Yabba dabba cough! when the flintstones shilled cigarettes

Among all the cartoon characters that have ever been used to sell products, it’s perhaps a bit puzzling that a prehistoric family appears to have been the most popular. So for this edition of our «Rewind» series, we focus on The Flintstones.

Way beyond their brand of vitamins, The Flintstones have used their clout to advertise products that most definitely did not exist during the Stone Age Winston Cigarettes, Kentucky Fried Chicken and Dove, to name a few.

But historical accuracy was never a strong point for the popular prime time show, which ran for six seasons from 1960 to 1966 (and continued in syndicated heaven for decades after). After all, Fred and Co. regularly celebrated Christmas.

When the show first aired, Winston Cigarettes was a presenting sponsor. That might have been because network execs were marketing the show to adults. Remember, Fred and Wilma were one of the first couples to appear in bed, on screen, during prime time (the show even implied that Barney and Betty had trouble conceiving children, leading to their adoption of Bamm Bamm). And the ads also threw in a bit of sexism in one of them, Barney and Fred watch their wives do a whole load of chores. «I hate to see them work so hard,» says Barney. Fred suggests going round to the back of the house so they won’t have to watch anymore, where they promptly light up.

These were the times when commercials were integrated in the middle of the action call it the 1960s’ version of native advertising. Grape jelly goes well with cigarettes, apparently. One commercial in a commercial spot showed Fred watching television when a Welch’s Grape Jelly spot came on. Pebbles, Fred and Wilma’s baby girl, asked for grape juice (although the brand wasn’t explicitly mentioned) during the show, and the company even sold special glass jars with scenes featuring the characters.

Miles Laboratories (now Bayer), the makers of Alka Seltzer, had Fred call out to his unseen «Ma,» asking her where the antacid was. It introduced its Flintstones vitamin brand in the late 1960s.

In 1970, Congress passed an Act banning the advertisements of cigarettes on television and radio. Although they never actually showed Barney getting lung cancer, in 1986, the Flintstones did a PSA for the American Cancer Association. In fact, when the series went into syndication, a more standardized set of opening credits were used, which removed references to season one sponsor Winston.

Fred and Barney also talked about the joys of Busch Beer in a promo short that was created for the company’s employees.

As late as 2005, Wilma appeared in an ad campaign out of Ogilvy & Mather Chicago for Dove’s hair styling products, alongside Jane Jetson. «My hair has been stuck in the Stone Age,» she says. A print campaign showed her looking fab with a blowout and some volumizing mousse and has she lost a few pounds, too?

In this article

  • Rewind

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Winston brand is one of the most popular cigarette brands in the history of tobacco industry. It is one of 10 top selling cigarette brands across the world, and sixth best selling in the U.S. And their huge popularity is on the rise.

Winston was introduced to the U.S. cigarette market in 1954, becoming the first national cigarette brand to be equipped with filters. RJ Reynolds, the manufacturer of these cigarettes, named them after the City of Winston Salem where the company’s first tobacco plant was located.

Winston cigarettes gained enormous popularity among adult smokers shortly after the launch. In 1956 Winston became the leading cigarette brand in the USA, and in decade the brand was named the best selling tobacco product, a place that Winston was holding for almost seven years, before yielding that position to another iconic tobacco product, Marlboro.

The main feature that encouraged the huge popularity of Winston brand is the secret tobacco formula comprised from the finest tobacco imported from Brazil and Nicaragua and blended with care to give Winston cigarettes its mild and inimitable taste. In addition, the premium quality, peculiar to all tobacco products manufactured by RJ Reynolds (in the USA) and Japan Tobacco International (outside of the USA), undoubtedly makes Winston cigarettes worthy to be tried.

Winston brand provides the slower burning time turning smoking into thrilling sensation of delight. It doesn’t matter which style of Winston you prefer, you will always have a superb quality cigarette with a smooth and mild taste, charming flavor and at moderate price.

Winston offers a wide assortment of varieties, ranging by strength, length and flavor. currently offers Winston in seven different styles, so that every adult cigarette lover might select the one that matches all his requirements.

If you prefer classic smokes, you can try Winston Classic, Winston Blue or Winston Silver, or you can opt for low tar Winston White.

If you are willing to try a more delicate and exclusive smoke, better try Winston Super Slims Silver and Winston Super Slims Blue.


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