Wednesday’s ad is for Heineken, from 1977. In the later 1970s, Heineken embarked on a series of ads with the tagline “Heineken Refreshes the Parts Other Beers Cannot Reach.” Many of the ads were in a sequential panel, or comic strip, format and they were intended to be humorous.
In this ad, a two-panel format, a man is carrying a large steel girder, balanced on his head, while carrying a full mug of beer. It’s obviously a poke at Guinness advertising, which had a similar ad with a man carrying a girder. The girder is bent in a curve, essentially drooping in the front and back, as if he was carrying something limp. But in the second panel, after he’s drank some of his beer, the girder has stiffened up and is straight as an arrow. Plus the man has gone from frowning to wearing a smile, but I’m sure that’s just a coincidence.