Happy National Junk Food Day! It comes as a welcome relief that today is the one day of the year that we as Americans, especially us TV-loving Americans, can finally indulge guilt-free in all our favorite fatty snacks and sugary treats. Finally, we can unlock those fries, pizza and candy we’ve been keeping in the vault and really let loose after another year of healthy, balanced eating. Screw you, salad. We’ve earned this!
OK, so I’m kidding. It’s no secret that our country loves junk food no matter what day it is — and that us TV fans have a certain reputation for pigging out more than most. Our national love for delicious, high-calorie garbage is so pervasive that lots of TV shows have made fictional snacks a big part of their world. From that time Lucy and Ethel pigged out in the candy factory to Liz Lemon’s obsession with her Sabor de Soledad, junk food has always been on our minds, in our hearts and in our mouths.
Here are some of our favorite fictional junk foods from some of our favorite past and present shows. Snack on these fun clips now, then go ahead and order the large ice cream cone later, comfortable in the knowledge that nobody can say a thing about it. It’s a holiday!
The Cornballer (Arrested Development): A running joke that led to countless bleeps and screams on Arrested Development, the Cornballer is one of George Bluth Sr.’s crackpot inventions from the 70s, and it makes delicious fried balls of corn that the whole family can enjoy. If they’re not covered in third-degree burns after using the machine.
Sweetums NutriYums (Parks and Recreation): Nurse Ann, registered party-pooper, claims these “granola bars” by the Sweetums Company are just solid blocks of sugar. But if you ask us, there’s got to be something else in the formula (cocaine?) that makes for such a righteous high. Look how much fun they’re having! Wash ’em down with some of Tom’s SnakeJuice, a Swanson (a bacon-wrapped turkey leg) and some chiki-chiki parm-parm, and you’ve got yourself a party.
Cheesy Blasters (30 Rock): “You take a hot dog, stuff it with jack cheese, fold it in a pizza, you got cheesy blasters!” And you’ve also got heart disease (probably) and a case of the intestinal “cheesy blasters” (definitely). Still, they sound a lot better than Sabor de Soledad, Liz’s favorite Mexican bargain cheese puffs that have been known to cause false positives on pregnancy tests.
Cheesy Poofs (South Park): We’ll finally know why Cartman is so obsessed with these cheesy snacks, because they’re going to make them and sell them at Wal-Mart. If you plan on buying some, it would be most prudent to learn the song so you can really have the full South Park experience while you snack.
Roger Ebert Should Lay Off the Fatty Foods
Duff Beer (The Simpsons): In the world of Krusty Burger and Lard Lad Donuts, there’s something extra-special about Duff. They’ve got their own superhero spokesman, a theme park, and the ability to turn a man into an alcoholic in a single drink. Duff now exists in real life, too. According to this guy, some of the TV magic may have gotten lost in translation, but it’s not so bad.
Apollo Bars (Lost): Lost loved filling its world with Easter Eggs, and one of the most prominent was this fictional candy bar which was enjoyed on and off the Island by nearly every character, whether Jack was getting one from a vending machine at the hospital or if Annie was giving one to a young Ben when he first arrived on the Island. One dedicated fan actually made a “commercial” for the show’s favorite candy.
Krabby Patty (Spongebob Squarepants): Who says kids’ shows can’t have snacks for all ages? The heart and soul of the Krusty Krab restaurant, each Krabby Patty is a work of art that requires intense study, concentration and an appreciation for the subtleties of the P-O-O-P system, as this delightful training video illustrates. If you don’t have a whole 12 minutes to spare, I recommend skipping to the 10-minute mark and watching the dramatic presentation of the ultimate Krabby Patty. If it doesn’t make you hungry for a juicy burger, I’m not sure what will.
Now all I want is a Krabby Patty, and it hurts to know I’ll never be able to have one. NEVER. In the words of Liz Lemon, “I’m going to go talk to some food about this.”
Happy National Junk Food Day! How are you celebrating? Do you have any favorite fictional TV snacks that I didn’t mention?
(Image courtesy of NBC)