Would You Please Pass the Jelly?

I remember when my countrified rube of a third cousin happened upon one my family’s gentle Sunday soirees at the local Country club and asked for something he called “jelly”. Which I can only assume is some low food made from the leavings of a roadkill opossum he found while stumbling home from some dusty barn dance soused to the gills on his “lightning water”. The experience of dealing with this hill-folk barbarian was chronicled in small telefilms that I believe runs on what the common folk call television.

I think you will be amused.

This commercial for Polaner All-Fruit start running in the late 1988-1989 and was an instantly quotable hit. The premise was just too perfect and at the same time, silly. It could not be ignored and will probably be parodied for years to come.

The star of this commercial was Jason Byce. Byce, born Ervin Luther Buice, was from North Caroline and had quite a career. He starred on Broadway and had roles on soap operas like All My Children and TV dramas like, In the Heat of the Night.

Byce sadly passed away in 2005, but he will be well remembered as a talented actor for his work on the state and screen and I am sure for this classic bit of advertising.

Polaner was founded by Max and Lena Polaner as M. Polaner Inc. in the late 1800s in Newark, NJ. Polaner All-Fruit, probably their most well-known product because of this “pass the Polaner All Fruit” ad campaign, was the brainchild of Max and Lena’s grandson, Leonard Polaner. His creation is a preserve sweetened only with fruit and fruit juice.

Nowadays, Polanar is owned by B&G Foods. Founded in 1889, B&G owns several popular food brands, including Green Giant, Molly McButter and Mrs. Dash.

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