November 11, 2009: Two of the NFL's outspoken "bad boys" — Chad Ochocinco and Terrell Owens — are facing off to see which one is the baddest and has the thickest shell when it comes to taking criticism. Not on the field, but via a humorous campaign for Unilever's Klondike coated ice cream squares and bars, the "Ocho-TO Thicker Shell Face-Off."
Ochocinco, who plays for the Cincinnati Bengals, and Owens, a member of the Buffalo Bills, will take turns "roasting" each other at the Klondike Facebook Fan Page. The roast will take place over a two-week period: Starting Nov. 11, Ochocinco will take shots at Owens for a week with "lighthearted messages to test the thickness of Owens' shell." Beginning Nov. 18, Owens gets to lightly roast Ochocinco. During their respective roasting periods, Owens and Ochocinco will have an opportunity to respond to each other. The campaign also will encompass Twitter and Klondike's Web site.
The purpose is to support the fact that "six of the Klondike stickless bars now have a thicker chocolatey shell . . . with 25 percent more chocolatey coating!" The campaign plays off of the brand's long-time tag, "What would you do for a Klondike bar?" Here, it becomes, "What would you say for a Klondike bar?"
Unilever is not an official NFL partner, so there will be no images of NFL, Bengals or Bills logos or uniforms.
Among Ochocinco's early jabs at Owens: "I saw you wearing your Halloween costume on TV. Oh, wait, that was just your outfit for the press conference." And, "Watched your reality show this summer, The TO Show. Seemed more like one of those dating shows to me with the number of girls comin' in and out of that house."
Consumers are encouraged to submit their own "roasts" that may or may not be posted at the official site. However, at another Facebook site that is not censored by Unilever or Klondike, people already have posted their own comments, including: "Wow. I used to love Klondike. Why pick the two biggest idiots in the NFL?" And "This would seem a commercial nightmare to me if I was PR in this company." However, not all the comments were negative: "I'm by no means a fan of either of these guys, but this is funny. Lighten up, people!" And "Give [T.O.] a break. He's misunderstood."
"The 'interesting one' is very pleased to be working with Klondike," Ochocinco, who in 2008 legally changed his name from Johnson to his uniform number, said in a statement. "I can eat ice cream, embarrass TO and perfect my craft all at the same time . . . while still looking good. POW!"
Replied Owens, "I'm excited for this opportunity to slam my friend Chad. What would you do for a Klondike bar? How about what wouldn't Ochocinco do for attention?"