Columns » Kenneth Cleaver

Kenneth Cleaver

Consumer Correspondent

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January 8, 2005

HBO

Attn: Marketing

1100 Avenue of the Americas

New York, NY 10036

Dear HBO:

I have a beef. It's with the ads promoting your shows, like the one where characters from The Sopranos talk to characters from Six Feet Under who talk to characters from Carnivale It usually runs, I dunno, every eight minutes.

Look, I'm already paying a lot for your programming. And I'll admit, it's really, really good. As your own Ali G might say, Respek!

So what more do you want? Why must I be reminded of your greatness when my bill makes that perfectly clear each month? The only thing I can figure is that the onslaught of self-puffery is an implicit suggestion that I, too, congratulate myself for having HBO. That my subscription somehow makes me better.

Well I already know I'm better, and it has nothing to do with HBO and everything to do with my low-carb diet, superior fashion sense and staggering SAT scores.

My self-importance is already in the stratosphere known only to people like Richard Branson and Graydon Carter. If it grows any larger I'll be forced to run for Senate or take up a combined form of Scientology and Kabbalah. Neither of us wants that, so could you tone down the self-promotion? Please?

Sincerely,

Kenneth Cleaver

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