2/9/10

Food & Drink #6: Gum in the 70's


Throughout my early childhood, it seemed like all gum was pretty boring - Juicy Fruit, Chicklets, Big Red, etc. Don't get me started on the chalk flavored cardboard in baseball card packs.  Then, along came these big ads in the back of comic books for "cool" gum brands like Hubba Bubba and Big League Chew.  Gum was transformed from the lame old crap your grandma handed you, to awesomeness of epic proportions.

Hubba Bubba was cool because it didn't stick to your face when you popped a massive bubble.  Remember the Old West gunfighter commercials?

Big League Chew kicked ass. It had a pouch like it was chewing tobacco (which, like the candy cigarette, was especially cool), and the ads featured cleverly drawn athletes, perfectly suited for the elementary school boy market.

Fruit Stripes were a personal favorite.  The sudden rush of flavor was like a hypodermic needle of concentrated & flavored high fructose corn syrup applied directly to the sweet tooth.  Unfortunately, like heroine, the "high" was shortlived.  I think the flavor lasted a total of five minutes.

Bubble Yum and Bubblicious both had strong original flavors, and their flavor somehow made it to the ten minute mark.  Guaranteed to make your pearly whites yellow and cavity laden within days.

Freshen Up - A squirt of God-knows-what on your first bite, but became blander with each successive bite. No thanks.    

Am I missing one?

17 comments:

  1. Freshen Up!! Come Gum!! God, we loved that stuff!!

    You forgot Dentyne!! Big commercials then. Juicy Fruit, Fruit Stripe...
    ___
    Barbara
    http://ifididnthaveasenseofhumor.blogspot.com

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  2. How about bubble fudge?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UUjMezuNFt4

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  3. How much do I want that t-shirt? So, so very much!!!

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  4. Geez I didn't know Peter MacNichol had a family, and matching T-Shirts too.I bet htese folks go to ho downs and have potatoe sack races just like the Bradys.

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  5. I loved the Gum Fighter commercial. They used the most "John Wayne" looking guy they could find for that commercial.

    Thanks MattR, I was trying to remember what that chocolate gum was called!

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  6. come on... i loved the gum that came with collector cards! star wars cards, the sports cards (despite not giving a damn about sports), the monster movie cards, the other ones i can barely remember from those halcyon days.... i bet if you ate some of that now i would instantly send back those days. or kill you... :D

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  7. Bubble Yum had spider eggs in it, you know.

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    1. YES!!!
      I was *so* hoping someone here would post that. That was certainly the word on the street in Poughkeepsie NY back in the day. I've always wondered if that was a nationwide rumor or a local one.
      And, for that matter, how did totally nonsensical rumors like this even spread to large geographic areas in the days before the Internet?

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  8. My folks wouldn't let me have "Big League Chew" because they thought it was a gateway candy to having their 7-year-old strut down the street with a mouth full of dip. Ironically, they had no problem with candy cigarettes.

    I can't find Hubba Bubba anymore, but I still love BubbleYum for good ole gum smackin' fun.

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  9. Chewels and Freshen Up were almost identical. I can't recall which proceeded which though.

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  10. Bazooka! (especially the grape flavor). Two little sugar/chicle bricks wrapped in a comic with tantalizing mail-order merchandise ads for things like spy cameras and X-ray glasses. I think they were a penny a piece way back in the day.

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  11. Mississippi1971February 12, 2010

    What about the gum that came in rope like packages. I think it was called Bub's Daddy. Also, Gatorade put out Gator-gum.

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  12. I don't know if it can be classified as real gum, but what about the wax lips that you could chew afterwards? Yummmmmm...waaaax!

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  13. You forgot, "Tidal Wave" which had a commercial as great as the gum!

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  14. Here's a distillation of the Hubba Bubba commercials with the Gumfighter, created by yours truly: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tH7k8PVTVPc

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  15. AnonymousJuly 17, 2012

    Does anyone remember the powder gum that came in ice cream favors?

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    1. I remember it, but for the life of me I can't remember the name of it. I haven't been able to find any info on it or anyone else that remembers it. It had strawberry, chocolate and vanilla flavors. It was so yummy.

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