FCNews Volume 27/Number 12, October 22/29, 2012
Back in 1986, the fiber stain war was just getting started as yarn suppliers began introducing their versions of stain-resistant nylons to the market. But things were about to turn upside down with the start of Major League Baseball’s playoff sea son which featured the New York Mets taking on the Houston Astros in the National League pennant and the Boston Red Sox playing the California Angels for the American League championship. DuPont would use this national stage to launch its historic commercial, “Landing,” which featured a cute, curly-haired boy sitting in his highchair with his dinner in a tray shaped like an airplane. Filled with chocolate milk, a bowl of cherries and other carpet staining agents, the boy happily flings the plane full of food from the highchair and onto the carpet. After showing each item splash in slow motion, the mess is quickly wiped clean by a female hand holding a sponge as the voice over eases viewers’ minds by telling them how certified Stainmaster carpets can stand up to life’s messes, “Because you never know.” The commercial fades with the kid pushing off a racing car shaped tray full of food with the sounds of engines roaring.
This commercial was part of a $40 million marketing launch by DuPont and earned Stainmaster a place in history as the commercial and campaign are regularly cited among the top 100 of all time, not to mention having been used as a case study by the prestigious Harvard Business School.