Around the world there are probably hundreds of different brands of toilet paper and most of us only stop to think about toilet paper those 8 times a day when we’re sitting on the can and we need it. When you’re out of it, it’s all important, lest you be forced to reach for a slice of whole wheat bread folded in half to get the job done, but for every other moment in our day it’s pretty meaningless.
Someone out there, a lot of someones, live toilet paper day in and day out. They have to sell it and make it and market it and convince you and I that it’s the paper we need sluice down our cracks when we’re in need of some freshening up. Convincing someone the paper you make that is specifically designed to be wiped along an ass and then thrown out is somehow better than another brand is no easy task. What does it even mean to do that? Do you win when you convince people to run your product along their dirty ass? Yes! Of course you do, because you have money and they have a piece of shitty paper they have to get rid of, so in a week they’ll be back giving you more money.
Knowing as you do that you stand to make a buck by convincing the world they need to have your product nestled in their filthy crevasse, you need to know how to sell it. Let’s study what the other guys have tried their hand at and see what we can come up with.
You’ll notice a trend starting here. This innocent dog resting his head on a roll is adorable as the day is long but the fact remains the people at Kleenex thought that, when it comes to wiping your ass, the go to image was puppies. Have ypu ever squatted over a hardwood floor and let a chain of puppies run between your undercarriage using their backs as a shit scraping conveyor belt?
And because not everyone has the stomach to wipe their ass on a dog, there’s the kitten alternative. And really, if you ever get the opportunity to hold a kitten in one hand and a puppy in the other, I’m sure you’ll agree, a fluffy kitten really seems like it was custom made by nature to wedge itself in your crack and wriggle you clean.
The Charmin people didn’t want to mess around when it came to their anthropomorphic shit tickets salesmen, they went straight to North America’s largest land predator, the mighty poo bear. It is the dream of all modern men to not only tame the most dangerous animal they can find under the iron fist of their ass, but to make it comically pleased to have taken partin such an event.
And then there are the bastards who want to wipe their asses on endangered species. Sickos.
Some people still feel animals are too mangey. Why wipe your ass on something with claws and fangs (it’s a reasonable question). Instead, why not try a baby? Alternately the theory here is that this stuff is soft enough to wrap your baby in, as the packaging would suggest, in which case they’re also suggesting that you are a terrible sub-ghetto mother who approves of shit ticket swaddling clothes.
The last kids were having an awesome tag team shit and enjoying their toilet paper at the same time, while this child is just exasperated by how stupid his mother is for buying birch bark. The message here is that your child and/or your child’s ass is a bit smarter than mom, so pay attention to what they’re saying and smarten the hell up.
Apparently in France ass wipage is a lot more erotic than it is here, so much so that the implication is you may not even get to the second wipe before you’ll have to engage in unsanitary coitus on the bathroom floor.
When you’re not busy humping, Renova invites you to swing around homoerotically in toilet paper swings.
But when you’re done swinging, come back to Earth and hump some more, you dirty assed Casanova you.
Vintage toilet paper ads were all about appealing to how smart you, the lady who does all the shopping for her man and children, really is. You’re so goddamn smart that you’re not going to use the Sears catalog anymore, oh no. You’re going to wipe your ass the way European royalty does. Welcome to the Waldorf.
Scottish ladies sure are cheap. Also mannish and probably suffering the ill effects of alcohol consumption, but let’s just stick with cheap ass plaid wearing ladies with dirty asses for now. You need to appeal to their sense of not wanting to wipe their ass but knowing they have to. The celebrity endorsement from the piggy bank in the corner clinches this.
This has some cross over value and it’s weird as shit – on the one hand we’re appelaing to smart ladies, on the other hand we’re also talking about how great the shit tickets feel on your face. You’d be surprised how often ads use someone wiping their face. It’s really quite unsettling.
Toilet paper from abroad is a whole different animal, all the rules you’re used to have been thrown out the window. Kittens, clouds and angels? F*ck no, just sit and smile.
Obviously this is Japanese and obviously there’s no good reason for it other than someone wanted to scare the shit out of you at the single most apporpriate time to do such a thing. So they wrote a scary story on toilet paper, so you can be entertained and sanitary.
My Japanese is rusty, but my ability to figure out pictures tells me this is being sold to sweaty types who may or may not abuse laxatives that want to measure themselves after shitting to see if it actually took some inches off.
Naturally this had to end here. Sanrio licences their cloyingly cute little kitty everywhere, so it was only a matter of time before she ended up in your ass.
What have we learned from all this? There is absolutely no good way to market toilet paper, except in Japan where they gave up on good marketing ideas years ago and have instead opted for a barrage of crazy as a shithouse rat ideas that seem to appease the locals.