A Classic Drink Teams Up With The Green Hornet

In 1966, Vernors Ginger Ale, the oldest surviving ginger ale in the United States, celebrated its 100 Anniversary by partnering with a number of pop culture TV brands. One of those partnerships included this Halloween promotion with the short-lived superhero TV series, The Green Hornet, a series that originally premiered on September 9, 1966. Perhaps the campaign was meant to create buzz for both brands.

However, the promotion may not have gone as planned. The Vernor family, founders of the iconic soft drink, sold Vernors Ginger Ale to the first of what became a succession of owners that same year, including American Consumer Products, United Brands, A&W Beverages and Cadbury Schweppes.

The Green Hornet – which starred martial arts icon Bruce Lee as Kato and Van Williams as Britt Reid/Green Hornet – also didn’t fare well. While the George W. Trendle series was extremely popular overseas, it never caught on in the U.S., leading to its cancellation after only a single season. The 26th and final episode of the show aired on March 24, 1967.

Today both brands have cult followings.

As of 2024, Vernors is owned Keurig Dr Pepper and continues to be bottled. Its center of popularity is Detroit, Michigan, where the pop was first served in 1866 by local pharmacist James Vernor.

A little over one year after Bruce Lee’s passing in July of 1973, Twentieth Century Fox and Greenway Productions released several episodes of the 1966 TV series The Green Hornet edited together as a theatrical feature, in October 1974. Then in 2011, Seth Rogen and Jay Chou climbed into the Black Beauty for the Michel Gondry-directed version of The Green Hornet. As of 2024 there is a new television series in development based on The Green Hornet, along with a feature film project being hatched by director Leigh Whannell and writer David Koepp.

Throwback Space spotlights film, TV, gaming and pop culture of the past. It’s mostly the ’70s through ’90s, but we post stuff we like from way back too. Throwback Space is presented by @filmfetish

This story is presented by HIT PICTURES – Handmade Sight and Sound.