From The Blog Request Line: How Bad WAS Kris Humphries?

Like the Old School radio DJs we write about on this blog, we also open up the request lines from time to time.

We were flattered to receive a Tanner Friedman blog request from one of the top in-house PR and marketing professionals we know, Kim Eberhardt. Kim caught the “first interview” with Kris Humphries, the NBA benchwarmer who is now famous for being part of a reality show marriage and divorce. Only in America. Kim asked me to watch the interview on Good Morning America because I may think it’s an example of media training gone awry. She said he stiffly recited the same trite lines over and over again.

To honor the request, I did watch that interview. Beforehand, though, I had to brush up on the whole Humphries/Kardashian saga. As a pretty huge basketball fan, I had never heard of Humphries. As for the Kardashians, I try to ignore them (but I do remember their dad from covering OJ Simpson’s trial years ago).

In the interview, flanked by his mother, Humphries was flustered, frustrated and low on ammunition. I actually think it appears that he was under media trained and underprepared for the interview. Of course, he was going to be asked about his “marriage.” His cue card answers weren’t going to satisfy a celebrity-crazed audience. There was obviously a disconnect between the way ABC promoted the interview “His Life With Kim (Kardashian)” and the fact that he didn’t want to talk about exactly what ABC promised the audience. Now, Humphries apparently thinks he was ambushed, according to this piece.

Regardless of the intention of either party, here’s what we know: both parties got something out of this. ABC had the chance to get the ratings points it wanted. Humphries got the chance to lobby for an NBA job, which he no longer has probably for multiple reasons – marginal pro basketball skill and his sideshow life off the court. ABC picked up some audience and some buzz. Humphries got to show that he’s a real guy with a mom and a charitable foundation. All in all, that’s a win-win.

Happy Holidays to all of our friends and remember, request lines are always wide open.