Halloween is right around the corner, and horror fans everywhere are basking in the glorious season. This is our Christmas. This is our time. A time when fans of the horror genre can put aside our petty arguments over “Who played Dracula better: Lee or Lugosi?” The never-ending squabble over who started the slasher genre.
It all fades away in the month leading up to our beloved Halloween holiday, or maybe it’s just the result of sugar crashes that drain us of any energy to argue.
Speaking of sugar, candy has always been KING at Halloween, and one can’t deny remembering Halloweens past in our adolescent years. As we opened our eyes in the comfort of our cartoon character bedsheets on October 31st, we immediately thought of the glorious haul of Halloween treats we would possess that night. Pillowcases full of homemade popcorn balls, candy apples, and even the dreaded nickels and pennies were not only expected, but a Halloween staple in what seems like not so long ago.
Looking inside my child’s trick-or-treat bags these days is a far cry from what they looked like when I was a kid. Homemade treats from neighbors are strictly taboo as urban myths have pretty much put an end to that era. Long gone are the days of accidentally ingesting wax and smoking pseudo candy cigarettes. And I kind of miss it!
Although these candies are still very much available at old-time candy shops and online, I sure do miss seeing that super cool Mr. Bones in my kid’s pumpkin pails. So let’s take a stroll down Halloween memory lane and fondly remember the Halloween candy that has become an obscure item to see in present times.
10. Candy Cigarettes
Even with an unsavory past in regards to marketing, these were still pretty cool to get in your Halloween haul. Sitting around with friends negotiating candy trades with one of these suckers in your mouth made you feel like an adult, especially if you suckered someone out of their peanut butter cups; the one small “poof” of glory sugar smoke made it that much more satisfying.
9. Whack-O-Wax Lips, Fangs, and Mustaches
These over-sized red lips and ‘stashes were such a fun addition to our candy stash, even if you ended up shitting out waxy poops the next day. As a matter of fact, I think I still have that waxy taste in my mouth from 1992. However, in any case they still ruled.
8. Wonka’s Dino Sour Eggs
This sweet and sour variation of the Gobstopper was way more interesting than its plain counterpart. Depending on how long you sucked on these bad boys, they would change colors and flavors, eventually shriveling up into what looked like dino doo-doo if you got that far without spitting it out.
7. Monster Candy
Another variation of candy cigarettes was the Monster Candy that came in various tiny boxes that usually contained 2 sticks (if I can remember correctly). They weren’t the tastiest, much like the latter, but goddamnit if they weren’t one of the coolest things to find in your pile of candy. Just look at that gorgeous packaging with Karloff and Lugosi. Are you really going to disagree?
Oh man, Drac-Snax were THE TITS. Just like the Monster Candy mentioned above, this had some of the coolest packaging ever for Halloween treats. The hard fruit-flavored candies were not only good, but they completely captured the essence of what Halloween is all about. Bats, tombstones, and some poor headless sonofabitch.
5. Orange Juice Bubble Gum
I may be alone on this one; however, I really, really, miss this stuff. It was hard not to just slide all those tiny nuggets into your mouth all at once. The Topps gum had different flavors available like grape and lemon, but orange was by far the best. It was pure candy crack, I tell you.
Yes, the official name for these things were Nik-L-Lip, but we all just called them “wax juice.” You approached this in one of two ways: Either you bit the top off and sucked out all that sugary flavored syrup inside, or you just popped the fucker in your mouth, releasing an explosion of super sweet sugar-water onto your taste buds. Also, if you were like me, you chewed on the wax bottle until all the flavor was gone while, again, trying to avoid the waxy Halloween poops.
3. Garbage Can-dy
Who remembers sugary fish bones?! Or perhaps the old shoes along with some old soda bottles that definitely tasted a lot better than they looked. These Pez-like candies came in a super cool toy trashcan that you could use for storage. I personally used mine for Garbage Pail Kids stickers. It just seemed fitting.
2. PB Maxx
Oh, PB Maxx, how I miss thee. The ULTIMATE chocolate-coated peanut butter bar was fuckin’ heaven. And apparently I’m not the only one who thinks so. There is an actual active Facebook page dedicated to resurrecting the long discontinued candy bar. And if history has taught us anything about nostalgia foods (such as the return of Ecto-Cooler, then we just might get to see it again IF our voices are strong enough. And I would be all kinds of okay with this.
1. Mr. Bones
Was there really anything more radical than Mr. Bones? I mean, you not only got some delicious tart candy, but you got to build a skeleton out of your food! Oh yes, those sneaky bastards tricked us to use our minds to put together this jigsaw puzzle of a treat, and then devour it like an animal. Brilliance. Plus it came in a cool coffin box! The ultimate Halloween treasure treat was absolutely getting multiples of these spectacular candies. I miss you, Mr. Bones. You delicious little fellow.
What is a Halloween candy you would like to see make a comeback? I’d love to hear your two cents so share your retro rants below!