November 19, 2007

"Ladies! Please!"

Oh, no! Mr. Whipple died!



Dick Wilson, who was 91, made over 500 commercials as Mr. Whipple, the man who tried to stop women from squeezing the Charmin. What was squeezing Charmin all about? Whipple was an agent of sexual repression, wasn't he? But he was so delightful, and he never succeeded in stopping the ladies from.... squeezing the Charmin.

ADDED: James Lileks thinks very deeply about Mr. Whipple:
Mr. Whipple [was] the fellow who tried to impose rules he himself could not follow, and thereby revealed not only the essential hypocrisy of the puritan impulse, but the uselessness of imposing any sort of “standards” on human behavior....

19 comments:

LordSomber said...

Charmin rolls were the original stress toy, it seems.

B said...

The death of Mr Whipple proves, once again, that "it's not nice to fool Mother Nature".

Cedarford said...

When I read this post...I knew it was safe. So I went into the bathroom and squeezed a roll of the stuff.

Guy did have one of the more memorable put-down lines ever of Hollywood:

He declared himself not impressed with modern cinema.

"The kind of pictures they're making today, I'll stick with toilet paper," he told The Associated Press in 1985.

Kirby Olson said...

I had a communist friend in Czechoslovakia who loved Charmin. During the days of the wall, the only toilet paper they could get was like brown lunch bag paper because that's all that the authorities were prepared to make for their population. I used to try to send it to him now and then, but the communist authorities always seized it for their big butts and used every ply.

Once the wall came down the Czechs went nuts for western toilet paper, and I think it remains a symbol of capitalist freedom and happiness as compared to the grimness of the communist horror.

Legal Scholarship said...

Your case for "evolve or die" gets weaker with every post. I would have thought you might toss in some posts with a wiff of something pseudo-scholarly in order to support the "evolve or die" argument. Instead, it's same old, same old around here: sex, TV, photos.

There's a wiff -- but it's not of scholarship.

Ann Althouse said...

I agree. There is a "wiff." Maybe you could use some toilet paper.

rcocean said...

Brilliant post. I remember seeing this as a kid; poor Mr. Whipple.

I wonder if Mr. Clean is still alive or the Man from Glaad? I know Mrs. Olsen died recently. All part of common pop culture that no longer exists.

kimsch said...

I miss Mr. Whipple. The current blue and pink bears kind of creep me out.

lendeski said...

"The kind of pictures they're making today, I'll stick with toilet paper," he told The Associated Press in 1985.

I like it.

SteveR said...

Its an easy luxury to ignore, until you hav to use that Soviet era timbercutter brand, complete with splintrs.

I believe the Maytag Man left us recently as well.

SteveR said...

Hy my EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE doesn't work.

George said...

"You're soaking in it!

Gone, too...

"The quicker picker-upper!

Alas, her, as well.

Ann Althouse said...

I saw Jan Miner ("You're soaking in it") in "Othello." She played Iago's wife, Emilia. She was a serious actress.

mythusmage said...

Learned today that Dick Wilson also played a British Captain on Hogan's Heroes. The captain would drop in every now and then on the crew to see how they were doing. Were it not for the fact Colonel Klink was even more clueless than he the whole operation would've gone up in smoke thanks to his idiocy.

chickenlittle said...

Announcer:
"We secretly replace butter with Blue Bonnet Margarine at Chef Louis' elite french cooking school"

Chef Louis (french accent):

"On braid, en cooking, no dif-fer-rance!"

Steve said...

P&G, who makes Charmin, was changing the way we look at toilet paper. Prior, rolls were as hard as bullets (more paper on the roll) and so was the paper. The new Through Air Dried technology allowed them to sell bigger rolls with less paper. They are still doing it with their "less is more" advertising. Formidable foes they are!!

reader_iam said...

My mom hated those commercials, and vociferously. She said they were demeaning to women.

Trooper York said...

The passing of a giant of the commercial world is always poignant. But the truly tragic case is that of the Jolly Green Giant who is currently incarcerated for molesting Nibblet through much of the seventies. He is doing 10 to 20 at Joliet and his only correspondent is a lonely fan from San Diego who has a soft spot for kid touchers.

rhhardin said...

He also played a lawyer in Get Smart that sprung a KAOS parrot they had captured and were making talk, on various Constitutional grounds.