And now for the results of Contest #417: we asked you for the next celebrity or company to market their mistakes and you fabricated these faux pas:
First Prize: Ford's new entry into the compact car market is an updated version of the Pinto, called The Torch. Among its unique features are a fold-out barbecue, flame resistant seat covers, blow-off gas cap and carbon monoxide air bags. First 10,000 customers will get a year-long subscription to Pyrogourmet. Ford spokesman says, "The idea was inspired by the Chevy Blazer." Andy Stark, VP-corporate communications, Mutual of America Life Insurance Co., New York.
Second Prize: A spot for Bounty Paper Towels begins with a shot of Joseph Hazelwood, former captain of the Exxon Valdez, sitting at a table. He has just spilled his coffee and he is about to wipe it up. He looks at the camera and says, "Believe me, I know a thing or two about spills. And when I make a mess, I always reach for the quicker picker-upper." Jeff Walter, copywriter, Vital Communications, Lexington, Ky.; and John Gardner, instructor, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, S.D.
Third Prize: Allstate Insurance signs Bill Buckner, the former Boston Red Sox player whose fielding error cost his team the 1986 World Series, to appear in spots. Bill does the voice-over-"You're in good hands with Allstate"-and is seen at the end, with palms open, saying: "Allstate. The good hands people. Believe me, I should know." Jim Sabo, owner, Brose Productions, Tarrytown, N.Y.