Honda Scooter Commercials of the 1980s
I have always wanted a motor scooter. I am sure I was never exposed to Italian movies as a kid, and the town I grew up in was not what you would call a “scooter-friendly”. So where did my love of scooters come from?
Back in the Eighties, Honda used music/pop stars and celebrities to market their new line of scooters. From what I remember, the scooters ran afoul of emission laws here in the US and needed to be retooled. They may not have swept across America, but they had some awesome commercials.
This first one stars Adam Ant and the ever aggressive Grace Jones. It features classic 1980s cross-cutting.
For some reason, someone at Honda really loved Grace Jones. Maybe they loved her work in “Conan the Destroyer” or my fave “A View to a Kill”. Whatever the reason, she was the face behind these angular scooters and appeared in multiple commercials. She is so charismatic, I am not sure why she wasn’t a spokesperson for everything.
When Jim McMahon wasn’t leading the Bears Shuffling Crew, he was tooling around on his Honda Motor Scooter and flexing…always flexing.
I actually met Lou Reed during a music video shoot in the late 90s. I didn’t know what to say to him besides the obvious praise for his music. So I kept my mouth shut.
If I had remembered this commercial, I would have had to ask him, “Lou, A Honda commercial, really?” I am sure he would have answered, “beats walking.”
My favorite of these commercials featured one of my favorite bands, DEVO.
Are they not bikes? They are scooters!