Sunday, April 29, 2007

Mars, Inc., takes a pro-cannibalism stance

I want to take a stand against cannibalism. Really, I think that this is a slippery slope argument that works: if we start eating other people, or even parts of ourselves, outside of times of extreme duress, some of us may develop a taste for it. And some of those might go out and harvest it. Once the concept of people-as-foodstuff goes beyond a certain level, we're looking at a world where people are raised for slaughter in tight cages with their nutrients controlled for the color and flavor of their flesh.

That's not a world I'm asking for.

Now, you might think that this was an unassailable position. That, like anthropogenic global climate change or the occupation of arbitrarily selected foreign countries, the cannibalism industry would be universally regarded as a bad thing. However, it turns out that I'm not a super good predictor of what's going to be accepted by the American people, so I wanted to express my opinion.

What makes me think we might be in danger is a new package from Mars, Inc's Masterfoods subsidiary for their Shrek's Select Ogre-Sized Peanut Butter M&Ms. I'm not opposed to peanut butter, or even coating it in a candy shell or marketing it with a child's movie character. OK, maybe I'm a little against that, but that's a separate issue, if you can truly separate the fattening of children from the eating of people.

The package features the yellow peanut M&M dressed like Shrek wiping the saliva from his mouth as he stands next to a cauldron full of peanut butter (and Shrek himself.) He looks drowsy and happy, as if he's been using his green gloves to shovel melting peanut butter into his mouth all day. All of this is well and good. It's what he says that perturbs me.

I knew a few of those guys.

So, anthropomorphic character delighting in the denuding, grinding and melting of his fellows -- ones with whom he was personally acquainted -- as they are prepared for consumption. The seditionists at Mars, Inc can really only be advocating one thing, and we as a body public must be ever vigilant against it.

1 comment:

Brad said...

I've always been disturbed by advertising mascots who eat their own kind, or seem delighted that you would want to eat them. Thinking locally here, Bruno Ravioli comes to mind. Hell, that face in the ravioli is scary, period.