Friday’s ad is for Budweiser, from 1943. This World War 2 ad, while people were rationing, wants to ensure you get all of your B vitamins so you can keep on working or fighting. The imagery is fairly surreal, with a planet-sized clock with a ramp of working people lined up around it, creating a Saturn-like appearance. At the end of the line is a soldier, sailor, a construction worker who brings his own sledgehammer with him, a female member of the military, a farmer, another soldier with a pack on his back, a businessman, and so on ad infinitum. And the ad isn’t even about beer, but the brewer’s yeast which they supply to pharmaceutical companies who in turn use it to make Vitamin B pills. Yay yeast!
Wednesday’s ad is for Guinness, from 1960. Showing a man playing golf, suggesting he could play better by keeping “a Guinness in mind!” But I guess that only holds true for men, and not just any men, but just the tough ones, as the ad copy makes clear. “But for muscular men … who work hard, play hard, live hard … this is it.” And apparently it’s been that way for awhile now. “For 200 years now , this dark Irish brew has been the masculine man’s preference. Frankly, it is not for everyone. But vigorous, vital men are vehement that Guinness stout has the secret of the cool refreshment they need.”
Tuesday’s ad is another one for Schlitz, from 1936. Between the recipe for “Famous Schlitz Rarebit” and the man pouring a little Schlitz into whatever that dish is — soup, dip, etc. — it’s clear that Schlitz is cooking with beer. Based on the look on his face, I’d say he’s had a few beers before the guests are even due to arrive. And his wife in the shiny blue dress looks like she’s been keeping up, and is bringing in the next round. It’s going to be a great dinner party!
While I don’t put any stock in astrology, Bartram’s Brewery in Suffolk, England, did a series of zodiac sign beers. The brewer describes the idea as a fun “marketing ploy,” explaining. “Each month I brew a 4.2% beer using the same grist, Maris Otter plus 10% Crystal and then varied the hops so there is a whole load of experimentation going on! It has been an experience for me as I have been able to try out new hops each month.” In addition, each new beer has a new pump handle, with original art by Cherry Burns Salmond. In 1980, Guinness put out a calendar with each month representing one of the zodiac signs, which I posted throughout 2011, so I thought it would be fun to share these throughout this year.
Aquarius, the water-bearer, is from January 20-February 19.
To learn more about Aquarius, see:
Monday’s ad is another one for Schlitz, from 1936. “Schlitz, the beer with Sunshine Vitamin-D,” which is where the “Health with Enjoyment” line comes from. Apparently, “Sunshine Vitamin-D” gave people “that feeling of radiant health,” along with “that sense of bracing invigoration and fresh vitality.” That sounds impressive, doesn’t it. But it gets better. The ad continues. “It gives you the cooling tang that soothes heat-frayed nerves and awakens jaded spirits.” But the conclusion is certainly one that would never fly today. “Beer is good for you — but Schlitz, the beer with Sunshine Vitamin D, extra good for you. Drink it daily — for health with enjoyment.”
Sunday’s ad is also for Schlitz, from 1942. So when, exactly, is it that “The world looks brighter?” Why, it’s when you discover “that famous flavor found only in Schlitz.” The other big news in the ad, buried at the bottom is the fact that they just debuted a new quart-size bottle, which they call a “guest bottle.” I wonder why they’d call the larger package a “guest bottle.”
Saturday’s ad is another one for Schlitz, from 1952. It’s an interesting ad, focusing on “the little ‘extras’ that make Schlitz the best-liked beer in history.” They mention three “extra’s,” the “purity born of choice ingredients,” “delicacy of flavor,” and “that extra smoothness.” The artwork was done by Thomas Vroman, who’s more well-known for children’s books. I especially love the woman lying on the beach, with part of her visible through the glass of beer. That’s a cool effect, the way it’s drawn.
Friday’s ad is still another one for Schlitz, from 1956. This is another backyard barbecue-themed ad, like yesterday’s, but in this one at least the attendees are dressed slightly more casually. The art is by Tom Hall, another popular illustrator of the day. What is in that bowl next to the man in the foreground, on the table with two bottles of Schlitz? Are those brown potato chips, or something else?
Thursday’s ad is yet another one for Schlitz, from 1954. You see the main figure from the ad — the King of the grill — appropriated and used in other posters, but this is where it originally appeared. The illustration was by another well-known artist of the day, Tran Mawicke. Don’t you miss dressing up for backyard barbecues? Oh, wait, that never happened, at least not in my lifetime. Also, take a closer look at the salt and pepper shakers hiding behind the Schlitz logo — those are awesome.