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The Bong Show

August 7, 2006 12:00 AM

Showtime's marketing campaign for "Weeds" may be a hit with Rolling Stone readers, but the Bush administration is not amused.

To promote the second-season premiere of its pot-themed domestic drama, Showtime is inserting perfume-style scent strips into the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone. The fold-out strips emit an odor familiar to anybody who has gone to a frat party, attended a Snoop Dogg concert or watched "The Animatrix" on DVD. The network is also passing out "Weeds"-themed brownies at major transportation hubs. A Munchie Mobile is distributing merchandise at Los Angeles and New York concerts and sporting events. Showtime Executive VP of Creative Marketing Len Fogge said the network went to several scent-manufacturing companies before finding the perfect herbal essence. "We experimented with several scents before we chose one—not that anyone here knows firsthand what it might smell like," he said. "Our print campaign is fantastic, but we wanted to put whipped cream and a cherry on top." Tom Riley, director of public affairs for the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy, is not impressed. In addition to reciting statistics about marijuana use ("There are more teens in treatment for marijuana than for alcohol dependence—is that funny?"), Riley chided the Rolling Stone promotion as all too retro. "Unless they're going for the over-50 demographic, it sounds like their marketing department might be a little out of touch," Riley said. "Maybe some baby boomers still find this kind of thing edgy, but young people don't." That's right, because nobody knows what's cool better than the U.S. Office of National Drug Control Policy. -James Hibberd and Ira Teinowitz