Help me find these 80s PSAs
February 16, 2011 10:42 AM   Subscribe

Elephant with stuff in his ears, villains plotting to dirty a PI's teeth, and a man crawling under descending cardboard smoke: help me find footage of these early-80s PSAs.

Three public service spots that aired in the early eighties in Cleveland made an impression on me, and I'd like to see them again.

#1: Animated. An elephant is consulting a doctor, who is a mouse. "It's my ears! I can't hear!" complains the elephant. Dr. Mouse addresses the problem with a swab, and a cascade of random junk falls out of the elephant's ear, burying the mouse. Dr. Mouse then emerges to address the audience, saying "Never, never put anything in your ear!"

#2. Animated. A luridly orange city by night is inhabited by a private investigator who narrates, and thugs who tempt him with "sticky sweets and smackaroos." There's a shot of one such thumping his palm menacingly with a large candy cane. The PI has a secret weapon, though, which he reveals to be a toothbrush. "These babies are mine, and I'm going to keep them," he tells us.

#3. Live action. A man is standing in a house made of cardboard cut-out furniture and decor. A "flat" of white smoke begins descending, and the man gets on his hands and knees and crawls to the door frame as the smoke descends to just above him. He explains that "down here, I can breathe."

Despite all these details, I can't find any of them. This makes me feel crazy. Video would be amazing, but transcripts, or even descriptions that confirm their existence, would be enough. Thanks, and happy hunting!
posted by longtime_lurker to Media & Arts (1 answer total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
#3 sounds like one of the "Learn Not To Burn" spots starring Dick Van Dyke. In this one he says "Down here, I'd be able to breathe" but it's not a cardboard house. I was only able to find two more from the series: (1, 2) but they don't fit your description.
posted by amyms at 11:33 PM on February 16, 2011

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