Laughing Squid on vintage Consumer Reports product test photos


The illustrious mikl-em of Laughing Squid wildly jactitates and squeals with excitement as he points out this fantastic gallery of vintage photos from 50s, 60s and 70s consumer product tests.

If that's not good enough, mikl-em takes the opportunity to nostalgically sigh over the many decades of Consumer Reports magazines that have brought us the wildly implausible retro-future each and every day.

Those rows and rows of black or red dots comparing the merits of every conceivable product from electric shavers to popcorn poppers and chocolate bars to nasal sprays, were at the time a wonder of the world of buying stuff that awaited me. Like the thinking man’s Price is Right, here was the racing form for the consumerism derby. CR is really the predecessor to the Engadgets and Gizmodos of the world, as well as car review sites like and the like.

But unlike their followers, Consumer Reports has a strong policy of impartiality. They do not accept any ads in their magazine or allow their reviews to be used in commercials of any kind. So in a world of planned obsolescence where widgets that are more expensive are not necessarily more better, CR is an un-bribeable auditor of all the suitors for your hard-earned dough.

Very well said, mikl-em.

Vintage Photos of Consumer Product Tests [Consumer Reports]

Consumer Reports' Vintage Test Photos [Laughing Squid]

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  1. Thanks John, but this was actually a guest post by mikl-em, so the “wildly jactitates and squeals with excitement” and “nostalgically sigh” all came from him, not me.

  2. Well, that’s certainly embarrassing… it simply never occurred to me it hadn’t been you who wrote it, Scott.

    Anyway, fixed, with my apologies to mikl-em.

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