Classic Captions — Brazilian Willys Aero Edition

1961 01 Aero Willys 1st Gen Prop
Few people who aren’t car geeks remember what a Willys Aero was, and far fewer know that after being discontinued in the USA in 1955, production resumed in Brazil five years later. In South America, the Aero’s robust nature could shine, far away from the cheaper, flashier compacts coming out of Detroit. And shine it did. Production, with more and more homegrown Brazilian alterations along the way, lasted until 1971. Not a bad run for car that had been declared dead over a decade and a half earlier.
While one might conclude that Brazil’s auto industry was a bit outdated and crude by North American standards in 1961, it would appear that its advertising industry was too, as evidenced by today’s Classic Captions illustration. There is so much in this photograph to riff on, from the oddly posed family to the obviously studio-lit “beach” location, to the artsy backdrop, to the inscrutable inclusion of the pensive lifeguard walking out of frame in the background. What is your witty reaction to all this? Take a shot and leave a clever caption in the comments.

ad_mazda_rx3_sp_front_red_1977-readyLast week, our flame-trailing RX3-SP provided all the entertainment value I’d hoped; the comments were epic. GTXcellent provided the mostly highly voted caption: “After extensive testing, Yokohama decided that magnesium radials are not a good idea.” But wait, it gets even better when you add OA5599‘s follow-up reply: “Those are Firestones.” I assumed there would be the obligatory Back To The Future reference, and I wasn’t disappointed. OA5599‘s own comment, “Mazda: Finally capable of 88 miles per hour,” was relegated to runner-up status by a single vote. Despite finishing way down the leader board, I must give special mention to njhoon, who took the time to translate the closing monologue from the original Road Warrior into Japanese kanji. Well done, lads.

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  1. Wayne Moyer Avatar
    Wayne Moyer

    Like all good Germans here we see the Hasselhoff’s on vacation in Brazil. In the back seat little David would see the bodyguard on the left and shout “When I grow up I am going up to do that!”.

    1. Alff Avatar

      I understand that Brazil has been a preferred destination for the Hasselhoff family since the mid-1940s.

      1. Wayne Moyer Avatar
        Wayne Moyer

        That was where I was going with that comment 🙂

      2. nanoop Avatar

        Well, the Haselbergs came first, about 10years earlier, if they could.

  2. Sjalabais Avatar

    “The next best thing to a Socialist beach”…

  3. Alff Avatar

    The latest print ad for Brazil’s summer games does little to dispel the notion that the country is a bit …erm … backwards.

    1. Wayne Moyer Avatar
      Wayne Moyer

      Do note the lack of mosquitos though.

  4. GTXcellent Avatar

    That background looks off. I think it’s shopped. I can tell from the pixels…

  5. 0A5599 Avatar

    As America prospered, 1950’s consumer preferences trended to larger and larger cars, and the Aero quickly left the marketplace.
    Brazilians, however, understood that with Willys, it’s not the size that matters, it’s how you use it.

    1. Alff Avatar

      For it’s part, Willys thought the car might sell well because they understood that Brazilians need a bit less, south of the equator.

  6. Citric Avatar

    “Oh god, it’s Mary, and what’s she doing here with that guy? I don’t know him. And whose kids are those? I didn’t think she had kids when I was… Oh god, don’t look, don’t look, maybe she won’t notice it’s me if I just look over here…”

    1. P161911 Avatar

      Actually, Fred is hiding from his lover Alfonzo. He had no idea Alfonzo was married with two kids

  7. SSurfer321 Avatar

    It’s easy to identify the Brazillian market Wyllis Aeros, by the noted absence of interior carpet.

  8. mdharrell Avatar

    “…and now we’re lost in a Chuck Jones feature. I knew we should’a taken that left turn at Albuquerque.”

    1. 0A5599 Avatar

      I knew you shouldn’t’a taken that right turn at the ditch.

      1. Alff Avatar

        Good thing Acme delivers out here.

      2. mdharrell Avatar

        Thank you for assuming (correctly) that it was at least the right-hand ditch.

        1. 0A5599 Avatar

          I assumed you deliberately hit the ditch perpendicularly, and that, even at five years old you were trying to create a crater to study geological formations. However, the Bugs Bunny reference needed to include a change in direction.

  9. nanoop Avatar

    I hear that the need for compensating the lousy paint jobs is the root cause for the strong local buffing and waxing tradition.

  10. Lokki Avatar

    Freddy walked away quietly thinking, “Dat’s a strange strange family dat is… Dey gives me da Willys….”

  11. Tiberiuswise Avatar

    Even with a Brazilian, Roberta got no attention from the lifeguard.

  12. karonetwentyc Avatar

    Reflecting upon a time before marriage, the kids, a move to the suburbs, and the brief affair with the lifeguard, a former resident of Ipanema recalls when she used to walk on this beach, not park on it.

  13. Mister Sterling Avatar
    Mister Sterling

    Well to be fair, 1961 was only the first official year of the 1960s. And Brazil had a pretty good 1950s (their music got popularized up north, the rise of the Second Republic). So maybe they were clinging to the good times 1950s aesthetic in this ad.

  14. theskitter Avatar

    Pictured: An attempt by the Chamber of Commerce to re-brand Toledo as a summer tourist destination.

  15. Manic_King Avatar

    “Children, children! Pack it up. It’s time to leave concrete jungle before that great 1964 Ford Falcon taillight in the sky gives skin cancer to your dad!”

  16. Batshitbox Avatar

    My favorite line from Brazil?
    “Come on then, Big Boy, let’s have a look at your Willy!”

    1. nanoop Avatar

      You mean “Willys”.

  17. Van_Sarockin Avatar

    Don’t be shocked when you see the entire, new Willys in the flesh. This is Brazil. And you wouldn’t like the Harrys.