20 Years After 1984

by Chuck Toporek

According to one of the rumor sites last week, Apple's ad agency (TBWA\Chiat\Day) is already working on a commercial to mark the 20th anniversary of the famous "1984" Superbowl spot.

A bunch of the Mac faithful here at O'Reilly were commenting on this last week, and I was postulating whether Ridley Scott would reprise his role as the commercial's director. But I've since had a better thought. I'm thinking that the 20th anniversary spot won't be done by Ridley Scott, but instead by John Lassiter. You know. The top director at Pixar.

Now all we need is some music for the background...

It's just too bad that Apple and The Beatles are in a legal battle right now. If it weren't for that, Apple could try to license the use of "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts' Club Band". Ah, but wait...Michael Jackson owns the rights...so it is possible....

So, like a scene from Wayne's World, my mind quickly flashes into creative mode...

[key in music: "Sergeant Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band" by The Beatles]

[flash through various Mac OS logos and Apple logos]

"It was 20 years ago today.

Sergeant Pepper taught the band to play..."

[flash kid rockin' out to an iPod, then flash ITMS]

"They've been going in and out of style.

But they're guaranteed to raise the smile..."

[fade to the Happy Mac startup symbol]


[fade to black]

"So may I introduce to you..."

[fast flash through hardware]

"The act you've known for all these years..."

[fade out Sgt. Pepper]

[fade to black]


[key in guitar riff from "Back in Black" by AC/DC]

[zoom in Panther logo]

"Well I'm back in bla-ack!"

All hail the King of Pop.


What would you like to see Apple do for the 20th anniversary of the 1984 Superbowl commercial?


2003-09-22 09:15:47
Who owns...
So if Apple likes your idea...

Who owns the rights to this proposal?

2003-09-22 18:51:44
re: Who owns...
Well, it's my intellectual property, right? If they want to use my concept, I'd hope they would have the courtesy to at least call and ask permission.

I'm not The Beatles estate, but I do take pride in my thoughts. If they use it without permission or giving proper credit, I'll be miffed for sure. But then again, we all saw what happened with Watson, right? ;^)

2003-09-23 08:05:35
As much as I love Apple Computers, and as great as His Steveness thinks the Beatles may be, and as great as everybody else seems to think they are/were, I can't imagine a worse or more painful thing than to use a Beatles song in an advertisement. Any Beatles song. Ever. In fact I can't imagine any Beatles song ever being good or ever being put to good use except by ignoring them. Now AC/DC on the other hand... Or Motorhead. Or the Police. Or the Clash, and the list of bands ever so much better than the Beatles could go on and on and on... I sure hope they don't do something insane like what's suggested here.
2003-09-23 08:58:25
Your idea is lame.
No offense intended.
2003-09-23 09:00:29
The OUCH person a couple of posts back
is a retard.
2003-09-23 11:53:05
They should release a Special Edition
Use the same commercial, just change some of the narration at the end and perhaps what the big face is saying. The mind-numbed drones in the commercial fit nicely with the numerous pc-clones out there
2003-09-23 13:47:23
re: Who owns...
hmm .. as you may know "intellectual property" as such doesnt exist (!) its either copyright:'automatic for every work --protects before verbatim copying' or patent:'only for ideas' or trademark .. so dont lurk them together ;))

... btw the term "IP" is often used by big players/companys to confuse you and to promote their ideas ..

2003-09-24 14:10:55
RE: The OUCH person a couple of posts back
That's not nice.

Most retards would take offense - even they're intelligent enough to realize that the Beatles are one of the best (if not THE best) band in the history of rock music.

2003-09-26 18:02:14
Back In Black
I agree with using AC/DC. Back In Black would be the ideal choice, which a shot of the very cool looking PB G5 box.
2003-09-26 18:03:06
Back In Black
Er, make that the PM G5 box.
2003-09-27 20:49:57
Here's what MacSlash has to say..
My vote is Win-iTunes (Score:2)
by mpjstuff (biggianthead-at-mac.com) on Friday September 26, @01:24PM (#50740)
User #3473 Info
What better to launch a new hammer at the evil-empire than to commemorate the Anniversary with a free copy of WinTunes if purchase the week of the Anniversary, you get 30 free songs (or whatever equals the purchase price of the software).

I'm sure other things, but I think that might be most signifcant with what Apple could conceivably pull out of their sleeve on short notice. Panther might also be nice -- but somehow doesn't seem commemorative. Anything that seems like shooting a warning shot over the bow of the MS Monopoly would work for me.>
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Along those lines, but (Score:2, Interesting)
by justMichael on Friday September 26, @01:55PM (#50749)
User #8698 Info
I hope they don't charge for the software. I know development cost blah, blah.

If they really want to pick up a majority of the windows market they will have the windows version of iTunes available for free download.

Although even if they only pick up 10% of the windows users they have increased exposure dramatically. If they can move over 10 Million tracks as fast as they did with only 5% of the market, imagine what they can do with say 20% of the remaining 95%

My only concern is, will I be able to listen to music that I purchased on my PowerBook on my Windows desktop.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:Along those lines, but (Score:1)
by the_2nd_coming (johnybravo@cartoon.net) on Friday September 26, @03:10PM (#50760)
User #6691 Info
I don't see why not. iTunes authorises and deotherises your mac.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
My Storyboard (this is fun) (Score:2)
by EccentricAnomaly on Saturday September 27, @10:31AM (#50806)
User #5739 Info
My vote is for lots of hubris and a historical perspective:

(Fade in to a scene of a suburban California street on a sunny day... Camera is slowly moving down the street
to a typical ranch-stlye house)

(voiceovers in different voices of famous people)

"Who'd of thought that two guys named Steve could do
so much to change our lives in such a short time..."

(Camera pans to the garage where we see some young people soldering circuit boards... older man in a suit is
observing the operation and shaking his head)

"This Silcon Valley Start up was more of an up-start"

older man says: "What use are ordinary people going to have for a Computer?"

(Music starts with a strong drum beat... rapid flash of
pictures of Apple's early days, old logo with Newton under a tree, an old Apple I, and Apple II drawing a blocky rainbow Apple logo on a screen, magazing covers, black and white pictures of the Steves and other early Apple people... a visicalc print add)

(music stops Fade to a black screen, a flickering film stlye
image of the 1984 ad plays through the sceen of tha hammer hitting big brother)

"In 1984, Apple saved us from the green phoshors and gave us the first easy to use computer, the first PC with windows, a little computer called Macintosh"

(fade to classic mac with the happy mac face.... pan out,
the picture is a window in OS X... pan out more and we see a 17 inch Mac screen, another window behind the classic mac picture is a story about the G5 cluster with headline "Mac Cluster World's 6th Fastest Computer".... pan out
to show the whole iMac... The iMac changes colors from white to red to green to aqua and then begins to pulsate with different patterns like a Cuddlefish.... )

"Here's to twenty years of Macintosh"

(Mac Screen does the cube animation to a white screen, with dark grey letters that say: "Cheers." and then
fades to a Apple logo)
"Terminal" is OS X's killer app.
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Motal Enemies now partners. (Score:1)
by dlai on Friday September 26, @01:27PM (#50741)
User #10846 Info | http://www.moto-db.com/
Kinda thought it was intresting that IBM and Apple once enemies are now partners in bring us the powermac G5.

Guess Microsoft is the big evil now. Everyone, go toss your monitor at your nearest Windows.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:Motal Enemies now partners. (Score:1, Interesting)
by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 26, @06:03PM (#50772)
Well IBM is no longer the monolith attacking Apple PC. As a PC distributor they are about average. But they loss the PC area where back in the Mid 80 threw the early 90s PCs were Called IBMs or IBM Compatible, Now they are just PC and names like Microsoft and Intel now has the glory not IBM. So IBM has lost the PC war by winning those battles against Apple early on. Now in the eye of the general public and Both Apple and IBM are known to failed the Personal Computer market. So now after realizing their old fight allowed others to come and take both of their market share they are working together to make a better product and use both of their resources to reclaim their glory.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:Mortal Enemies now partners. (Score:1)
by Gilmoure ({gilmoure} {at} {tampabay.rr.com}) on Friday September 26, @07:31PM (#50783)
User #457 Info | http://darkstar.homeunix.org/~gilmoure
Just goes to show, you should never burn your bridges. You never know who you'll end up working with in the future.

What if Microsoft produced an OS based on Darwin, with some future version of Virtual PC making it "Windows"? That'd be strange.--------------------- Ya', I fix dem' Macs!
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
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more a fantasy prediction but... (Score:1)
by echt (from_macslash@webbix.com) on Friday September 26, @01:47PM (#50747)
User #8547 Info | http://webbix.com
How about a Mac Classic with a G5 processor, projector for to augment the original style mini screen (or for pure fantasy a holographic display).

I would settle for a remake of the 1984 commercial and continued prime time advertising. Apple has done a MUCH better job since the iMac debuted and I see adds in enterprise magazines now also.

3 percent and growing...
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:more a fantasy prediction but... (Score:1)
by Gilmoure ({gilmoure} {at} {tampabay.rr.com}) on Friday September 26, @07:35PM (#50785)
User #457 Info | http://darkstar.homeunix.org/~gilmoure
I could see Apple producing another one piece Classic looking case, with the guts of the cube in it. Would be fairly simple to do, especially using a built in 9" or 10" lcd display. Instead of clear, like the cube, I'd go for the white/ice look of the iBook. If they only sold it for under $1200, it'd be a hit. Never understood why they didn't do a G3 cube for the same price point as an iMac, back then.--------------------- Ya', I fix dem' Macs!
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Another ad (Score:2, Insightful)
by faux plastic on Friday September 26, @02:13PM (#50751)
User #9483 Info
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe I read a story earlier this year that Apple had actually hired a firm to put together a new ad for the upcoming Super Bowl. I remember participating in a thread speculating on what the ad would be about. My vote was for something very similar to the 1984 ad -- this time targeting the Big Brother autocracy of Microsoft.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:Another ad (Score:3, Interesting)
by nemo** on Friday September 26, @03:05PM (#50758)
User #717 Info | http://macslash.org/
Targetting the big brother tacits of the RIAA would seem cooler to be...more ballsy for sure, but that would have HUGE appeal I think. Apple, the populus company standing up for consumers and although they wouldn't sell more compuyter from it, they would sell more iPods, music downloads and the idea that Apple electronics are OK by people who still think Apple's are not compatable with today and eventually prompting them to seriously consider buying an Apple computer and I think that's a driving force behind their late motives. Apple is crazy smart, let's hope they don't blow it like they have so often in the past.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
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obvious (Score:1)
by klez23 (basura2@huzzam.com) on Friday September 26, @02:18PM (#50752)
User #3888 Info | http://www.huzzam.com
how about a 20th Anniversary Macintosh! Oh wait, been done...
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:obvious (Score:1)
by johnpaul191 (johnpaul_at_philly_shreds_dot_com) on Saturday September 27, @10:33AM (#50807)
User #2132 Info | http://www.phillyshreds.com
Though the T.A.M. was done during the era when Jobs was not around. If i remember right we just passed the 25th anniversary of Apple and they did nothing big and public to celebrate that. I do not know if that means we will see nothing, or if Apple will pull something out of nowhere. I guess a lot of it depends on how Jobs feels about it since he was the Alpha-Dog on team Macintosh. It's quite possible that they feel OS X is a rebirth of the Macintosh and don't want to promote the idea that this machine is 20 years old. The T.A.M. celebrated the birthday of Apple as a company, not one product. Then again, who knows. I hope they do somehting cool since the Mac was the real beginning of the public awareness of Apple. Heck, they used to sell them in department stores (anyone else remember that?). If that didnt say something about how friendly they were, what does? I was only 10 at the time but i remember being at a John Wanamaker's or somehting with my mom and thinking how much cooler it was then the Apple ][e machines we had at school.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

infamous? (Score:1, Funny)
by Anonymous Coward on Friday September 26, @04:02PM (#50765)
Why do I often hear the Ridley Scott commercial called infamous when it's regarded as one of the best and most notable commercials ever? It seems like everyone took their definition of infamous from "The Three Amigos".
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Well... (Score:1)
by superkendall on Friday September 26, @08:41PM (#50787)
User #3184 Info
It *was* a pretty funny movie.--> Kendall (proper spelling is this post brought to you by Safari [if I remembered to turn it on])
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:infamous? (Score:1)
by elo on Saturday September 27, @09:52AM (#50803)
User #8227 Info
Absodamnlutely. The 1984 commercial is certainly *famous*. Surely people who call it "infamous" must have another word in mind. (In the same vein, no doubt, as people that think "penultimate" means "really ultimate" or some such thing.)

[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:infamous? (Score:1)
by MidnightBrewer on Friday September 26, @09:28PM (#50790)
User #3918 Info | http://www.lineofsite.org/
So it's *your* fault we had a second earthquake in Japan this year!

--Give a man a fire and he'll be warm for a day; set him on fire and he'll be warm the rest of his life.
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I'm Hoping... (Score:2, Funny)
by sarcasmatron on Friday September 26, @04:27PM (#50768)
User #4318 Info
Apple drags John Dvorak naked through the streets of Cupertino.

QuickTime Streaming Pay-per-view!
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:I'm Hoping... (Score:2)
by spackle on Saturday September 27, @04:22AM (#50797)
User #514 Info
I would appreciate seeing Steve Balmer appear on the stage at MWSF wearing a big, red clown nose. It could be a funny bit, especially if he's there to announce that henceforth, all Microsoft technologies will be made to run seamlessly on OS X, now and forever.

Oh, and yeah... I pray for world peace, too.[Insert favorite sig here]
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:I'm Hoping... (Score:1)
by shockhead19 on Saturday September 27, @07:50PM (#50828)
User #6996 Info
Seriously, that would rule. Dvorak is a mess.

This is not my .sig
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Twentieth Birthday Mac (Score:1)
by tydalforce on Saturday September 27, @11:52AM (#50811)
User #6957 Info
I'm calling for a G5 Sphere. Round. Alluminum. Comes with a pedistal. Get yours before they roll away (c:
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:Big Brother's speech from the 1984 commercial: (Score:2, Funny)
by anthropos9 on Friday September 26, @06:14PM (#50774)
User #5294 Info | http://www.cteens.org/
Is it just me or does that in some ways sound like G.W. Bush?

"Microsoft's programs interoperate efficiently only with Internet viruses" - Dan Geer
[ Reply to This | Parent ]

Re:Big Brother's speech from the 1984 commercial: (Score:1)
by Capt Cosmic (captcosmic at ( a-ch double-a gah errr ) . net) on Friday September 26, @06:50PM (#50776)
User #4520 Info
It's just you.-> Capt Cosmic <- E-mail has been phonetically encoded.
[ Reply to This | Parent ]
Re:Big Brother's speech from the 1984 commercial: (Score:1)
by Concerned Onlooker on Saturday September 27, @12:39AM (#50796)
User #3580 Info
Ha! No, it's not just you. There are at least two of us. But just wait. We get rescued by a woman in red shorts who really knows her way around a hammer.
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Apple & MS likes to avoid competion. (Score:1)
by dlai on Saturday September 27, @12:17PM (#50812)
User #10846 Info | http://www.moto-db.com/
Both Apple and Microsoft avoid direct competion for each other. If Apple started releasing OSX for x86, then Microsoft will end up releasing windows for Macs. Both one will go out of business and both sides would have wasted millions in Development, Deployment of new Dev tools to the software makers, asking software makers to make x86 builts of their existing OSX app, Support having 2 platforms, Marketing, Strategic placement, operating costs, etc... Apple does not want to risk being runned out of business, and happying making their millions in their niche, and Microsoft is happy making their billions in their side of the court, and not waste money in competition with Apple.

There has been lots of rumors of the existence of an x86 branch of the OSX development tree, and Darwin, the underlying OS can run on x86. It's not Apple can't compete on the x86 front, it's just they don't want to.

2003-10-08 17:06:19
Would Apple be able to use a Beatles song, seeing as how Apple Records (the Beatle's producer) is angry at them over some contract break?
2004-01-07 07:24:49
Why is she wearing an ipod?
At least on the version on Apple's web site. She is wearing an obvious ipod on her body. Is this a remake because it can't be the original.
2004-01-07 11:35:53
Why is she wearing an ipod?
That's a great question. I noticed it right away too. Does anybody know the story behind this?
2004-01-09 11:01:22
Why is she wearing an ipod?
Easy, it was superimposed later as the anniversary commercial. Kind of like the old & new as one. The original ad can be found at:
(note the lack of an ipod in this one)

-- Heliocentric