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September 12, 2005

Hi, My Name Is Earl

Not that I have anything against Jason Lee, but I'm going to have to ask all readers of this blog to boycott his new show "My Name Is Earl". Fact of it is, someone's got to take a stand against the unholy marriage of text advertisements and speaker boxes:

Personally, I'm a fan of Jason Lee and perhaps his new show will rock enough to get me to tune in and/or Tivo it. But I seriously doubt it. Especially after having my page-flipping Sunday evening solitude so entirely disrupted when I came to this ad and turned past it only to jump at the loud sound of Jason's voice coming from straight outta nowhere and telling me "My name is Earl! Do good things and good things will happen to you! It's called Karma!" I quickly ascertained that the voice was not from inside my head but rather inside the page via a small speaker wired to a small pressure sensitive circuit board embedded in it.

Think I'm overreacting? Behold your future:

[W]hen I turned the next page Jason piped up again. "My name is Earl! Do good things and good things will happen to you. It's called Karma!" And again with the next page. And again. After the fourth "My name is Earl" I backtracked to the offending page ripped it out of the mag and then tore the guts out of it (pictured after the jump) to shut good ol' Jason the fuck up[.]

And, as Will Campbell, the intrepid periodical explorer who found the ad, notes, Lee's mechanical message is powered by three micro-cell batteries. Considering Entertainment Weekly, where the ad is running, has a circulation of about 1.6 million, we're talking almost 5 million batteries headed straight for the landfill. Maybe this show should stop worrying about karma and start thinking about Gaea.

September 12, 2005 in Television | Permalink


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» The Captain's New Favorite TV show is..... from bennellibrothers.com
...NBC's My Name is Earl. Non-PC and very Bennelli. It also helps my appreciation of it with inane postings like this basically bashing the show based on an overuse of batteries in an add and the lead actor's relationship... [Read More]

Tracked on Sep 21, 2005 10:46:55 AM


Loud, obnoxious, and over-commercialized. If I hadn't sworn off TV completely, I'd probably watch it as best representing the America of today. The "going straight to the landfill" part seems the most appropriate

Posted by: William Bollinger | Sep 12, 2005 2:30:52 PM

Jason Lee named his child Inspektor Pilot (or something equally insane), which was reason alone for me to boycott this show. He's also a Scientologist, so we may do well to brace ourselves for a Cruise-style crack-up if this show has any success.

Posted by: Shakespeare's Sister | Sep 12, 2005 2:36:52 PM

The Germans have it right: outlaw Scientology before it takes over the country completely. :-))

Isn't it nice to know that we are spending our country into the international poorhouse importing this sort of galactic crap from China (while making 'significant' jobs for our trading friends as well)?

The PR genius asshole (or is it asshole genius?) should be sentenced to one year of listening 16 hours a day of this important 'news' nonstop.

But just think: 1000 years from now the Los Angeles landfill will be a great source for what will then be rare and valuable metals, all concentrated for the taking. Halliburton Empire will surely make good use of that 'windfall'.

Posted by: JimPortlandOR | Sep 12, 2005 2:56:44 PM

I see the outtrage for this but not for the uses that you *like* (Anybody have a cellphone or an ipod?). However, the end result is the same. So now we are down to your judgment on how these terrible batteries shall be used. Business use that generates jobs and moves products and services......bad. Entertianment .....good.

I think your outrage is not at the batteries or the damage they can cause....

Posted by: Fred Jones | Sep 12, 2005 4:24:52 PM

Fred's right. I actually have a deep-seated anti-jobs agenda.

Posted by: Ezra | Sep 12, 2005 4:35:26 PM

Um, Fred. Batteries in things like cellphones actually get recycled. Batteries in things like magazines will either end up in the landfill like Ezra said, or will contaminate an otherwise recyclable bunch of paper.

Now, I'll let you get back to changing your oil over the storm drain.

Posted by: Mr Furious | Sep 12, 2005 5:05:06 PM

I actually thought I had much respect for Lee (the whole Kevin Smith connection) but after reading that stuff that Shakesperes sister said, um....riiiiiiiggghht.

Posted by: Adrock | Sep 12, 2005 5:18:01 PM

The PR genius asshole (or is it asshole genius?) should be sentenced to one year of listening 16 hours a day of this important 'news' nonstop.

I could probably think of about 10 recent instances where a similar PR whathaveyou should receive the same! The dematophyte one, the Snoop/Iacoca one, just to name a few.

Posted by: Adrock | Sep 12, 2005 5:20:42 PM

Here's the answer: Get your elected officials to make a law against this...or better still, go to court and shop for a jurist that will listen to another new and novel interpretation and will rule approvingly.
Sit here and bitch about someone else's lawful promotional practice and harrumph to all of your readers about how horrible it all is......

Posted by: Fred Jones | Sep 12, 2005 5:51:56 PM

Bush's poll numbers are really getting to you, huh Fred?

Posted by: Ezra | Sep 12, 2005 6:07:24 PM

Still a-waitin' on them thar rules, city boy.......

Posted by: Fred Jones | Sep 12, 2005 8:10:56 PM

Nah, not all the batteries are landfill-fodder. When we gleefully ripped up the ad that had caused me to jump a couple steps back from the mailbox when it started talking to me, we rescued the batteries as my husband happened to need one for the clock in his studio, and the drug store only seemed to sell them by the 12-pack.

Posted by: Elayne Riggs | Sep 12, 2005 9:52:46 PM

1) Jason Lee has nothing to do with NBC's marketing.
2) If you subscribe to or read Entertainment, Weakly - you deserve to be annoyed.
3) The show will still be just as funny as it would have been without the ads.

Posted by: Ali | Sep 12, 2005 10:53:14 PM

Actually "Fred," contrary to your deeply held beliefs, Ezra is not a communist. He believes he should use his public forum to talk against certain private, but legal, business practices that he disagrees with. I'm sure you could come up with a few private but legal practices you disagree with as well. Its not about creating laws, "Fred," its about using a public voice to change the way things work. Isn't that what conservatives believe in? Thats the market will respond to the public's wishes? Why are you going against your deeply held beliefs?

Posted by: Adrock | Sep 13, 2005 9:20:36 AM

I wonder what would happen if you recycle the magazines? We recycle all the paper and mags. Would they end up in the sludge that is made from recycled paper? I suppose thats ok then Ezra!

Posted by: Adrock | Sep 13, 2005 9:30:58 AM

Um, Fred. Batteries in things like cellphones actually get recycled.

Slav Stein, President and CEO of AESP remarked, "According to industry statistics, there are over 150 million cell phone users in the United States. There are also a growing number of cell phone users in Europe, in Russia and in other developing countries, and the infrastructure for cell phone use is being expanded throughout the world, which will increase the number of cell phone users in the future. Industry statistics tell us that on average consumers update their wireless devices every 18 months. Today, when retired, only a small percentage of the cell phone batteries are recycled, with the majority ending up in landfills where they can turn into hazardous waste.

So, I guess we're back to using your idealogy to decide that using batteries for business promotion is bad........cellphones and ipods......good.

Actually "Fred," contrary to your deeply held beliefs, Ezra is not a communist.

*I* said that??!

Posted by: Fred Jones | Sep 13, 2005 9:58:03 AM

Um, Fred, my interpretation of this post was -
"WTF these Marketing jerks won't even let me read a lousy rag in peace!"

Working in Advertising and Marketing myself - I have to confess, it doesn't actually produce diddly. Not even much in the way of pointless jobs. You only need so many people to come up with ideas like this.

Posted by: Geeno | Sep 13, 2005 12:34:31 PM


iPods and cell phones aren't exactly disconnected from business. Are people to believe that there are not businesses upon whose activities you place little value?

Posted by: TJ | Sep 14, 2005 11:35:50 AM

Hey, I've got no problem with either. I was simply pointing out the stupidity with which "Mr. Furious" and others attempt to weave their pet political causes into every conversation without engaging their brains. He actually made up some excuse to "rail against the machine" of business while excluding what you so rightly pointed out was also business. He just made it up out of his hatred for corporations. It is dumb, and it is irrational.

Posted by: Fred Jones | Sep 14, 2005 4:25:16 PM

Jason Lee is actually not a Scientologist, and to boycott "Earl" because of what he named his son is pretty strange. The name of his son has nothing to do with a television show that Jason just happens to be starring in.

Posted by: Steve Huxon | Sep 21, 2005 7:57:08 PM

Surprise. I Loved it. Finally the Network is willing to take on HBO.

Posted by: Tom Hoey | Sep 24, 2005 12:05:14 AM

What makes you think Jason Lee isn't a Scientologist? The Scientologist publications claim he is. He's listed as one in several media sources and he's never publicly denied affiliation. Jason Lee is a Scientologist until he denies affiliation in a public press outlet.

Posted by: Grendl | Oct 26, 2005 1:17:09 PM

Trust me, I know, and on a very personal level, that Jason Lee is not, and has never been a Scientologist. He knows Scientologists, but he himself is not a Scientologist.

This has always been something that people have confused, but, again, Jason Lee is not a Scientologist.


Posted by: Steve Huxon | Nov 18, 2005 5:17:48 AM


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