Six Videos That Can Now Be Looked At As Missed Opportunities For Product Placement

noah | April 24, 2009 6:00 pm

I still love this morning’s story about the product-placement deal that was struck between Autograph and Paper-Mate 25 years ago, mainly because it took so long for the obvious-in-hindsight synergy to be noticed by this observer. “With the name Autograph, it’s logical for us to be advertising a pen,” lead singer Steve Plunkett told the Los Angeles Times when the deal was dissected. “It would only be weird and out of place if we were advertising something like a vacuum cleaner or a roach spray.” But what if other videos of the era did work with less, um, glamorous products? Six vintage clips that we can now look at as perfect except for their insufficient monetization, after the jump. Feel free to add your own suggestions–and hey, given the impending doom that car companies are seeing, perhaps some current musicians might want to think about getting “creative” with their own endorsements?

Queen, “I Want To Break Free”

Autograph may have been the wrong act to advertise vacuum cleaners, but Queen was the oh-so-right one.

Ratt, “Round And Round”

Milton Berle: He’s got L’Eggs!

Madonna, “Borderline”

This spray paint will not only look great defacing your gallery, it’ll help you get laid. (Would graffiti-era age restrictions on spray paint result in this clip being restricted to the late-night hours?)

Jermaine Stewart, “We Don’t Have To Take Our Clothes Off”

One label shot of that cherry wine (or, hell, cough syrup), and that background would have been a lot less minimal.

Rockwell, “Somebody’s Watching Me”

It’s being exploited to the hilt by Geico right now, but what if Johnson’s “no more tears” baby shampoo had underwritten the shower scene? No more tangles, no more tears, no more having to have Gary Brolsma dance to an inferior Autotuned version of your song 25 years after the fact.

Van Halen, “Hot For Teacher”

“I dropped my Paper-Mate…” could actually fit, cadence-wise, into David Lee Roth’s cat-calling. And Van Halen did tour with Autograph during the 1984 era. Maybe this whole story is a case of sloppy seconds? Hmmm!