Most Mondays I don’t watch a lot of TV, but I ended up watching a couple hours’ worth last night, and I noticed something that several of the series had in common: Strategically-placed hashtags to get viewers tweeting about the shows. They would pop up after plot twists or jokes, encouraging people to continue the conversations on Twitter even as they tuned in for the second half of the episode. My favorite came during Bones 7×09 “The Don’t in the Do,” after this exchange (paraphrased):
Arastoo: “I’m not getting published. The journal pulled my paper in favor of a puff piece about Selena Gomez on a fossil hunt.”
Brennan: “I’m not familiar with Dr. Gomez’s work, but I look forward to reading it.”
Right after the punchline, the little gray hashtag #DrGomez popped up in the bottom corner of the screen. It was a great joke, simultaneously poking fun at Brennan’s lack of pop culture knowledge as well as the phenomenal fame of Disney stars like Selena even in academia. I’d say it was one of Bones‘ (and Fox’s) more successful attempts at reaching outside their main audience; unfortunately, the product placement for cars always comes off as stilted or over-the-top.
The hashtag didn’t take off as much as Fox would probably have liked, but there were still a few funny responses:
Sadly, there’s been no reaction from Selena herself, whose recent tweets are about her upcoming perfume line. After all, she has her own hashtag to promote: #askSELENA, where she’ll answer fans’ questions in “old-school” YouTube videos. Her social media team should’ve been on it.