Old Thermos Ad: Use Our Product Or Your Baby Will Die!

I know we all like to laugh at old homemaker ads, like where bad coffee will make your husband have an affair or the wrong douche will let the communists win, but here’s one that pushes it a step further. How? Dead babies. As the scary ad explains, a thermos keeps filthy germ-ridden flies away from the milk, and keeps the milk cold, and that means the milk won’t kill your baby. If you don’t buy this thermos, you may as well make your baby into terrible tasting instant coffee and use it to drive your husband into the arms of his secretary, because that’s what you deserve.


vintage thermos ad [Livejournal via BoingBoing]


Edit Your Comment

  1. 47ka says:

    This ad must have come out before the discovery of Listeria monocytogenes.

  2. slim150 says:

    this makes me miss the old wendy’s tables with the old newspaper print

  3. raydee wandered off on a tangent and got lost says:

    I dunno about anyone else, but I use my Thermos every day; it keeps my tea BOILING LAVA HOT (or freezing-ice cold!) all day… A coworker uses a big Thermos to keep boiling water at his desk so that he can make hot tea or ramen whenever he wants it.

    Yay thermos!

  4. danmac says:

    It’s not as if this marketing strategy has died out entirely…I am immediately reminded of the Duracell/Brickhouse Child Locator ad that implies your child will be kidnapped/raped/murdered if you do not use their products:

  5. GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

    I think it’s funny they are in the Thermos Bldg. I’m picturing a large cylinder shaped building, with a sign on the side that looks like a handle, that is either really hot, or really cold.

  6. chaesar says:

    the first sentence is amazingly false, “Flies are the most dangerous insects known.”

    mosquitos disagree, and scorpions just look the other way

    • Applekid ┬──┬ ノ( ã‚œ-゜ノ) says:

      They had yet to discover those insects. :)

    • Murph1908 says:

      Scorpions look the other way because they are arachnids, not insects, and know this doesn’t apply to them. =)

      But yeah, calling the housefly the most dangerous insect is laughable.

  7. Daverson says:

    Surely your child’s life is worth $1.

  8. Tim says:

    “And hurled a Thermos brand Thermos onto the street.”

    “Does it still keep hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold?”

    “I’m afraid it doesn’t keep any drinks anything.”

    • Winteridge2 says:

      Silly! It does keep hot drinks hot and cold drinks cold, but not together in the same thermos.

  9. theSuperman says:

    “Thermos keeps liquids ice cold for 3 days”
    I highly doubt that claim. Although that ad is full of many other misconceptions and exaggerated truths.

    • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

      Well, you have to remember this is 3 days in like the 1920’s. If you take inflation into account, it’s only 12 hours in todays time.

      Also, it says “ice cold” which is 32 degrees F. It doesn’t say what the temp was when they started the clock.

  10. TeraGram says:

    I preferred to keep my infant’s milk in my boobs. Never had any problem with flies getting in.

  11. pot_roast says:

    Thermos is another company that has seen a significant quality decline after farming out manufacturing to China. Old Thermos = still awesome. New Thermos = crap.

  12. shepd says:

    If you are feeding formula, and the baby is a newborn, there is some truth to this. Although nowadays the baby wouldn’t die, they’d just get sick and need to visit the doctor. Perhaps when this ad was published it wasn’t so.

    • B* says:

      This is true, and germs from flies can still kill today in some circumstances.

      But this is like Graco marketing a car seat with a picture of a coffin.

  13. JulesNoctambule says:

    Infant mortality is a common theme in a lot of older ads, but then again, it was also a common event at the time. I have one magazine from the late 1910s that has an ad with little kid version of typhoid, cholera, measles and influenza; I don’t remember what it’s advertising but it’s creepy as hell.

  14. savvy9999 says:

    They are born in filth, live in filth, and carry filth.

    sounds like as good a description of BP execs as I’ve ever heard

  15. AllanG54 says:

    Hell, it can’t be that bad. Remember the old saying, “Eat shit, six billion flies can’t be wrong.”

  16. cmdr.sass says:

    “the wrong douche will let the communists win”

    Don’t laugh. It almost happened in ’84 and then again in ’88.

  17. Moosenogger says:

    I don’t get it, ad agency. How is a baby drinking some fly-dipped milk any different from a baby chewing on tables, chairs, running their tongue over the floor tiles, and eating bugs straight from the ground?

  18. Nick says:

    Keep them babies alive so they can grow up and SMOKE.

  19. Winteridge2 says:

    I had one of those thermos bottles, and look, I survived!