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October 13, 2015

Press Kits Unwrapped

Press Kits Unwrapped: Dollhouse

by Brad Trechak, posted Jan 26th 2009 11:05AM
DollhouseIt is going to be an uphill battle to success for Joss Whedon's Dollhouse. One defining factor in the quality of support that a network gives its programs is the impressiveness of the press kit it releases for the show. If this is the case, Dollhouse is in trouble.

For the sake of full disclosure, let me mention that our editor-in-chief Joel had the package first because he desperately needed to watch the premiere the moment he got it (as someone who is anticipating the series, I understand completely). The package was opened and re-packaged by the time it got to me. That being said, it still didn't look anywhere near as cool as the 24 press kit that Jonathan reviewed. It did have one or two saving graces, though.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: 24, season 7

by Jonathan Toomey, posted Dec 30th 2008 11:10AM

Kiefer Sutherland as Jack BauerAs if you haven't heard it enough from all of us here at TV Squad, one of the best perks by far of the TV critic biz is getting to see episodes before they air. DVD screeners are always pouring into the TV Squad HQ for just about everything - usually all the shows nobody wants to, or ever will, watch.

But when one of the big ones comes in the mail, it's always exciting. Especially since the networks typically go all out when it comes to the press kits for those trademark shows. These are always more than just a DVD. Sometimes the extra bonuses are good and sometimes they're bad - I still have no use for my incredibly dull Prison Break pocket knife.

Even still, whether the press kits are loaded with junk or not, it's a thrill to open them up. Last week, I found an interesting package on my doorstep. Take a look after the jump for pictures of what I found inside.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: TNT's The Closer

by Joel Keller, posted May 22nd 2008 11:43AM
The closer press kit
When I got a knock on the door yesterday morning from the FedEx guy, I got all excited because I thought it was a pair of Cubs tickets that I bought for an upcoming trip I'm taking to Chicago. But when I looked down, I saw a black box. When I turned it over, the box had the label you see above. It's a press kit for TNT's returning hit The Closer, and it shows star Kyra Segdgwick guiltily nibbling on a bunch of cookies. The tag line on the label is "Everyone has something to confess..." Hmm. Interesting. Obviously this label held some strong clues as to what I would find in the box. So I cut the sealing tape, opened it up, and found what I suspected would be in the package...

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Press Kits Unwrapped: So You Think You Can Dance

by Debra McDuffee, posted May 13th 2008 11:36AM
cute kid wearing headband, towel and holding a water bottleAs you know, we get press kits here at the TV Squad offices all the time. Sometimes they are useful items, but most of the time they are useless and emblazoned with promotion brew-ha-ha wherever there is a blank space.

This week brought us the So You Think You Can Dance press kit, complete with Bjorn Borg terry headband, long thin sweat-mopping towel (or perfect for rat-tailing), and plastic water bottle, most likely loaded with phthalates and Bisphenol-A.

As you can see, my son was very excited to dress up and pose for this picture. He found the branded products enchanting, irresistible, even super-cool. So there may be something to this whole promotional press kit deal. Heck, they caught the attention of a three-year-old.

When we explained to Owen what break dancing is, he was jumping out of his skin excited to see So You Think You Can Dance. It premieres on Thursday, May 22 at 8 PM ET on Fox, and you know we'll be DVR-ing that for our little Nick Lazzarini-to-be.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: FOX's The Sarah Connor Chronicles

by Keith McDuffee, posted Dec 7th 2007 1:54PM
sarah connor chronicles keyAfter quite a quiet spell from the impressive (or maybe "overdone") press kits, FOX stirs things up once again with a press kit for their new upcoming show, The Sarah Connor Chronicles (starting Jan. 13 at 8PM EST).

Last week the TV Squad offices received a "mysterious" key in an envelope (it would have been more mysterious had the other side of the key not said 'The Sarah Connor Chronicles' on it). Along with the key was a note from ... John Connor (dun dun duuuun!), telling us to be on the lookout for another package. Wow, could the key, like, maybe open whatever he's sending?

This week we got the next package. Surprise! It's a safety deposit box (actually I was surprised, as I was expecting a car). And in case we didn't keep that all-important key sent last week, John was nice enough to tape another key to the top of the box. Apparently Terminators are afraid of keys.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: How I Met Your Mother - AUDIO

by Joel Keller, posted Sep 25th 2007 12:05PM
Barney BobbleheadHere at TV Squad HQ we get all sorts of fun stuff. Networks seem to think that TV critics and journalists need to be swayed by toys and other assorted tschotkes that mostly just end up in a drawer or the nearest circular file. I swear, only pharmaceutical reps and computer shows generate less needless knicknacks than TV networks.

Sometimes the Squadders have enjoyed the press kits that have come to us; our dearly departed colleague Adam Finley always had a grand time finding interesting uses for the "swag" (I hate that term) that he has gotten from the networks. But sometimes, things come in that just stand on their own and end up in a proud place on a Squadder's desk.

Case in point is a promotional item CBS sent to us to promote How I Met Your Mother: a talking Barney bobblehead. Audio is after the jump.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: FOX's Nashville - VIDEO

by Keith McDuffee, posted Sep 11th 2007 2:01PM
nashville press kitThe press kits have just begun rolling in, and for the most part the networks haven't gotten nearly as fancy with the packaging as they did last season. FOX had a reputation for going way out of their way to make their packaging stand out, but the first couple of screeners sent (Prison Break, for example) didn't have much more than the DVD. With the first new-show screener, Nashville, they're back to their old ways.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: TBS's My Boys

by Richard Keller, posted Nov 21st 2006 12:33PM

myboys press kit

You thought we were done with press kit reviews, didn't you? No sir, not in the new television world of hundreds of channels and year-round original programming. As winter approaches you may see more reviews as the fall season makes way for the mid-season premieres. Just fair warning to you all.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: The Simpsons' Treehouse of Horror XVII

by Adam Finley, posted Oct 25th 2006 8:02PM

Press kit open

A note to the people who put together these press kits: if you want to woo me, fill the kit with lots and lots of candy. I don't care if it has anything to do with the television program you're promoting or not. I want lots of damn chocolate, and I want it now. As you can see in the picture above, this press kit for the upcoming "Treehouse of Horror" episode of The Simpsons was stuffed with mini candy bars, Blow Pops and peanuts, all of which I scarfed down fairly quickly, growling under my breath like a starving dog protecting his food bowl.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: The O.C.

by Keith McDuffee, posted Oct 18th 2006 10:16AM
the oc press kitThe O.C. is one of those shows that I did watch at one point, but the show quickly changed into something I was embarrassed to admit I ever watched at all. Like Beverly Hills 90210 or Melrose Place. I caught the first season of The O.C., but I just couldn't stomach any more of it. That's why it pains me that Fox sent me some O.C. swag (or should I say "siag") that I can't give away, and that I'd only fully appreciate if I were a 16 year-old fan of the show. And a girl.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: The Simpsons, Family Guy, American Dad, and The War at Home

by Adam Finley, posted Sep 9th 2006 8:05AM

ingredientsFOX's animation-heavy Sunday lineup kicks off this Sunday starting with The Simpsons at 8, American Dad at 8:30, Family Guy at 9, and The War at Home at 9:30. That doesn't matter though, because we're not going to talk about those shows right now. Instead, let's dive into the nifty press pack FOX sent out to promote their returning Sunday shows. After the jump you'll see pictures of me enjoying all the cool free stuff. Please be aware that I suffer from a rare skin condition, and I'm only twenty-two inches tall. Okay, let's tear into this kit:

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Press Kits Unwrapped: FOX's Happy Hour

by Richard Keller, posted Sep 2nd 2006 2:07PM

Happy Hour Press Kit

As the fall television season draws ever closer, we continue to receive press kits from the networks. This time around it's for FOX's new comedy Happy Hour, which premieres on Thursday, September 7th at 8:30. This particular kit lacks a little in one aspect, while it shines in the other. Let's take a look, shall we . . .

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Press Kits Unwrapped: FOX's Bones

by Richard Keller, posted Aug 29th 2006 10:28AM

The Bones Press KitWoo.

Even though FOX's Bones isn't a new show (its second season premiere airs this Wednesday at 8:00) I was expecting a bit more from the press kit. I mean the kit for FOX's Prison Break, which is also into its second season, came with a hooded sweatshirt and faux-newspaper detailing the characters and plot of the show. The least I expected from the Bones kit was maybe a mini-mangled body to put on my mantle, or a small reproduction of the holo-tank they use for their investigations. Alas, all I got was what you see in this picture . . . not even a folder or envelope for the materials!

Well, at least the show is good. Let's take a quick (and I mean QUICK) look at the paltry amount of material that this press kit provided.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: FOX's Standoff

by Bob Sassone, posted Aug 23rd 2006 8:40AM
standoff press kitPress kits usually come in one of two ways: they're either a very basic press kit, just a folder with the show's logo on it, and some print press materials inside, maybe a few photos. And then there are the other ones, the press kits with really cool collectibles inside and/or an innovative packaging. The one for FOX's Standoff seems to be in the middle. It comes with the basic paperwork stapled together (no folder??), but also includes two neat collectibles.

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Press Kits Unwrapped: FOX's Justice

by Anna Johns, posted Aug 22nd 2006 2:09PM
justice; press releaseFirst off, let me say that I am very jealous of the sweatshirt that Keith got from the Prison Break press kit. Since I'm covering Justice this season, Keith sent its press kit all the way across the country to my house. FOX didn't quite go all out with this press kit the way it did for Prison Break. No newspaper. Just a stack of office paper with bios for the actors, including a pathetically short bio for Kerr Smith, and a letter from the law firm instructing me to watch the pilot on DVD (also included).

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