The issues of 1778 are still the issues of 2016.
That’s the premise of AMC’s new tongue-in-cheek campaign to promote season three of TURN: Washington’s Spies.
The witty multi-platform marketing assets draw parallels between the political turmoil that gave birth to our nation — upon which the show is based — and the contentious political drama currently unfolding.
“In our promotional campaign for the upcoming season of our Revolutionary War drama, TURN: Washington’s Spies, we play off the reality of our current fractured political environment by comparing today with the 1770s, when the colonies were split and warring over their relationship with England,” said Linda Schupack, executive vice president of marketing for AMC and SundanceTV.
The campaign tackles the current presidential election by throwing George Washington into the mix of candidates with an AMC micro-site set up like a campaign website. Pulling from history, AMC uses quotes to clearly outline his positions on important issues being debated today like immigration, taxes, foreign policy, trade, civil liberties and education, and asks America to “Vote for Washington.” Real-time polling lets viewers pick their candidate and share their vote across social media under the hashtag #washington1778.
On-air promo spots remind us that “before there were red states and blue states, there were redcoats and bluecoats.” And season three key art, which will appear on billboards and bus sides, features the 13-star “Betsy Ross” version of the American flag and the words “America Divided: Now and Then” in bold letters.
The campaign also features political buttons and GIFs with statements like “Mo Taxes, Mo Problems,” posters with sayings like “See Why Capitol Hill Isn’t So Different From Bunker Hill,” and bumper stickers with taglines like “Taxes, Gun Control Immigration? Been There. Done That.”
“The campaign feels appropriate to the period but incredibly fresh as well,” Schupack said.
AMC will top off the season three campaign with a live event in Washington D.C. on April 13 featuring former presidential candidates Mike Huckabee (R-Ark.). The two former governors will make their first joint appearance since stepping out of the race to share the campaign materials for TURN: Washington’s Spies, and discuss the state of politics today.
They’ll be joined by actor Ian Kahn who plays Washington on the show, along with show creators Barry Josephson and Craig Silverstein, and AMC President of Programming Joel Stillerman.
Season three of TURN: Washington’s Spies premieres Monday, April 25.