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November 24, 2014

Rowan & Martin promote savings bonds - VIDEO

by Richard Keller, posted May 29th 2008 2:02PM

Rowan and Martin promote Savings Bonds to support the troops in VietnamHere's an interesting little film short that I saw on Turner Classic Movies earlier this week. It features Dan Rowan and the recently departed Dick Martin, stars of the 60s psychedelic sketch comedy Laugh-In, promoting the sale of the new U.S. Savings Bonds called Freedom Shares, which were introduced back around 1967. If you were an avid fan of the NBC comedy you would recognize the back-and-forth between these two -- Rowan was the straight man to funny man Martin -- as they discussed the benefits of these bonds to the movie-going public.

The video is after the jump.

What's neat to see is all of the cameo appearances from the personalities of that era in this very short (about eleven minutes) public service film. Many of them have also passed away, including Don Knotts (who says 'I'll drink to that!' quite a bit), former MPAA President Jack Valenti, and singer Barbara McNair. Also appearing in the film, from clips of other Savings Bond PSAs, are Bob Hope, Dean Martin, Lorne Greene, Charlton Heston, and many more fine people who we dearly miss.

There are some references to Laugh-In during this film. 'Sock it to me!' is used a number of times and, like in the show, it leads to some unfortunate consequences. Dick Martin also mentions the phrase 'You bet your sweet bippy!' to which guest Andy Griffith (in sheriff Andy Taylor garb) responds 'What's a bippy?'. I'm surprised that no other members of the Laugh-In cast were asked to participate in this promotional film. Maybe the government thought they were a bit too irreverent to appear in a promotion for savings bonds.

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