Monday, March 1, 2010

Baman Piderman

Puppets Make Me Buy Chow Mein

0:40 is surely some sort of pressure sell.

Let us celebrate the salesmanship of the La Choy Dragon.

The La Choy Dragon appeared in TV ads for La Choy from 1965 to 1967. It was an early project for the burgeoning Muppets Inc., with Jim Henson providing the voice (which sounds nearly identical to Rowlf the Dog, if he had 50% less brain cells and yelled everything for emphasis).

Interesting Muppet trivia: Rowlf the Dog was the first Muppet to reach stardom & an advertising deal as the star of a series of Purina Dog Chow commercials in 1962, prior to the La Choy Dragon's invention. But I digress.

I'm a huge Muppets and Jim Henson fan, so it was a treat to find this gem years ago. It never ceases to make me laugh and foster a longing for the classic days of Muppets Inc. and selling techniques that just involved yelling your message loud enough from the mouth of a giant puppet. Regardless, the tactics of that boisterous lizard (who had Muppeteer and crucial member of Muppet/Sesame Street success, Frank Oz, inside for the first and last time as a walking full body puppet) are crude at best and I love him for it. He wrecks the whole store and scares women into buying noodles.

If I were approached in the same manner, I would agree to anything that dragon suggested just as the terrified mother does. Clearly she just wanted to feed a bunch of hungry cub scouts, La Choy Dragon. And we all know cub scouts love Chinese food. It's quick cooked in dragon fire for Pete's Sake.

Look forward to more classic advertisements and Muppets in future entries!


PS: If you happen to find one of THESE promotional blow-up La Choy Dragons in your next antique store hunt or Uncle Bill's yearly garage sale, call me.