For the first time ever, Pringles unveiled a full-body version of its mustached brand mascot Julius Pringles, or Mr. P, after a request from HBO’s Last Week Tonight host John Oliver went viral.
During the show, which has pivoted to YouTube segments since the pandemic, Oliver joked, “There is a lot that we don’t know about the Pringles guy. In fact, the only thing we do know is his head looks like a hard-boiled egg disguised as Tom Selleck.”
Oliver said the show would donate $10,000 to Feeding America if Pringles showed the world what Mr. P’s body looks like, but on one condition: that Pringles doesn’t spend any of the money on the brand “because it’s a garbage snack.” In just four days, the video amassed over 4 million views.
Viewers took to Twitter to share amusing caricatures of what they thought the rest of Mr. P might look like. Oliver shared these depictions in a video update in which he implores Pringles to give the people what they want, saying:
“My point here is, I know so much useless information about Pringles. But not the one thing that I really want to know, which is: What is Julius Pringles working with from the neck down?”
Two days later, Pringles debuted a casually dressed Mr. P, who welcomes fans into his holiday-ready home in this 14-second video:
The tweet garnered nearly 10,000 likes, 2,000 retweets and 800 comments. Neither Oliver or the show have reacted yet to the news.
Pringles’ banter with Oliver is a prime example of how brands can benefit from marketing opportunities spurred by organic social media moments. Another notable example of this involved user @420doggface208, who rose to internet fame after he posted a TikTok video of him skateboarding to work while drinking a bottle of Ocean Spray cranberry juice and lip-syncing Fleetwood Mac’s “Dreams.” The video has racked up more than 72 million views and led to 15 billion brand impressions. In addition, in the week after the video was posted, “Dreams” was streamed 8.47 million times in the US alone.