Thursday, December 17, 2009

The 39 kiloton exclamation point!

(click ad, via) The exclamation point—or "bang" (snicker) as it's known—is, almost always, a piece of punctuation to be avoided like radiation in advertising. Retro case in point: this 1946 Westinghouse ad! Descendants of the hundreds of thousands of innocent Japanese civilians killed during and after the droppings of Fat Man and Little Boy (combined blast yield: 39 kilotons)? Bow to lamp research scientist Dr. Harvey C. Rentschler here. There's a second uncomfortable use of the bang, bold copy, first column: "Little did they realize that their know-how would one day give America a head start in the race towards history's grimmest goal!" YAY! Previously in disastrously ironic atomic age ads: Even this cloud has a silver lining.


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