To engage fans of its new drama series “The Leftovers”, HBO contacted some fans that are especially active and engaging on Twitter to recruit them as ‘The Watchers’. Each of them received a special package containing series-related items. During the series’ run, ‘The Watchers’ regularly receive text messages and tasks that tie into the series’ plot and are encouraged to promote the campaign by using the hashtag #TheLeftovers.
— Jo Garfein (@jopinionated) July 8, 2014
The selected fans were first followed and contacted by the official “The Leftovers” Twitter account and asked for their address before receiving the package containing a personalized letter (including the fan’s Twitter handle), a pre-paid cell phone on which they receive the messages, a Zippo lighter with the words ‘Don’t Forget Me’ engraved on it, a ‘We are living reminders’ mini-poster as well as a file containing personal facts and the fan’s Twitter profile picture.
— The Leftovers (@TheLeftoversHBO) July 18, 2014
The package content is connected to plot points in the series. The Zippo lighter for example appears in episode four, “B.J. and the A.C.”, as a christmas gift from series character Jill to her mother Laurie Garvey. Laurie is a member of the Guilty Remnant (GR), an organization that was formed after The Sudden Departure. Members of the GR are self-proclaimed to be “Living Reminders of God’s Awesome Power, which also refers to the ‘We are living reminders’ mini-poster.
— Ben Rogers (@BenRogers) July 18, 2014
In the same episode, character Tommy is seen playing with a cell phone with a smiley face sticker on it, resembling the phone the fans found in the package. The mini-poster from the package appears in various episodes of the series. On the provided pre-paid cell phone, fans regularly receive cryptic and mysterious text messages they are encouraged to share on social media.
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