Mar 30, 2012

A Time gone by - Old Ads

Memory lane continues...Watching an old movie recently from my VHS collections (Any one still remember? Betamex / VHS..??), and this was a recorded one done quite a long while ago (I still have my VHS cassettes :))... 

Half way through the movie, an an ad comes up (these were the days of recording one and watching another and no effective pause buttons) and I go spell bound.. Nothing great or out of the world, but the sheer oldness and the simplicity of the Ad rang a bell. Nothing fancy, no special effects, and yet a message. Fevicol

Off on a wild chase for more of such memorial ads that many of us grew up watching, during school, or college and were probably the brightest spots in a boring Chayya Geet or a drab Sunday movie on DD1.

An all time favourite: Lalita Ji and her "samajdhari" in purchasing Surf. Simple setting ad's, children doing nonsense, no shirts being torn, no women in see through wear or people jumping off buildings, or women coming out of pools, just the message.

Creams.. Sangita Bijlani in the old Vicco Turmeric Ads.. Family wedding, an old style lavish bungalow, followed onwards after marriage. Absolutely simple, yet effective. Pan Parag with Shammi Kapoor and Ashok Kumar... "Baratiyon ka Swagat, paan parag sey kijiye".

Talcum powders, body creams, deodorants, simple messages through people that could be associated. No Rock stars, high fliers that we have today.. Yes, there were film stars that did the ads in the days of the old, but yet, one felt that the masses could relate to them as most were with people of every day life. Today it has to be an SRK or a John Abraham, or a Kareena, or a Deepika Padukone.. How many of us relate?

Another favourite: The Remo / Juhi Pepsi Ad, truly a rocking ad at the time. Musical and starry, felt the blood go on on that one, with a classy finish.

Then there were the ones with Gavaskar and Imran, and Imran, Wasim, Waqar... Remo going Yehi hai right choice Baby.... .Aaahaa.. The Hajmola Ad...

Endless, surely, and the list can go on and on, with soo soo many favourites. Missed no doubt, never seen again, ever, surely the people who acted in them, might not want to see them, but all said and done, they are pure classics.

Part of life I guess, things move on, times progress.. What is classic to us today, would have been shocking to our parents then. could they have accepted us rocking like Remo did, or drooling over Sangeeta Bijlani.. Lalita Ji, was to respect and revere.. The Nirma Ad was just a blaze of circles, with the package only showing.. Never a person.

But as always, times change, people move on and the world looks for something new. But in this search for the new, do we retain our innocence?

Why do we need women in bikini's to be standing next to a guy and rubbing his cheeks for a clean shave? Why do you need to do a body to body salsa, going through every curve of a woman just to eat a biscuit? Why does a man need to smell a woman all over just to find out that her hair is smelling gr8 and has no dandruff? How do Angels fall when you splash Axe? How can you come out of the ocean wearing a bikini and it gives you a lemon freshness feeling? Why is it that when a guy in shorts walks past the pool, the water evaporates from the heat of the body spray??

Are we so conscious, or are we as a generation growing in the midst of a new century, so obsessed with looks, bodies and beauty, that every thing else is secondary? Do we really buy the products watching half naked people walking in the Ads.. Surely, the wife and the husbands would kill each other if that being the case? Why then the need to degrade people of any gender, simply to sell, or to "reach the masses".

As we changed, surely, our coming generations too will change.. What we don't know is where the next generation goes. Of course, one would say that we are unnecessarily worried, but sure, as we progress, our coming generations too have a right to progress..

That of course, is a long time off.. For the time being, it is a forgotten past, an era gone by, simplicity replaced with show business, and all we have is memories.. In case, one needs to view old ads, these are all on the Doordarshan blog spot.