That's all cute enough. A couple of stock pieces of immature scribbling, obvious gags, then the rest is weird boasting about gaming prowess. Is this the bathroom of an arcade? The ad, I think, overstates the hold games had on the popular consciousness. It would have been awesome if they had indeed enjoyed this degree of cultural penetration, but I don't think it ever got there.FOR A VID TIME CALL
1-900-720-1234Spider-Man Was HereRoses are Red
Violets Are Blue
Q-BERT'S A HOPPER
And This Place Is Too!FROGGER EATS FLIESJEFF IS A WIMP
I'm not wimpy -- I play Popeye!(unintelligible)
I GOT 007 FOR MY BIRTHDAY
150,000 ON Q-BERTCOILY'S A SNAKEGYRUSS IS COMINGSUPER COBRA'S THE TOUGHEST YET
THINK YOU'RE GREAT LET'S MAKE A BET
OTHER GAMES ARE JUST A BREEZE
I'LL WIPE YOU ON COBRA
AND THAT'S THE SQUEEZE!
I AM NOT SHORT!CALL OUR NEW VIDEO HOTLINE
GET THE WORD ON PARKER BROTHERS' LATEST GAMES
Consumer Cost 50¢ Per Call.
Despite its departure from their core business, Parker Brothers had a good run during the first video game boom, from the looks of things with at least one solid hit to every two also-rans. Makes you wonder why they got out of the biz (until their stumbling attempts to sell Sega Master Systems) but perhaps it's for the best that they got to go out with their dignity.
The real question is: what is this ad promoting? Not just the games, but a hotline -- one with the weirdly Skype-y title of a "Video Hotline", presumably short for "video game hotline". You could call it and, 50 cents later, it would tell you which new games were coming out? Here, Parker Brothers, I have a better idea: I go to the store, and see which games are on the shelves -- for free! Then, I buy one that I like the looks of. "But wait," says the automated Parker Bros. voice on the other end of the line (or, embarrassingly, a live operator) -- "in 1983 Strawberry Shortcake Musical Match-Ups is coming!" Nuh uh. You don't spend money on the ad convincing us to spend money on the next ad. And, well, perhaps that is why they got out of that business. Not enough calls to the hotline.