Comic book ads lied? No!

"Kids are stupid," Justin Plourde rightly asserts in his introduction to twelve examples of planet Earth's most inconsequential false advertising of all time. Whatever happened to the classic comic book ads? Did someone finally kick up a litigious stir about X-ray specs and all the other useless gadgets? Did they pupate into ads for homoepathic elixirs and healing crystals?

Wired's Lewis Wallace, however, points to a better example of the genre, from Dogwelder's Flick set:

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12 Comic Book Ads That Taught Us To Be Cynical [Cracked]

Published by Rob Beschizza

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7 Comments

  1. Say it ain’t so. I loved my 204 piece Revolutionary army men set. The Frankenstein poster was by Jack Davis. The X-Ray Specs never lived up to the hype. The worst was the pretend Trident sub which turned out to be a expensive cardboard board with rubber band powered missile launchers.

  2. I bought the “finger chopper” in that ad! It was actually a really clever mechanism: it could cut through something in the bottom hole without cutting through something in the top hole — but if you didn’t know the “arming” trick, the top hole would be dangerous too. I think I still have the thing around here somewhere.

    I also bought the “secret book safe”. It was sad plastic junk. Finger chopper was all metal, though.

  3. I’m fascinated by these, because for me, reading them as a kid in England, they were imports. So there was a layer of the unattainable and alien about these things. Magic America!

  4. I never ordered the Trident sub, but was convinced, as a child, that if I did, I would be able to take it out in the nearby lake.

    I did order the Army men set once. They were all flat silhouettes, but not really all that bad.

  5. Ghod I poured over those ads as a kid.
    Seemed like it was always when I was waiting to get a haircut or something I was reading those comics…

    Yes, the 600,000 piece army men set was always a cool one. 🙂

  6. Waiting to get my “BANG” gun in the mail from Johnson & Smith was wonderful. The gun wasn’t the best thing ever, but still nice.

    I think the main reason novelties like this aren’t as common as they once were is because of consumer safety standards for kids toys. It all changed in the 1980. Guns could no longer be black, robots stopped firing missiles. And catalog merchants couldn’t sell cheap crap to kids anymore lest their modern boomer parents sue them into submission.

    Not for nothing, but a friends kid LOVES the snakes in a can. Yeah, there’s metal edges and such, but if someone could just release a “kid safe” version that’s a money maker.

    Peanuts? Why I’d love some peanuts! And in a can! I will… OH MY GOD IT’S INFESTED WITH SNAKES!!!!!

  7. I’m sorry this is a little late but I’d like to thank you guys for reading my cracked article and linking it.

    you guys rule, thanks!

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