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Column: No need for a meltdown over this candy gossip
Shannon Casas high res
Shannon Casas

The internet has a lot to say this week about some little chocolate candies — the ones that melt in your mouth not in your hand. 

The M&Ms want a happy melting pot where everyone feels they belong — OK, probably not a melting pot; melty chocolate might be tasty, but it would certainly strip the M&M characters of their unique identities — or their very lives.

Mars is rolling out some changes to its M&M characters’ wardrobes and sensibilities, according to a news release on its website.

The green M&M is trading her go-go boots for sneakers. 

I saw her late last year at the plant down in Flowery Branch, and she had on sneakers in the rain that day. Known by many as the “sexy” M&M, she certainly had everyone’s attention as employees followed her around with umbrellas so she wouldn’t melt.

I can’t confirm whether they’re pumping out M&Ms inside that facility — all I smelled was spearmint.

The internet meanwhile, seems at least a little distraught that Mars is toning down the green M&M’s sexy vibes. 

In fact, M&M responded Thursday night with the Tweet, “Did my shoes really break the internet?”

The orange M&M meanwhile is learning to love himself, anxieties and all. I didn’t know the orange M&M suffered from anxiety, but I guess there is the ever present possibility of melting — or getting crunched in someone’s teeth or even beneath a shoe.

The red M&M must have been burying his feelings about those tragic inevitabilities, responding with anger instead of worry — but he’s supposed to be getting a little bit nicer now. I might want the number of his therapist. I know a few other folks who would be better off if they were a little nicer.

The brown M&M has apparently gotten older, because she’s trading in her high heels for some more sensible heels — still that feminine touch but her feet won’t hurt when she gets off work doing whatever M&Ms do. I can’t blame her.

And their arms and legs, traditionally a peachy flesh tone, are turning to paper white. They’re chocolate inside, so I don’t know why they ever had limbs that color anyway. 

Apparently the M&Ms got woke. Or they just want everyone to get along. They definitely want to be more inclusive, as the statement from Mars notes: “M&M’S branding will also reflect an updated tone of voice that is more inclusive, welcoming, and unifying, while remaining rooted in our signature jester wit and humor.”

Some of the characters have been around quite a while. The iconic red and yellow M&Ms first debuted in 1954, according to “Ad Week.” Most of the other colors joined in 1998. We probably don’t want candy characters with the societal beliefs of 1954 — there are a lot of colors in an M&M bag, after all.

A lot has changed since then and even still since the turn of the last century. Maybe the M&Ms needed a revamp. Or maybe Mars just wanted everyone talking about M&Ms. They got their wish.

Has all this candy conversation unified anyone? I don’t know, likely not. But it’s sure been an entertaining distraction.

At the end of the day, no matter the M&M’s colors, genders or personalities, they’re all sweet chocolate on the inside. And their big boss Mars is making a mint off them. 


Shannon Casas is editor in chief of The Times and a North Hall resident.