IS IT 1986 AGAIN?
It would be pretty cool if it was... I could see Ferris Bueller's Day Off on the big screen again (I was lucky enough to see it with my parents when it was new), or hop on a jet to Japan and watch Project A-ko, one of the best anime films ever animated (though it's not generally recognized as such because it lacks depth... but it more than makes up for that in terms of pure energy). I'd probably drop a whole bunch of quarters into the original Sega Out Run arcade game (though I'd have to get used to not being able to drift, like you can in Out Run 2006: Coast 2 Coast). And I'd get to see the premieres of Pee-Wee's Playhouse, Alf and Sledge Hammer! again!
I'd be 11 again, which would probably be a pretty fun age to live over, if I hadn't found school to be a miserable experience, but, if I had the wisdom of hindsight the second time around, I'd know to be a lot more positive and to talk to people more. The thing that would suck would be that a lot of the people I talk to on the Internet would be about... uh... 1 year old, not that there was much of an Internet available to the general public back then.
Anyway, I know it's not 1986, but, considering that it's not 1986, why is this commercial back on Canadian television all of the sudden?
I did not know this back in 1986, but French Quebeckers also knew "Danny McGee", but they knew him by the name of "Ti-Paul des Bois" (Roughly, "Little Paul of the Woods").
I think I know what's happening. Kellogg's Canada wants to start a new marketing push for Raisin Bran cereal. But what's the hook? The gimmick with Raisin Bran now is exactly what it was 20 years ago, that there's two scoops of raisins in every box. So, they could spend millions producing a new advertising campaign to tell Canadians what they already knew... or they could spend absolutely nothing and push the nostalgia button by showing commercials from 20 years ago. (Okay, probably not quite "nothing": I'd imagine that they'd have to upconvert the NTSC video signal to HDTV, or maybe just re-master it from the original film source if they still have it, and they probably used a tiny amount of CGI just to bring the Raisin Bran boxes up to date, but, relative to the cost of starting a new campaign from scratch, the cost of doing minor touch-ups would be a pittance.)
What's weird about this commercial is that, unlike, say, the Colgate Pump commercial that aired on American kid's TV during the same approximate time period, the "Sturdy Danny McGee was up his 59th tree" Raisin Bran commercial is not one I'd have remembered off the top of my head without being prompted. Yet, when I saw this commercial for the first time in almost two decades, I knew exactly what it was, when it was from, and what it was selling hearing just the opening notes and the first few words of the commercial, before they even got to the first "Kellogg's Raisin Bran", so it's like the memory of commercial has resided in my head (along with many, many others) for the past 20 years, it just wasn't at the surface, yet it was brought back to the surface with just the slightest of cues, like some kind of really elaborate posthypnotic suggestion.
And I'm not the only person that this not-just-retro-but-completely-recycled brand-awareness-rebuilding marketing technique has worked on. Kellogg's seems to have been quite successful at building buzz with a simple-yet-brilliant idea: show a commercial for longer than a couple of months and it becomes stale. Stop showing a commercial after a couple of months only to bring it back two decades later, and it's an "event", somehow.
Not that this is the only "old" commercial ever seen on Canadian TV, but the thing about the Slinky ("For fun, it's a wonderful toy") and the Libby's Zoodles ("Have you ever gone hunting with a bowl and spoon?") commercials was that they didn't have the benefit of having gone off the air in the first place (at least not until the mid-90s or so when they were finally put out to pasture) for their comeback to be an "event".
If I were in charge of Kellogg's Canada, Inc., I'd probably buy whomever at the ad firm that came up with this "recycle-marketing" idea a shiny red F430, because even the cost of a brand new Ferrari would likely be only a small fraction of the money they saved by "recycleketing".
Sturdy Danny McGee was up his fifty-ninth tree, he said, "I work as fast as I can." when he suddenly saw TWO SCOOPS OF RAISINS in a package of Kellogg's Raisin Bran! Well, he rushed to the ground 'cause old Danny had found what's important to a raisin fan. Only Kellogg's puts TWO SCOOPS OF RAISINS with those nutritious flakes of bran. (So here comes Dan!) When he got to the truck, Danny sure was in luck. He was one happy man! Only Kellogg's puts TWO SCOOPS OF RAISINS in a package of Kellogg's Raisin Bran!