Looking beyond Beyonce

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J.Lo, Martha Stewart and Hillary Clinton have something in common. They all fell into the passe bin, according to trendsetters who responded to Advertising Age's second Pop Culture Survey.

Conducted by Lightspeed Research, an independent research company, this year's poll drew on the opinions of 503 trendsetters, consisting of Ad Age readers as well as an outside consumer panel.

"Coupling," the British import sitcom that's one of the brightest stars in NBC's fall lineup, cinched the No. 1 spot among new TV shows viewers are most likely to watch, with 29.9% of people voting for the new show.

It was followed closely by another NBC offering, Jimmy Caan's drama "Las Vegas" (26.3%).

`straight guy'

The only reality show that came close to having a solid following was "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy," with 20.7% of people confessing they were hooked on the Bravo program.

Write-in votes for hot shows came for programs like Showtime's new dark comedy "Dead Like Me," the Web-adapted show the "Smoking Gun TV," and the already successful "Trading Spaces" and "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation." Swooping to the top of the book category was "Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix" by J.K. Rowling, with 70.7% approval. In comparison, "Living History" by Hillary Clinton sank to near the bottom of the list, with only 29.7% saying it was a must-read. In between came selections including "Kate Remembered: A Katharine Hepburn Biography" by A. Scott Berg (49.1%) and "The Kennedy Curse: Why America's First Family Has Been Haunted by Tragedy for 150 Years" by Edward Klein (43.85%).

Gorging on celebrity worship seemed to respondents' liking, with People winning the No. 1 spot, followed by laddie book Maxim. Martha Stewart Living was second to last on the list with more than 90% of respondents saying the domestic queen's namesake publication was out.

Respondents offered a variety of their own reading material, ranging from Random House's mystery "The DaVinci Code" to the magazine Radar.

When offered a plethora of high-tech gadgets to rank, respondents voted plasma TVs as the coolest tech toy (81.9%).

In the arguably more fickle category of fashion, Manolo Blahnik shoes reigned supreme with 49.9% of women voting for the brand, followed closely by Gap's new line modeled by Madonna and Missy Elliott (45%), and Marc Jacobs (43%). Just 13% of women considered J.LO's Glow fragrance hip. Respondents offered a closet full of their own picks such as Jane Fox handbags.

The diversity of opinions came through in respondents' general predictions: "Tour de France training for kids" and "organic lifestyle, not just food," chimed in a brand strategy consultant from San Francisco.

And don't say you weren't warned: A designer from Chicago cautioned, "Look for a backlash against low-riding pants as more obese attempt this look."

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