I'm too young to remember when Gee, Your Hair Smells Terrific was on shelves, but gee, I can't imagine why a shampoo with a ridiculous name didn't stick around. Ah, but you can't keep a good thing down for long, which is why the shampoo and conditioner are back. I think I'll pass.
At the risk of being called a misanthrope, if I got the kind of message that this poor woman receives on her screen, I'd be speed-dialing the cops faster than you can say "Commodore 64." There's something unsettling about Jack the hax0r taking over her computer then whisking her away to Fantasy Island. (OK, I guess you can call me a misanthrope after all.) Still, would this commercial make people more likely to buy conditioner? I'm betting no.
There's something innocent and dreamlike about this commercial, not just in its aesthetic, but in its message: That with the right hair equipment, we can all be as virginally beautiful as Susan Dey. It seems quaint to modern eyes, but I can't help but think that Dey was a more appropriate role model for girls than some of the modern-day panty-flashers out there. Good luck trying to get the jingle out of your head . . .
Oh man, I remember this commercial. I also remember eagerly awaiting the day when I, too, could have crimped or curled hair from one simple styling tool. Unfortunately, 20 years on, the jingle hasn't left my head, so you may as well join me in reliving the horror.
Oh my. A Buddy Holly lookalike shows up to take his special ladyfriend on a date, but the aftershave is just too much for her to resist. Our hero must fend the vixen off with fake martial arts moves. Every bottle of Hai Karate came with a self-defense instruction booklet — y'know, to keep the ladies from overtaking the aftershave-doused dudes. Uh huh.
Everything old is new again — if you wait long enough. Kanye West helped bring back retro sunglasses, the likes of which make a cameo in this mid-'80s spot for Care Free Curl. While a modified Jheri curl is back for some Hollywood stars, I'm not sure if we'll ever go back to the days of asymmetrical haircuts and shoulder pads. (Or will we?)
When I think of my mom's youth, I imagine it looks something like this — all wholesome fun and bouncy music. I'm not sure why these youngsters are celebrating at what appears to be Medieval Times, or why it looks like Bela Lugosi is helping the birthday girl with her cake, but you have to admit, the song's pretty snazzy — a word my mom used in her youth and beyond.
Another ill-advised marketing message: "If you don't look good, we don't look good." Hmm, so can I tell that to the cashier at the drugstore the next time a product doesn't work? Maybe she'll let me return an empty tube? I guess this is colorific in someone's eyes, although the choppy commercial makes my head hurt even more than the rad hair hues we see. But, the hairstyles? Oh yeah, tease me, baby.
Don't you just love how commercials attribute awesomely vague life-changing experiences to a particular product? "It won't happen overnight, but it will happen." But when, when will it happen? After a week, a month . . . or after you switch back to your old product? I guess skeptical ol' Bella won't ever know but I'll take Kelly LeBrock's word for it. Decades later, Pantene's still pushing its provitamin formula. So don't hate me because I'm beautiful, love me because I've uncovered this retro ad for you. Enjoy!