In 1959 something changed for The Sociables. They'd spent most of the decade dining and dancing and painting the town red, white and Pepsi blue. We'd attended their weddings and now we were watching as they settled down into married life.
The ladies gave up their careers as models and jet-setting stewardesses and the gentlemen moved into corner offices at America's law firms, ad agencies and manufacturing industries. Everybody traded in their downtown loft apartments for sprawling ranch style homes in the suburbs.
Instead of late nights at chichi resaurants and jazz clubs, The Sociables started spending lazy, sunny afternoons by the pool with friends, throwing dinner parties and looking at each other's vacation slides.
This transition from singles to couples was marked by some interesting adjustments in presentation: settings became more fully realized, striking room and furniture details reinforced The Sociables style and affluence. Men began to play a more significant role - even older men were consciously included (though, notably, not older women).
Most intriguing for us though (as students of the art form) was the move to a semi-linear illustration style that makes me think a little of comic book art. With some elements fully painted and others treated flat and graphically, Pepsi managed to revitalize The Sociables in a most compelling visual manner unlike anything else being done in magazine advertising at the time. The piece below, signed by Lynn Buckham, tells us that the Cooper Studio was still involved with the account - though I have my doubts that Buckham did all four of these ads.
Its a shame Pepsi abandoned this new style the following year. Tomorrow, a look at the decline and fall of The Sociables.
All of these images have been added to my Pepsi Flickr set.