Cola Wars: Awesome Vintage Coke commercials
Yesterday I was reminiscing about the Coke/Pepsi “Cola Wars” back in the ’80s and ’90s. I took a look back at a bunch of Pepsi’s most famous commercials from that era. If you missed it, I urge you to check it out.
Now, let’s take a look at the other side of the coin, Coca-Cola. They have come up with some pretty famous commercials of their own. Let’s take a look back in time at some of Coke’s most famous TV ads.
Coke’s 1971 Teach the World to Sing commercial (video above) is undoubtedly their most famous advertisement. It is so famous that it received two official sequels. First, during the 1971 holiday season, Coke released a Christmas version of the commercial that ended in darkness with all the candles the people were holding in the shape of a Christmas tree. Then, in 2005, Coke inexplicably allowed singer/songwriter G Love to create a horrible douchebag hipster alternative rock version called Teach the World to Chill. Might have been a worse idea than New Coke.
If the “hilltop” commercial above isn’t Coke’s most famous, then this 1979 Mean Joe Greene commercial is. It’s still today a fantastic commercial. Of course, in 2009, Coke filmed a sequel to the Mean Joe Greene commercial with Troy Polamalu.
The 11:30 Diet Coke break from 1996 is another popular Coke commercial. I remember it airing what felt like every 5 minutes. And, wait, I’m shocked to say this, but, in 2007 Coke filmed a sequel to the 11:30 commercial. Talk about milking a concept dry. I wonder if any of Coke’s commercials haven’t had a sequel.
In 1994 Coke started it’s “Always Coca-Cola” campaign. And with it, this commercial which is one of my favorites. The song is so catchy. I remember it playing in movie theaters before the feature during the commercial break. I loved it and usually sang along with it. Fantastic jingle and I love the fonts and design of the commercial.
I can’t do a Coke commercial article and not talk about New Coke. When Coke launched their reformulated “New Coke” in 1985, it trotted out as many stars as they could find to get people to buy the new formula. Max Headroom was chosen to bring in the young people. In this commercial he interviews a Pepsi can about being second best. For the older crowd, they trotted out Bill Cosby.
In the ’90s, Coke signed Paula Abdul to market Diet Coke. This led to the above commercial which has Paula dancing with Gene Kelly and hobnobbing with Cary Grant and Groucho Marx. A very cool commercial. Also, for the campaign, Paula teamed up with Elton John on several commercials singing “Just for the Taste of It…Diet Coke!”
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