LOS ANGELES—In a fiery and, at times, frenzied speech before a crowd of his most devoted followers, Neutrogena CEO Richard Harper announced plans Thursday for a campaign of worldwide cleansing, saying his company would never relent in its goal of attaining facial purity across the globe.
Harper, standing on a massive stage in Griffith Park and flanked by enormous banners bearing the Neutrogena logo, delivered his address to an estimated 200,000 people, all of whom stood at attention in perfect formations and appeared to possess uniformly smooth and even skin tones. The assembled supporters could be heard roaring in approval as the CEO extolled his company’s plan for a final skin-care solution.
“We must scour from the earth all the acne, oily T-zones, and blotchy patches that have infected our societies with facial inferiority!” said Harper, who slammed his fists on the podium before him, his face reddening with each forceful call to action. “For too long, these blemishes have burdened our communities and deprived us of descendants with flawless, supple cheeks and a healthy glow. We have tried covering up the problem with a bit of concealer, but despite an award-winning line of cosmetics that can work wonders on your trouble spots, this is no longer enough.”
“The time has come for a deep, deep, deep scrub!” Harper continued. “Only then can Neutrogena begin its thousand-year reign over a clear-skinned, facially pure world.”
Harper then reportedly paused a few minutes to moisturize using a triple-action face lotion with broad-spectrum UV protection.
Witnesses confirmed that at one point during his speech, the CEO noticed a man in the crowd with a single pimple and exploded with rage, instructing security to remove the offender from the venue and have him cleansed. This tactic would seem to coincide with accounts of larger-scale mass cleansings being conducted around the world by Neutrogena’s armed purification agents. Reports have proliferated of incidents in which people with conditions as minor as routine breakouts or combination skin have been rounded up and subjected to repeated applications of oil-free acne washes and deep-clean purifying peel-off masks.
Handbills distributed at Thursday’s rally bore the title, “Don’t Just Cover Up—Clear Up!” and featured a crude caricature of a teenager with severe pimples and blackheads being violently scrubbed with a bar of Neutrogena soap. Online propaganda in support of the facial-cleansing campaign declares that the global populace should be prepared to sacrifice everything to “break the breakout cycle” and achieve clearer skin in just one week.
“Excess oils and impurities have penetrated deep into our world’s once-pristine face, and we must go deep down into the pores to root out this dirty menace,” Harper said to his cheering followers, whose resounding chants in praise of the “number-one dermatologist-recommended brand” grew increasingly fanatical. “The crusade will be long, and our struggles will be many. But through the compulsory administration of strict, personalized skin-care regimens, we will purge all that contaminates us!”
He added: “Mark my words. The streets will run white with the pus of the unclean.”
According to sources, such efforts have already begun with Neutrogena not only apprehending people it considers of an inferior face, but also busing them to secret exfoliation camps. When they arrive, those deemed capable of rehabilitation are reportedly sent to the showers for immediate cleansing. Meanwhile, those labeled hopeless cases are allegedly used to test experimental grapefruit-based microbead acne wipes and potentially lethal new hydration routines.
“We call on our loyal customers everywhere to be on high alert and report to the proper authorities any instance of fine lines or wrinkles among their middle-aged family members,” said Neutrogena global brand ambassador and Academy Award winner Nicole Kidman, who spoke briefly at the rally. “This way we can ensure they are dosed with the proper anti-aging serums.”
“Though in keeping with company protocol, any person 55 or older must, of course, be liquidated immediately,” Kidman added.