"If someone ever asks you if you drink Wilkins Coffee, just say yes."
<iframe width="267" height="200" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/LmhIizQQol0?feature=oembed&wmode=transparent" frameborder="0" allow="accelerometer; autoplay; clipboard-write; encrypted-media; gyroscope; picture-in-picture" allowfullscreen title="Wilkins Coffee - Wilkins and Wontkins (1957-1961, USA)"></iframe> <p>Thanks to <a href="https://www.openculture.com/2022/11/jim-hensons-commercials-for-wilkins-coffee.html">Open Culture</a>, we now know Jim Henson made some pretty violent coffee commercials with puppets in the late 1950s. </p>
Up until that time, TV advertisers typically made a direct sales pitch. “We took a different approach,” said Henson in Christopher Finch’s Of Muppets and Men: The Making of the Muppet Show. “We tried to sell things by making people laugh.” The campaign for Wilkins Coffee was a hit. “In terms of popularity of commercials in the Washington area,” said Henson in a 1982 interview with Judy Harris, “we were the number one, the most popular commercial.” Henson’s ad agency began marketing the idea to other regional coffee companies around the country. Henson re-shot the same spots with different brand names. “I bought my contract from that agency,” said Henson, “and then I was producing them–the same things around the country. And so we had up to about a dozen or so clients going at the same time. At the point, I was making a lot of money.”
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