When I was a kid every other product seemed to end in an ‘O’ - Omo, Brillo, Bisto, Brasso, Rinso, Oxo, Rollo. I used to wonder why the letter ‘O’ held such a fascination for the product marketing people and I still do.
‘Omo’ was hilarious to us back then, with its obvious and schoolboy-silly connotations, but the choice of a name for a product can ‘make it’ or ‘break it’. Sometimes the choice can be very funny – ‘funny odd’ as well as ‘funny ha-ha’. Why on earth 'Cillit Bang', and whose idea was it to draw our attention to the rather nasty idea that it was a 'Mr. Brains' who made those faggots? It got me thinking, if it’s like this in the
Okay folks, hang on to your hats, and if you are at all sensitive to smut or double-entendre STOP READING NOW! It would seem that once outside of the
Closer to home, our Norwegian cousins are very partial to nibbling on ‘Megapussi’ potato chips, whilst Primula’s ‘Jussipussi’ bread rolls are almost as popular as McVitie’s ‘Finger Marie’ biscuits are all over Sweden.
If your car lock freezes solid there’s always ‘Super Piss’, a Finnish solvent that will unfreeze it for you, and if your grass turns brown why not try greening it up with ‘Green Piles’ lawn fertilizer.
Further afield ‘Pee Cola’ outsells ‘Pepsi Cola’ in
The Chinese eat ‘Asse’, a chocolate flavoured blood nourishing delicacy, but if you prefer your chocolate in liquid form, why not try drinking ‘Schovit’, a favourite all over Germany along with ‘Dickmilch’, yet another German milk based drink. There’s no need to worry about your clothes either, because if (in the words of Phil Lynott) you should happen to get chocolate stains on your pants, there’s always ‘Barf Detergent’ – barf being Farsi for snow.
Of course it’s sometimes the changing times that distort and change our view on product names. I’m sure that the recent fuss around ‘Spotted Dick’ is more about political correctness, that people finding the name offensive, after all nobody’s objected to ‘Plum Duff’ or ‘Roly-Poly’ (yet).
And then there are those other times when you simply can’t know what’s around the product name corner. When Campana launched ‘Ayds’, an appetite suppressing candy, in the late 70’s, how were they to know the phonetic association that was going to make the product vanish into oblivion just a few years later.
Nothing, but nothing explains the 'Wii' though. Why 'Wii'? Well why? I’ll leave you to answer that one.