NBC names new cop show after crap movie, runs ed-vertisement on LA Times front page for it

Or maybe I mean adver-torial.

latladI saw the large L-shaped NBC ad meant to resemble an actual article on the front page of yesterday’s print edition of the LA Times and it did cause me to pause, for two reasons: It took up a lot of space where I’m used to seeing news and looked clunky. And it was for a new cop show, curiously with almost the same title, Southland, as a crap movie I had the bad fortune of enduring last year. (Actually, the first 10 minutes of Southland Tales were really good, compared to the following 145 minutes, which were really, really bad.)

I don’t watch much TV, never watch cop shows, but I do read a lot of newspapers, the print editions. For all of the trouble both the network and the paper took to formulate the ad, you would think it wouldn’t have looked like, according to an article in today’s NY Times raking LAT over the coals for this latest embarrassment, “the kind of thing that says, ‘Sell Us Your Gold” inside the paper or something.” As it turns out, the ad was LAT’s idea in the first place.

The NYT article also contains some amusing ad-speak from NBC’s marketing president, Adam Storsky, that would not be out of place in farce.

“What was great about this ad unit is it gave us a quote-unquote ‘editorial voice,’ ” he said. (Sigh. Did he really say, “quote-unquote?” Did he also cackle like Richard E. Grant in How to Get Ahead in Advertising and make the little finger dance when he said it?)

After editor Russ Stanton’s hastily organized hand-wringing session yesterday with disgruntled employees protesting the ad, LAT released a statement with phrases like “innovative approaches,” “unique marketing opportunities” and “stretch traditional boundaries.”

So continues the desperation dance of stumbling media giants.

7 thoughts on “NBC names new cop show after crap movie, runs ed-vertisement on LA Times front page for it”

  1. I read about this last night. I was horrified – but not at all surprised. What a shame that such an institution has come to this. Countless layoffs, less local coverage, and now, fake news.


    Someone should remind Russ Stanton that the whole idea of a newspaper is to report the news. Local, national, world. Simple as that.

    The day that Tribune asks for a bailout is the day that I show up at 1st & Spring with a pitchfork and a torch.

  2. Actually, to be fair, I like the new front section of LAT that combines the California, national and international sections, in that order. There is a lot more local and state coverage than when the California section was separate. Unfortunately, the national coverage has shrunk drastically, but overall it’s a better read for me.

    And Rosa Brooks, who is sadly leaving LAT but gladly to work in the Obama administration, had a column yesterday giving a reasoned call for a government bail-out of newspapers, setting them up as non-profits and removing them from the clutches of the likes of Zell and Tribune.

  3. After some long thought and discussion, I found Southland Tales to be a decent reimagining of Revelation, but it was definitely bogged down by its own obscure references. Too each their own…

  4. When I first saw the ad, I thought, how tacky and what poor journalistic ethics. It’s an old and cheap trick, used on television as well, cosmetically to disguise an ad as a news story. But then I remembered that the L.A. Times is so far past jumping the shark, the whale, and the Loch Ness Monster in so many areas that this latest move didn’t faze me at all. It’s sad when one’s expectations drop so low, and then are met.

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