Tonight's 'Cougar Town' episode will be streaming online as a clickable Target ad


As if product placement in TV shows didn't already stand out enough, tonight's episode of Cougar Town is about to make its sponsor's stuff impossible to miss. Through a deal with Target, TBS' unfortunately named sitcom will be simultaneously broadcast on TV and streamed online, where viewers will be able to mouse over select products to learn more about them. Doing so will pause the show and — naturally — display an easy way for viewers to buy what they're looking at.

An entire plot line will revolve around a Target shopping spree

According to The New York Times, over two dozen products will be featured as part of a plot line that has two characters redecorating an apartment after a Target shopping spree. Whenever Target's items are shown on screen, a flashing red plus sign will appear beside them, signaling that they can be selected. The product integration is already being featured online in a behind-the-scenes video, which shows how Target's products — including a rug, a lamp, and some wall art — will look on set. The Times reports that the full episode will be streaming with the integration from tonight through April 15th. It appears that the oversized bottles of wine that Cougar Town's characters are usually drinking from will not be included in the promotion.

More than a few apps and services have attempted to make shopping like this a reality, letting TV viewers immediately identify what actors are wearing or determine where they can buy the products that they're seeing. That's obviously an ambitious and difficult task without working closely with studios, which Target is doing here for this one-off promotion. If its successful though, it's likely to only increase companies' resolve that this could be a key way to shop down the road — but for now, the integration is just distracting.

The Verge
Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new Verge username and password

As part of the new Verge launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to Verge going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new Verge username and password

As part of the new Verge launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to Verge going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.



Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.