I never ever remember red M&M candies when I was growing up

Red M&Ms

Red M&Ms

From David G – Mr. Pop – Is my memory correct in that, I never ever remember red M&M candies when I was growing up, but I see “red” today. Didn’t Mars discontinue the little red candies, then, bring them back?

Mr. Pop History – You have a good memory, Mars discontinued red M&M’s in 1976 because its dye was considered a health risk. But, they were brought back in 1987. Here’s something from the mrpopculture.com files from January 15, 1987:

Mars announces that red M&M’s are coming back after an absence of 11 years. The return of the little candy was prompted by a national outcry that included thousands of letters to the manufacturer and the formation of college campus societies. Red M&M’s were discontinued in 1976 because of “confusion and concern” over Red Dye No. 2, which was banned by federal regulators as a health risk. Red M&M’s were always safe though, as they contained Red Dye Nos. 3 and 40. Mars always sold a limited number of packages of green and red candies for the holidays.

You state the Whopper came out from Burger King in 1970. From what I knew, that couldn’t be accurate

Whopper

Whopper

From Fred W – First off, I regularly visit your website, and enjoy it immensely- I adore pop culture trivia, and you are definitely an authority.

You state the Whopper came out from Burger King in 1970. From what I knew, that couldn’t be accurate- I was personally eating them before then. Not too long ago, Burger King did a commercial about the Whopper- where the original Whopper (a father figure) berating the Whopper Jr. (the son) for selling himself for a dollar- and the son coming up with an old ad where the Whopper was selling for 37 cents!

In checking Wikipedia- it indicates that the Whopper came out in 1957 (as did I) and sold for 37 cents!

So, the Whopper was far earlier to the market than the Big Mac, and although I do like the Big Mac, the Whopper is far superior.

Just my two cents

Mr. Pop History – 
Fred – Thanks so much for the kind words. Really appreciate it!

I’m sticking to the February 1970 date for the national BK Whopper introduction. On Wiki, someone copied the info on Burger King’s website, which says, something called a Whopper came out – in 1957.

One of the problems with this kind of information is – that very little can be verified from the 1957 info. It probably wasn’t much of a burger and was available on a limited basis. IOW – it wasn’t anything special.  In fact, most people don’t remember a BK Whopper before 1970. That’s just a fact. In 1969 – Whopper commercials were introduced, but on a regional basis. The most important point – there was no trademark on “Whopper” until 1968. Hmmm…

I do know when the McDonald’s Big Mac was introduced nationally in 1968, BK took out a trademark for the Whopper. This was September of 1968. Burger King knew that – whatever they had – they weren’t doing it right.

It clearly needed a big burger to compete with the Big Mac nationally.  Had they’d been serious, “the Whopper” would have been given the credit earlier – but – McDonald’s gets the credit for rolling out a big burger nationally – first.

And, you can bet BK was testing a version that was much different what was being offered.

I’m looking for a White Rock soda commercial that used the Seekers’ “Georgy Girl” as the melody.

White Rock Soda

White Rock Soda

From Melinda H – Hello Mr. Pop. I hope you can help. I’m looking for a White Rock soda commercial that used the Seekers’ “Georgy Girl” as the melody. I still remember the words – “Hey there White Rock Girl… bubbly, exciting White Rock Girl…”

Mr. Pop History – It’s a great one. Listen to this commercial. It’s so darn catchy. I remember this before the song became a hit. Just as the movie “Georgy Girl” came out in 1966, this commercial began. When the song became a hit. I remember thinking – “Georgy Girl? – this is the White Rock commercial?” So, in this instance, the commercial was using the movie theme, not the hit song. This commercial is perfect – and timed impeccably – right up to 60 seconds with no fill.

You’re the girl whose always zingee… swingee and spark-e-ling.” Gotta love it! It’s sooo 1960’s when it seemed – everything was “swinging.”

Here it is – The White Rock soda radio commercial – first aired in the summer of 1966 and ran through the summer of 1968. To me, the beer, cigarette and the soda people had the best jingles. Pick any one – most were good to great!

These types of commercials helped make top-40 radio so much fun. You listened and really, really enjoyed them.

Here’s that commercial – still sounds great!

Paul Newman – A Great Actor And So Much More

It seems everyone at least knows one Paul Newman movie. But, through it all, the humbled Newman believed he was the luckiest guy alive. And more than any actor, he stood out for other reasons. He was truly one-of-a-kind.

Besides movies, Paul Newman became a successful racecar driver, winning several Sports Car Club of America national driving titles. He even competed at Daytona in 1995 as a 70th birthday present to himself. In 1982, as a lark, he decided to sell a salad dressing he had created and bottled for friends at Christmas. Thus was born the Newman’s Own brand, an enterprise he started with his friend A.E. Hothner, the writer. More than 25 years later the brand has expanded to include, among other foods, lemonade, popcorn, spaghetti sauce, pretzels, organic Fig Newmans and wine. (His daughter Nell Newman runs the company’s organic arm.) All its profits, of more than $200 million, have been donated to charity, the company says.

Much of the money was used to create a string of Hole in the Wall Gang Camps, named for the outlaw gang in “Butch Cassidy.” The camps provide free summer recreation for children with cancer and other serious illnesses. Mr. Newman was actively involved in the project, even choosing cowboy hats as gear so that children who had lost their hair because of chemotherapy could disguise their baldness.

Several years before the establishment of Newman’s Own, on Nov. 28, 1978, Scott Newman, the oldest of Mr. Newman’s six children and his only son, died at 28 of an overdose of alcohol and pills. His father’s monument to him was the Scott Newman Center, created to publicize the dangers of drugs and alcohol. It is headed by Susan Newman, the oldest of his five daughters.

Mr. Newman’s three younger daughters are the children of his 50-year second marriage, to the actress Joanne Woodward. Mr. Newman and Ms. Woodward both were cast — she as an understudy — in the Broadway play “Picnic” in 1953. Starting with “The Long, Hot Summer” in 1958, they co-starred in 10 movies, including “From The Terrace” (1960), based on a John O’Hara novel about a driven executive and his unfaithful wife; “Harry and Son” (1984), which Mr. Newman also directed, produced and helped write; and “Mr and Mrs Bridge” (1990), James Ivory’s version of a pair of Evan S. Connell novels, in which Mr. Newman and Ms. Woodward played a conservative Midwestern couple coping with life’s changes.

Mr. Pop Culture – NYT