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Brain Teasers & Tasters

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Part I: Questions without answers*

(* Answers can be found on other pages. Seek and ye shall find.)

masturbating young man extracted from cigarette adWhich cigarette ad contained this 'masturbating' young man?  And, if you animation of startled and embarrased ghostdon't think he is supposed to be masturbating you can see how Picasso represented this form of behaviour in one of his paintings by clicking here.


 Marilyn Monroe and Mercedes beauty spot on cheekWhich ad made use of the Mercedes logo in place of Marilyn Monroe's beauty spot?  It was a Merc ad, of course.

extract from an ad showing a pair of sheepWhich beer company (with lots of buddies in the US) has produced an ad that seems to allude to a connection between their beer, their customers, sex and sheep?   Do their customers act like sheep, or what?  Before you let your imagination run riot, seek out the answer on this site.

 Extract from an ad showing a 'camel' about to bite or suck an erect penis.What is this camel about to get up to and in which cigarette ad will you find this imagery?   The unethical nature of this type of advertising could lead one to conclude this ad constituted unfair comment on a competitor.

[Note the background of this image has been 'blacked out' to make the figures more easily discernible.  You can find it in the bottom right hand corner of the relevant advert.]

An ad for Jim Beam Whiskey. Click for a largerr (flawed) version.What is brewing on the tip of this man's tongue?  It usually has three letters and can be oral in nature.


Extract of ad with devilish 'faces' etc.Which cigarette ad contained the 'devilish' face (on the left of this extract). It is lit from the below left, leaving the upper right cheek and the top of the head in shade. In addition, the central figure is almost like an insect with antennae.  Could it be a 'little devil'? If so, the complete ad also contains a few of their relatives and some 'customers'.

extract from an ad showing  deathly facesWhich ad contained two 'deathly white' individuals 'kissing'?  If you found the ad with the masturbating young man, look around the same page(s) and you will also find this image (the ad appeared as both a single and a double page spread).  The ad also contains a few other semi-subliminal items of equal interest. Note: the image has multiple focal points and can also be perceived as a single 'face' with a beard.

[Note this image is similar to a number of classic visual illusions.  It offers features that can be interpreted as either one face or as two.]

All of the ads containing the features illustrated above can be found somewhere on this web site. If you want the answers to the questions and many others all you have to do is browse. 

A few  other teasers, with immediate answers, are in Part 2, below.

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Part II : Images with answers*

(*Answers are at the end of the section. Note that there are no alternative message associated with these images in order not to spoil your fun. Click on the image if you wish to see a larger version of the ad. )

Benson & Hedges ad. Click for a larger version.

Benson and Hedges (UK) claim to offer oral satisfaction. Given time they'll permanently pull the plug on smoking and the other activity that is marginally represented in this ad.  What is odd about this ad?

[Note this ad has been brightened to allow the wiring to stand out against the background]

Advert for Jim Beam Whisky ad. Click for a larger version.  

Here we have Jim Beam - he's a real flash guy. Light a match where his message is and you will get more than your fingers burned. But he also has a lot more to hide. Check out the larger image and you'll note that the robot is sexually charged.

See Jim's Beaming for more Jim Beam ads.

An ad for Stella Artois lager. Click for a larger version. And here is Stella Artois. Don't get too closely acquainted with this lady - she's not just expensive, she could easily be the death of you and spoil the fun associated with her embedded message.   Can you see it?  It's a little bit runny.
Camel Joe: RIP.  Click for a larger version.  

Good 'Old Joe' - he's defunct now but his spirit lives on.  There has always been more to this Camel's life than giving the hump and lots of youngsters fell for this self parody, courtesy of J.R. Reynolds.

This animated illustration has nothing to hide. It is simply a taster for the Camel ads discussed elsewhere.  These have lots of 'hidden' features.  

An ad for Disaronno.  Click for a larger version. Dis is an Ad is for Disarrono, but it does have some human characteristics. In fact, the producers of this ad would be somewhat contented if you accused it of being two-faced. But then not every advertising professional can count.  To find the oddity, note that everyon% has a number of sides to their character and you should never pay too much attention to looks.   
An ad for Gordon's Gin. Click for a larger version. And last, but not least, we have part of a Gordon's Gin ad.  Mixed well, his cheery countenance often hides a rather depressing nature.  He'll help you deal with anxiety but 'slow motion suicide' is his real game.  Champagne bubbles might lead to fun but Gordon's most definitely don't.


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Part III : What you have been missing?

If you haven't been unusually observant in the past you will not have noticed the 'hidden' elements in the ads presented above. Each advert incorporates something that in lay persons language would probably be described as subliminal advertising or as attempts at subliminal persuasion. A more appropriate term, as indicated elsewhere - and often - in these Web pages, would be semi-subliminal information.

Normally you would not notice these aspects of an advert as they are on the borderline of perceptual ability and extremely well disguised.  But - once they have been drawn to your attention - they become difficult to overlook. Anyone who saw Bob Loblaw's pages concerning the images embedded in the opening screen of Windows95 knows what I mean.  To test the impact these ads, and a little bit of attention, might have on viewers it is suggested that you return to view the site someday.    When your return you will recognize virtually every semi-subliminal image that you identified, even though you might have had difficulty recognizing the 'hidden' elements initially.

This is what you missed in Part II

  • The Benson and Hedges ad has the wires twisted into the letters S E X, or at least as close as one can get to this configuration without being too obvious.   Beats the Kama Sutra any time! Check it out by clicking here.
  • The Jim Beam ad has 'forked lighting' S E X in the groin area ( the letter e is reversed).   Flashy stuff! Check it out by clicking here.
  • The Stella Artois ad uses condensation underneath the glass to spell SeX (the letters are upside down). Check it out by clicking here or here for two separate entries regarding this ad.
  • The ice cubes in the Disarrono ad is formed from rather unhappy faces - four small faces form one large, equally unhappy, one. Check it out on by clicking here.
  • Although not all that clear, in the original Gordon's Gin ad you can perceive a extract from Gordon's gin ad.'drowning' face in the bottom left hand corner ( more than one 'figure' can actually be perceived in this image ).  The principal 'figure' is rather reminiscent of Spider Man and other hooded cartoon characters. A slightly clearer reproduction is offered below.   Whether one accepts this is an image of a drowning person will largely depend upon how familiar one is with Gordon's  Gin advertising over the years.     See the AAAA ad in Ads from the Archives for another example of a 'drowning' drinker.

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Commentary and information about any of the ads or requests on this Web site can be sent by e-mail to the Webmaster

To the best of the author's knowledge none of the illustrations, in the format used on this site, are subject to copyright. If copyright has been inadvertently breached please contact the author in order to rectify the matter. All brands and logos referred to or illustrated on this site are the property of the relevant companies and copyright holders. However, commentary and other information produced by the author can be freely copied and distributed. Similarly, illustrations of ads, so long as they are accompanied by commentary or are presented in the form of parody, can also be copied and distributed but please acknowledge as the source. Translation of tobacco company ads and relevant commentary into languages other than English will be particularly welcomed.

Last Revised: 3rd January, 2003


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