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'The Playboy Club:' Chrysler to Continue Advertising Despite PTC Campaign

The Playboy Club
NBC

"We do not take this approach to offend, but we feel that it is important to deliver information about our products to a diverse and broad audience," says a rep as seven sponsors pull out.

Chrysler says it will continue to advertise on The Playboy Club, despite the Parents Television Council urging sponsors to pull out of the controversial NBC show.

STORY: Seven Advertisers Drop Out of 'The Playboy Club' After PTC Calls for Boycott

"Many variables are utilized when deciding where product advertisements are shown.  Like other companies and auto manufacturers, the brands of Chrysler Group LLC advertise using a variety of mediums, including broadcast, to reach broad audiences," a spokesperson for the company, Dianna C. Gutierrez, tells The Hollywood Reporter.

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"We recognize that not all advertising placement is liked by all individuals.  We do not take this approach to offend, but we feel that it is important to deliver information about our products to a diverse and broad audience," she adds.

Seven sponsors -- Kraft, Sprint, Lenovo, UPS Store, Subway, P.F. Chang's China Bistro and Campbell's Soup -- did not advertise in the second episode of The Playboy Club.

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The PTC has targeted the show for objectifying and degrading women since it was picked up by NBC.

Citing the show's ratings, the group's president Tim Winter said Wednesday, “What has been clear to everyone outside of NBC must now be clear even to those inside NBC: The Playboy Club is a commercial disaster and must be removed from the airwaves. We call for the network to cancel this degrading and sexualizing program immediately."

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The premiere was soft with 5 million viewers and just a 1.6 rating in the ad-coveted 18-49 demo. It sunk 19 percent in its second week, with just 3.8 million viewers and a 1.3 in the key demo.

The group vows to continue to ask its members to contact advertisers such as Capital One, Chrysler and Samsung "until they cease sponsorship of a broadcast television program that is mainstreaming the pornography industry."

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Reps for Capital One and Samsung have not yet gotten back to THR.

Showrunner Chad Hodge downplayed the controversy (Gloria Steinem called for a boycott; NBC's Salt Lake City affiliate refused to air it).

"I think there’s a perception of the show that’s false," he said. "There are different brands of feminism and I don’t think it should be boxed into any one version"

"I think there was a perception that we were trying to do something politically ambitious or make a statement or make this a show about empowering women, which sounds super boring to me. That sounds like a documentary, which this certainly is not. This is more like Chicago, Moulin Rouge and All That Jazz, Desperate Housewives. This is a fun, sexy soap," he added.

Lindsay.Powers@Thr.com

@LKPE