I was researching the world record was for memory game Simon when I came across these two vintage ads (it was that kind of night). As you may or may not know, Simon has a history of hilarious commercials. I’m aware that asking you to watch two vintage commercials for Simon (three if you count the link in the last sentence) is a lot. Just stick with me, have I ever let you down?
First up is this gem from the 80’s. Watch before reading on.
When critiquing Simon commercials, I try to cut them a lot of slack. It’s a tricky product to market - you can never really beat it, so it’s not quite a game. It’s certainly not social. Still, this one pushes it a little far. Implying that Simon skills will impress other 8-year-olds is the kind of claim that should have been investigated by the FCC. I do, however, like the part with where Simon itself woos the crowd with it’s soothing song. I’d give the whole production a B-.
By 1992, that commercial was dated and laughable. So they put out this one. Watch before reading on.
FUCKING RELENTLESS! I 100% agree with whoever updated this ad that the original version was a little too subtle when it showed Simon taunting Johnny at the end. That’s a detail that really changes the meaning of the whole piece. I’m glad they made it more obvious with sound effects. Then again, maybe Simon is just saying “you’re welcome.”
It sucks they cut Simon’s solo but the new soundtrack is so intense I’m not sure if I even care. This is a fascinating look at what an ad guy thought were the exact differences between the 80’s and early 90’s. Kis were apparently hungry for more cutaways.