Don’t Smoke! – Laser Time #341

You don’t need to be all that old to remember a time when the world was a lot more friendly to tobacco, smokers, and their related advertising. But the backlash was fairly swift, so folks our age got to live through a rather insane wave of pervasive attitudes towards smoking simultaneously with a growing ubiquity of anti-smoking campaigns. These were confusing times! So in this episode we’re looking at when, where, and how fast attitudes changed regarding smoking, as well as how the cigarette companies attempted to stave off their inevitable decline…

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15 thoughts on “Don’t Smoke! – Laser Time #341

  1. My parents sent me to camp with older kids. I stuffed my Garfield blanket under the bunk bed in shame and slept in the cold.

  2. https://youtu.be/NxSdA0oWKuU Enjoyed this scene from Tom and Jerry. As well as the Goofy short on quitting smoking. https://youtu.be/L0JnM4MvhVc Also can’t believe they kept Edna Mode in as a smoker in the new Incredibles 2 movie.

    Personally I was scared away from ciggaretes thanks to so many American Ad Council commercials and D.A.R.E like this one lumping smoking in with other *harder drugs* https://youtu.be/WMAzWfxsYco https://youtu.be/k4H517oi7pU

  3. I was really anti smoking as a kid, then turned 15 and suddenly decided it was a good idea. The thing that made me quit was standing in the pouring rain at college because I couldn’t smoke inside and having a homeless guy who used to play drums on the trash can (rubbish bin) come up to share a light. I realised I didn’t look cool and also that there was nothing interesting about doing it. I threw the last 3 cigarettes away, and only had a few blips in the 10 years since.

  4. I listen to a lot of old time radio podcasts, so I’ve heard a decent amount of smoking commercials. The ‘healthy’ ones always stand out for me. Chesterfield was a long time sponsor of Dragnet and they would advertise about a study that was done showing “no adverse effects to the nose, throat and sinuses.” The study obviously used bad methods to get their result.

    The other more infamous ad campaign about doctors smoking Camels was also a lie. What the company did was send a bunch of free cigarettes to doctors and then when they would ‘poll’ the doctors on what cigarette they smoked they of course said Camel.

  5. Looking forward to this ep, I’ve always HATED the anti smoking movement primarly because it’s so hypocritical compared to the many beer and alcohol commercials when I’d argue drinking is worse and ruins more lives.

  6. Not sure how the formatting is going to turn out but here it goes:
    I would like to add that cigarette advertising was prevalent in motorsports up until recently as well. Some of the most iconic race cars of all time sported liveries with major ad space dedicated to tobacco corporations, such as:

    Ayrton Senna’s McLaren Honda: https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a2/1a/b9/a21ab9a6d7742c9d31ce788f8cbb730c.jpg

    Colin McRae’s “State Express 555” Subaru Impreza: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/pS9QvDN7VNw/maxresdefault.jpg

    Many of Michael Schumacher’s Ferraris: http://fcauthority.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Schumacher-Ferrari-720×340.jpg

    In 2005, the EU moved to ban sponsorship by tobacco companies, but the companies found a loophole: sponsor the team but have no name appear on the vehicle. This lead to some rather abstract subliminal advertising:

    Ferrari’s “Barcode” livery: http://files.abovetopsecret.com/files/img/rp50fd7523.jpg

    Subaru’s fake 555 livery (the plate still says 555 BAT): http://snaplap.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/24082549/1995ColinMcRae-RACRally052.jpg

    They eventually cracked down on this too, and now you only see the cars sporting brand colors, with no symbols from their tobacco sponsors. It’s been argued that the loss of these major sponsorships hurt motorsports severely, but the racing is as good as ever, I think.

  7. I would like to add that cigarette advertising was prevalent in motorsports up until recently as well. Some of the most iconic race cars of all time sported liveries with major ad space dedicated to tobacco corporations, such as:

    Ayrton Senna’s McLaren Honda: https://i.pinimg.com/originals/a2/1a/b9/a21ab9a6d7742c9d31ce788f8cbb730c.jpg

    Colin McRae’s “State Express 555” Subaru Impreza: https://i.ytimg.com/vi/pS9QvDN7VNw/maxresdefault.jpg

    Many of Michael Schumacher’s Ferraris: http://fcauthority.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Schumacher-Ferrari-720×340.jpg

    In 2005, the EU moved to ban sponsorship by tobacco companies, but the companies found a loophole: sponsor the team but have no name appear on the vehicle. This lead to some rather abstract subliminal advertising:

    Ferrari’s “Barcode” livery: http://files.abovetopsecret.com/files/img/rp50fd7523.jpg

    Subaru’s fake 555 livery (the plate still says 555 BAT): http://snaplap.s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/24082549/1995ColinMcRae-RACRally052.jpg

    They eventually cracked down on this too, and now you only see the cars sporting brand colors, with no symbols from their tobacco sponsors. It’s been argued that the loss of these major sponsorships hurt motorsports severely, but the racing is as good as ever, I think.

    1. I wanted to contribute this bit too! Tobacco and alcohol companies were huge in motorsports before they abolished them in the 2000s.
      Camel was at one point a title sponsor for Pons Racing in MotoGP and even the factory Yamaha team https://www.sportbikes.net/forums/attachments/general-sportbikes/70753d1138023519-moto-gp-official-testing-camel-yamaha-pic-rossi_yellow.jpg

      Lucky Strike was a sponsor for the Suzuki team that saw a few world titles http://photos.motogp.com/2009/05/13/kev.gallery_full_top_md.jpg

      To add to what psylah said, companies found ways to add their logos in subtle ways
      Marlboro was a title sponsor for the official Ducati Motogp team, adorning the iconic red and white colors. They became a silent sponsor afterwards and have gotten away with getting their logo on the liveries http://photos.motogp.com/2017/01/20/6-_tin3138.gallery_full_top_md.jpg

  8. I visited family in Korea in 2002, and I noticed that one of my dad’s friends smoked Virginia Slims.

    I asked him, “Why do you smoke women’s cigarettes?” and he replied, “What are you talking about? Virginia Slims are for men!”

    It turns out, Virginia Slims are marketed to men in Korea and is one of the most popular brands for men. In fact, it was (is?) illegal to market cigarettes to women. “You’ve come a long way, baby!”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/SB851629844168006000

  9. Has lasertime recorded an episode about anti drug ads in the 90s and early 2000s? Those were hardcore. My favorite was with the teenage girls having a sleepover, and using a pimple cream. A girl says “hmm it really burns” with another responding that it was “just doing it’s job.” Then the first girl collapses and is engulfed in flames with the others simple running away from the situation. Yeah, don’t do drugs basically.

  10. This was a fun episode to listen to! I thought that maybe you would get into the anti-smoking commercials more, but maybe those were covered in a past episode? Or maybe it will be covered in a future episode?

  11. “Don’t smoke” on lasertime. Smoking kills!
    Lasertime brought to you by e-vape.com make sure to use the lasertime code at check out. Because popcorn lung is cool and tasty.

    Hypocrisy at it’s finest

  12. “Don’t smoke” on lasertime. Smoking kills!
    Lasertime brought to you by e-vape.com make sure to use the lasertime code at check out. Because popcorn lung is cool and tasty.

    Hypocrisy at it’s finest. I’m done….

  13. Weird how Chris was talking about smoking being banned from bars in Florida . I was in Orlando last year and there were a couple of pubs within spitting distance of my hotel that not only allowed smoking but had signs outstide promoting the fact that you could smoke in there . Ireland banned smoking in pubs back in 2004 so naturally the Orlando bars were full of Irish people

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