You're not safe anywhere from ABC's promotional ads

July 18, 2000|By David Zurawik | David Zurawik,SUN TELEVISION CRITIC

LOS ANGELES - Indicating that there is nowhere ABC won't go for viewers, the network yesterday announced an off-beat fall promotional campaign that targets men's restrooms, among other places.

The restroom campaign will be on behalf of the prime-time sitcom "Norm," starring Norm MacDonald. Spoofing its own "Must See TV" slogan, ABC will put posters on the walls in front of restroom urinals in New York and Los Angeles featuring MacDonald next to such headlines as "Must Pee TV."

And, using CD-ROM technology, MacDonald will "speak" to those standing at the urinals. Known for his adolescent humor, MacDonald says such things as, "Hey, watch your shoes!" and "You're a mover and shaker and so am I." "Norm" moves to Fridays this fall.

Other aspects of the campaign:

Answering machine messages left for viewers in the Top 10 television markets in the country urging them to watch ABC. (Baltimore is No. 22.)

Messages placed on 7 million buckets of Kentucky Fried chicken this fall promoting the ABC lineup.

On-air spots using newsreel footage of non-English speakers, with a mock translation that says how much the speakers' lives have been changed by the show "Whose Line Is It Anyway?"

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