The campaign encourages users to put themselves in the place of a seedy Hollywood producer and virtually harass a young actress on an audition. The most offensive thing about it is how unoriginal it is.
The online promotion, called "The Devil In You" is ostensibly meant to measure your ethical "score" based on what you choose to force an aspiring actress in a bad wig named "Ellie Moss" to do on a Flash video page. Your choices include "Proposition her," "Ask her to strip," "Give her booze," "Give her drugs," "Encourage her," "Ridicule her," "Make her dance," etc. Clicking a command causes a pre-taped segment to play, with the unseen producer (based on the one in Ellis' book) acting out your command and the actress reacting to being hit on (she turns him down hesitantly), offered drugs (she does them), etc.
At the bottom of each screen is the choice to "Let her go." It's kind of like "Choose Your Own Adventure" but less entertaining since no actual story emerges — as soon as each segment is done you're back to the choice screen. When you realize how boring the "game" is and click "Let her go," you're taken to a screen that gives you a percentage meant to show how much you have "the devil in you." You can then send the special meaningful score of exactly how bored you are at work to Twitter or Facebook and promote Ellis's book to your friends:
The lamest thing about this promotion, though, is its unoriginality. Navigating through the "game" (which, oh my god, nobody gets paid enough to do that) my biggest emotion was "I feel so sorry for whoever had to make this awful thing!" Remember Burger King's "Subservient Chicken" campaign from April of 2004? This is just like that, only not as interesting, six whole years later, because you can't enter your own commands. If I could, I'd tell Ellie Moss to "THROW UP ON THE PRODUCER."
The Devil In You [Picador]
Woman Taunted In Promotion For Bret Easton Ellis' New Book [AdRants]