There are the uncertainty of the products and services being promoted, the not-so-subtle stereotypes, and the often hilarious homoerotic undertones. And don’t get me started on the rich, vivid hues. You can’t beat an olive green—especially on all your kitchen appliances.
Past generations had a knack for doing it better—and by better, I mean so bad it’s good again. So, for your viewing pleasure, here are 10 classic print ads from the “Mad Men” era that deserve recognition.
1. Canada Dry: “Gingervating.” And so the revolution against redheads began.
2. Burton: “Cool Suit.” The original inspiration for “Reservoir Dogs.”
3. Ronrico: “Meet Ronrico.” Just a bottle of Puerto Rico rum with a Spanish mustache—nothing stereotypical about that. If the product had been tequila, it might be in poor taste. But this—this is as smoothly executed as that shot of the rum.
4. Germaine Monteil: “Red Fury.” Much like the hair in No. 1—numero uno para mi amigo, Ronrico—a red lip is hard to pull off. But given equal parts of dame and gumption, any guy with a pulse could get fired up over it.