KFC loves an oddball stunt, and announced a casting change for its spokesperson, the Colonel, today. But instead of tapping a famous actor to fill out the white suit, KFC is using a computer-generated bro that the company is calling “Virtual Influencer Colonel.” As his name implies, this dude loves living the good life and posing for photos on Instagram with his girlfriend, who is also a computer-generated model. Of course he’s got his own hashtag — #secretrecipeforsuccess — and those words are also tattooed across his chiseled abs.
The creepiness of this stunt is offset, somewhat, by the pitch-perfect parody of influencer babble in the captions of these posts. “It’s important never to lose sight of the things that make you who you are,” reads the caption below a photo of the Colonel in the kitchen. “For me, it’s being in the kitchen and making amazing fried chicken. That’s what got me here, and I never want to lose that young and hungry Colonel who spent all his time perfecting fried chicken. I’m still that kid who straps on an apron and makes fried chicken.” And like any true Instagram hustler, the Virtual Influencer Colonel is thirsty for brand partnerships: According to a press release from KFC, the digital spokesperson will be “crushing deals with brands like Dr Pepper, Old Spice and TurboTax.”