back to article Orwellian Apple ad celebrates 25th birthday

Today marks the 25th anniversary of Apple's iconic 1984 TV ad. And no, we haven't got our math wrong. Apple's introduction to the Macintosh - widely hailed by the overly-excitable as one of the greatest advertisements in the history of television - did not debut during the nationwide TV feeding frenzy of the 1984 Super Bowl. …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Ah memories

    Nice to see after 25 years that ad still holds up. I have a few friends at Chiat\Day and they say the old timers still talk about that ad with a great amount of respect.

  2. theotherone
    Thumb Down


    wot a crap ad ...

  3. Herby Silver badge

    The more things change, the more they stay the same

    In 1984: IBM

    In 2009: Microsoft

    Then there are those who say:

    In 1984: Apple

    In 2009: Linux/Open source

    Time will tell when Orwell will be proven right. It will be some day.

  4. dave


    And isn't it about time you ran another story on the Eee?

  5. jake Silver badge

    Yeah, I remember.

    In a Palo Alto living room, we all anticipated the advert during Superbowl XVIII.

    In a Palo Alto living room, we all yawned.

    We all still yawn. Apple computers are still just computers. They crunch ones and zeros, just like all other (digital) computers. Why do people fawn over them? Or any other computer, for that matter?

    Get a fscking LIFE, fer crissake!

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    Apple, and Apple fans are complete wankers...

    But that is still a great ad.

  7. The Fuzzy Wotnot

    It happened anyway!

    Now tell me when you get on any bus or train these days, or simply walk about the streets, what do you see? Legions of morons with little white headphones all plugged in listening to the lastest X-Factor or Coldplay claptrap, all wired in and subservient to the lord and master Steve "Polo-Neck, Dance Teacher" Jobs and his enslavement devices!

    1984 happened, just not quite the way Mr Orwell had in mind.

  8. snafu

    Brave New World

    It became more of a Huxley thing tan an Orwell one. Pass the iSoma.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    In the run up to MacWorld, go and observe Digg, or Gizmondo, then watch the comments on any live feed of the keynote you can find. Hell, go back and read the comments on the last one. There is a cult of blind zealots all marching in step, but it isn't PC users.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Gates Halo

    @fuzzy wotnot

    Imagine a world full of brown Zunes!

  11. ShaggyDoggy


    That they couldn't promote Apple on its own merits, rather than have a pop at IBM.

    IBM would never sell against another product, they always sold their gear on its own standing.

  12. Graham Jordan

    Am I the only one who noticed

    The bouncing tits?

    Bounce bounce bounce...

    Geez you lot truely are geeks. There were bouncing tits for christs sake! Tits!

  13. Mage Silver badge
    Black Helicopters

    Really Orwell's 1984

    Orwell wasn't writing about the future. He was writing about the Then.

    He had been a Communist but due to Spanish Civil war and the "Communists" even shooting their own, he later realised that what Russia, China etc had wasn't Communism. It was a tirade against Fascism and Communism.

    Wilfred Greatorex's 1990 is closer to real prophetic writing, and while assuming a "conservative" type Government, the real Nu Labour of Blair....

    Or maybe Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. Where reading & books is illegal.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    And now...

    And now Apple is The Man. How times have changed! (Or maybe they were always like that and the "fanbois" were too up their own to notice.)

  15. Sordid Details

    RE: Am I the only one who noticed

    No you're not. I'm right there with you on the pause-rewind-playback controls Graham.

  16. Thomas Silver badge


    There are several cults of blind zealots all marching in step, including but not limited to:

    • a tiny subset of Mac users;

    • a tiny subset of Windows users;

    • a tiny subset of Linux users;

    • a tiny subset of XBox users;

    • a tiny subset of Playstation users;

    • a tiny subset of ATI video card owners; and

    • a tiny subset of NVidia video card owners.

    It seems that zealotish cults come with the IT territory.

  17. weirdcult

    Oh yes

    i actually remember this ad clear as day and was quite taken in by much so i got me dad to buy me an Atari?

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Proud to part of race we call human

    Reading the comments is sometimes more interesting than the article.

    Article 'X', blah blah blah X.

    Comment 1: PCs suck!

    Comment 2: Macs rule!

    Comment 3: I'm still using version 0.99b of slackware linux that I installed with 52 floppies.

    Comment 4: I'm a PC and I crash/rock/reboot.

    Comment 5: Actually, 'X' is spelt wrong / was first used in 1968 blah blah.

    Comment 6: Did you see those tits.

    Everyone is a gem, priceless. For the record, I'm with the guy about the tits. Nice one.

  19. Gareth Gouldstone

    Zealots == Bigots

    Has it occurred to anyone else reading these comments that if you substitute 'Apple' and 'Microsoft' for 'Christian' and 'Muslim' (or any other religious grouping), then the commentators would be regarded as extreme bigots and their comments regarded as socially unacceptable?

  20. N Silver badge

    Nice tits...

    Require a bit of moderate support though & her shorts have faded a bit in the second advert.

  21. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Zealots == Bigots

    Well, yes, but if we substituted 'fuckface' for every word on this site then it would be really rude, silly.

    I'm no great supporter of religious rights but still, it's a pretty offensive comparison, don't you think? It's a bloody consumer preference. Don't get so lofty about it.

  22. Chris
    Thumb Down

    Best ad ever?

    Am I the only person who thinks this ad is not the best ad ever? I couldn't tell you which one is, but it's certainly not this one. Most of my fellow Ameritards think of 1984 in terms of Footloose and Ghostbusters. In 1984, the climate was that of cold war and nationalism not of anti-establishment. And they played the ad during the superbowl. How many wankdribbles watching this ad had any idea who Orwell was. And IBM and computers? Are they serious? It's one of those smugtard ads where if you get it you can chuckle to yourself about how better than everyone else you are.

    Maybe the US government can do an advertisement spoof on Grapes of Wrath where Hank Paulson plays the role of Rose of Sharon and feeds failing banks and automakers from his teat. huh huh *smug chuckle* isn't that so creative? *smug chuckle*

  23. Lozzyho
    Paris Hilton

    @Fuzzy Wotnot

    @Fuzzy Wotnot - Excellent observation, sir.

    @Apple - One word: EGO

    @Graham Jordan - Oh yeah. Something PC and Mac users alike can appreciate: Tits.

    Paris, because we're talking tits here.

  24. Steven Hunter

    Never cared for the "updated" version

    MiniTru; correct error double-plus ungood picture-wise untechnology (iPod).

  25. Tim
    Jobs Halo

    I'm no fanboi but...

    I still like that ad (thought I think Brave New World was much better than 1984).

    Halo for Jobs for inspiring one of the best Simpsons episodes ever

  26. Thomas Baker
    Paris Hilton

    Two things.

    1). If a girl looking like that had thrown a hammer like that, it would have hit the guy in row five on the back of the head, somewhat spoiling the effect; unless of course she was Russian, built like a bulldog and with a face like a dropped pie.

    2). Tiiiiiiiiiits!

    Paris, because she can swing my hammer any time she likes and, um, er, tiiiiiiits!

  27. Chief sub

    math hysteria

    "And no, we haven't got our math wrong."

    Why do Yanks say "math" instead of "maths"? Do they not learn "mathematics" at school, or just "mathematic"? On second thought, given the way they've shafted the world economy, maybe it is the latter...

  28. jake Silver badge


    "I'm no great supporter of religious rights but still, it's a pretty offensive comparison, don't you think? It's a bloody consumer preference. Don't get so lofty about it."

    Uh ... but it's true, Sarah. The Mac/PC/Sun/whatever fanbois are basing their strong opinion on faith alone. They have obviously never used a large quantity of equipment or OS. If they had, they wouldn't be fanbois ... or fangrrls, if you like.

  29. Richard

    After the screen smashes:

    "Haaaaaay! We were watching that!"

  30. Dave Morris

    Re: Math vs Maths

    We use math instead of maths because we never use mathematic (singular) as a noun, only the plural mathematics. So when shortening it, we simply shorten it to math.

    An example of something we do use in both the plural and singular is yankee; thus you have a yank or several yanks.

  31. Chris

    Re: Math vs Maths

    I could just as easily (and more logically) ask: Why do Brits say "maths" instead of "math"? It isn't mathSematics, but mathematics. Why omit the e, m, a, t, i, and c, but then put on an unnecessary 's'? We also refer to Economics as econ, rather than econs. (Physics is short enough already).

    Abbreviating it to math is 20% more efficient, and mathematicians are all about efficiency.

  32. moonoi

    Re: Math vs Maths

    Chris: Thats just Bollox and you know it!

This topic is closed for new posts.

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019