Schweppshire's Absurd Brand Narrative

Can you believe that the following copy, written by Stephen Potter and designed by Lewitt-Him,  is used in this advertisement for Schwepps?

“That Schweppshire movies ‘forward to Nature’ is clearly visible behind the scenes of dress designer Schwepperelli. Materials created in the laboratory, woop and warf evolved literally from the pure blade of grass, include a simple gown of chlorophyll-treated gaberdine, wired by molecularly reconstituted, furnace hardened chloroin (rhymes with heroine) innocently adapted to the contemporary fashion. Syringes impregnate the material with ‘Natural Sun’ chlorogen whose ultra-violet radiation conquers inert heat just as surely as it does away with cold, and without trying to substitute warmth for chilliness by the old method, produces the ideal temperatureless state without which natural poise can never be achieved. . .”

Chlorophyll Fashions? Modern Bio-elegance? This is for tonic water? And before global warming?

And what about “Europe in Perschwepptive?

“Let us take you to Italy where it is difficult to disentangle the tottal mixture from the general impression, where millennium is dovetailed with millennium, B.C. is mixed with A.D., and A.D. tangled up in M.M. (Mille Miglia). . . “

Or this “The Technique of Slumbercram (Sleep While You Learn)”:

“It  was our pioneer educationist Monteschworri who first shouted EAT CAKE NOISILY to her infant charges in order, by counter suggestion and general Reacting Against, to ensure stubborn silence and peace at tea-times. Using the same technique, the Youth-boss or Magister of our school of Schwepponomics begins his seminar by ordering his students to keep on the alert. During the deep sleep which immediately follows, the paths to deeper knowledge are unblocked, diagrams and television demonstrations are felt rather than merely seen, and a simple repetition, if necessary by gramophone, of Euclid Book Six, the Law of Demand Curves, or the influence of Jane Austen, is indelibly printed on the more delicately receptive under cortex or deeper matrix – to put it in the simplest possible language – of the student mind.”

Ah Messers Porter and Lewitt-Him, so outre. This was the creme de la creme of advertising copy, from the early 50s, before “the big idea.” What a gas for the carbonated beverage that is barely mentioned. (Click on image for larger view.)

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4 thoughts on “Schweppshire's Absurd Brand Narrative

  1. PatiencePie

    Snooty people in the 1950s were captivated by this sort of thing. They found it playfully highbrow and imaginative. Today, brands still do this … what’s changed is our cultural references, our idioms, and our tastes (for sure.) But if you think about TV commercials today, many of our favorites are based on totally nutty stories. Way nuttier than Schweppersville. Can you say Malibu Rum? 

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