Archive for October, 2012

HSN’s Universal Vault Hitchcock Jewelry Is For ‘The Birds’

October 31, 2012

Are we the only folks to find this a little disturbing?

Perhaps appropriately tomorrow, on Halloween, HSN will be presenting Universal Vault Jewelry: Hitchcock. This is billed as “jewelry inspired by iconic movies starring Hollywood’s most glamorous women.”

This collection includes a raven black crystal brooch, a gold bird ring and a feather stone brooch. Birds and Hitchcock? We wonder what movie this is referencing?

Of course, it is “The Birds,” a Hitchcock horror classic where these winged creatures all of a sudden, without explanation, start attacking people. This includes plucking Suzanne Pleshette’s eyes out, in a scene that in its day was terribly shocking. This was before gore porn films like “Saw,” remember.

And HSN is doing jewelry based on animals that are killers in this movie?

This jewelry line is particularly galling to us because we just watched the HBO movie “The Girl,” which is actress Tippi Hedren’s story about how a repulsive Hitchcock kept sexually harassing her during the shooting of “The Birds” and “Marnie.” He recites some disgusting off-color limericks to her that if he had ever said to a Jersey girl like us, we would have knocked him on his fat ass.

And, according to the film, REAL live birds were thrown at Hedren, two days on end, in a scene where she opens up a door and is attacked and bloodied by this monsters. Hedren claims that the sadistic director had led her to believe that mechanical birds would be used in the scene.

So how about an HSN pin with a bird holding one of Pleshette’s eyeballs in its beak?

Raspy Rocker Rod Stewart, With Juicy Book, Back On HSN Live Tonight

October 26, 2012

Raspy rocker Rod Stewart — he of the “haystack hair,” as The Daily News put it — will be performing live on HSN tonight to pitch his new Christmas CD.

We suspect he will also manage to plug his new book, named simply “Rod: The Autobiography.” The Big Apple tabloid the Daily News’s music writer, Jim Farber, did a lively review of the book this week.

It appears that Stewart, who was very charming and engaging during his last appearance on HSN, is also charming, funny and self-deprecating in his book. There’s also some good dish.

Stewart writes about being chased by female raspy singer Janis Joplin, who he claims he was “terrified of.” He discusses his philandering.

He says he turned down a chance to have his manhood added to the collection of Plaster Caster’s molds of rock star penises. Stewart got a gander at how large Jimi Hendrix’s “cast” was, and didn’t think he stacked up.

And perhaps most incredibly, Stewart addresses the almost mythic story about him: That “about a quart of a certain bodily fluid … somehow found it’s way into his stomach,” as Farber out it.

According to Stewart, that was a groundless rumor started by a PR guy that he fired.

Sound like good reading.

HSN Starts Hunt For ‘Next Big Idea’ In Promotion With Seth Rogen Film

October 26, 2012

HSN has cooked up another promotion linked to a new movie, this time with Seth Rogen’s “The Guilt Trip.” Our fellow Taurus Barbra Streisand is also in it.

In the flick Rogen plays a struggling inventor traveling across the country to sell his product, and the deal is that HSN going to to conduct a nationwide search “for the next big idea,” it announced Thursday. The home shopping network is partnering with Paramount Pictures, part of nutty Sumner Redstone’s realm, and “online inventor community” Edison Nation, so were are told.

Coming Christmas Day

Aspiring inventors are invited to attend an open call at Paramount’s Hollywood studios on Nov. 17 or submit their ideas online at

“Long established as a launching pad for entrepreneurs, HSN will give one inventor the chance of a lifetime – to present their product at HSN,” the press release says.

“Once again, HSN proves to be an innovator in creativity and programming with this incredible tie-in to the film,” LeeAnne Stables, President of Consumer Products for Paramount Pictures and head of global marketing partnerships for the studio, said in a canned statement. “Creating an opportunity for inventors nationwide to have a chance to appear on HSN is a fantastic compliment to the storyline of an inventor on a cross-country road trip with his mother (played by Barbra Streisand) to pitch his product.”

Following the online search and at the live event, Edison Nation’s team of product experts will review the submissions and present the top concepts to HSN on Dec. 4. A panel of judges will select the final product and the inventor will have the opportunity to appear live on HSN during the primetime “The Guilt Trip” Event on Dec. 23 (Jeez, Christmas is coming) to share his or her inventing experience.

Their item will be sold at HSN next year.

“HSN has always been an incubator for bold and creative entrepreneurs,” our buddy Bill Brand, HSN’s executive vice president of programming, marketing and business development said. “Their passion, dedication and vision have greatly contributed to HSN’s success today. We are thrilled to be involved in this heart-warming, hilarious film and look forward to working closely with Paramount and Edison Nation to discover the next ‘big idea’.”

Got a product you want to pitch? You can show up at Paramount’s lot Nov. 17. Inventors are encouraged to preregister for the live event online at in order to be guaranteed a spot in the prescreening product review.

Or go to Edison Nation ( now through Nov. 12 to submit ideas. It is free to join Edison Nation and costs $25 (mmmmmmmmm) to submit an idea, which covers a portion of the cost the company incurs to review all ideas.

Here’s the boilerplate on “The Guilt Trip.”

“The Guilt Trip” stars Rogen as Andy Brewster, an inventor about to embark on the road trip of a lifetime, and who better to accompany him than his overbearing mother Joyce, played by Barbra Streisand. After deciding to start his adventure with a quick visit at mom’s, Andy is guilted into bringing her along for the ride.

Across 3,000 miles of ever-changing landscape, he is constantly aggravated by her antics, but over time he comes to realize that their lives have more in common than he originally thought. His mother’s advice might end up being exactly what he needs. “The Guilt Trip” is directed by Anne Fletcher, written by Dan Fogelman and produced by Lorne Michaels, John Goldwyn and Evan Goldberg.

The movie opens Christmas Day.

HSN is also creating a week-long programming event tied to the opening of the film. “The Guilt Trip” Week, which runs Dec. 17 through 25 on HSN, is a celebration of independent inventors and ingenious products that gives customers an inside look at the multichannel retailer and the product creation process of some of the most popular brands and must-have products from HSN.

QVC And Susan Graver, Give Customer A Refund On Her Crappy Full Metal Jacket

October 20, 2012

A while back we were contacted by Carol Connell, who had a beef with QVC’s in-house fashion designer Susan Graver.

“Quite awhile ago I bought a pewter color metallic jacket from Susan Graver,” Connell wrote. “Even though I knew it would be too small. I loved the jacket and finally lost enough weight to wear it. The first and only time I wore it I was mortified because when I stood up it had shedded metallic all over the seat and left shed marks on the jacket. I think I should be compensated for this.”

Susan Graver

Well, we were remiss in that we never tried to contact QVC about this, which apparently got Connell a little peeved at us. She posted this about a week ago.

“QVC referred me to Susan Graver.” Connell wrote. “Can’t reach her. Obviously you can’t help me either so I will chalk it up to a bad experience and probably won’t order from her anymore. I can’t remember who referred me to you or how I got you.”

Well, we don’t know who referred us to you either, Carol.

But if QVC and Graver are really customer-friendly, why aren’t they helping out Carol? They’d gain a lot of good will by just refunding her the cost of that crappy metallic jacket.

Joy Mangano Wanna-Be Lori Greiner Talks About ‘Shark Tank’

October 20, 2012

Last week we caught QVC invention guru Lori Greiner on “Shark Tank” for the first time over at our mom’s house, and we were rather shocked at what a hard-ass she is on the show.

Surrounded by testosterone-laden business men, Greiner had dropped the sweetpea persona she has on QVC. Her hair was harshly slicked back and was giving the boys, including Mark Cuban, as good as they were giving.

We once met Cuban when we were covering the cable industry, and he looked hot in a tight T-shirt and jeans. That was years ago, and we will never forgot it. He was very nice to us, but on “Shark Tank” he was very dismissive of Greiner and her interest in supporting a father and son trying to get traction for a vitamin supplement that you spray into your mouth.

Then lo and behold, The New York Times did a Q-and-A with Greiner about her stint on “Shark Tank.” The headline was “The Queen of QVC Talks About The Risks of Dealing with Sharks.” Note to The Times: No one calls Greiner the Queen of QVC.

As any home shopping aficionado knows, Greiner is QVC’s counterpart to HSN’s Joy Mangano. Both are female inventors, but quite frankly, we don’t think Greiner will ever outdo Mangano’s Huggable Hangers.

In the interview, Greiner claimed that her Reader Rest, a magnetic glasses holder, has been the most successful product in “Shark Tank’s” history. It has sold 3 million units.

Nothing particularly illuminating in the story otherwise.

QVC’s Parent Liberty Interactive To Report Third-Quarter Earnings Nov. 6

October 16, 2012

QVC’s parent, Liberty Interactive Corp., will release its third-quarter earnings Nov. 6 at 11:00 a.m.,the home shopping network said Monday.

Greg Maffei, Liberty Interactive’s President and CEO, will host the call. During the call, Maffei will discuss the company’s financial performance.

Call Premiere Conferencing at (888) 455-2265 or (719) 457-2703 at least 10 minutes prior to the call.

Replays of the conference call can be accessed through 1 p.m. on Nov. 13 by dialing (888) 203-1112 or (719) 457-0820 plus the passcode 7834540#.

In addition, the third-quarter earnings conference call will be broadcast live via the Internet.

All interested participants should visit the Liberty Interactive website at to register for the webcast. Links to the press release and replays of the call will also be available on the Liberty Interactive website. The conference call and related materials will be archived on the website for one year.

ShopNBC’s New Chief Operating Officer Will Pocket $420,000 Base Salary

October 14, 2012

ShopNBC has promoted QVC alum Carol Steinberg, raising her base salary to $420,000 a year. That’s not chump change, folks.

Steinberg, 52, as of Oct. 8 was named the home shopping channel’s chief operating officer, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Previously, she served as the company’s executive vice president of Internet, marketing & human resources since June 2011.

Steinberg joined ShopNBC as senior vice president of e-Commerce, marketing and business development in June 2009.

Prior to joining the home shopping network, Steinberg was vice president at David’s Bridal from September 2006 to June 2009, where she expanded its Internet presence by designing and implementing marketing and merchandising strategies that drove traffic in store and online.

Prior to that position, Steinberg spent 12 years at QVC from July 1994 to September 2006, most recently having served as the director of online marketing and business development.

In connection with the promotion, ShopNBC’s board approved an increase to Steinberg’s annualized base salary to $420,000 and an increase to her target bonus opportunity equal to 65 percent of her base salary. She will also receive 30,000 shares of restricted stock, which will vest in equal installments over a two-year period.

QVC Does Damage Control On ‘Today Show’ With Fainting Guest Defending Dan Hughes

October 12, 2012

QVC did some damage control Thursday over the fainting-guest incident, which went viral this week.

Cassie Shane appeared on “The Today Show” to defend the honor of QVC host Dan Hughes. On Sunday, in a very disturbing scene to watch, Shane was pitching a children’s tablet on QVC when she suddenly clutched her chest and fell toward Hughes.

The camera went to a close up of Hughes, who kept selling the product. No one ever explained what happened to Shane.

Shane told Lauer that she has three young kids, shoe was up the night before one of them, and she hadn’t eaten before the show. She said fainted, which is something you never heard from QVC on Sunday. What the audience didn’t see was that two medics were helping Shane off-camera, she said.

“I feel really good,” she said on the morning news show. “I went to see the doctor and I’m OK.”

She defended Hughes, claiming she was the one who told him to keep selling. She added that he was one of her good friends.

“He did the best he could,” Shane said. “I think people think he was stepping over my body.”

That’s not the point. QVC should have done viewers the courtesy of explaining what happened to Shane, rather than pretending nothing happened. Shane said she hadn’t watched the clip herself because her husband, her family, told her not to.

“My mother and sister saw it, and they were crying,” she said.

QVC viewers were also upset, and the home shopping network should have given them an explanation of what happened.

QVC’s Official Word On Guy Fieri, Whose Pots Feature Art By His Tattoo Artist

October 11, 2012

We wrote this last week, but here is QVC’s official press release on Guy Fieri.

Guy Fieri Takes His Rock ‘N’ Roll Cooking Style On The Road To QVC
The “Culinary Rock Star” is Scheduled to Offer His New Cookware Collection Through the Multimedia Retailer

WEST CHESTER, Pa. (October 8, 2012) – Celebrity Chef and Restaurateur Guy Fieri is firing up his cooking skill for, yet another, broadcast audience as the “culinary rock star” is scheduled to make his QVC debut on Wednesday, October 10 at 5 PM (ET).

During this exciting show, Fieri will share his culinary vision with viewers through an electrifying appearance, complete with cooking demonstrations featuring his line of professional-quality Guy Fieri cookware. Fieri is also scheduled to appear during QVC’s popular cooking and dining program “In the Kitchen with David®,” hosted by Program Host David Venable, at 8 PM (ET).

Guy Fieri and his ink

“We are thrilled to invite Guy to the QVC family to provide shoppers with an inside look behind his latest project,” said Doug Howe, executive vice president of merchandising, planning and sales for QVC. “His new cookware is not only functional but it is decorated with distinctive designs representative of his dynamic personality, which is surely unlike anything we have ever offered.”

Known for his fired-up approach to full-flavored food, Fieri combined function with his signature style to create Guy Fieri cookware. The high-performance assortment available through QVC includes various non-stick and hard anodized aluminum products with easy-care characteristics and specially designed handles. For a touch of individuality, the Decorated Skillets feature artwork from Fieri’s personal tattoo artist Joe Leonard. The Antimicrobial Cutting Boards and Stainless Steel Locking Tongs round out the assortment, which ranges in price from approximately $19.00 to $160.00.

“After dedicating many months to the development of my new cookware, I am stoked to now have the opportunity to share select pieces with QVC shoppers,” says Fieri. “My hope is to shake things up in the kitchen with every home cook in the country.”

This Is Scary: HSN To Report Third-Quarter Earnings On Halloween

October 11, 2012

HSN will release its third-quarter results on Oct. 31, which is not only Halloween but also our Uncle Tommy’s birthday.

HSN will report its earning at 8 a.m., before the market opens, the home shopping network said Wednesday. Chief Executive Officer Mindy Grossman and Judy Schmeling, executive vice president and chief financial officer, will hold a conference call at 9 a.m. to review these results.

Those interested in participating in the conference call should dial 877-307-0246 or 224-357-2394 at least five minutes prior to the call. There will also be a simultaneous audio webcast available via the company’s website at

A replay of the conference call can be accessed until Nov. 14 by dialing 800-585-8367 or 404-537-3406, plus the pass-code 38334674 and will also be hosted on the company’s website for a limited time.