Monday, 19 October 2015

Countdown to Halloween: Ghostbusters Halloween Candy!

Best Halloween candy this decade!

I haven’t actually enthused about the Ghostbusters franchise at any length on here yet (it will come) but needless to say (as I’m devoting a whole post to cheap sweets with their imagery on) I’m a big, big fan. The movies, the cartoons, the toys and yes the cheap sweets with their imagery on, if it’s Ghostbusters I am there which is why these gifts from Samhain made me so happy. Also Ooky’s back to help me, everyone say Hi Ooky!

"Get over the Ooky thing already"
Actually it’s more than just being Ghostbusters themed: with the internet spoiling every surprise ever nowadays it is very hard for us pre-internet people to experience the old thrill of walking into a shop and finding something new and exciting we didn’t know was coming out, the days of being surprised by new sticker albums or a new wave of toys from your favourite things are long gone. Thank god for cheap shit in chain stores because here I had no idea these were a thing, just like days of yore I wandered into a shop, saw them and marked out then instantly bought some and rushed home to enjoy them, the only thing that was missing was begging my mum to ensure a purchase. These cheap shitty sweets with Slimer on them made me feel just like a kid again, hell they’re even tied into something that I was into when I was a kid, and that was enough to turn another grey, depressing day of growing older into A Good Day, it’s the little things people.

Anyway they’re brand new for this Halloween season and are from someone called World of Sweets (I think I recognise the name?) who quite rightly decided there wasn’t enough Ghostbusters in Halloween and we needed some more. And where did I find them? Fucking Poundland (you may have read my Poundland Does Halloween post and seen me hyperventilating about them), these little bundles of sugary ectoplasmic wonderfulness are only a pound, and they’re officially licenced:   

So if you’re sitting comfortably, I’ll begin to excitedly jump up and down and shout look at them a bit more in-depth.

Popping Candy!
Can’t say that I’m especially fond of Popping Candy on its own, I like it fine in something but it just doesn’t have enough chocolate around it when it comes in bags like this, but this is Ghostbusters popping candy so it’s already about 168% better before it’s even been opened. Each pack includes 8 packages of the child’s crystal meth, four with the No-Ghosts Ghost logo on it and four with Movie Slimer and you know I think that’s the most amazing bit about these sweets – they’re movie-tie ins, not Real Ghostbusters tie-ins. For those going “well yeah of course it is, that cartoon hasn’t been on air for decades”: back during Ghostbusters first flush of fad-dom everything like this – all the cheap licenced (and unlicensed) crap, the sweets, rack toys, party goods, it seemed like it was all Real Ghostbusters themed (because it was aimed at kids), all covered in Real Ghostbusters stock artwork. I’m cool with that but finding something like this in an ordinary cheap shop (not like, say, Forbidden Planet) tied into the films has a great novelty about it to us old-timers, or I guess, us semi-old timers who came in after RGB came out. Anyway back to the sweets, because World of Sweets takes cheap Ghostbusters tie-ins as seriously as I do the popping candy in each pack is thematically tied to the ghost printed on it – Slimer’s is green and ‘apple’ flavoured and No-Ghost Ghost’s is red and ‘strawberry’ flavoured and while I will say they do taste different, neither tastes like the advertised fruit, Slimer’s candy tastes like when you sick up in your mouth after drinking a slush puppy and No-Ghost Ghost’s stuff tastes like cheap fruit squash before you add water, it’s very strong but not horrible, the better of the two easily, it must have been ok because I ate a whole pack of it. But no one eats popping candy for the flavour (I least I hope they don’t) they eat it for the popping and fuck me these are good value for money, I had a wet finger full of strawberry while taking the ‘open’ photos for this post and it popped the whole time – that’s a good few minutes of popping. Again these cost £1 for 8 packets, I expected them to pop once, if at all, but they’re bloody lasting, in fact they’re longer lasting than the ones that came in the high-end Willy Wonka bars.  

Everything about this packaging makes me delighted, except maybe them using the ‘shiny’ video game logo (I just prefer the stark white one ok?). I don’t know if Columbia licencing (or whoever) have some kind of set templates that licensees can use to ensure brand unity or whatever the buzz-word for everything looking like it belongs to the same franchise is now, they probably do – a lot of this looks like the same graphics you can find on things like the recent vinyl money banks and UFO machine soft toys, but what I like about this is that World of Sweets went to this much effort for £1 packs of sweets. They could have just had everything black (or black and green) with the No-Ghosts Ghost logo on it; I’d’ve still have been happy but they’ve got the yellow and black tape going on, the official fonts, a New York City skyscape and a huge CGI Slimer which I’ve never seen before but I’m sure isn’t unique to these, there’s no way £1 sweets are going to have any unique renders on them. The packaging feels like a proper product and that makes the sweets feel more legitimate and me even prouder.         

Slimer Chocs!
Today these were the Halloween gift that kept on giving, every stage of them brought a new delight as I went “they should have done…they did!”. I saw them and thought “they should have green filling” and they do! I opened the bag and thought “they should have different Slimers on them” and they have three different pieces of artwork! I unwrapped one and thought “these should taste nice” and they do! The label on the bag (and somehow selling them in one of these net bags makes me far happier than if they came in Haribo style plastic bags – either I’m a secret eco-warrior or just really easily swayed by nostalgia) calls them ‘Green Crème Filled Chocolates’, yeah they don’t even bother to assign a flavour to the crème filling it’s just ‘green’ and I can confirm that they taste green. The chocolate’s your standard cheap Easter Egg/Christmas tree chocolate, I really like that type of chocolate (again, easily swayed by nostalgia) but if you prefer your chocolate sweeter and milkier don’t worry because the ‘green’ crème filling should bring it up to at least Diary Milk level of sweet; as for the Slimer sludge it’s odd, tasty but odd – it’s not as grainy or overpoweringly, sickeningly sweet as Crème Egg crème and has a slight tang too it, it also leaves my mouth feeling very airy, so I’m guessing there’s mint in there somewhere but honestly it could be made from grass, toothpaste or hairspray. It’s not how I imagine Slimer to taste (everyone knows Slimer tastes like Ecto-Cooler) but they are really nice.    

Now just to enthuse about the packaging – the sweets are wrapped in one of three different Slimer poses: Keep Away From Me Slimer, Aww You Bought Me A Cake Slimer and the one from the Popping Candy packaging. Some of these I’ve seen used before, the happy Slimer (with different arm positions) was used to advertise the 30th Anniversary Kristy Kreme donuts last year and has turned up on a few other bits and pieces so I’m leaning towards these being stock artwork that Columbia Pictures just gives out (albeit slightly modified for better fitting onto small, roughly Slimer-shaped chocolates) but even if they’re not original (and I didn’t really think they would be, again these cost £1 for about 12) it’s certainly another cause to praise World of Sweets of their production value, they could have easily have just used one image, but instead they used three, good for them.

Just to wrap up, I scanned the Popping Candy packaging, the back has a bigger, grayscale version of the Slimer render (as well as the list of ‘ingredients’), thanks for reading about me cooing over cheap shitty candy that ties into a film over 30 years old, enjoy the scans my imaginary chums:

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