Hot on the heels of Dos Equis retiring their “Most Interesting Man in the World” campaign, another suave personality has stepped up to fill the beer commercial void. That’s right, 25 years after hanging up his spokesperson hat, Lando Calrissian himself, Billy Dee Williams has reunited with Colt 45 in a new commercial.
For those who may be too young to remember, Williams was the face of the malt liquor from 1986 to 1991. Banking on his “Star Wars” cred, Billy Dee became famous for walking viewers through the cool romanticism that Pabst Brewing Company’s brew can bring. It may be weird, seeing Williams resurface after all these years, reviving the “It works every time” tagline, which some have taken to referencing the sexual benefits of getting women drunk.
Branding and communications consultant Tracey Riese tells USA Today, “liquor advertising has always targeted men, and it has almost always been about making women, if not drunk, then certainly sexually available.”
With the larger cans and higher alcohol content in Colt 45, it seems the company is trying to rebrand their brew in a “cool” new campaign as 40 ounce beers became associated with a certain gangsta rap stigma in the early ’90s thanks to Ice Cube’s love of St. Ides –a malt liquor that also happens to be owned by Pabst Brewing Company.
Aside from the concerns of sexism that comes with beer advertising, one can’t help but wonder if a new campaign starring the now 78-year-old actor will help boost sales. In a world where craft brews and designer beers have gained notoriety, bringing the suave back to alcohol ads may help … especially since Dos Equis left that “Most Interesting” void open to be filled.
Here are some of Billy Dee’s original beer commercials, in case you need a refresher.
Now, if only Bud Light would resurrect Spuds MacKenzie. All would truly be right with the world.