Just when you thought that Facebook was only good for sparking political arguments with people you haven’t seen in person in 13 years or complaining about all of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge videos clogging your normally enthralling feed, fans of a discontinued soft drink are changing the way that people use social media… at least this week. Coca-Cola has announced that thanks in part to the 132,623 people (up 3K since this morning) who are a part of the “SURGE Movement” on Facebook, the company’s answer to Mountain Dew is coming back in an exclusive deal with Amazon.
But first, let’s allow the three gentlemen behind the SURGE Movement to officially share the news and why the return of this soft drink is so important to them.
As Evan explained, Surge has been a part of his life since it was introduced in 1996, so to have it back for the first time since production stopped in 2002 clearly has him bursting with excitement that looks an awful lot like indifference. But lack of emotion or charisma be damned, because with just one click of the mouse, you can hop on over to Amazon to load your shopping cart up with 12-packs of Surge (once they’re available again) at the low price of… $14? Ah, the classic tale of a corporation spotting nostalgic fools and imagining dollar signs over their faces.
But for $14, I’m going to need something a little better than Surge. Some people obviously remember the Coke product fondly, but it was hardly the best drink that was pulled from the market in the 80s or 90s simply because people weren’t buying it. Thanks to the success of this SURGE Movement, I hit Facebook to find some other nostalgic groups (and presumably diabetics) who are desperate to see the revival of other great drinks that I also happen to love. This is not your standard celebration of nostalgia, nor is it one of those “Hey, here’s some sh*t that used to exist that people love joking about!” lists. This is stuff that I actually like(d), because I have the taste of an 18-year old stoner. Whatever, Totino’s Pizza Rolls will always need someone to champion them.
As a disclaimer, one departed soft drink that I will not lend my support to is Vanilla Coke. That stuff was disgusting, as was its counterpart Black Cherry Vanilla Coke. Almost all of the flavored Coke and Pepsi varieties should have never been made, with the exception of just plain Cherry Coke and Pepsi. Science should only be meddled with so much, and once you start including limes and berry hybrids, you’re just asking for trouble. Now, as far as a Pepsi variation that should be brought back with a vengeance…
The Facebook Movement: “Bring Back Crystal Pepsi”
This group has been woefully inactive since 2012, but at one point in time, it was a page for dozens of people to gather at and share their enthusiasm for Crystal Pepsi, which was sort of like regular Pepsi, except it was clear and tasted nothing like it. At one point, in an effort to save the beverage, Pepsi gave it some sort of citrus flavoring that, in turn, effectively ruined it for everyone. The truth is that Crystal Pepsi by itself was one of the greatest drinks that had ever been created, no matter what anyone says. And there are people out there who still really want to have it back. Just watch this jackass drink a 20-year old can again.
Hi-C Ecto Cooler
The Facebook Movement: “Bring Back Ecto Cooler”
There are actually quite a few Facebook groups, public and private (what’s the point of the latter?), that are devoted to bringing back the Ghostbusters-themed kids drink. This is exactly the kind of in-fighting that will make a cause fail miserably, because the need for some people to be in charge of others is simply pathetic. If all of these groups would simply put their political ambitions aside and join forces, Hi-C might actually be forced to consider the demands of hundreds of dorky adults who want to drink something that, realistically, kids should have never been drinking in the first place. And sure, some people like my UPROXXian colleague Dan Seitz might argue that Ecto Cooler was never anything more than Hi-C’s tangerine flavor, but it’s not real if it doesn’t have Slimer on the box.
Also, I don’t want to hear anything about how there’s a recipe so I can make my own, because I’m terrible at that crap, and I’m pretty sure that the result of my effort to recreate Taco Bell’s discontinued Volcano Sauce was lethal.
The Facebook Movement: 7up Gold
Good news! If you’re one of the 350 people who vaguely remembers that 7up once made something that kind of tasted like ginger ale, 7up has heard your prayers and might actually be responding. As recently as August 1, this seemingly legit 7up Gold fan page has been teasing the return of this soda, and at least 10 people (11 if you count me!) are totally jazzed about the prospect of being able to enjoy this soft drink before it’s discontinued again by, I don’t know, December?
Dr. Pepper Red Fusion
The Facebook Movement: “Bring Back Red Fusion Dr. Pepper”
With only 113 people, the movement to bring back Red Fusion is alive but barely kicking. The cherry-flavored version of the classic “one-of-a-kind” flavor was introduced in 2002 and barely made it into 2003. As always, people are terrified of change, and seeing as Dr. Pepper had the same recipe since the dawn of time (or 1885, whichever came first) adding cherry to it was basically as outrageous as adding a black person to the cast of Friends.
The Facebook Movement: “Bring Back Zima!” (there’s a very unoriginal theme happening here)
Despite the fact that it was celebrating the milestone of 300 fans, the Bring Back Zima! page hasn’t been updated since July 18, 2013. That’s probably because you’d have to be really drunk on Zima to think that bringing this alcoholic beverage back is a good idea. But you know what? Just like those bros who created the SURGE Movement had a personal tie to a gross can of sugar, I have a special place in my liver for Zima. Back when I was a senior in high school, my bros and I had a little ska band and we played a show at this sh*thole in West Palm Beach. On the menu, there was a listing for “Fine Wines” and the only option was Zima. A place that fancy couldn’t possibly check IDs, so a few of us celebrated with a bottle, and no fewer than a few of us puked in the parking lot. I can’t deprive today’s youth of that same lesson.
The Facebook Movement: There isn’t an official page, but there is ONE MAN…
All any good movement needs is one man and maybe a person who runs a Facebook fan page that probably isn’t related to the product in any way. Regardless, it’s pretty typical that Americans were too afraid to try something new, in this case the seeds of the Brazilian guarana tree. These seeds boast more caffeine than your standard, pathetic coffee bean, so Josta should have become the official eye-opening energy drink of this lazy country. I’m sorry if that comes across as anti-American, but if we’re not lazy, then how do you explain the Save Josta website being for sale after all these years?
Original New York Seltzer
The Facebook Movement: None, but there is an online petition that seems to be as flat as one of these adorable little bottles that has been left open
If it hadn’t been for this Surge, um, resurgence, I would have probably never thought about the tiny little bottles of delicious bubbling water known as Original New York Seltzer for the rest of my life. But as soon as I saw that classic logo, I remembered the time when a young, bright-eyed, not-yet-impossibly-handsome Burnsy thought that these sodas were the height of luxury. Every once in a while, my mom would buy me one of the black cherry bottles and I would lose my mind with happiness. Just thinking about it makes me angry that I can’t have one. Everybody hurry up and sign that petition that probably doesn’t go to anyone!
The Facebook Movement: None :(
RC Cola was always pretty lucky that Tab existed, because otherwise it would have been the worst of the soda aisle. Of course, when a kid like me heard the name “Royal Crown,” that always implied that it was the soda of royalty, so my ignorant fondness for RC makes me a nostalgic sucker for its Mountain Dew rival Kick, which – wait for it, because this is an awesome pun – KICKed the bucket in 2002. Seeing as there is no movement or even fan page for this long-forgotten soda, it’s safe to assume that nobody has missed it.
However, while I don’t know if this is real or not, if this radio ad for Kick had actually aired, I think that it would have been the best-selling soda of all-time.
JOLT MOTHER-F*CKING COLA
The Facebook Movement: “Bring Back Jolt”
According to Amazon, Jolt Cola is still being produced and it is available for $32.95 per 12-pack. I’m afraid that I’m going to have to agree with the admin of the Bring Back Jolt Facebook page, who wrote back in March that a 12-pack of this delicious bottled energy from Zeus’s loins cost him $46.95 with shipping, that this is outrageous. Jolt may not have had the best flavor, and it probably wasn’t the healthiest stuff on the shelf, but if you took just one bottle and poured Pop Rocks into it, you felt like you were staring at the Earth’s core with a pair of middle fingers extended from your heart’s erection. Jolt should be available in every store under the sun, and it shouldn’t cost as much as a day of PPV pornography for us to enjoy.
Bring back all of this stuff, but mostly Jolt, please. And throw in a pack of Gatorade gum while you’re at it.