Wednesday, February 20, 2008

How Mr. Potato Head became a political activist


"How Mr. Potato Head became a political activist
Two very special things about Mr. Potato Head: 1) he was the first toy to be advertised on television, and 2) he was the first toy that featured real produce. That's right the original toy came as a collection of eyes, ears, noses, a body and accessories that you'd "force" into a real potato. To be fair to Hasbro, Mr. Potato Head's creator, did include a styrofoam "potato" but it wasn't much fun.
In 1964 a molded plastic potato body became part of the toy. But back then, Mr. Potato Head also had friends including Carrots, Cucumbers, Oranges, Peppers and a love interest, Mrs. Potato Head. With Brother Spud and Sister Yam there was an entire Potato Head family, and all of the packaging carried the slogan "Lifelike Fruits Or Vegetables To Change Into Funny, Lovable Friends."
What's most amazing, however, is that Mr. Potato Head's appeal has garnered him many "spokespud" gigs.
In the American Cancer Society's annual "Great American Smokeout" campaign he handed his pipe to then Surgeon General C. Everett Koop and swore off the tobacco, he got up off the couch for the President's Council on Physical Fitness, and he even pitched in with the League of Women Voters for their "Get Out the Vote" initiative.
Of course, he's been involved in plenty of straight marketing campaigns, too: in 1997, he shilled for Burger King's "Try the Fry" introduction of their new French fries.
That said, our favorite thing about the spud is the sort of celebrity pull he has. After all, what other toy can claim they were voiced by Don Rickles?"

7 comments:

Mark said...

I didn't know all those things about Mr. Potato. Those are interesting bits of information.

bluedreamer27 said...

gheeeh this is my frist time to know about how popular mr potato was all i know about him is as he featured as one of the toys in the toys story series
thanks for sharing

shae-shae said...

Hey! I only had Mr. & Mrs. I never had the rest of the family. I guess I missed out.

The All Seeing Eye said...

Thanks for your comment, Mark. I am always on the look-out for unusual stories.

The All Seeing Eye said...

Thanks for your comment, Mark. I am always on the look-out for unusual stories.

The All Seeing Eye said...

You're welcome, Bluedreamer27. Most of this was news to me too.

The All Seeing Eye said...

Well Shae-Shae, that's more than what I had...