“It was likely the best thing on TV that year.”
Not likely, Sir or Madam!
Indeed it was. In fact it inspired me to make my first super 8 animation about 4 years later.
“additives that stop cars from knocking”
Yeah, probably lead, so I guess “nox” isn’t short for “noxious.”
Did you see the skidmarks that guy’s ass left on the road, towards the end? Dang.
Reminds me of a bit i caught on Night Flight as a teen
and i found this one while i was searching for it, same actors and production it would seem
they’re either by the same producer as the commercial or it’s an obvious homage since some of all of them seem re-made shot-for-shot
tetra-ethyl lead, mostly likely.
“best thing on TV that year.” WHAT?!?! Huff & Sputter! Are you forgetting:
Better living through lead.
During the mid 1960s, Menville and Janson co-produced a series of short live-action films, among them the Academy Award-nominated Stop Look and Listen, an innovative stop-motion pixilation experiment in which the main characters “drive” down city streets in invisible cars.
Disney and other Hollywood studios saw little use for the technique, and so the pixilation technique became largely forgotten after McLaren moved on to using other animation techniques for later films. But Menville and Janson revived the all-but-forgotten technique, introducing it to a new generation.
They followed Stop Look and Listen with their 1967 short film, Vicious Cycles a comedy shot in 16 mm, featuring a gang of hard-core bikers intimidating a motor scooter club. Menville played the head of the scooter club. Clips from the film were featured in a 1970 summer television series on the ABC network called The New Communicators and made Menville’s pixilation technique famous in the USA.
Gulf Oil soon hired them to do a series of pixilation commercials for its “no-nox” gasoline, which allowed them to increase the production value of their films.
Also – it’s not “stop-motion animation” – that’s the filming of inanimate objects, frame-by-frame, to make them appear animated. This is pixelation. - stop-motion photography. Related, but not the same thing at all.
You might be familiar with the work of Grant Munro who probably coined the term, and worked with Norman McLaren on Neighbors:
The laying of the fence is my favorite bit. The faces scared the heck out of me as a kid, seeing this in the dark of the library basement during story time.
Ha! I thought it was no nitrogen oxide emissions. NOx
Rather it was for more lead oxide particulate emissions… so fun…
For some reason, I kept thinking of the car chase scene from Bullitt.
Thank you for finding exactly what I was thinking of. Just thinking about Night Flight gives me the warm fuzzies. This was also played in segments on Nickelodeon’s Turkey TV, also a feast of silly goodness.
Yes, kids, cable was our YouTube back in the day. Now go get grandpa another beer and he’ll tell you about Dynaman and the last adventure of Spunky The Wonder Squid.
If you never had to hold the rabbit ears at a funny angle while trying to crane your neck at the same time to see one of the 5 channels available on the TV, then get off of my lawn!
i still have the Vicious Cycles ep on VHS :^)
it was broadcast, though. SNL, then Soul Train, then Night Flight.
ETA: @SpunkyTWS, if you haven’t seen it yet, this is a thing now:
keep bringing the wonderful things @frauenfelder !
Four Quatloos on the poster!
I was probably in kindergarten around then, and I remember this – must have made a big impression on me too
…dat opening crotch shot…um…okay…