Date: 1951
Brand: Old Gold
Manufacturer: P. Lorillard
Campaign: We Don't Make Medical Claims
Theme: For Your Health
Keywords: Holidays, Halloween, Medical, Health,
Quote: We Don't Try To Scare You With Medical Claims. . .

Comment: The ad claims that there is "no catch" to the story, which though is meant to mean that the ad isn't going to make any false claims, has the subconscious effect of implying that there is no "catch" to smoking cigarettes. They merely want to "simply say" their message, which would give it authority since it seems like they're not trying to trick the viewer, however they say this specifically so that the viewer does not look for hidden messages. The portrait depicts a man poised to offer someone a cigarette making people more comfortable with the situation of being offered cigarettes by viewing the ad.

We Don't Make Medical Claims

Towards the end of the era in which false medical claims were endemic (early 1950s) the Old Gold brand had a prolonged campaign with more than 50 variations on this theme - in which they touted: We Don t Try to Scare You with Medical Claims. Ironically, many of these ads in their fine print make outlandish statements that Old Golds were less irritating and thus safer than the competition. Somehow they calculated that the public would not see this obvious hypocrisy.

Note the white box strangely reminiscent of the Surgeon General s warning introduced years later. In what can only be characterized as rank hypocrisy, they claim Old Gold s are less irritating and easier on the throat.

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