This 1957 Chevy truck commercial was shot by Alexander Film Company on the declivities of Pikes Peak. At first it seems that this might be nothing more than a routine drive up the Pikes Peak Highway in an attempt to impress the less savvy of their would-be customers with the dramatic backdrops offered by Pikes Peak. But then they actually drive the truck up… well, not straight, but pretty darn straight up at least a part of the mountain. The fact that it’s presented as a kind of mountaineering first ascent film (the drivers wear matching khakis, blue sweatshirts and, eventually, helmets as they bounce across the boulder fields above timberline) with timpanies to punctuate the narrator’s hyperbole, makes it as cheeky as you’d expect from a piece of this vintage. And of course, anyone familiar with the topography of the area will question the route of their ascent, but much of it is still impressive even by today’s standards. We’re sure the Forest Service thanks you in advance for not attempting to repeat it!

Surely the greatest line ever about Pikes Peak: “The most famous mountain in America thunders its defiance.”! Then of course there’s “Straight into virgin timberland into chassis-battering terrain.” And then there’s: “How many nuggets would a Sourdough have offered for one of these trucks?”

What we wouldn’t give to bang out copy writers for Alexander Film Company!

Thanks again to the Pikes Peak Library District for posting this to YouTube and thanks to Big Something reader Keith B. for bringing it to our attention.

 

5 Responses to The Original Monster Truck

  1. How did the guys in the bed of the truck get there and why don’t they have those nice helmets?

  2. Nancy Wilsted says:

    The truck was unscathed, but perhaps not the orchestra’s horn section.

  3. Ronwell Q. Dobbs says:

    whoa

  4. Bob Carnein says:

    More better ideas from the American auto industry.

News

Getty Images
February 8, 2016 | NPR · Social scientists see long-term benefits to new dads spending a few months caring for a baby. But these studies won’t nudge fathers to take leave if they still see a work culture that frowns on it.
 

Maria Fabrizio for NPR
February 8, 2016 | NPR · Most breast cancer cases are in women, so treatment and support is geared towards them. Men with breast cancer can feel isolated. One man was given a pink ice pack and told to put it in his bra.
 

AFP/Getty Images
February 8, 2016 | NPR · Taiwanese officials canceled traditional New Year celebrations and went to temples to pray for earthquake victims, instead.
 

Arts & Life

Getty Images
February 7, 2016 | NPR · According to Adam Grant, a person’s preferred browser is one way to tell whether they accept or reject the defaults in their life. His new book is called Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World.
 

February 7, 2016 | NPR · Translated from Giambattista Basile’s 17th century stories, Tale of Tales — known as the world’s first collection of fairy tales — traverses through 50 fantastical adventures.
 

WireImage
February 6, 2016 | NPR · Game of Thrones may have killed off many major characters, but the manipulative, scheming Queen Cersei is still standing. We’ve invited Headey to play a game called “You win and you die.”
 

Music

Via YouTube
February 7, 2016 | NPR · The singer’s new music video quickly drew commentary of all kinds — on its references to being black in America, Hurricane Katrina and Black Lives Matter.
 

February 7, 2016 | NPR · When Coldplay and Beyoncé released the music video for their new song, they were immediately accused of cultural appropriation. What does that mean? And how pervasive is it in the music industry?
 

Courtesy of the artist
February 7, 2016 | NPR · Burwell has scored 16 movies for the Coens, but his work on Hail, Caesar! — as well as Todd Haynes’ Carol, for which he’s nominated for an Oscar — presented a few brand-new challenges.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab