Top Chef’s Padma Lakshmi On Product Placement: “It’s Hard To Make That Sh!t Sound Natural”

Top Chef’s Padma Lakshmi On Product Placement: “It’s Hard To Make That Sh!t Sound Natural”

The recent comedy flop The Internship took a lot of flack, and deservedly so, for being a feature-length ad for Google masquerading as a movie. But compared to some product-placement-packed reality TV shows, that film looks like a fiercely independent labor of love. [More]

AT&T's 'American Idol' Text Message Stunt Backfires

AT&T's 'American Idol' Text Message Stunt Backfires

AT&T spammed a “‘significant number’ of its 75 million customers” yesterday with text messages advertising the premiere of American Idol. AT&T also pissed off a significant number of its 75 million customers in the process, and the company’s justification for the blitz isn’t exactly making AT&T sound smart when it comes to understanding what qualifies as spam.

McDonald's Sued By Devo Over Happy Meal Toy

McDonald's Sued By Devo Over Happy Meal Toy

The band Devo is suing McDonald’s over a toy which bears a striking resemblance to the band’s signature look made popular in the 80’s. The “American Idol” series of happy-meal toys features plastic characters that play their own little tune when activated. “New Wave Nigel” depicts a character wearing the band’s famous “energy dome” and even plays a song that sounds Devo-esque. Unfortunately for McDonald’s, that little hat is copyrighted and trademarked, according to Rolling Stone. Details, inside…

Comcast DVR Cuts Off American Idol Results, Sopranos Finale Style

Reader Bill, who sends in this video of what his DVR recorded during last night’s American Idol finale, says:

Pith & Vinegar: On Coin Slots

Pith & Vinegar: On Coin Slots

• Duct Tape is for the birds, we’re gettin’ some of this.

The Unattainable Coca Cola Couch

The Unattainable Coca Cola Couch

When I was in school, mysterious state-endorsed hucksters would burst through my classroom door from time to time with arms full of candy bars. These guys would then proceed to gang press us all as unpaid door-to-door candy salesmen. The candy bars (which were usually more peanut and Chinese newspaper than chocolate) were uniformly terrible; moreover, they cost like 5 bucks each. But these guys were smart: they kept us hustling with the promise of prizes for reaching impossible goals. Ten candy bars sold got you a pencil, but a million? A robot dinosaur that transformed into a monster truck. Needless to say, the best prizes were logistically unattainable.