Hopefully Eliot Ness Won't Trash This Bus Kiosk

Street-Level Promo for HBO's 'Boardwalk Empire'

By Published on .

The travails of municipal transportation authorities and their empty coffers has lead in recent years to a lot of cool, if often obtrusive advertising. You know the type, shrink-wrapped buses, or decals on subway windows. If you are a frequent rider of the shuttle between Times Square and Grand Central in Manhattan, as I once was, you've seen the S line frequently taken over by HBO, like when wrapped the interior of the cars in "Deadwood"-era decor. (As our editor Abbey Klaassen once put it, "Talk about immersing consumers in a brand.")

But New York's MTA isn't the only beneficiary of HBO's media buying. The cable network has made it to Chicago and is using the CTA's bus kiosks, including one just outside our Windy City bureau, to promote its new gangland series "Boardwalk Empire." It makes sense for HBO to play up the Martin Scorcese-helmed drama here: "Boardwalk Empire takes place during the Prohibition, and Chicago, after all, is where that history was writ large, courtesy Al Capone and Eliot Ness. The signage plays up the cases and barrels of illegal whiskey -- the types often seen in movies smashed by The Untouchables -- and smartly downplays that the series is set in Atlantic City (though "boardwalk" is a good giveaway).

You can read more about "Boardwalk Empire" here. Below are some pics of the promotion.




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