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Thu Jul 29, 2021, 01:13 PM

Ron Popeil, Pioneer Of 'Wait...There's More!' Late-Night Infomercials, Is Dead At 86

Come, young ones: Gather around the glow of the smartphone's screen for a tale of a distant time when we watched TV on big boxy machines, and switched channels when we were bored.

There were commercials — several of them — between the segments of TV shows. What's more, in the distant era before streaming, you had to watch them all — or, if you had time, run to the kitchen or the bathroom. You couldn't pause, or fast forward, or take the screen with you.

And in the darkest, wee-est hours, when all the real programming ran out, the night creatures emerged — beasts called infomercials that were entire TV programs about people selling products that might be useful to you but that you probably didn't know you wanted.

These immediate forebears of home-shopping channels and, beyond them, the content marketing techniques of the 21st century were where Ron Popeil, an American original who gave the world the word "Ronco" and died Wednesday at 86, thrived.


https://www.npr.org/2021/07/29/1022133556/ron-popeil-the-inventor-wait-theres-more-late-night-infomercials-is-dead-at-86

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Reply Ron Popeil, Pioneer Of 'Wait...There's More!' Late-Night Infomercials, Is Dead At 86 (Original post)
Jilly_in_VA Jul 2021 OP
ProfessorGAC Jul 2021 #1
Elwood P Dowd Jul 2021 #2
rsdsharp Jul 2021 #5
EYESORE 9001 Jul 2021 #3
Xavier Breath Jul 2021 #4

Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Thu Jul 29, 2021, 01:44 PM

1. A Marketing Icon

The last infomercial I remember by him was either that countertop rotisserie or the knife set.
Quite a long time ago.
He was good at what he did, and some of the gadgets he hawked were pretty useful.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Thu Jul 29, 2021, 01:49 PM

2. I want one of his famous "Bass-O-Matics".

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Response to Elwood P Dowd (Reply #2)

Thu Jul 29, 2021, 02:46 PM

5. Oh, God. That reminds me of my Contracts law professor.

Even though he taught contract law, he hated the phrase “meeting of the minds.” Very early in the semester, he brought a blender to class with a couple of containers.

He opened them, and held one up. “Calf brains!” he announced, and dumped it into the blender. He held up the second container and said, “Pork brains!” dumped it into the blender and hit frappe.

A horrible smell permeated the room and he said, “That’s the only example of ‘a meeting of the minds’ you’re going to see in this class.

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Response to Jilly_in_VA (Original post)

Thu Jul 29, 2021, 01:58 PM

3. Yunno, we've given Mr. Popeil a lot of grief over the years

but in actual point of fact, the vast majority of stuff he marketed actually worked - spray hair in a can notwithstanding. A friend has a pocket fishing pole that still works. He keeps it in his car if he gets the impulse to go fishing.

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Response to EYESORE 9001 (Reply #3)

Thu Jul 29, 2021, 02:04 PM

4. My father also owned a "Pocket Fisherman."

Although I personally have limited knowledge of the skills necessary for successful fishing, having avoided it religiously to my Dad's disappointment, I can attest that his success rate was nor worse with it than a regular pole.

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