Hi Guys. It’s been too long. Had to drop by after spending my morning chasing down old anti-drug PSAs. I was disappointed with DARREN ARONOFSKY‘s new ones for the Meth Project – too sleek for my taste, perhaps – which made me nostalgic for some of the ads from my past that *really* traumatized me.
There’s one I can’t seem to find, probably from the late ’90s or early 2000s, that I could never sit through after the first time (which unfortunately was late at night, wrapped in a blanket on the sofa in the dark). I always assumed it was made by Partnership for a Drug-Free America, but after researching their ad history, I’m beginning to doubt it.
In the ad, a glamorous woman, heavily made up and possibly in a long evening gown, seats herself before a lighted vanity mirror. She starts taking off normal things, like her makeup, maybe some fake eyelashes… though even that is very striking in the unflattering light. You begin to dread what is coming next, and then, affirming your worst fears, she removes her wig, revealing no or very thin hair, and finally, yes, false teeth. I’m assuming these were the effects of meth, but I’m not certain. I have no recollection of what the ad sounded like, in terms of music, effects, or voiceover.
And while I’m at it, I’ll mention another commercial – this one not drug-related, but obviously still employing a scare tactic – that I’ve also been unable to find. Up until recently I was positive it was for Liberty Mutual Life Insurance, but now I’m doubting my memory. A teddy bear is falling from the top of a tall building in slow motion, while a child’s voice sings some type of chant or nursery rhyme. The camera is looking up from directly underneath. The teddy bear gets closer and closer to the lens as it falls, and finally there is an impact that seems to crack the camera lens. The suggestion is clearly of a child’s death.
Man, that was a depressing contribution. Sorry! Advertising execs are sick! If you guys can assist with either or both of those, I’d be obliged.