On December 29, I wrote about Product Placement (PPL) and The King of Dramas, as a set-up for today's post on PPL in Cheongdamdong Alice (CDDA). Sometimes, knowing what is and what is not PPL in a drama is not all that straightforward (though random close-ups on random things is a pretty good indicator). The list of sponsors at the end of each episode is long and often varies (Episode 7 had by far the most, so far) - and for a non-Korean, deciphering all of them is not a piece of Paris Baguette cake.
And then, the questions ... can we expect all of the sponsors to have placed at least one "product" in the episode? I remember from Nice Guy (Episode 1) that the hospital that they filmed the doctor scenes in was listed as a sponsor at the end, for example. Is that still product placement? Did the hospital actually pay them something? Or did they just get to shoot there for free? Anthony, to the rescue! Tell me!
Of course, there is also very obvious instances of PPL; and most of them belong to one of the following C-Categories:
- ComputEronics (yes, that's a made up word, but it starts with a C).
CarsThis is the easiest of the 4 categories - cars are big, loud, and usually fill the whole screen. There's no way you don't notice a car PPL. Cheongdamdong Alice's characters drive cars from the Infitini line, produced by Nissan (everybody in Nice Guy did too).
Detail 3: Shows in which car companies are not a sponsor usually don't have many driving scenes. Ergo: PPL does dictate a certain amount of scenes and their settings. Boo.
Coffee/Cafés (and other Meeting Places)Paris Baguette is the first of CDDA's sponsors mentioned in the end credits. Therefore, there are many meetings in one of their outlets. Paris Baguette is a Korean company (founded in 1986) and seems to be the perfect sponsor for this show, which is so Paris-crazed.
They didn't manage to show us the whole logo in the "break-up" scene, all the more annoying for this sudden zoom out to this ... half-logo. Duh.
Second, we get to see some kind of Christmas Special products ... looks like cookies and cakes and stuff. They seem to be everywhere in the CDDA world ... also at the Artemis VVIP Party. That made me lol as well. Since the green-red-white colors adds a rather nice touch to every scene (and add a certain Xmassy vibe), I don't mind. So far, I find it amusing. I'm guessing we'll see one of the red or green packages in the bus or in the car next.
Detail 3: This drama does not have a coffee sponsor, therefore, people hardly drink any coffee. They eat cake instead. Not so sure it's good for their wasteline!
Detail 4: There is another prominent location in the series ... many of Cha Seung-jo's and Han Se-kyung's pre-romance scenes have taken place in front of this building - The Galleria (a shopping center that belongs to the Hanwha Group. Yay, real life chaebols!). Also one of the sponsors.
Clothing/.ccessoriesThis is a difficult category ... potentially, every single piece of clothing and jewelry is sponsored in KDrama. Since Artemis Korea is a supplier of pet food and chocolates in real life, the various bags that we see are products of companies such as Lovcat, Kwanpen, Daks, etc. (some of the sponsors I could make out in the end credits or in the background).
I already mentioned the glasses. An example of good PPL (good as in "non-annoying") is the scene in which Han Se-kyung's sister sells seven glasses to Dong-wook before she tells him where her sister is hiding. The scene is funny, and the chemistry between sister and Dong-wook was adorable. The PPL and the storyline harmonize.
frequent sponsor of rings in KDrama and you cannot mistake it for anything else.
Detail 1: If you are interested in the clothes the women are wearing, go check out this very useful site. Doing this post already took me hours ... identifying the exact piece of clothing that is worn is simply amazing!
Detail 2: ... err ... there is none. Jeez, this post is long.
Detail 3: Ah, yes, there is something. Do you guys remember Kan Maru's nice watch? Probably not. In any case, my husband and I spent a fun hour trying to find out what it was (even though the manufacturer sign was removed). And we did. And I got the watch as a Christmas present ^_^ I am a PPL victim of the happy sort!
ComputEronicsThis is, once again, a very easy category. They constantly fumble their electronic equipment. In a way, seeing how people write text messages to each other or do something smart on their phones doesn't bug me much. That's just like in real life - everybody is constantly stroking their electronics around me.
In CDDA, Samsung is the main sponsor, and we get to see various Samsung products: desktop computers, tablets, phones (Samsung Galaxy Note II), Samsung camera's, and Samsung fridges (Samsung zipel). They definitely went overboard with the lengthy PSH and Galaxy-product ad. This is the kind of PPL that makes people angry in the long run.
Matryoshka doll! Outer shell: Samsung. Inside: Paris Baguette Christmas special present. Inside: Paris Baguette Bûche de Noël. Inside: a little Jean-Thierry Cha doing a crazy dance. Inside: Paris Baguette cake Jean-Thierry Cha just ate. etc.