Apple’s 1984

By | Jan 24, 2012

During the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII a commercial aired. The commercial has been considered a masterpiece in advertising and it also introduced the Apple Macintosh Computer.

The commercial alluded to George Orwell’s classic novel 1984 and featured Big Brother on a screen speaking to an audience of drones. In runs a young lady wearing a white tank top, with Picasso-style picture of Apple’s Macintosh computer on it and red shorts carrying a sledge hammer. She hurls the hammer at the screen destroying it. Then the words “On January 24th, Apple Computer will introduce Macintosh. And you’ll see why 1984 won’t be like 1984.” appear and are said.

The commercial was directed by Ridley Scott with Anya Major as the girl and David Graham as Big brother. Scott had just recently completed the film Blade Runner. It had a production budget of $ 900,000.

Super Bowl XVIII was played in Tampa, Florida with the Washington Redskins, who were favorite to win, losing to the Los Angeles Raiders by the score 38-9.

While the commercial had appeared prior to the Super Bowl, (1:00 A.M on 15 December 1983 on KMVT in Twin Falls, Idaho so that the advertisement could be submitted to award ceremonies for that year), this was it’s last appearance as advertisement.

The first Macintosh had an all in one design featuring a 9 in Black and White screen within a beige plastic case that also held the computer and a 400 kB, single-sided 3.5 inch floppy disk drive along with a keyboard and mouse. It also had two standard RS-422 DE-9 serial ports named “printer” and “modem” and a port for an external disk drive, one mechanically identical to the internal one.


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