JCPenney’s ‘Hitler’ Teakettle Sells Out Online

You’ll have to visit JCPenney stores in person to buy the tea kettle that resembles former German Chancellor and Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler

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Tea Kettle Resembles Hitler
JCP Media Inc.

Adolf, is that you?

Updated, May 29, 1 p.m.: You’ll have to visit JCPenney stores in person to buy the teakettle that resembles former German Chancellor and Nazi dictator Adolf Hitler.

Over Memorial Day weekend, a user on social news site Reddit noticed something odd: a teakettle that looked like Hitler. The Michael Graves Design Bells and Whistles Stainless Steel Tea Kettle ($40) recently showed up on a JCPenney billboard near Culver City, Calif. (If you don’t see the leader of the Third Reich, it’s all about the negative space created by the kettle’s Hitler-hair handle, like seeing the arrow in the FedEx logo.) By Tuesday morning, the kettle had gone viral. By Tuesday afternoon, it was sold out on JCPenney’s site.

(PHOTOS: Hitler’s Bunker and the Ruins of Berlin, 1945)

While J.C. Penney didn’t respond to messages about the product, the out-of-stock kettle was the only one of the 31 teakettles sold on jcpenney.com to be sold out on Tuesday afternoon. (As of Wednesday morning, it appears the teakettle has been completely removed from JCPenney’s site. The company has also taken down the billboard where the advertisement was first spotted, according to the CBS affiliate in Los Angeles.)

The retailer, which has had to put out one fire after another over the past couple of years, soon began trying to explain its latest hiccup over Twitter, calling the teakettle’s resemblance to the man responsible for the Holocaust unintentional. “If we had designed it to look like something, we would have gone with a snowman or something fun :),” the company tweeted.

(MORE: The 5 Big Mistakes That Led to Ron Johnson’s Ouster at J.C. Penney)

J.C. Penney has recently been through the most tumultuous period in its history, from the hiring of former Apple and Target superstar Ron Johnson as CEO to his radical reinvention of the entire brand to his eventual firing and the subsequent rehiring of former CEO Mike Ullman. The company is now reversing many of Johnson’s decisions, once again embracing the use of sales and discount pricing.

Considering everything J.C. Penney has been through recently, the Hitler-teakettle ad may be the least of its worries. In fact, it even appears to have moved a few products.

This article has been updated to include the removal of the billboard and the product from JCPenney’s site.

MORE: The Coming Corporate Crackdown

108 comments
selnari
selnari

Hello, i am glad to read the whole content of this blog and am very excited and happy to say that the webmaster has done a very good job here to put all the information content and information at one place. The retailer, which has had to put out one fire after another over the past couple of years
Regards

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nemonaide
nemonaide

Kind of a stretch...did they sell an uncommonly high # of these to a house in a gated compound in Brazil?

bcmugger
bcmugger

All i see is a tea kettle.

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

You've got to be kidding me.  It's like seeing Jesus in a piece of toast.

People need to chill out.

vfrickey
vfrickey

Doesn't look like him to me.  I smell a projective psychological test.

RuiPereira
RuiPereira

What is next? Cats that look like Hitler?

redbluefukyou
redbluefukyou

Hitler is good for the economy. He drives sales of both tea kettles and tea!

AlexC
AlexC

Though using Hitler as a marketing tool elicits quite a few negative comments from people, it does seem that it actually works. If this teakettle sold out online, then, it did work.  There have been many businesses who have vocally used Hitler to promote their products and to them, it works and they have no plans of changing it ( whilst some, like JCPenny's say they did not intend to ). Here is one article that tells more about it. http://www.encubits.com/sales-marketing/is-hitler-becoming-a-marketing-tool 

JackieMorrison
JackieMorrison

I REALLY THINK THAT SOMEONE REALLY NEEDS TO GET A LIFE OR MAYBE FIND A GIRL/BOY FRIEND OR EVEN GET A HOBBY

tiredofyourPAB
tiredofyourPAB

Oh jeeeez, is there nothing some of us Americans can't find to WHINE and be OVERLY SENSITIVE about anymore?????? What did us baby boomers end up raising, a bunch of 2 year olds. I didn't even freaking see it when I saw the ad (maybe you just have to be LOOKING for it)what I did see was a damn teakettle. Now, with that said,  the first thing I did do upon all this BS was RUN out and buy one, just in spite for the stupidity of this accusation. I will think of the whiney dumba$$es when the teakettle starts to blow steam....sort of fitting.

nelsondreyes
nelsondreyes

Are you kidding? That's definitely Charlie Chaplin!

DavidNunez
DavidNunez

Yeah, that kettle looks just like Hitler. I'm sure some idiot probably thinks, I look like Hitler too!

FishHook
FishHook

Now the Redit user can claim commission from JC Penny for the free Hitler promo connection. 

The Hitler Haters can now boil him in a kettle and turn their tea into Hitler's blood. 

Right. JC = Jesu Cristi

ilansachs
ilansachs

Sic transit gloria mundi is a Latin phrase that means "Thus passes the glory of the world." 

From a reuler to a kettle

HowardGleichenhaus
HowardGleichenhaus

This is a bit far fetched. Reminds me of the man who called every Rorschach plate a porn picture then asked the psychiatrist if he could take home the dirty pictures.

Fladabosco
Fladabosco

Ludicrous. This is the same kind of argument as saying the Edsel didn't sell because it's grill looks like a VJJ.

zeke3199
zeke3199

I did nazi this coming... 

BillYoung
BillYoung

Today zie tea und tomorrow zie welt!

polaris01usa
polaris01usa

When will the Obama toilet plunger be available?

davis1838
davis1838

This morning I noticed that the tea kettle was back on the JCP website but in backordered status.  I was able to order it and request that it be shipped to my closest JCP.

BruceStrong
BruceStrong

This sounds like a your classic tempest in a teapot !!@#!$$$!

AndersLundberg
AndersLundberg

They are missing the obvious sensational historical fact here; Hitler was never trying to salute his adherents, he was only trying to look like a kettle! 

The ensuing question is, of course; did his disciples know of this, all trying to look like kettles? Or did their answering salute really mean "You look like a kettle"?

What does Freud have to say about this?

texasghost01
texasghost01

There's a reason why this kettle sold out....

Cause people are hoping that JC Penney will re-design the kettle...then you will see this Hitler kettle on about 30 pages of Ebay saying this is a rare kettle that looks like Hitler...and you can't buy it through JC Penney anymore cause they re-designed it.

All I can hope for is JC Penney leaves the design alone so these num-nuts that are thinking they are going to make a quick buck selling it on Ebay find out they are stuck with a kettle they didn't want in the first place.

Surfspurs2Tyler
Surfspurs2Tyler

Um, really. A teapot looks like Hitler. And frustrated commuting wingnuts see a billboard say it's so. And JCP even gives them the time of day? hah! Grow some cajones JCP... these ppl r flakes!

UleNotknow
UleNotknow

Actually it looks more like a pretzel that looks a little like Abraham Lincoln on a bad day than AH. You have to squint your eyes...

Whatanotion
Whatanotion

@tiredofyourPAB I really like the way you pout when you whine about the whining .  You seem so philosophical and not hypocritical at all.. 

popcornmaltese
popcornmaltese

@Fladabosco 

At the time they were saying that the Edsel looked like "an Oldsmobile sucking a lemon." Either way, not a promising image for high sales. 

FishHook
FishHook

@thewholetruth 

Every Jew and Arab came from Egypt

Every Egyptian came from Africa south of the Sahara.

Hitler was a Jew.

Western Europeans came from India.

Indians came from East Africa

SwiftrightRight
SwiftrightRight

@thewholetruth Umm, pretty sure every human on the planet has some "african blood" since that is were our species evolved.

And with the wide spread dispersal of Semitic people over the entire globe over the last 4,000 years its pretty safe to say most humans have some semitic markers.

Hadrewsky
Hadrewsky

@Sibir 

Every DNA test has come up false... remember the skull with the hole in the head? - its a woman's

Nobody know wtf happened to him.... them SS folk were motivated to do a good job.

texasghost01
texasghost01

Well...let me add something..just went on Ebay.  There are already 3 pages of JCP Hitler tea kettles saying...get one before they are gone.

Fladabosco
Fladabosco

@MarkLarma My mother in law had a cat that looked similar to this but more like Hitler. It was hilarious and it helped that he was not the brightest bulb in the box. 

tiredofyourPAB
tiredofyourPAB

I guess what it boils down to, is I'm really not looking for Hitler or anyone else in my coffee, tea or their vessels. Guess I watch the road when I drive too. You say whining? There comes a point when enough is enough, but at least my comment merits comment.