Friday, October 17, 2008

"And Standard Makes My Flivver Fly!"

From East! From West! For many a mile
They've come to visit Treasure Isle!
"Such crowds!" quacks Donald. "I must say
The gang's all here for "Snow White Day!'"
And such excitement! See folks run!
They leave the Tower of the Sun--
They flock from Courts of Moon and Flowers—
The Gayway--and the Elephant Towers.

Cries Donald, "Step up! Right this way!
She's fair as San Francisco Bay!"
The throng the big arena packs--
"She'll be here soon now," Donald quacks.
But no! A shout rings through the air!
"Snow's kidnapped! Help! Surround the Fair!"

Max Hare alone, in all the throng,
Had seen the villain do his wrong!
"The Wolf!" cries Max. "He snatched Snow White
And ran that way—with all his might!"

Yells Mickey, "Let me lead the chase!
With Standard Gas I'll win this race!
Quick! Get my car! She'll start in high
And Standards makes my flivver fly!"

Upon the bridge that spans the Bay
Brave Mickey overhauls his prey!
"Unhand her, villain! Free Snow White!
You've met your Waterloo, all right!"
"You saved me!" cries Snow White. But he
Says, blushing, "Standard Gas-and me!"

In 1939, Walt Disney partnered with the Standard Oil Company to produce an advertising campaign featuring many of the studio's well known cartoon characters. The commercial short The Standard Parade was perhaps the most famous and lasting component of that campaign, though the campaign extended to other media as well. Little seen since their original publications were newspaper ads that featured rhyming storytelling not altogether far removed from the Good Housekeeping magazine pages that had been popular throughout the 1930s.

I have found three "Tiny Tykes" ads that appeared weekly in the Los Angeles Times during May and June of 1939. This one is particularly significant in that it very prominently showcases San Francisco's Golden Gate Exposition, the west coast counterpart to the New York World's Fair at Flushing Meadows.

A "flivver" originally referred to a Ford Model T, but by 1939 had become a slang term for any old, run down automobile.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Windows to the Past: Davy Crockett in Atlanta

Young boys in their coonskin caps pose in front of the Loew's Grand Theatre in Atlanta, Georgia before attending the local premiere of Davy Crockett-King of the Wild Frontier. The film was a compilation of the original three Davy Crockett episodes from the Disneyland television show and was released to theaters in May of 1955. Sharing the bill was Arizona Sheepdog, a 22 minute featurette.