Superbowl Halftime Show - Doubts!

Superbowl Prank - page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7

Not long after John Hargrave posted the video for the "Super Stunt", Jim wrote. He and I exchanged a few emails below. His letters are shown here in blue text.

I admit that my replies were designed to draw him out a little, because I was enjoying hearing his point of view, and I expected to be able to crush his doubts with overwhelming evidence.

At this point, I'm going to assume that the "prank" is on the reader, and none of this ever happened.

The other alternative is that you and others spent $40,000, risked felony convictions, many years in prison without your children, causing an unprecedented terror-scare, shutting down the Superbowl, and/or having the crap kicked out of you... all to create some unreadable blue letters that no one ever saw on TV -- to publicize a book.

Which would make you all among the stupidest and most vile humans alive.

Because I enjoy your site, I'm going with the first option.

-Jim

What is the felony?

-Rob

If someone's actions cause a building/stadium to be evacuated, that is a felony. 

The lack of photos, both in quantity and quality, is a bit of a giveaway.

If y'all spent 40K on a prank, there would be video, audio, tons of stillshots, etc. You'd have a documentary of the whole event!

My advice: Try to photoshop some more stuff for future installments.

 

Rob,

I checked back at your site, and Zug, a few times since the fake Superbowl prank to see if you'd ever try to put up more evidence... and I gotta tell you, that video is disastrous. It is essentially conclusive proof that the stunt never happened. 

$40K on a stunt, and the only record of it is a couple brief video shots of people yakking in a hotel room
and on some bleachers? Plus stacking boxes in some anonymous warehouse? Lord God Almighty.

I assume that the "prank" has achieved some of its goals -- advertising the book -- but there's lots of room for improvement. 

I do admire the idea of the fake prank, but... yeeesh.

Hi.
It actually isn't fake.

I took a ton of photos, but if I showed one of them to you, you would probably just think I photoshopped it.
Tell you what, tell me what you would like to see a picture of, and I'll send it to you asap. I only have the pictures from my camera.

-Rob

Hi Rob,

Sounds like I touched a nerve. My apologies, I did not mean to. I am a HUGE fan of your site, and Zug's site too.

And I wasn't trying to rip you (two). In my opinion, the fake-prank I have outlined is actually FAR more impressive than the "real" prank in your video.

I simply thought your execution was weak. Probably good enough to fool enough people to promote a book, but not enough to stand scrutiny. 

To wit: 
  • There is no way in God's Green Earth that a single person would be allowed to transport a couple hundred boxes around a Convention Site without a union card. If the convention is THE SUPER BOWL??? God help us. I assure you that no one was allowed to carry a paper clip ten feet in that building without a union person interfering. Not to mention the issues with even dropping stuff off in the first place. And this has nothing to do with "security" which would be a whole 'nother layer of anguish.
  •  In short, if you're dropping $40K on a prank -- not to mention it being the BIGGEST PRANK OF ALL TIME -- you'd probably hire a wedding-videographer-level person to tape it, so that the tape would live on even if the prank failed. Which it "did." But the tape shows brief clips of people citing brief rehearsed lines in a hotel room... briefly.

Believe it or not, I'm actually trying to help.

Had you done this properly, there would have been:

  • Video of the "assembly line" with all the packs being assembled... instead, John just wrote about retards for a few laughs
  • Video of John on the phone talking to people at the Super Bowl, trying to rig things
  • Clips of John being excited as things were starting to come together
  • Audio of John explaining the prank for the first time, over the phone, to people like you
  • More stillshots of things like press passes, airline tickets, etc.
  • TONS more video of getting into the superbowl, including simple audio of what is was like to talk to the first guard you spoke with, etc. Hidden microphones, hidden video, whatever.
  • Obviously, the same thing for handing out the packs at the game. Hidden video/audio. 
  • A postmortem of everything.

AGAIN: I love you guys, and I appreciate your sticking to your story. I am seriously trying to help. In fact, for future projects, I even offer my assistance as a fully-grown-up electrical/computer engineer living outside XXXXXXX. This stuff cracks me up. 

This prank could have been excellent, but fell short.

 
Jim:

It's awesome that we have created an event so unbelievable that people are not willing to believe it. 

But I can assure you that it's true.

A close examination of the video will show too many details to fake (photos of guys at the Super Bowl, me standing next to the Six Feet Under guy with the light, etc.) It would simply be more expensive to fake than to do for real.

Thanks for writing,
John Hargrave

 


I love ya John, but now you're just insulting me. And how could you insult a stranger on the internet? How could you? :)

I can appreciate that one or more of you had SB tickets, and you got brief videoshots of a person or two with a box on the staircases. And I can see that you all got together in a hotel in some warm locale, possibly Florida. And you loaded some cardboard onto some shelving while someone had an "Event Staff" shirt on nearby.

Total expenses: I dunno. But about a hundred times less than $40K.

I'm here to help. You can do better -- much better.

Jim

Ah, it sounds like you are a movie maker.

Keep in mind that John and I are pranksters, not movie makers, so we aren't as tuned in to what shots have to be in a production than that. I took a bunch of stills, because that is how I present things on my site.

Well, you sound like you have some good points. I know the shipping and drayage situation at conventions is tightly controlled, but it isn't that way at the Superbowl. And if we had needed a union card, we would have had fake union cards.

I've included two photos.

-Rob

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Hi Rob,

Nice of you to reply (and send photos), I was not expecting it.

But there's no need to send me stuff to "convince" me this thing happened. It's obvious to me it didn't. Two photos of garbage heaps and a man in a poncho are not evidence to the contrary, and MOST IMPORTANTLY, it should not matter what I think. 

All that matters is whether the prank WORKS, and as clever as this prank was to begin with, I suspect your execution was severely rushed and it suffered. I suspect y'all had some SB tickets, but photos of people at the SB doing nothing of particular interest are not compelling.

Again -- it doesn't much matter. The fake prank is probably generating some buzz, and getting some book buzz. More power to you. But I think this could have been done better.

And.. that's it. He didn't want to be convinced, and I wasn't sure what else I could do to prove my position, or if I even wanted to.

It is kind of exciting to have done something that is perceived to be TOO CRAZY TO HAVE ACTUALLY HAPPENED.

Superbowl Prank - page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7  

John also describes this prank on zug.com.
Super Bowl Prank - The Video (on Revver).

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