M&Ms Have Been Uncancelled and You’ve All Been Played

m&ms cancelled

If you thought 2022, or, really, any time since 2016, was mad, the latest furore over M&Ms has proven we are just getting started. This is 2023 weirdness we’re talking about and that means events so strange they are barely hanging on to reality or basic humanity. Welcome to the Überweird.

To recap: M&Ms, the fairly bland chocolate coated in a crisp layer of sugar was cancelled by major conservative networks in America. Yes, they’re cancelling chocolate now. Is it because the chocolate is made unsustainably, perhaps? No, it’s because the chocolate is gay.

In January, M&Ms announced a new campaign whereby their packaging would now feature an all-female lineup of their animated cartoon M&M characters. Money would be donated from their sales to organisations that support women and a new, purple M&M would lead the charge. Ads showed two female M&Ms holding hands while the larger, purple M&M sang a song about self-acceptance.

Let me tell you, conservatives lost their collective minds.

You could not ask for a more perfect vision of ‘old man yells at cloud’ levels of transparently fabricated outrage than the following:

Arch-Conservative commentator, Tucker Carlson, said out loud on the show that; “woke M&Ms have returned. The green M&M got her boots back but is apparently now a lesbian, maybe? And there’s also a plus-sized, obese purple M&M, so we’re gonna cover that, of course… Because that’s what we do.” You can almost hear the shame and regret in what his life has become in the pause at the end there.

The reaction was idiocracy made real. This was a howl of rage at fading relevance and an utter inability to talk about anything of substance — and there’s a heap of substantial topics to be talked about in America — because the causes of those problems are largely the people who support and fund them. So, let’s all yell at chocolate because if you’re mad, you’re distracted. The five minutes of hate never seemed so laughable.

Still, it was enough to prompt M&Ms to issue some sort of grovelling apology to people who hate women, writing: “Now we get it — even a candy’s shoes can be polarising. Which was the last thing M&Ms wanted since we’re all about bringing people together.”

“Therefore, we have decided to take an indefinite pause from the spokescandies”.

So, FOX got the multi-coloured animated blobs cancelled. In their place, M&Ms fronted actor and comedienne Maya Rudolph as their spokesperson to “champion the power of fun to create a world where everyone feels they belong.”

However, this decision was quickly UNO reversed. After the 2023 Superbowl, M&Ms spokescandies made a comeback.

Image by M&Ms and Mars

“Back together again,” said the announcement. “M&Ms characters return.”

Now, when M&Ms made this announcement, did they explain why it backpedalled on its politics? No. Okay, but did this corporation at least go up against Carlson’s rhetoric? No.

All M&Ms wanted to discuss was candy.

The Problem with M&Ms & Carlson

In February of last year, when the changes to the M&Ms characters were made, Carlson and co-launched their unhinged tirade because of course they would. The FOX network unleashed their roving pack of swivel-eyed outrage merchants on some mediocre sweets, with hosts describing them as “disgusting,” “conniving,” and “offensive.”

“The new green M&M is an opportunistic, evil b***h,” one mouthpiece said on the Gutfeld show.

Carlson himself complained that the M&Ms were no longer sexy enough for his liking, saying: “The Brown M&M has, quote, ‘transitioned from high stilettos to lower block heels.’ Also less sexy. That’s progress. M&Ms will not be satisfied until every last cartoon character is deeply unappealing and totally androgynous, until the moment you wouldn’t want to have a drink with any one of them. That’s the goal. When you’re totally turned off, we’ve achieved equity. They’ve won.”

The problem is that this faux Victorian outrage leans into the wider right-wing attacks on trans people, queer people, and women in America. It’s giving them ammunition to pursue a hateful agenda by telling their viewers that every company and community is out to get them and, probably, their children. Feeding these monsters, for profit, is not only unwise, but it’s also unethical and dangerous.

Who (And Why) Is Nick Adams?

Australians, it seems, are not immune from such charlatans – in case anyone thought we were. One of the biggest pretend-victims is a bloke called Nick Adams, who genuinely styles himself as “Alpha Male” and “Trump’s favourite author” online. Adams is a former Liberal Party member who was once the Deputy Mayor for Ashfield in Sydney’s Inner West. In 2005, he genuinely tried to ban pigeons from the local government area.

He popped up in America a few years back, somehow ingratiating himself with President Trump, and now spends his days grifting the conservative right by saying whatever it takes to get them upset — very little, it turns out.

He recently called for a boycott of M&Ms, following the female-led branding, and, since the announcement, has said that he will continue his boycott until M&Ms “pay reparations” to “all men” and offer an “all-male” packet of M&Ms.

So, M&Ms gets free advertising, the right-wing loons have something to shout about that has no relevance or impact on the lives of anyone, and trans people, queer people, and women take a beating while Mars laughs all the way to the bank. And so the spiral of outrage cycles on.

Related: Peter Dutton’s War on Wokeness Is Over: LGBTQIA+ Events Are Back

Related: Coercive Control: What the Domestic Violence Practice Is That Queensland Is Outlawing

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