When James Garner passed away, obituaries mentioned not only his movies (The Great Escape, Grand Prix) and TV Shows (Maverick, The Rockford Files), but also commercials he made for Polaroid cameras. Polaroid partnered him with actress Mariette Hartley, who had done mainly guest star appearances on TV shows (Gunsmoke, Star Trek, Mannix) up until then.
The ads were so successful that Garner reportedly made over 300 of them between about 1977 and 1983. He and Hartley had such a winning chemistry in the spots that viewers presumed that the two were actually married to each other. They were not.
Here’s a bunch of the Christmas-themed ads that Garner and Hartley did for Polaroid.
Members Only, the makers of the now-classic 1980s racer jacket, encouraged Americans to vote in the 1988 elections using imagery that probably seemed overly dramatic at the time. The U.S. Constitution, the narrator intoned, “suggested a very simple way to keep fools like these out of our government.” The fools? Hitler, Stalin, and Mussolini. The remedy? Voting. Some commercials are timeless.