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Play along with `Heroes'

Just for fun, NBC threw in a website with cryptic leads for viewers to puzzle with.

January 24, 2007|Choire Sicha | Special to The Times

Not once but twice, NBC flashed a Web address for Primatechpaper.com during Episode 12 of "Heroes," the show's first episode after a winter break.

The address was conspicuously printed on the business card for Mr. Bennet's front operation, a paper supply company. Mr. Bennet, a.k.a. "Horn-Rimmed Glasses," is the possibly evil dude who searches out the superhuman "heroes" and employs a mind-wiper. And he is the apparently adoptive father of Claire, the highly saveable -- yet magically indestructible! -- cheerleader.

A quick check of the domain-registrar search service revealed that the registrant of the site is, unsurprisingly, the General Electric Co. of Fairfield, Conn. It was procured in October 2006.

Visitors to the Primatechpaper.com website received the suggestion that they call a toll-free number or send a text message. Those who did so received a code that, when entered on the site, provided a job application form and an evaluative questionnaire. After submitting that information -- including phone number, address, e-mail, age and cell provider -- a text message confirmation was sent with promises of contact in about a week.

And there the trail of this digital to-do, for now, went cold.

In November, Primatechpaper.org was purchased under the name "Clayburn Griffin." It contains a blog with two posts, a few pages and some -- sensible! -- Google ads. GE does not appear to be involved in this one.

Internet citizens also snapped up Primetechpaper .com, a site that, on the night the NBC website was unveiled, hosted a chat interface quickly (and temporarily) filled with spam links that, when clicked, caused the viewer's browser to go nuts and one's computer to play a loud message that said, "Hey everyone, I'm looking at gay porno!"

Later that night, that site changed to read "Heroes? Justin Radcliffe yah hurd?" and linked to yet another site where confused URL mis-typers posted messages such as: "how is Primetechpaper.com related to this and to the show heroes?"

By Tuesday morning the site contained just an aerial view of Manhattan and a link to the Primatechpaper.com site.

Both NBC.com and the "official/unofficial" 9thwonders.com "Heroes" message boards were buzzing nicely. On the front page of its site, NBC promised to deliver "Heroes" "in a whole new way" to satisfy viewers, whether they craved delivery online, mobile or, for the television-owning old-fashioned types, "on-air."

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