Product marketing is a group effort, with teams of people coming up with innovative ideas and often tons of marketing dollars behind them. Actor Mary Holland and director Maureen Bharoocha (Golden Arm) guess if the failed products described are real or fake.
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JONATHAN COULTON: This is ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR. I'm Jonathan Coulton. Here's your host, Ophira Eisenberg.
OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:
Thanks, Jonathan. We're playing games with the director and star of the new movie "Golden Arm," a comedy about a women's arm-wrestling championship. Maureen Bharoocha, Mary Holland, are you ready for another one?
MARY HOLLAND: Oh, yes.
MAUREEN BHAROOCHA: Yes.
EISENBERG: OK, so this game is called Good Tries. So Jonathan and I are going to describe a failed product, which - can we all agree? - is the best kind of product to describe. And you're going to tell us, is this a real failed product, or is it something we just made up?
EISENBERG: Mary, this first one is for you.
HOLLAND: I'm ready.
EISENBERG: Gerber Singles - so in the 1970s, Gerber marketed baby food to college students and adults living on their own for the first time. Is that real or fake?
HOLLAND: I mean, I have to say I would be - I would...
HOLLAND: You know, I was - I would be the target demographic for that. I think that's real.
EISENBERG: (Laughter) Oh, yeah, that is real.
HOLLAND: Oh, my God. Wow.
EISENBERG: That is real.
BHAROOCHA: I feel like my friends and I ate baby food in high school for some reason. I don't know why.
BHAROOCHA: Yeah. I have a friend, Katie (ph), who, like, loved it. She's like, I always eat baby food...
BHAROOCHA: ...And, like, would have it in her lunch. And I was like, I mean, just get applesauce.
COULTON: All right, Maureen. Ore-Ida Funky Fries from the early 2000s - these frozen French fries were sold in chocolate, cinnamon and blue-colored varieties. Real or fake?
BHAROOCHA: Chocolate, cinnamon or blue-colored - those are the three flavors?
COULTON: There was a chocolate, there was a cinnamon and there was a blue, yes.
HOLLAND: Blue. You know, the flavor blue.
BHAROOCHA: Yeah. I mean, I'm going to say yes. I'm going to say that this is a true item.
COULTON: That is absolutely a real item.
COULTON: It only lasted about a year, perhaps because it is not a great idea. But, yeah.
BHAROOCHA: I mean, I enjoy regular fries a lot, so, you know.
COULTON: I don't know - no word on whether the blue was a specific flavor or just a color. I think it was just a color.
BHAROOCHA: It was actually wintergreen fries, like...
HOLLAND: Wintergreen, ugh.
EISENBERG: Right. That's the last fry you eat to clear your breath so you can move on.
EISENBERG: All right, Mary, playing off the popularity of boyfriend jeans for women, Levi's created girlfriend jeans for men, which are a slimmer, body-hugging style meant to evoke the feeling of slipping into a pair of women's jeans.
HOLLAND: I mean, I think it's a great idea, but no.
EISENBERG: You are correct. No. The answer is fake. It is a no.
BHAROOCHA: But they just call those skinny jeans.
EISENBERG: Yeah, skinny jeans.
HOLLAND: Right, right.
COULTON: Skinny jeans - that's right.
HOLLAND: Yeah. Yes.
COULTON: All right, this is the last one. Maureen, it's for you. Cosmopolitan yogurt - Cosmopolitan women's magazine tried to get in on the booming yogurt market business in the late 1990s with its own line of healthy dairy snacks. Real or fake?
BHAROOCHA: I'm going to say yogurt is gold, baby, so it's true.
COULTON: You're right on two counts. It is true, and also, yogurt is gold. Yes, correct.
EISENBERG: So right. So right.
HOLLAND: Yogurt is gold, baby. I've never heard you say that in my life. Oh, my God. So funny.
COULTON: Yogurt is gold.
HOLLAND: That's your catchphrase, I forgot.
BHAROOCHA: Yogurt is gold. I have a new yogurt line coming out myself. No, I'm just kidding.
EISENBERG: Fantastic. Well done. Mary Holland and Maureen Bharoocha are the star and director of the movie "Golden Arm" about a national women's arm-wrestling championship. It just premiered in theaters and on digital. Mary, Maureen, just thank you so much for joining us.
HOLLAND: Thank you for having us.
BHAROOCHA: This was so much fun. Thank you, guys.
(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.