Lots o’ Soda: Big Blue
Advertising is pretty evil, and it gets even more evil the more abstract and detached from its subject it gets. But it reaches a certain point of abstraction where it transcends its sinister purposes and can go one of two ways: it can become art, or it can be so ridiculous that it’s sort of funny. The latter usually happens when branding and focus marketing leads to a complete detachment between descriptor and described, a perfect example of which is the way that colors and flavors have become interchangeable in certain products. Hence we have this, a product from the Texas outfit that makes Big Red (whose freakish flavor and curious racial history we’ll get to eventually). They make other drinks that are fairly obvious to figure out (Big Peach, Big Pineapple, etc.), but then there’s Big Blue. ‘Blue’, in the modern disassociated vernacular, has come to signify ‘berry’, but claiming a berry taste for this stuff is going out on a very thin, shaky limb. In fact, it’s hard to say what it tastes like; it’s really just sort of sweet and liquid-y. I’d say that it’s going for sort of a sweet, carbonated version of water, but that might just be me reacting to the packaging, which puts me in mind of someone jumping into a river with an inner tube. I can tell you what it smells like, though: it has the heady, powerful, perfume-like cream soda odor that it shares with Big Red, and you can smell that shit from ten feet away. It’s not a bad smell, but man, it’s strong — like a guy who wears a cologne you like, but way too much of it.