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Free to Be Cynical

TV critics attending the new CW network's Summer TV Press Tour 2006 party, in the garden of the Ritz Carlton Huntington hotel in Pasadena, jammed a so-called CW Lounge area, in which hostesses were printing T- shirts with the network's Free to Be [fill in the word] marketing campaign.

They had their choice of Free to Be:

Cynical
Quotable
Terse
or
Critical

"Two lime green cynicals!" one hostess shouted to another.

"We only have XL left!" the second hostess shouted back over the crowd.

"Damn!" said the critic who'd been waiting in line.

By far the most popular line among critics was Free to Be Cynical, we were told; virtually no one was interested in Free to be Terse.

And, ironically, after having felt free to be critical during a morning Q&A of the marketing campaign's CW Green -- a macedoine of baby-puke green and Jolly Rancher Apple green -- the green T shirts were getting snatched up while white T shirts went begging.

Small-sized Free to Be Cynical T-shirts in CW Green were gone early because critics had taken several at a time -- for their children, the hostesses were told.

This was the first stop for the CW Lounge, which will be making stops at shopping malls in major market cities in August, including Washington on Aug. 26 and 27. Other stops include New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego and Seattle.

The tour will target young potential CW viewers --mostly teens and early 20s.

We asked one of the tour managers which of the four words would be most popular with that age bracket.

These words are suited for critics only, and not at all suitable to the target audience -- far too negative, we were told.

Young TV viewers will be much more interested in T- shirts that say Free to Be:

Funny
Girlie
Fierce
or
Fearless.

By Lisa de Moraes  |  July 18, 2006; 2:02 AM ET
Categories:  Summer TV Press Tour 2006  
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