Yesterday, September 30th marked the 50th anniversary of the Flintstones cartoon. This was brought to my attention when I visited Google’s homepage and saw that they had put up a Google Doodle featuring a Flintstones theme. Yes, I know that it would have been better if I’d discussed this post on the day of the anniversary but it just couldn’t be done I was taking the GRE. The design is below.
Upon further research I discovered that the Flintstones were not a children’s cartoon when they were first aired. The Flintstones were actually an adult sitcom much like The Simpsons and Family Guy. I know what you all are thinking right now, how does this relate to Inside That Ad? Well, Winston Cigarettes were the largest sponsors of the Flintstones back in the 60s when the show was airing.
The first T.V. spot above had both an actual commercial and a sponsor identification segment, which is really cool, at least for an ad guy like me. I also loved the seamless way they integrated the cigarettes into the storyline of the loveable Stone Age couple. But the Winston Cigarettes only sponsored the show for the first two seasons. When the third season got started Winstons was replaced by Welch's fruit juice as the main sponsor according to the Winston Wikipedia article. Miles Laboratories was the alternate sponsor to Winston Cigarettes. Miles is behind the Flintstones chewable vitamins.
From what I can dig up the spots were created by Hanna-Barbera productions but the primary ad agency for the R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, which owns Winston Cigarettes is the William Esty Ad Agency who is also behind the famous jingle, "Winston tastes good like a cigarette should," I believe.
Anyway, what do you guys think?