Camel Creates Line of Non-Ironic Hipster Cigarettes

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Two hipsters smoke cigarettes, which probably rolled themselves.

Jeaneen Lund

But they probably knew about this news ages ago.

In an admirably naked demographic power-grab, R.J. Reynolds (manufacturers of Camel cigarettes) have launched a special “Williamsburg” version of its Camel Blues, named after the Brooklyn neighborhood that’s the epicenter of the East Coast hipster subculture.

Camel’s website describes the neighborhood in floridly self-dramatizing tones that would be sure to turn off any actual hipsters. (Or is romanticism in again? We havent checked.)

It’s not about hip, it’s about breaking free. It’s about last call, a sloppy kiss goodbye and a solo saunter to a rock show in an abandoned building.

(As people who spend the occasional night out in W-burg, we have to say, we’re disappointed: NewsFeed has never done any of those things when we’re in the neighborhood. We need better friends, we guess.)

The temporary re-branding is part of a 10-week promotion that will redesign boxes of Camel Blue to feature 10 of America’s hippest locales, such as The Haight (over it), Seattle (so 20 years ago) and Austin (who are you, Richard Linklater?) It has already drawn fire from local officials, like New York City Councilman Steve Levin, whose district includes the neighborhood:

I don’t like to see a promotion targeting a neighborhood that I represent. Look at the history of cigarette advertising. Cigarettes are very dangerous, and I don’t like to see an ad campaign which is trying to get more people to smoke in my district.

In NewsFeed’s experience, Levin has nothing to worry about. The Williamsburgers we know wouldn’t be caught dead smoking Williamsburg-brand cigarettes — that would be so cheesy. But wait. What if they start smoking them ironically? (via the Brooklyn Paper)