Colbert snacking with Doritos again


NEW YORK -- For the first time since the demise of his South Carolina presidential bid last November, Stephen Colbert is shilling for Doritos, with the brand's new Spicy Sweet Chili chips as the sponsor of Colbert's Pennsylvania primary coverage.

If Tuesday night's show is any indication, Doritos is in for another great ride of blatant over-the-top integration that due to Colbert's brand of humor is extremely effective for Doritos and doesn't turn viewers off as other obvious product placements might.

Noting that Doritos sponsored his South Carolina presidential bid, Colbert told his audience, "Folks, I am here to say I am not making that mistake again. It was tawdry, and frankly, I believe it cheapened the process. That's why my Pennsylvania primary coverage will be sponsored by new Spicy Sweet Chili Doritos.

"Tonight I am proud to announce the Stephen Colbert's Doritos Spicy Sweet Pennsylvania primary coverage from Chiladelphia, the city of brotherly crunch. Jimmy, let freedom snack," he shouted as bags of the new Doritos chips fell from the studio ceiling onto his desk.

Colbert threw bags to the audience and uttered numerous mmm's and ooohhh's in delight as he opened a bag and started chomping on the chips. "Spicy and sweet -- that is my dream ticket. Four more years in my intestinal track ... It's like I'm holding a caucus in my mouth."

A Frito-Lay spokesman said Doritos did not pay any additional fees for the integration, which lasted more than two minutes. But the PepsiCo division is a big spender on Comedy Central and its sister Viacom-owned networks. Doritos Spicy Sweet chips, in fact, are sponsoring a new short-form reality dating series online and on-air at MTV. The microseries will premiere April 18 and the winning couple will be featured in a national commercial that will air exclusively on MTV and MTV2 this summer.

Colbert reportedly had a relationship with Doritos earlier in his career that led to the presidential bid sponsorship, as well as this latest deal with Doritos.

"Across our brands, Frito-Lay does have an ongoing relationship with Viacom Networks," said Frito-Lay spokesman Jared Dougherty. "This is a continuation of Colbert's original partnership with Doritos for his presidential campaign. The incorporation of Doritos is predominantly driven by Colbert and the writers because of Colbert's past relationship with the Doritos brand. We're happy to again be part of his primary coverage."