Word: dog-and-pony show
(dog and POH-nee shoh)
noun: An elaborately staged presentation or briefing arranged for public relations, selling, etc. Also, a presentation that is overly contrived.
After small traveling circuses that featured tricks involving dogs and ponies. Earliest documented use: 1885.
“Rather than be honest about the tragic missteps of the past and confront the lingering issues over detainee treatment, the Pentagon puts on a preposterous dog-and-pony show when reporters come calling.”
Pentagon’s Offensive Guantanamo Show; St. Petersburg Times (Florida); Jul 7, 2009.
“Cebu Pacific, the Philippines-based airline, has turned their safety announcement into a true dog-and-pony show. Their flight attendants dance to the music of Lady Gaga and Katy Perry while pointing out and demonstrating safety equipment. It’s even choreographed.” (video)
Gail Todd; Some Airlines Employ Humor With Safety Announcements; Chicago Daily Herald (Illinois); Apr 3, 2011.