7 thoughts on “Excerpt from Creepiness in TNI

  1. I was pretty young and naive when these ads came out, but I found the creepiness of the King mostly hilarious–that is, the creepiness is what made the commercials humorous. Also, my friends and I would often joke about the King as some woefully misunderstood force for good and altruism, which I guess reveals something about public cynicism and the desire for some kind of authenticity…or something.

    On a semi-related note, are you aware BK made several King themed video games for XBOX 360? I actually had one called “Sneak King” wherein you play as the King sneaking around various open-roaming levels to deliver burgers to unsuspecting NPCs. When you successfully delivered the burger the King did some kind of flourish and everybody was super happy. The other two games weren’t as readily immersive, though still odd–one was a motorcycle racing game and the other had to do with bumper cars. Apparently they might even make another one.


  2. Just to follow up, I cross referenced my reaction to the King commercials with a few others around my age (~25), and they also shared the impression that the King was just trying to spread joy and was misunderstood. On your narrative this interpretation is harder and harder to maintain as the King develops, but the initial cold take was positive. I was in high school when these premiered, for what it’s worth.

    One friend suggested your reading and our reaction could be the generational difference between Gen X and millenials. We sort of don’t really take commercials seriously as trying to sell us something, or at least bracket that out, and opt to consider them aesthetically. That lets us ward off the cynicism in some respects.

  3. I’m surprised more people haven’t drawn a connection between the Creepy King and The King in Yellow. It seems like low hanging fruit, but a casual google search doesn’t return much.

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