Pub Memories #1: The Humour of Skol

Poor old Skol Rwanda have recently become the latest victim of the Twitterati for printing a series of supposedly anti-feminist jokes on its beer bottles.  IMHO, the twitter furore is typically overblown.  The jokes might be slightly dated, but they are more inoffensive than most of the comments that pass for normal discourse on social media and, one at least, made me chuckle either despite, or because, of myself.

The current outrage is a five-minute wonder of no consequence, but it did have one lasting outcome for me.  It made me remember Skol.

At one time, Skol was a household––pub-hold, maybe––name.  For me, Skol meant weak lager that you presumed came from Scandinavia, but which actually originated from Scotland.  I never drank Skol, but I was perfectly content that it existed; more than that, I was amused that it existed and this had much to do with Skol’s marketing.

For me, Skol’s iconic advertising campaign was the Hägar the Horrible collaboration.  It would have been the late 1980s and in a series of predominately black and white commercials the Dik Browne-penned cartoon Viking Hägar, accompanied by his best friend Lucky Eddie and loyal dog Snert, promoted Skol to a British TV audience.

The commercials included such classic episodes as The Drinking Song, The Doggone Inn, Indian Restaurant, The Ghost Train, Paris, Crisps and Quiet Drink.  They were humorous; reinforced Skol’s faux Scandinavian credentials and laid the foundations for simplistic animated commercials, which companies such as Red Bull have built on since.

I still never drank Skol, but I appreciated their commercials.  And then Skol was gone.  The Hägar commercials disappeared from our TV screens and Skol disappeared from my beer-dar.  Until now.

I am pleased by the current Skol Rwanda scandal, if only because it has reminded me that Skol still exists, unreconstructed, into the 21st century.

I might even go out and buy myself a pint.

© Beery Sue


Beery Sue is a bit unreconstructed herself.

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