Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Boncilla – Clasmic Beautifier
In this ad, the image shown is an illustration yet it is realistic looking. The women pictured are dressed similarly with similar hair styles. The main difference, however, is that one is smiling confidently while the other looks sad and envious. The language used is very dramatic and seems to parallel John Kennedy’s theory of “salesman in print”. Phrases like “Why Look Old Before Your Time?” and A Boncilla Today Keeps the Wrinkles Away, combined with the imagery tell you why you need to buy Boncilla. The quote -and One was fair to look upon - the Other fading fast – A Bedtime Story really dramatizes the whole thing. It almost sounds like a fairy tale.
The emotional appeal this ad plays on is a common fear many people have, even now: aging. You see two women sitting down, one looking happy and confident, the other sad and envious. The copy below says: “You look as young as you did eight years ago, Adele – How in the world do you do it? And a wistful tone of envy unconsciously crept into Marjorie’s voice”. These words, coupled with the imagery all work to build reader anxieties about aging. After a brief conversation about the two women, the ad goes on to describe the product – what it does, how it works, where you can find it and how much it costs. Basically, the ad creates anxiety through an image and a story about the image, then tells you how to get rid of the anxiety by using the advertised product. Their slogan, A Boncilla Today Keeps the Wrinkles Away definitely sums this up.
It is difficult to say whether or not the ad makes a logical appeal. An anti-wrinkle cream sounds rather absurd to us now but during the time of this ad, I doubt knowledge that these things don’t work was common. That being said, the product further claims that not only will you “…see renewed color in your cheeks, your skill will be soft and satin-smooth, free from pimples and blackheads, and you will experience that delightful sensation of having been ‘made over’”. This is starting to sound a lot like patent medicine ads. It tells you what the product will do but never offers any outside sources to verify their claims. The image used shows a woman who is feeling that “delightful sensation of being made over” while her friend looks on in envy. It is also evident that the ad is targeting women during the depression era because it advertises the “Boncilla Pack O’ Beauty” for 50 cents but says “later, you will want the larger and more economical sizes”.
Posted by Ethan Thompson at 7/16/2008 10:44:00 AM