Throwback Thursday: Pizza Hut’s Pizza Head

A second grade art project or a horrible amalgamation created by a partnership between Dr. Moreau and Little Caesar? Actually, the humanoid in the photo above is part of a 90s ad campaign. *Scratches ‘humanoid’ off list of words to use in blog*

His name was Pizza Head and in the early-to-mid 90s he was salesman extraordinaire for Pizza Hut.

With his penchant for mischief and uncanny resemblance to Saturday Night Live’s Mr. Bill, Pizza Head was a big hit for the Dallas-based pizza chain.

Under the direction of SNL writer and Mr. Bill creator Walter Williams, The Pizza Head Show campaign ran from 1993 to 1997 and featured more than a dozen quirky, off-the-wall spots.

One can’t discuss the exploits of Pizza Head without at least acknowledging the campaign’s perpetual antagonist, Steve (a pizza cutter). Disguised as a doctor, Sith lord or vampire, Steve would always be introduced as Pizza Head’s friend, only to ultimate cause him harm.

While the campaign is remembered mostly for its absurdity, I believe its effectiveness remains understated. The ads were able to use the Mr. Bill likeness to strike a nostalgic chord in adults and decision makers, while pandering to the pizza-craving youth with a character better suited for Looney Tunes.

Almost 20 years later and I can still hear Pizza Head’s familiar screams with every bite of pizza I take. I should probably talk to somebody about that…

(H/T Retro Junk, Pizza Hut)

by Daniel Sweeney | posted | in Advertising & Marketing
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