Lady Gaga and the Muppets entertained TV fans on Thanksgiving night, in a special aptly named Lady Gaga & the Muppets’ Holiday Spectacular. If you’re a fan of one or the other, the show was no doubt well received and probably even enjoyed. And if not, it was likely passed over for a football game or a rerun on TNT. Entertainment Weekly makes an excellent observation about the show, however–pointing out that both Lady Gaga and the Muppets received mutual promotion for performing together.
You see, Lady Gaga–a.k.a. Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta–has a new album out. Artpop was released earlier in November and includes her hit song Applause. The Muppets have a new film that debuts in theaters in March of 2014. Muppets Most Wanted is the first film the stuffed characters have done since 2011. They’ve been playing this game for decades, and that means they’re old. They need all the promo they can get. EW claims the show was akin to watching a Black Friday ad that encompassed the entire holiday season–and they make a valid point.
Artpop isn’t going the way of other Lady Gaga albums. In fact, sales have dropped significantly in the past week alone. Will her Thanksgiving night performance send Black Friday shoppers out to buy Artpop?
While the Muppets and their upcoming Muppets Most Wanted can’t exactly materialize in a Black Friday shopping bag–they can in fact breed hype in the minds of millions of children who love the fuzzy critters, as well as their parents, who have probably watched their earlier films since childhood. Plus, where there’s a kid’s movie, there are accoutrements to accompany it. There are dozens of options in retails stores already–sticker books, games and stuffed animals–that promote the March release.
This Twitter follower didn’t really know what to think about the Thanksgiving TV special.
lady gaga converting the muppets to satanism pic.twitter.com/OrdmxgqDon
— matt (@tarmandabynes) November 29, 2013
How about you? Did you catch Lady Gaga & the Muppets’ Holiday Spectacularon Thanksgiving night? The show did feature top notch guests like Elton John, RuPaul and Joseph Gordon Leavitt. But was the blatant promotion something you recognized before it was brought to your attention? If not, then kudos to the producers. And best of luck to both Lady Gaga and the Muppets. Hopefully her album sales will skyrocket (probably not happening, though) and box office sales will break the bank for the Muppets in March.
Now that this concept of Black Friday-type promotional TV specials has been outed, how many other holiday TV specials might have planned similar promotional strategies? EW might have unwittingly changed the way holiday TV viewers watch these shows. Maybe viewers will start watching them the way shoppers watch infomercials or ‘not available in stores’ advertisements.
But wait! Buy now and receive two gadgety gizmos for the price of one!
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