If you’re scared, don’t expect Amazon Echo’s Alexa to be a calming voice of reason. She sounds a little different (and very spooky) in one of the new co-branded videos Amazon created to promote Spike TV’s new series, The Mist.
To market the show, which premieres tonight and is based on Stephen King’s 1980 novella (which was previously made into a 2007 movie), Spike partnered with Amazon to produce a pair of spots in which two different couples discussing the new series ask Alexa for assistance.
In the first video, as the man is trying to deny that he’s nervous about watching the show, he is startled when fog—or is it The Mist?—starts to roll in under their door. He asks Alexa for a weather report, and that’s when things get weird.
Alexa’s voice doesn’t change in the second video in which she’s asked to settle a bet between a different couple as to whether or not King wrote the original story for The Mist.
“The Mist is a huge priority for Spike, so we have been working for over eight months on this plan,” said Anhelo Reyes, svp of brand marketing and activations for Spike (which will be rebranded next year as Paramount Network). In a deal brokered by Spike’s media agency, Horizon Media, Amazon dreamed up custom branded spots that integrated Alexa.
“We really wanted to make sure that we could partner with something that was equally as important to them as The Mist is for us,” said Reyes. “They’re superfans of Stephen King themselves, so the idea, the scripts and the treatment reflect that.”
Alexa’s altered voice, which seems to be the first for a partnership, “was a big deal for us,” Reyes said. “That is an example of just how excited and invested the Amazon creative team was in this process, just as we were. They suggested it to really give it a feel that was more organic to the entire spot. And we were like, if you’re willing to do it, let’s go.”
With more than 455 scripted series expected to be released this year, Spike was looking for a distinctive marketing plan to help The Mist stand out in the “Peak TV” era. “We’re in the golden age of television and there’s so much amazing content out there,” Reyes said. “We want to make sure that we put the content front and center.”
The videos will appear on Spike’s digital and social platforms and across Amazon’s properties, including Amazon.com, Fire TV, Fire tablet, Amazon’s social pages and IMDb,
It’s the second time this week that ads play on Alexa’s voice. A parody spot earlier this week imagined Alexa being voiced by controversial InfoWars host Alex Jones.