Yesterday, all of Boston was put on code red alert because there were ‘bombs’ on bridges and near an Urban Outfitters store. The local and national news took this story and ran with it. Bridges were shut down, traffic piled up and the general public was inconvenienced. There was no investigation, no real reporting, it was essentially fear mongering.
Now, the truth is out and it’s worse than originally thought. These terrifying ‘bombs’ were part of an amazing guerrilla marketing campaign featuring the Mooninites from Adult Swim‘s Aqua Team Hunger Force. Little to no work was put into discovering the purpose or source of these bomb-like devices before they made national news. Isn’t the fact that they’re covered in brightly glowing LEDs and placed in highly visible areas a sign that they may not be bombs?!
The ad campaign was conceived by Interference Inc. and has been in place for over two weeks in 10 different cities. Many people have noticed these ads, knew what they were and appreciated them. Todd Vanderlin even blogged about it (two weeks ago!). Maybe this incident speaks to the generational gaps in our country. I think common sense would have solved this problem, but alas that’s not the case. In a state of panic, the city of Boston shut down causing a potential loss of millions of dollars in wasted time. We at Tropist lost about 10 minutes to this ‘crisis’ and would like that time back.
The goal of the promotion was most likely to promote Aqua Team Hunger Force’s new movie coming out the in the end of March. I just learned about this movie because of yesterday’s code red, so the ad campaign appears to be working.