Product Placement Watch: Stephen Colbert’s Brands of Our Lives

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Stephen Colbert finally got around to lampooning the clunky product placement in the soap opera Days of Our Lives that we pointed out a couple weeks ago. In true Colbert fashion, it’s hilarious.

Colbert, a master of the craft, puts the “pro” in Product and the “cement” in Placement. For the sardonic comedian knows that the true secret of the tree of knowledge is that eating the forbidden fruit means more free fruit.[more]

Colbert’s pitch-perfect shilling technique is on-brand for his wry comedic persona as a bit of a jerk. An engaging, whip-smart and funny right-wing jerk, that is. In character, he has often played fast and loose with thanking his “sponsors,” at once acknowledging them while at the same time playfully running them into the ground.

During his sponsorship of the US Winter Olympic Team, Colbert had fun at his sponsors’ expense, saying of Verizon “it’s what’s for dinner,” that Budweiser “brings good things to life,” and Dr. Pepper is “the quicker picker upper.”

Colbert branded his Presidential run “Hail to the Cheese: Stephen Colbert Nacho Cheese Doritos 2008 Presidential Campaign Coverage.” After winning a Peabody Award, he thanked Doritos for its support aand for giving him “nacho cheese lung.

But where Colbert excels is as an Apple pitch man. From the MacBook to the iPad to the iPhone, Colbert always gets away with a veritable snow Jobs.


That’s right — if you’re a Apple product, Colbert says, “There’s an app-ertunity for that!”

So does all this free advertising for Apple by Colbert actually help the tech brand’s bottom line? Is the Colbert audience too swift to be influenced? Or do they all already have Apples?

Well, we’re not saying Colbert’s to credit, but the iPhone just took the lead in the smartphone race.