September 24, 2012

The top female ad icons of "all time."

According to Ad Age. I put "all time" in quotes, because they don't go back to Elizabethan England, let alone the Stone Age. But they don't overvalue recent years, like most "all time" lists. One is from 2008, but after that, you have to go back to the "Where's the beef lady?" in 1984, which was the year I got my first videotape machine and acquired the power to fast-forward. So 9 out of 10 of these ladies are very familiar to me, but... who's Flo?

58 comments:

Unknown said...

No love - or disdain - for Aunt Jemima?

Sorun said...

The sexiest one is a banana.

Pete said...

I love Flo!

SeanF said...

Without even having clicked on the link, I'm guessing "Flo" is the Progressive insurance lady - you know, with the white apron and the big hair?

Which would make her the most modern one on the list, as her commercials are in current rotation and production.

EMD said...

Aunt Jemima should make the list over Flo.

Flo's radio work is better than the TV spots, and the actress who has also appeared in Mad Men and some other shows, is pretty good.

Portia said...

Or maybe Flo from 'Kiss my grits' fame?

Which was some years ago.

carrie said...

Flo is the Progressive Insurance lady. High School and college kids dress like her at Halloween, if you go to a boat show there will be a life size flo cutout that you can stand next to so that it looks like you are getting your picture taken with Flo, etc.

AprilApple said...

Flo? ugh.
Progressive Insurance is a company run by progressives who are pushing a product that you attach to your car that keeps track of miles driven.
This gadget will come in handy when the democrat party decides it is time to unveil their next tax scheme. Democrats want to tax us all by the mile. Isn't it cool that a corporation is helping democrats slip this quietly through the door? Neat.
It's not enough that we already pay a gas tax.

MadisonMan said...

You get the idea that some editor said Hey waitaminute, we need someone modern!! and someone else in the room said What about that Insurance lady?

boldface said...

How about "Cora" (played by Margaret Hamilton) doing the "good to the last drop" bit for Maxwell House? Everyone knew she was the Wicked Witch of the West, but the commercials worked anyway.

rehajm said...

The Coppertone girl could be here too. But I like their choices

Earth Girl said...

The conventional wisdom is that "sex sells," but nine out of these ten women are characters.

chickelit said...

I guess Julia hasn't sold out and gone commercial--yet.

The Drill SGT said...

I'm with unknown.

Aunt J goes back to 1889

http://www.auntjemima.com/

still in use

EMD said...

The conventional wisdom is that "sex sells


Depends on the product.

Hagar said...

They forgot Little Lulu?

deborah said...

Amazing Betty Crocker is there, but not Aunt Jemimah. In the sixties, I named a cat Josephine, after the plumber, but she turned out to be a he. Kept the name anyway.

DADvocate said...

No love - or disdain - for Aunt Jemima?

Really. Maybe they're being too PC. Rosa "Aunt Jemima" Washington Riles, the third lady to portray Aunt Jemima, is buried a few miles from my house. My kids wouldn't have a clue who Rosie the Riveter is, or half of those other "icons", but they all know who Aunt Jemima is.

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=1205

deborah said...

http://www.youtube.
com/watch?v=ho9XNfy6JBM

MadisonMan said...

@EMD, your comment would have been better if you'd just said Depends.

:)

Although now that Lisa Rinna is shilling Depends, who knows.

Paddy O said...

Flo had to be included as the symbol that advertising hasn't gone backwards, and that women are seen now only as empowered sex object.

She's not nearly as iconic as the rest, but she's one of the very few now serving in the same mold as those others.

Dante said...

Flo can be pretty funny, check out this commercial

Explained here.

Here is another pretty good one, also referenced.

edutcher said...

Agree on Aunt Jemima (even though it's rraaaccciiissstt) and the Coppertone Girl, but remember Dena ("It's not nice to fool Mother Nature") Dietrich?

Darrell said...

The Democrats were all set to enact that "tax by the mile driven" plan when they controlled both Houses --until word got out. They wanted gas stations to collect the tax when people filled up and they expected us to buy the units that would keep track. And they weren't cheap. The gas station would have the master key to reset the device after the taxes were paid.

paul a'barge said...

Who's Flo?

Srsly?

Somewhere in the night no one hears the sound of a lonely bell ringing.

paul a'barge said...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flo_%28Progressive_Insurance%29

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stephanie_Courtney

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0183960/

Ron said...

"Flo" is also one of the secretaries on Mad Men...

Darrell said...

I'll take Carly Foulkes, the T-Mobile Girl anyday over Flo, the Socialist huckster. Carly even has a Ducati superbike now. And the leather to pilot it.

deborah said...

"Dena ("It's not nice to fool Mother Nature") Dietrich."


She was a hoot.

deborah said...

Today the Coppertone girl would be child porn.

raf said...

It's not enough that we already pay a gas tax

An unfortunate side effect of rising gas prices and fuel economy is that collections of gas taxes have been in decline. Something must be done. Once the proper devices are mandated for all cars, an appropriate mileage plus emissions tax can be levied at license plate renewal time. To lessen the annual shock, additional income withholding can be implemented. Or, we could issue monthly license plate stickers to those without income. Unless you are an illegal alien, of course, because that would be discriminatory.

hillbilly said...

"I've fallen. And I can't get up."

Madge, the "you're soaking in it" woman and Mrs. Olsen the coffee woman.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

When I hear/see 'Flo', I can't help thinking of the monthly curse flow.

All of those Progressive ads are object lessons is misleading the public. They are craftily written to say/promise absolutely nothing. Parse them yourself, if you don't believe me.

Despicable company. Creeping liberal fascism. But I repeat myself.

kimsch said...

Jodie Foster was the Coppertone baby at 3 in 1965.

Sam L. said...

I don't watch much TV, but I know Flo. Don't like her; not one little bit.

William R. Hamblen said...

Who's Flo? Flo is played by Stephanie Courtney.

Chuck Currie said...

Flo is an example of "we just couldn't help ourselves". Progressive is "progressive" in the political since, and Ad Age just had to get their "progressive" woman on the list - icon or not.

Flo will be long forgotten while all the rest - including all those mentioned here and not on the list - will still be icons.

Cheers

Aridog said...

Is the effete green lizard for Geico Insurance a female parthenogenic Gecko? Not included? Whot!

Not sure which is more irritating, Flo or the Lizard. Both huckster for noxious insurers.

MadisonMan said...

Madge, the "you're soaking in it" woman and Mrs. Olsen the coffee woman.

If you bothered to click the link, you'd see them on it.

Mother Nature is conspicuous in her absence, as is the Maidenform Woman.

MaggotAtBroad&Wall said...

Flo is the iconic lady from Progressive Insurance.

The chairman, CEO and long time controlling shareholder of Progressive is Peter Lewis. Lewis is a billionaire and very close associate of George Soros. Together with Soros and Herb and Marion Sandler, they spent over $100 million to try to buy John Kerry the 2004 presidential election. The three of them were central to forming the Democracy Alliance, a shadowy coalition of ultra rich "progressives" whose goal is to promote "progressive" ideals. Lewis recently decided to discontinue his association with the Democracy Alliance because he believes the DA is now focused too much on electoral politics and he wants to use his money to create institutions that promote "progressive values". So he donates to left wing think tanks like The Center For American Progress (and its sub groups Think Progress). He's been busted for drugs a time or two, and is a trustee at Princeton University.

Progressive Insurance commercials run in heavy rotation on Fox News, yet Peter Lewis has donated to Media Matters, whose sole purpose and reason for existing is to get Fox removed from the air. I've always had a hard time understanding that. His company spends money to advertise on Fox, which presumably generates more business and enriches him personally, then he donates to Media Matters which is trying to get Fox off the air. I guess its sorta like the communist quote from Lenin that the capitalists will sell the rope to hang themselves. In this case, Fox News is selling Progressive Insurance advertising inventory which enriches Lewis so he can donate to Media Matters to destroy Fox. It's a very odd relationship.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

Another way to think of 'Flo'.

Shit. Shit flows. Downhill mostly, when not being flung.

BOYCOTT PROGRESSIVE INSURANCE!!

Chip S. said...

I vote to overthrow the tyranny of fictional characters. Surely Suzanne Somers deserves some recognition for her outstanding work flogging the Thighmaster.

jille said...

My daughter is dressing up as Flo for Halloween. Sort of scary...

Chris Lopes said...

The funny thing about Flo is that although she is a "modern" icon, she gives off a very 1950's burger joint waitress vibe.

Texan99 said...

I can't stand Flo either, but from what I read she's a money-maker. I'm afraid they won't be getting rid of her any time soon.

Crunchy Frog said...

I love Flo. I'll never do business with Progressive, and I'm certainly never going to attach a dongle to my car that tracks my mileage and whether I ever exceed the speed limit, but I love Flo.

Ann Althouse said...

The test for me these days is whether it would stop me from fast-forwarding. I stop for those gecko commercials sometimes. I like them. Flo, however, doesn't say slow down and watch to me. Maybe something there is appealing to guys (or some other sort of woman).

Michael Ryan said...

Who's Flo? That's like Taranto admitting that while he was at the RNC he visited some odd restaurant called "The Olive Garden".

caplight45 said...

Edutcher said: "remember Dena ("It's not nice to fool Mother Nature") Dietrich?"

I actually referenced that commercial in my sermon yesterday. Had to describe it to all the young folk.

I don't use Progressive myself but two men in my congregation are in their employ. They tithe. I pray Progressive does well.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

OK, this thread caused me to do some YouTube searches, and I came across this one.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pEHxtbPyR5g&feature=fvwrel

So the chick that plays Flo in the commercials is actually pretty cute. I'd hit that, as they say.

Progressive Insurance should be boycotted though, I still say.

William said...

I wasn't aware that I was conscious of those women and thus I did not know that I had forgotten them. Does Gloria Vanderbilt's spiels for her jeans count?....Has anyone ever thought of having guest hosts on commercials? Flo could talk about how new Tide with bleach gets her uniforms sparkly white. Mr. Charmin and that where's the beef woman could gross out America in a truly memorable way if they had made a guest appearance on each other's commercial.

Clyde said...

Put me in the "don't like Progressive Insurance (or "progressives") but like Flo camp.

SeanF said...

Michael Ryan: Who's Flo? That's like Taranto admitting that while he was at the RNC he visited some odd restaurant called "The Olive Garden".

DNC. And if Althouse was trying to make a joke, like Taranto was, she could use some tips from him :)

William: Has anyone ever thought of having guest hosts on commercials? Flo could talk about how new Tide with bleach gets her uniforms sparkly white.

They used Oreo cookies in one of those "Got Milk?" ads, and I'm pretty sure there was at least one Energizer Bunny ad that used an actual product for the commercial the bunny interrupted.

matthew49 said...

What about Gunilla Knudsen and "Take it off...Take it all off"? I'm 63 and still using Noxzema shaving cream because of that commercial from nearly 50 yrs ago.

Michael Ryan said...

SeanF - I stand corrected. 9/7/12. But he being in NYC, it's not clear to me Taranto was joking.

SeanF said...

Michael, I do believe that Taranto was being honest when he said he'd never actually been to one before. But the reference to Marilyn Hagerty's infamous review gives away that he's having some fun.

kentuckyliz said...

I can bring home the bacon
Fry it up in a pan
And never never never let you forget
You're a man
Cuz I'm a woman
Enjoli

"It's not nice to fool Mother Nature!"
Was this so powerful because people were processing their guilt at using the Pill, about a decade into it?

kentuckyliz said...

I'm sorry, I must have offended the Muzzies...bacon ain't halal. Please don't riot.