the Bird - Commercial spokes-bird for Western Airlines who made his
debut in 1955. Wally is a rather big beaked, plump yellow bird who sits on the
outside tail wings of the Western Airline luxury flights. Sipping champagne as
the airplane sailed through the sky, Wally recites his famous quotation: "It's
the O-O-ONLY way to fly!" (the ad campaign had him flying both propeller and
later jet planes). Wally was designed by John Urie, assistant animator at John
Hubley Storyboard Productions.
Les Goldman originated the phrase "It's the only way to fly." Reportedly,
Wally derived his name from the phrase "Western Airlines Loves
You." Shepard “Shep” Menken provided Wally's voice.
The campaign was created by Buchanan Advertising Agency.
TRIVIA NOTE: On episode #9 "Witch or Wife" on the occult sitcom BEWITCHED, Endora the witch (Agnes Moorehead) spoofs the Western Airlines ad when she snags
a ride on a jetliner. Of course, instead of reserving a seat onboard, she sits
outside the aircraft at the tail fin and sips champagne. As the plane soars
through the skies, she looks into the camera and says "It's the only way to fly."
The ad slogan was again used in the title of episode No. 26 "Driving is the Only
Way to Fly."
"It's the Only Way to Fly," says Endora
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