I haven't seen this commercial for Atari Pole Position since 1982 and I love it more than ever

Originally published at: I haven't seen this commercial for Atari Pole Position since 1982 and I love it more than ever | Boing Boing


Ironically, now the stereotype of a corporate executive is that they are the assholes driving racecars on public streets and leaving skid marks on our souls.


This had as much plot as most 80s films, iirc.


Do you remember the Saturday morning cartoon, though?

Pole Position Animated Series


The cartoon had the superior 80’s theme song between it and the commercial. My brain was going, “This is the wrong song.” The whole time.


@frauenfelder writes
This TV spot for Pole Position , a racing car game for the Atari 2600, is pure genius.

Uh, that looks like the Atari 5200 (see the last frame of video). I don’t think the 2600 has the horsepower to run such a game.


I never saw this…and I don’t recall 90 second ads on tv…ever, really. When/where did they show this?

1 Like

Occasionally you will see 60 and 90 minute commercials. A lot of times there will be a 90 minute one, and then one edited down to 60 and 30, with the longer two rarely seen.

Usually when I see a very long ad, it is selling Medicare extended coverage or some As Seen on TV product. Your brain will go, “Is this commercial still going?”

1 Like

You must be watching the higher cable channels at 3am


Or the local secondary channels. ME TV, etc.

1 Like

Kept waiting for someone to snap into a slim jim.


Expected at the end read very rapidly: Disclaimer- when playing pole position in real-life mode, Atari is not liable for your certain imminent death; additional quarters do not buy additional lives.

1 Like

It was like I was watching NBC in the 80’s for sure !


The highest score I ever achieved on Pole Position was near the end of an evening in a bar, when I was several drinks above the limit. (It was a popular off-campus bar that was less than two blocks from the dorms.)

That didn’t encourage me to loosen up and go driving - instead it made me realize how easy it was to think I was OK to drive when I clearly wasn’t. And I never could replicate the results, despite many beers of trying.


They may have oversold the game a bit.


I don’t really remember anything about this show, except that the car computers were cool, and I think the cars transformed, which was also cool.

1 Like

Everything about this is awesome. The polo wearing rich tool. The music. The Death Race 2000 feel of race. Even the weird car-human hybrids reminds me of Nightmare On Elm Street 5.

Fantastic find!


“Well, Muffy, Buffy, Biff Jr., and I are going on a Sunday drive,” says Biff Sr.

The bit where both the dad and son push up their glasses was a nice touch.


“…and it’s FREE!!!” --Joe Namath


Locally we have George Brett selling it, and honestly, I love how it is messed up. I haven’t found a copy of it online last time I looked, but the extended version leans into the concept that they people don’t realize they are in a commercial with George Brett.

“How did you get in here?”

“That’s a great question! And even better one is how Blue KC can save you money.”

“We have a dead bolt on our door.”

“You need a new one. Like you need a new plan from Blue KC.”

Hope I am remembering the bits right - like I said, I can’t find the actual ad online.