WCBS New York unveiled a fun promo Monday afternoon. The spot promotes chief weathercaster Lonnie Quinn, but Quinn--the real Quinn, at least--never appears in it. Under the guidance of Bruce Brauer, senior VP, creative services, promotions and advertising, CBS Television Stations, the 30-second spot looks like a cheeky late ‘70s/early ‘80s commercial for, say, an Evel Knievel wind-up motorcycle toy.
It features a Lonnie Quinn action figure ready to tackle severe weather.
Brauer spoke about the promo moments after it premiered on WCBS, around 4:23 p.m. ET. “It’s a good type of disruptor ad that will stand out from the clutter,” he said.
The action figure features pull-string “Lonnie-isms,” Quinn uttering catchphrases like “Let’s go to the Mobile Weather Lab!” and “The storm is coming.”
The figure also rolls up its sleeves, as Quinn often does when the forecast appears severe.
Helping the Lonnie action figure do its job is a winter coat, umbrella and the CBS2 Mobile Weather lab.
Brauer said the project took about a month to complete. An artist worked on a generic male doll to fashion into Quinn’s image. “We showed it to Lonnie today and he loved it,” said Brauer.
He figures viewers of a certain age will recall those toy commercials from days of yore. “It’s a nod and a wink to those commercials,” he said. “It will find a warm space in older viewers’ hearts.”
A couple years ago, the CBS2 creative services department had another catchy, Lonnie Quinn-themed promo called “Gotta Listen to Lonnie.”
“We jumped a little higher this time,” said Brauer.
The figure is not available for purchase. But Brauer said, if demand goes sky high, that might change.
Watch the Lonnie Quinn action figure promo below:
Watch the "Gotta Listen to Lonnie" promo below:
Broadcasting & Cable Newsletter
The smarter way to stay on top of broadcasting and cable industry. Sign up below
Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.