Baldy Man

A commercial for Hamlet Cigars

Produced by Graham Rose for Collett Dickenson Pearce, Aired 1989, UK

A creation of British sketch tv veterans Gregor Fisher (The Baldy Man) and Colin Gilbert, this commercial ran in 1989. The commercial is based on a simple premise: the photobooth always takes a picture when you're not prepared. The man struggles to hold his pose, but as soon as he bends down to figure out why the photobooth hasn't taken a photo yet, the flash goes off, catching him off guard.

This is the oldest joke in the book as far as photobooths go; it's been used and re-used in a variety of different movies, tv shows, and commercials over the years. I refer to it as the "Baldy Man" trope, so everyone is on the same page.

Contributed by Brian

The man smooths his comb-over and readies himself for the first shot.
He bends down to insert the coins.
He freezes his smile in place.
A few seconds go by with no flash, so he leans down to check just as the flash goes off.
He readies himself for the next shot.
Again, nothing happens, and another glance down just as the flash goes off.
He grimaces.
The stool immediately slips and the man falls straight down just as the flash goes off for a third time.
What a drag.
His only recourse? Light up a cigar.
Finally capturing a moment of happiness, the flash goes off for the last time as he exhales his Hamlet smoke. "Hamlet. The Mild Cigar."