’90s kids: Perhaps you remember Pogs? Pogs were incredibly useless cardboard discs you used to trade with your other idiot classmates. They came decorated in such beautiful designs as skulls, ying-yangs, aliens, or the word “POG” in fire letters. And then there was also something called a “Slammer,” which was far less destructive than its name suggested.
Pogs were modeled after milk caps, which, when you think about it, is kind of genius marketing on the Pog Czar’s part because he found a way to make a video- and TV-obsessed generation play with something which was probably last popular with Depression Era youths. Good job, Capitalism.
What’s perhaps more depressing than Pogs themselves are their commercials. Several spots marketed these colorful circles as something elicit through intense flashing images and words, although the words kind of conveyed mixed meanings:
DON’T WATCH TV (OK?)
HIDE YOUR PARENTS (What does this even mean?)
DON’T TRY THIS AT HOME (This one I get.)
2. “Hide your parents” Pog commercial:
And then there was this commercial, which aside from showcasing kids having way too much fun playing Pogs, positioned the caps as aliens invading earth and terrifying parents and grown-ups.
This probably reflected reality.
4. Pog “invasion” commercial:
And finally, this commercial came up with a new jingle, which actually reminded kids that Pog was a game. Not something you randomly scattered on the floor with no strategy whatsoever. These brilliant lyrics accompanied the commercial:
“Haven’t you heard that Pog is a game? Everybody knows it’ll drive you insane!”
Even so, no one knew how to play it.
This, by the way, was brought to you by the World Pog Federation. Legit.
6. “Pog is a game” commercial:
Somehow, most Gen Yers made it through the ’90s — Pogs and all — just fine. Although some of us probably lost some friends along the way after stealing someone’s Sonic the Hedgehog Slammer.
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