BLOGS

The Telefile
HBO Exploits Epic Overshare Campaign to Combat Nation's ADD Everyone knows we're a nation of ADD-addled freakazoids with the out-of-sight, out-of-mind mental capacity of a gnat. So it makes sense that some network and cable brass are feeling a little worried about the months that've elapsed since their shows last proffered new episodes. Case in point, HBO's Big Love, which for various reasons mostly owing to the writer's strike hasn't aired a new show since August of '07 (you read that right) and is therefore throwing endless resources into reminding people it exists and is still relevant. Specifically, in keeping with the show's tagline, "Everyone has something to hide," they've constructed eye-level billboards in New York and L.A. equipped with headsets which passers-by can don and listen to random people offering up "secrets," from stealing someone's lunch out of the communal work refrigerator to less wholesome untruths. It's a brilliant ploy, because the Great Hot Mormon trend of '07 might've flamed out, but gossip and secrets never go out of style.

This little flight of marketing fancy might very well succeed in recapturing Big Love viewers and even winning a new audience. But what about some other returning shows without the budget or the creativity to exploit the subconscious desires of the masses? I've decided to be a generous soul (it's my new thing for '09!) and come up with a few ideas for shows that have been off the air so long that their core audience has all but given it up for dead. Just call me Mother Theresa.

24
I admit, it was a smart move on the 24 peeps' part to come out with a 2-hour movie-style TV "event" to get us stoked for the return of the beloved show. Me myself, I'm more into a slow burn. I've already forgotten all about Redemption and am struggling to remember the name of the lead character (Jack something?), so I think the show's return might've been better promoted with a guerrilla-style Twitter campaign (a la Mad Men) in which that guy (his name keeps escaping me!) keeps everyone up to speed on shit he's doing -- in real time. I don't know about you guys, but getting to hear the gory details of a particular tricky BM or the contents of Jack Bauer's spam folder would be scintillating info.

American Idol
If I were a much sicker and more jaded individual, I might point out that in the intervening months since Idol was last on the air, the show's managed to stay in the headlines due to an inordinate number of tragedies (Paula Godspeed, Jennifer Hudson), but even I don't think Seacrest would stoop so low as to concoct such atrocities (though I do believe he's in cahoots with Satan). Now when the show does come back, all anyone will be thinking about is the sad mess it's left in its wake (and Jason Castro's luscious dreadlocks). They'd have done well to mount a positive campaign in which people could compete to get Ryan as a personal assistant for the months leading up to the show's return. Imagine how many people would participate if the possibility of getting to watch Ryan clean your toilet was at stake?

Lost
Silly Lost showrunners, thinking that they'll be able to plant cliffhangers and red herrings all over the place and have people coming back for more! That barely works on a week-to-week basis anymore, let alone when we're talking months at a time. What we really need to do to keep people interested is create a reality based program that works off of the premise as Lost, but is styled in more of an interactive, Choose Your Own Adventure way, sort of like a mix between Burger King's Subservient Chicken and Oregon Trail. You can watch real people interact, dictate their actions from remotely, and watch as they get dysentery, get devoured by polar bears, drown or escape from the island in an aircraft carrier.

Hell's Kitchen
I know I'm always talking about that show Breaking Up With Shannen Doherty, but that is because it's awesome! Why couldn't we poach that idea for the purposes of Hell's Kitchen? You could sign up to have Gordon Ramsay telling people you don't like to sod off, sending them pig parts in the mail and generally terrorizing your enemies during his downtime from the show? It would build a feeling of bonhomie toward the otherwise terse British a-hole and make us all eager to tune in to a new season. Or maybe I'm just a vengeful bitch.

Medium
Obviously, we need to take advantage of what Michael K might call Patricia Arquette's magnificent chichis and use them as veritable Magic 8 Balls to help us make sense of ambiguous text messages, decide what to eat for dinner and generally plot our futures. Definition of a promo!

What are some other ways long-absent shows can make us stoked for their returns? I'm all ears!

Comments

SHARE THE SNARK

X

Get the most of your experience.
Share the Snark!

See content relevant to you based on what your friends are reading and watching.

Share your activity with your friends to Facebook's News Feed, Timeline and Ticker.

Stay in Control: Delete any item from your activity that you choose not to share.

MOST RECENT POSTS

BLOG ARCHIVES

The Telefile

March 2014

25 ENTRIES

February 2014

24 ENTRIES

January 2014

43 ENTRIES

December 2013

15 ENTRIES

November 2013

28 ENTRIES

October 2013

40 ENTRIES

September 2013

37 ENTRIES

August 2013

16 ENTRIES

July 2013

15 ENTRIES

June 2013

26 ENTRIES

May 2013

38 ENTRIES

April 2013

43 ENTRIES

March 2013

35 ENTRIES

February 2013

58 ENTRIES

January 2013

62 ENTRIES

December 2012

48 ENTRIES

November 2012

60 ENTRIES

October 2012

71 ENTRIES

September 2012

67 ENTRIES

August 2012

66 ENTRIES

July 2012

51 ENTRIES

June 2012

60 ENTRIES

May 2012

70 ENTRIES

April 2012

73 ENTRIES

March 2012

72 ENTRIES

February 2012

64 ENTRIES

January 2012

80 ENTRIES

The Latest Activity On TwOP