That is the way a local grocery store worker named Mr. McGregor, a recurring character in Folgers coffee ads of the 1960s, describes his “brand-new, can’t-miss” product.
McGregor’s sexist description is but one cringeworthy detail from the company’s coffee ads of yesteryear. It is not the only sexist ad from that era — many ads portrayed women as wives or mothers, sometimes scantily clad, with one main objective: to get, or please, a man.
The Folgers commercials often followed the same story arc.
They started with a woman serving her husband a cup of coffee in the kitchen, often before work or after a meal. He “ughs” and “oh, no’s" in disgust and hurls an insult at his wife, often noting he can get better coffee elsewhere, or so-and-so makes it better.
In one instance, the man dumps his coffee out in his wife’s garden.
“Honey! You’ve killed the petunias!” she exclaims.
In another instance, the wife asks her husband, Harvey, if he wants anything special for his birthday, to which he replies: “Just a decent cup of coffee.”
The husband exits, leaving his wife with a pout on her face. Determined as ever, she heads to the grocery store. That is when we find her talking to Mr. McGregor.
“Phil would rather drink cafeteria coffee than mine.”
“Ed says he gets better coffee at the police station.”
“My coffee: It’s murder! It’s either too bitter or too weak.”
At McGregor’s suggestion, the woman buys a can of Folgers and heads home to dutifully whip up a cup for her husband.
Many of the ads end with a pleased, smiling, adoring — and well-caffeinated — husband, gushing thankfully at his wife. He often serves her one last dig, as in one instance when a husband sips his cup-o-joe and says, “Hey! Great coffee! What happened?”
Sexism in ads is still prevalent, as in this 2004 Budweiser Super Bowl ad, where the narrator suggests a referee “trains” to “take a beating” (a.k.a. a screaming fit from a coach) at home by listening to his wife yell because he has not tended to his household chores and projects.