“Recipe for Seduction” is a Lifetime movie about KFC that makes you crave more than fried chicken. Or so the producers and advertisers hope. We’re not so certain about that, but we do know it has us thinking about making our own fried chicken from scratch.
It doesn’t really matter what your views are on anything—politics, pandemic, or patriarchy. We’re all the same in that we’re hungry for something else. Lifetime thinks it understands this need. And its response rides not just on a spicy secret but a secret recipe.
“Recipe for Seduction” is what Lifetime dubbed a 15-minute mini-movie made in partnership with Kentucky Fried Chicken about the lustful relationships surrounding a young Harland Sanders, the founder of the fried chicken chain, who finds himself in a battered web of jealousy and deep-fried deceit with the woman he desires, her fiancé, and her mother. Yes, 2020 continues to surprise.
Acted out with all the drama of a telenovela meets Saturday Night Live parody, “Recipe for Seduction” promises love, betrayal, and 11 herbs and spices. The brand collaboration, which airs at noon on Sunday, December 13th, promises to stir more than just your hot sauce in its trailer, though in a PG-13 sorta way. The family-size bucket of distraction features star power with Mario Lopez as the handsome and youngish (it’s all relative, sweetheart) Sanders. And let’s not forget Brad Doreck, who plays Billy Garibaldi III. He voiced Crackle (of the Rice Krispies) in 2007. Whether it inspires an actual SNL skit remains to be seen.
Yes, it’s hard to take this seriously. Type the title of the mini-movie into Google and you’ll find a lot of pre-release questions being asked. Among them, “Is this REAL?!” While a lot has seemed surreal this year, perhaps none so much as this.
And this bemused befuddlement is, apparently, the intention behind the collaboration. Well, that and sales. “Let’s face it, we could all use a little distraction this holiday season, so why not fill some of your time at home with a suspenseful drama and the comfort of our world-famous fried chicken?” said Andrea Zahumensky, KFC U.S. CMO. “‘A Recipe for Seduction’ is a perfect excuse to curl up at home and escape to your own happily ever after.”
Although Lifetime isn’t exactly famous for happily ever after. And no one understands the cloying drama of Lifetime like the network itself. “Through a terrific cast, and with a wink to the unique sensibilities celebrated in Lifetime movies, this co-production spotlights each brand’s POV and marries them in a fun and authentic way,” said David DeSocio, EVP, Ad Sales Marketing & Partnerships, A+E Networks. Unique sensibilities indeed.
Maybe all of us could use the warm, smothering embrace of implausible sexual tension and sprayed-on hair. And what else? Wet-naps to help clean up after the raw emotion of love?
Or maybe the real seduction here isn’t the distraction of a lusty plot but the inexorable lure of fried chicken that underlies the plot. You know what we mean. A peppery coating that falls away with the merest of tugs and gives way to tender, juicy chicken, whether consumed hot or tepid. And for that, you don’t need Lifetime. Or KFC. You just need a few ingredients and a little time. And we’ve all got a lot of the latter. Consider it a distraction of a more sophisticated sigh-inducing sort. While any comfort found in fried chicken still can’t change the last several months or our current situation, it can at least satisfy us in a different sort of way. A less warped way. And maybe, just maybe, that helps us show up a little differently to whatever our current situation.
“Recipe for Seduction” will appear on Lifetime at noon EST on Sunday, December 13th.