Dear Mr. Inman: I have a very stupid TV question that I think you might be the only one who may have the answer to. It’s been bothering me for ages. Back in the early 1980s, Taster’s Choice coffee had a series of commercials starring Anthony Stewart Head (Giles on “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”) and a very attractive woman as neighbors. Eventually they dated and she had to decide between getting together with him or her ex-husband. Do you know which person she chose? I remember it was a big deal at the time, but I really can’t remember the conclusion. – R.S., Rochester, NY
Dear R.S.: Hey, respect the stupid. It keeps me in business.
Those commercials were originally produced in England, and they also featured Sharon Maughan as the woman. The little dramas were very Cary Grant and Ingrid Bergman-ish, because nothing says sophistication like instant coffee.
The commercials began airing in the UK in 1987 and in the U.S. in 1990. The conclusion to their product placement predicament was that she chose him over the ex, because he had more than good taste – he had Taster’s Choice!
Here’s a look at the British spots: