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January 09, 2009

New York TV station's bus ads recall a golden age of dumbness

Posted on Fri Jan 9 2009

Pix copy

New Yorkers of a certain age may have noticed bus ads around town for the local CW affiliate WPIX-TV that read, "I ♥ PIX." The reference made BrandFreak flash back to the 1980s, when WPIX pioneered a forerunner of Internet gaming (that's probably overstating it) with a show called TV PIXX.
  Here's how it worked: The station would call a local kid who had sent in a postcard and put him or her on the air. The kid would tune into Channel 11 and play a video game live, shooting bullets by saying the word "pix" into the phone. (The smarter kids figured out that saying "Pix, pix, pix, pix" as fast as they could worked better than trying to time their shots more deliberately.) It was one of the stoopidest/most brilliant promotions ever.
  The new campaign has nothing to do with TV PIXX. It's for the channel's morning show. But Jessica Bellucci, the station's PR manager, is a TV PIXX fan herself, and says one of the perks of the job is that she's met engineers who manned the controls back in the day. Plus, she says, "I keep hearing that we should bring [TV PIXX] back. There's been talk of that, so stay tuned."

—Posted by Todd Wasserman


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