Brawny Schools Unmanly Men

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Brawny "Brawny Academy"
Cross one more fantasy off the list. Brawny's plaid-clad fantasy man has satisfied yet another feminine desire with the opening of Brawny Academy, an institution of manly learning designed to turn bums into gentlemen over the course of an eight-part online reality show. "Women are busy," says Fallon copywriter Alisa Sengel Wixom. "An online based show allows them to watch on their own time. And because the episodes average 10-15 minutes—half as long as a regular television show—it's like instant gratification entertainment."

The gratification will certainly be felt by the wives and girlfriends of the show's eight bumbling contestants, hand-picked by a reality show casting director from among the laziest guys in Dallas, Boston and Chicago. In fact, the production process for Brawny Academy boasts many similarities to the real-life dramas now playing on your television screen. "It was exactly the same as a network reality show shoot, using all the traditional methods, including crew, casting and quality of production value," says art director Kris Wixom, "but there were fewer cameras, and it was shot over a two week period as opposed to two months."

Having already established a solid interactive reputation for Brawny with last year's "Innocent Escapes" website, Fallon was up to the challenge of pushing the digital envelope. "We didn't necessarily set out to do an interactive campaign, but the idea needed a bigger platform than traditional media could provide," says Wixom. "That left us with either doing this as an online show or with trying to get a TV network to buy in. The fact that 'Innocent Escapes' was so successful gave us the confidence that an online show would work, and by going the online route, we were able to maintain a much higher level of control over the show and character."

The first webisode—which introduced the Brawny Man host, chronicled the arrival of the unwitting contestants and eased them into the first set of man-lessons and man-challenges—is currently live, with the second installment due on June 26.
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