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September 4, 2015

Interesting product placement on 30 Rock

by Joel Keller, posted Oct 12th 2006 2:27PM
Trivection ovenThe Newark Star-Ledger's Alan Sepinwall (actually his friend Phil Rosenthal) points out on his blog that last night's pilot for 30 Rock had an interesting bit of product placement: the oven that "vice president of East Coast and microwave oven programming" Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwon) developed, the GE Profile Trivection oven, is real (notice what it says on the lower left corner of that web page: "The GE Profile oven with Trivection technology becomes a star on NBC's new sitcom, 30 Rock.").

But that's not the most interesting part. NBC decided to air an ad for the Trivection oven right after the scene where Jack talks about the oven to Liz Lemon (Tina Fey) and producer Pete (Scott Adsit). It's as if they wanted to emphasize to the audience, "Hey, folks, this isn't some comedy thing Tina came up with! It really does use three kinds of heat!" Considering the fact that the scene was making fun of Donaghy, I'm not sure if this was the right move by GE. Was this an ingenious way to introduce a product or an act of desperation by NBC's parent company? Let me know in the comments.

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Chris Wyant

Product placement can work... With downloads and Tivos, people don't want to see conventional ads anymore (except for Geiko apparently). I'd rather see Alec Baldwin use an actual product in a metaphor and laugh about it, then see everybody use the same kind of computer or cell phone or car.

October 13 2006 at 7:36 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I skipped past the commercials, so I had no idea it was a real product(thus proving to GE and other companies who advertise their stuff, Tivo is evil), but if I was in the market for an oven that could cook a turkey in ONLY 22 minutes, I would probably buy the trivection oven.

October 12 2006 at 5:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Who doesn't know about trivection ovens? Seriously. I was looking into redoing my kitchen two years ago and this bad boy was at the top of my list.

BTW, that was one of the few funny scenes in the whole damn show. Maybe it was funnier to me because it's a real product.

October 12 2006 at 5:08 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

The mock SNL razor commercial had something like 7 blades. It was hysterical. And everytime they add a blade to razors, all I can think of is that commercial. Of course, all the electronic tea brewers make me think of Father Guido Sarducci's "Mr. T" product, introduced when Joe DiMaggio was still shilling for Mr. Coffee.

It seems like no idea is so crack-brained that someone can't make money off it 30 years later.

October 12 2006 at 4:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

@elf -- Already there... "Gillette unveils 5-bladed razor"

And the Onion predicted it in 2003. ;)

October 12 2006 at 3:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

At first I thought it was a joke commercial.

The "husband" in the commercial looked a lot like the guy who was the wardrobe man on the show-within-the-show. But there was no payoff, and then they showed it AGAIN. So it just seemed CHEEZY.

Tina Fey may have decided to include a real product in the script, but it was GE who decided to add to the in-show commercial by adding two more of their own. It was really, really lame.

October 12 2006 at 2:53 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Seing the comercial after the scene cracked me up and then to show it twice during a comercial brak was brillaint. It would have been funnier if they had showed it a few more times.

I really like this show.

October 12 2006 at 2:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

According to Tina Fey, this isn't a marketing ploy.

From the Houston Chronicle (http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/ent/4248773.html):

"I was trolling GE's Web site when I was writing," she recalls, "trying to figure out where this guy's area of expertise was. I found that oven in there, and I liked it. There was no GE product integration - it was all done without their knowledge. Though now, maybe somebody's taking credit for it."

Sure looks like it.

October 12 2006 at 2:37 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I thought it was a ridiculous, designed-by-committee comedy prop until GE advertised it moments later ! So to me it backfires on them. Why would you let your product be a parody of itself ? And three types of heat ?! Why didn't they add solar too to tout it as a "Green" appliance. Trivection dies on the launchpad...

October 12 2006 at 2:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to GerryofNorVA's comment

I think you're right!

February 08 2011 at 8:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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