Best served by a girl with a pistachio fridge

PETER YORK ON ADS:No 186: TONY'S FREEZER COCKTAILS
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If you liked the B-52s you might very well like Tony's Freezer Cocktails. And then again if you like Channel 4's American sitcoms you could be in Tony's target market.

There's a lot of kitschy Americana in the Tony's Freezer Cocktails commercial, including the US sitcom setting, with added laughter and applause reminiscent of Miller Time.

The ad is set in a modestly modern flat in what you assume is New York. It's a girly flat. It's full of girls, most of them unmemorable looking. On-screen titles, in that General Motors script you see chromed on the back of finned cars, say "Serving suggestion" in excitable diagonals. (Serving suggestion, incidentally, was put into comic parlance by that underrated genius Danny Baker a good five years ago). Serving suggestion one is to get the girls round.

The hostess, a silvery blonde in diverting striped trousers, pads into the kitchen and introduces the star of this little show, her singular coloured fridge. It's a Seventies fridge-freezer enamelled a deep pistachio green and bearing the legend Tony's Freezer Cocktails in the GM script. It's a major statement, that fridge.

When she takes out the Freezer Cocktails - oh, funny familiar forgotten feelings - it's a Slush Puppy. The actual serving suggestion seems to be: "cut off corner of luridly coloured sachet and squeeze into those breast-shaped glasses sometimes used for champagne."

So, pushing back the cultural envelope in her interestingly coloured apartment, the hostess returns to the living room, trips, somersaults, lands on her back on a Thirties rug and has the cocktail tray land intact on her stomach. In another treatment she is carried in on a stretcher.

The substantive product innovations - flavours, textures, actual serving suggestions - don't count for much here: it's the aesthetic and the associations that are being sold.

So what exactly did happen to Mari Wilson?

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