Annals of weird promotion: ABC's 'Sam I Am'

Applegate_samiam_240 If you've been watching ABC any in the final days of the season, you've probably seen a few promos for the new show Sam I Am, which debuts in the fall.

You'd be forgiven, though, if you're not sure which show that is, because the network hasn't gotten around to telling you that that's the name of the show.

I get what the promo folks are doing, since the show is about Christina Applegate's character having retrograde amnesia. So they're selling the premise, albeit in an overly cutesy way.

The voice-over in the ads goes something like, "Christina Applegate is starring in a new comedy this fall ... but she can't remember what it's called." (Clip of Applegate saying, "I have amnesia!," taken from this scene.) Narrator: "But that's OK -- as long as she remembers that it's on ABC." The final image is of a big question mark.

So, OK: ABC, Christina Applegate, comedy. Those are some pretty key elements in getting people to be aware of the show. And I know it's a good four months before the show premieres, and the show is airing after Dancing with the Stars so a fair number people will probably watch anyway. And I understand that a team of professionals works on these things.

But if you're trying to build awareness of a show, wouldn't the most important part of that campaign be, you know, the show's name?

I find the promo a little off-putting, which is a bit of a shame -- I haven't seen the complete Sam I Am pilot yet, but the full-length trailer ABC has up looks kind of charming. I hope ABC will start to use the title (once again, that's Sam I Am) in promos soon.