As reported by CNN Money, the cast of the MTV reality show hit “Jersey Shore” are milking their 15 minutes of fame for all it’s worth.
Mike Sorrentino, better known as The Situation on the show, is “hoping to get a cologne on the market that will smell like money.” That’s a subtle and nuanced direction—just the sort of thing I am sure affluent cologne buyers will go for. Or something.
His female counterpart, Jenni Farley (known as “JWOWW” on the show), is reportedly in the process of launching her own clothing line.
In addition to branching out into product launches, the cast is supposedly getting $180,000 each for the second season, in addition to “appearance fees” at night clubs and red carpet events.
Here’s my prediction: the “Jersey Shore” craze will be dead by the end of the second season. So they are wise, in a reptilian sort of way, to milk this recognition for all it’s worth. The Situation’s cologne will be a commercial failure, but he’ll get a nice upfront payment out of it at least. And I predict much the same for JWOWW, whose actual name I was not familiar with until five minutes ago when I started filing this story—not exactly the sort of name-brand recognition that accompanies a successful clothing launch.
Most important of all, I foresee the media’s surprising goodwill toward the crew turning at some point, very soon. Those of us in the media have been nice to the “Jersey Shore” Powerball winners—well, maybe not Powerball, more like scratch and win—but inevitably we will grow bored with them. And they aren’t pros, like the Kardashians or Lady Gagas of the world. I don’t think the Jersey Shore kids have the necessary machinery in place yet to really make a go at it. They need smart, connected representation who can do for them what former American Idol winner Jennifer Hudson’s manager did for her. She is one of the few Idol winners who was able to take reality fame and turn it into ‘real’ fame. But then again, she’s got real talent.
Ultimately, anyone can take money that’s being thrown at them. The real question is whether they will be aggressive and smart enough to move beyond an exploitative show and create long-term value for fans. It’s a tall order.
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