The Creepy Commercials Countdown!
October 8th, 2012: “Tostitos Chilada Chips!” (1986)
I don’t know what led to the decision to promote Tostitos by way of The Addams Family, but it made for a memorable commercial. Mixing old show clips with custom shoot footage, Tostitos Guy™ gives Morticia and company the hard sell for new Chilada chips.
“Chilada.” Such a great word. I’ve seen countless variations (and spellings) of it, but to this day, I don’t know what the term exactly refers to. For Tostitos-related purposes, I guess it was just a certain blend of tangy spices. Lime and salt, most likely? I don’t know. “Chilada” sounds like a fast red car.
I have a vague memory of the commercial, but really, I completely ignored All Things Addams until the movies came out in the ‘90s. It wasn’t by choice, as I don’t recall the original series being easy to find on television. If it was on, it must have been rerunning in a terrible timeslot.
After the first movie came out, the original series began to get more play again. For me, the TV characters just couldn’t match up to their big screen evolutions. On the other hand, I was still a kid, and exactly the type of idiot who’d ignore good television just because it was in black-and-white.
So I didn’t notice The Addams Family until the ‘90s, and strangely, I could say the same about Tostitos. Every time I see an older Tostitos commercial, I’m so surprised. I don’t at all remember seeing the things until the Great Salsa Explosion of the ‘90s. Without commercials like this, I’d never believe that they existed before then.
Boy, did I miss out. Just look at that bag. Old junk food commercials were so good at the “bag shots.” They never looked bloated or wrinkly. They didn’t even look like they made crinkly noises.
This may end up being the shortest entry of the entire Creepy Commercials Countdown. Truth is, it’s its own worst enemy. It’s made me too hungry to continue writing. I don’t care if this should be two paragraphs longer. I want something orange and dusty, right now.
Cayenne-dusted tangerines may have to do. We haven’t gone grocery shopping in weeks.
I leave you with a confession: Every time I go to type “Tostitos,” I spell it “Tostidos,” curse myself and fix it. I will never not do that, for as long as I live.