The mind behind weekend Los Angeles sensation Dumb Starbucks came forward today, and it's comedian/prankster/Canadian Nathan Fielder, best known as the star of Comedy Central's Nathan for You.
It's Nathan. pic.twitter.com/yjkYGrrL2e— Lacey Donohue (@laceydonohue) February 11, 2014
Dumb Starbucks opened in LA's Los Feliz neighborhood over the weekend, and it was an exact copy of the real Starbucks except that it had the word "dumb" in front of everything, from the drink options to the CDs by the register. The real Starbucks was none too pleased, noting that its name is a "protected trademark."
Dumb Starbucks claimed it had gotten around those rules because it was a parody art project and thus "fair use," though Gawker pointed out that those laws may not apply in this case. It remains to be seen if Starbucks will pursue legal action now that all has been revealed.
That Fielder was behind everything wasn't much of a surprise (although this guy thought it was the work of Jimmy Kimmel). People associated with the production company behind his show, Abso Lutely Productions, were among the first to tweet about it, and the AP discovered that film permits had been taken out for the location by the same company.
Fielder told reporters that Comedy Central didn't know anything about the prank and that he plans to open a second location in Brooklyn. In an above video, Fielder claimed that this is not a prank, but "a real business I plan to get rich from." Sure.
He added that the health department was trying to stop him from serving more coffee, which is probably a good thing. Most reviews said it was terrible.
Update, 9:33 p.m.: Oops.
THIS JUST IN: Dumb Starbucks in Silver Lake shut down by health department. pic.twitter.com/YFzz15cimh— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) February 11, 2014
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.