Tuesday, July 7, 2009
"Jack Heights" making a comeback
From the NY Times:
The bloggers deemed him “a pregnant Mr. Peanut” and the whole business was quickly forgotten.
But Michael P. Carfagna, who created the character as a vehicle for MPC Properties, his Jackson Heights-based real estate brokerage firm, was not prepared to give up on a potentially profitable spokesman.
This summer, Jack Heights has re-emerged as the star of a neighborhood-themed comic strip, to appear on a locally distributed map of Jackson Heights businesses. He received a sprucing-up, courtesy of a local cartoonist. And plans call for tie-ins like T-shirts, hats and buttons.
“We may actually have a Jack Heights man running around,” Mr. Carfagna said in a recent interview, adding, “I’m the only one I know of who has a trademark in a neighborhood.”
The revamped Mr. Heights has grown cherubic cheeks, sprouted a bushy mustache, and gained a button nose and a skinny necktie. (Fingers, alas, are still AWOL.) He sports two-tone spats and cuffs on his sleeves. And he has a lot of nice things to say about his namesake neighborhood.
“We have some of the best food in New York City!” Mr. Heights exclaims in one panel. “We have gorgeous, prewar buildings with communal gardens. ... Oh, and we’re 12 minutes from Midtown Manhattan!”
That's stretching it just a bit. A mascot with scoliosis... hmmm.