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March 9, 2007

Brand Naming: Say Goodbye to Cold Pizza and Captain America

ESPN_Cold_Pizza.gifThe Big Lead blog just broke the story that ESPN’s Cold Pizza, which has been slated for a move to Bristol, CT, is getting a name change: ESPN’s First Take.

Some bloggers think the show needed a name change, but some dislike the new brand name. The Big Lead discusses how ESPN gave up on the original format of the show a while back, and now they're throwing away the last bit of brand name recognition. "Cold Pizza" has garnered much publicity over four years, similar to when Coca-Cola underwent a name change to "New Coke."

The very popular Deadspin blog is getting a lot of comments suggesting superior name candidates. Frankly, I think the new name is pretty good and would not doubt that ESPN worked with a naming consultant for this effort. I'm sure there was good rationale to throw out the Cold Pizza name.

captain_america.jpgSpeaking of doing away with recognizable brand names, I was far disturbed to read that one of the most popular brands in the Marvel comic universe, Captain America, was killed this week by a sniper. Even though Freak Comics has already been pleaing for fans to "get over it", his death does give me pause.

Some writers posit that a post-911 Captain America was simply too pure-hearted for the new world, but then again ABC reports that his rebirth is coming in a year or so and in the meantime Marvel will sell large volumes of comic books.

The “Captain America”, which in many ways is an iconic brand name and product name, is a loaded one in American pop culture, and reminds me of Peter Fonda’s portrayal of the hippie biker in Easy Rider who was also killed during troubled times. 67-year-old Fonda is currently partially reincarnating that counterculture version of “Captain America” in the hit new movies Wild Hogs and Ghost Rider.

Some names just never say die, but as for Cold Pizza and Captain America, we say goodbye...for now...

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Posted by William Lozito at March 9, 2007 8:33 AM
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1 Comment

It's not so much the fans that need to get over it (although some of the more hardcore fanboys are taking it a lot harder than need be, seeing as he'll be back soon enough).
My point was mainly that the media needs to get over it.

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