Throughout the decades, candy has been a staple in American pop culture and has been an essential part of American life. Brands are instantly recognizable by even the youngest of generations, even though some have been around for half a century before them. We are going to take you on a ride through each decade’s favorite candies and how they fit with the pop culture of the time. So sit back, relax, and experience the roller coaster of nostalgia, memories, and even wonder as we take you back in time to your childhood and beyond to see how popular candy has changed through the decades.
The 50s was an exciting time in American history. The average family was now able to afford more than they ever could and people began to express themselves in brand new ways from clothes to music to cars. It wasn’t uncommon to pass a diner with a jukebox and it definitely wasn’t uncommon to see teens in poodle skirts, and leather jackets dancing over the diner’s tiled floors! The playful life of this decade was seen in the candies people ate and loved.
The most popular candies of this century included Atomic Fireballs and Bazooka Bubble Gum.
Pop culture in the 1950s glorified atomic bombs. World War II brought attention to the extreme weapon, and it was eventually introduced in popular culture in the Atomic Craze. In 1954, these fiery hot cinnamon candies were introduced by the Ferrara Candy Company. Kids and teens played games over how long one could hold one of these suckers in their mouth. Now, 15 million of these candies are consumed each year, proving to be a continual favorite in America for decades.
Bazooka Bubble Gum-
In the 1950s, one brand of bubble gum, Bazooka, was extremely popular. Though created shortly after WWII, the popularity of the product expanded when the wrappers featured comics on them. The comics often described the adventures of “Bazooka Joe” and were meant to be humorous, probably to get kids and teens to buy a pack of the gum. You could also win prizes by saving up wrappers and mailing them to the company. The comics ranged from everyday funnies to future predictions, as sci-fi was also beginning to blow up in the 1950s. Today, Bazooka Bubble Gum wrappers do not include the comics because younger generations found them less amusing, but those who grew up with the brand might care to disagree!
Groovy! The 1960s was a time for hippies, peace signs, and colorful, flowery print clothes. Music was revolutionized by The Beatles and other classics like Stevie Wonder. Old ways of thinking moved out of the way while new ways moved in. Candies that are still popular today rose out of this era, changing the candy game in more ways than one.
Some of the most popular candies of the 60s included Astro Pops and Starburst. Continue reading “Candy and Culture: The Modern History of Your Favorite Sweets”