm pretty sure at some point the entire notion of advertising itself will seem quite bizarre.

      5 votes
      1. Thra11
        Link Parent
        I grew up without a TV, so I never really saw adverts on TV until I went to university and shared houses with other students. I found them so bizarre! I just don't understand how putting on a...

        I grew up without a TV, so I never really saw adverts on TV until I went to university and shared houses with other students. I found them so bizarre! I just don't understand how putting on a silly voice and saying something obviously bullshit would actually encourage me to buy something instead of just making the product look sleazy. No doubt I'm susceptible to other more subtle forms of advertising, but I distinctly remember adverts on TV generally making me hate whatever was being advertised. And now TV is dead (isn't it?), everything's online and we have adblockers, so I haven't seen many ads for years. I'm probably in the minority, but I find adverts bizarre, and pretty much always have.

        7 votes
      2. post_below
        Link Parent
        That's a nice thought... A future without pandering.

        That's a nice thought... A future without pandering.

        5 votes
    2. [2]
      nobody
      Link Parent
      I can't help but notice the use of "it's" in place of "its".

      I can't help but notice the use of "it's" in place of "its".

      1 vote
  4. [3]
    Moonchild
    (edited )
    Link
    The ‘beat your wife’ ad seems to me not so much sexist as simply a joke in poor taste (if in poorer taste now than contemporarily). Particularly because of the presentation: the title, like...

    The ‘beat your wife’ ad seems to me not so much sexist as simply a joke in poor taste (if in poorer taste now than contemporarily). Particularly because of the presentation: the title, like modern-day clickbait, seems intended to provoke, and to attract attention to the body paragraph.

    7 votes
    1. [2]
      fredo
      Link Parent
      All these ads are jokes, but being jokes doesn't make them much less terrible.

      All these ads are jokes, but being jokes doesn't make them much less terrible.

      11 votes
      1. Loire
        Link Parent
        The only one I give any credit to is the flight attendant ad. I don't find it particularly sexist that they "go beyond looks" and interview for maturity/intelligence/resiliency/whatever else. Its...

        The only one I give any credit to is the flight attendant ad. I don't find it particularly sexist that they "go beyond looks" and interview for maturity/intelligence/resiliency/whatever else. Its pretty much explicitly stating that women are more than their looks.

        7 votes