Stranger Things recently teamed up with a truly strange thing…New Coke.
Does anyone remember New Coke? Released in April 1985, Coca-Cola launched a new recipe that consumers found totally repulsive.
A public outcry over the drink’s increased sweetness forced the soft-drink giant to yank New Coke from shelves. But Netflix’s Stranger Things 3 is bringing back the controversial Coke spin-off for a nostalgic marketing stunt.
Back from the grave (or the Upside Down)…New Coke lives again!
Never-before-seen footage found in the Coca-Cola archives. May, 1985 https://t.co/uiZlOXmM0t
— Stranger Things (@Stranger_Things) May 21, 2019
According to reports, series creators The Duffer Brothers wrote New Coke into Season 3 of Stranger Things. But they also reached out to Coca-Cola corporate about producing a limited run of New Coke’s original 1985 recipe.
Shockingly, their twisted plan worked!
New Coke will return to some stores and be available online for a limited time. You can check out Coke’s nifty retro-style website for the promotion here.
Even if you wouldn’t dare drink a New Coke, the website is totally radical.
Coke executives told Fast Company about their unlikely collab with Stranger Things.
“They wrote us into the third season in a fairly meaningful way, so they brought us the idea. And you can imagine that it wasn’t the idea that we were maybe expecting to hear. There was a moment, when anybody who’s been on this project sort of said, ‘Oh wow, are we . . . are we really gonna think about doing this?’”
But the idea turned out pretty sweet, with plenty on social media cracking open a can of nostalgia.
Whoa, someone at Coca-Cola needs a raise (whoever came up with this)
— Pierre Bus (@PierreBus380) May 21, 2019
Nothing strange about that!
— Coca-Cola (@CocaCola) May 21, 2019
— Coca-Cola (@CocaCola) May 21, 2019
But not everyone’s welcoming New Coke back with open arms.
All this fuss about sugar water! Soda is gross. #NewCoke
— HUDSON VALLEY VEGANS 🦋🌱 (@HudsonVegans) May 24, 2019
Apparently New Coke is making a limited return in partnership with #StrangerThings. Gross. Who asked for this? It was trash in the 80's & I'm sure it's still trash. Maybe some show set in the 90's can bring back Crystal Pepsi? pic.twitter.com/s1uYgQp8xm
— Adventure Nipples Ⓥ (@xtineogle) May 21, 2019
Others couldn’t help but groan about the Stranger Things corporate tie-in.
Very Cool To See Brands On This Webpage! Love To See Content From My Favorite Brands!
— BigJimFridge (@BigJimFridge) May 21, 2019
But you know what?
Some people are freaking pumped for New Coke’s return.
I am excited to try this. I heard it was awful so I need to learn why. And the best way to find out is to try it. lawls.
— AngryCrazyZebra (@AngryCrazyZebra) May 24, 2019
— Dinosaur Dracula (@DinosaurDracula) May 24, 2019
Some couldn’t help but think of New Coke’s brother from another mother…Crystal Pepsi.
I see your New Coke and raise you – pic.twitter.com/dlyJuKRE4w
— MrFKNSunshine (@MrFKNSunshine) May 21, 2019
Netflix is also doing other spooky promotions for Stranger Things and New Coke.
visited the upside down and got myself a new coke. thank u @CocaCola and @netflix. this is not an ad, I am just extremely enthusiastic about this immersive effort!!!! 👏🏻👏🏻👏🏻 pic.twitter.com/2gFmHSwAic
— Sean (@Sean_POBrien) May 23, 2019
But what exactly does New Coke taste like?
According to the internet…Pepsi.
— The FOZ (@FOZGodfathers) May 24, 2019
#NewCoke If you are that interested in what New Coke tasted like,pour 6 oz.Pepsi in a glass then pour 6 oz.of RC cola in it,mix with a stirrer,and I guarantee you it tastes just like that
— Brian Francis Nearey (@BrianFr11473) May 24, 2019
Why New Coke failed?
Because they tried to make it taste like Pepsi.
If we wanted that, we'd just get a Pepsi.
I am seeing parallels to the upcoming Dem Primaries.
That was not intentional.#NotMeUs
— Bacon 4 President 🥓 It's Bacon! (@Bacon4Pres) May 24, 2019
Soda mythology suggests Coca-Cola originally launched New Coke to compete with sweeter brands of soft drinks, like Pepsi, that gained market share in the mid-eighties.
New Coke didn’t catch on like the original formula, but people seem unusually hyped about its 2019 revival.
Thanks to Stranger Things season 3, we can all relive the glory (or brutal disappointment) of New Coke.