Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Kirk And The King

Burger King has kicked off their Star Trek promotion. Clearly I'm already hooked.

Burger King, already known for their memorable advertising, have really outdone themselves this time. They've introduced the Kingons, which as you can probably figure out, are a cross between their infamous mascot and the race of Star Trek aliens. Honestly just the idea that there are other "Kings", particularly a female one, is more disturbing than them being King/ Klingon hybrids.

Star Trek actually holds a special distinction in fast food history. Star Trek: The Motion Picture was the first movie to be promoted as a Happy Meal. It's also interesting that McDonald's built their campaign around the Klingons just as Burger King would do thirty years later.

It's funny to me that something that has been seen as insular as Star Trek really was mainstream enough to have had a number of fast food restaurant tie-ins. There were collector glasses available at Taco Bell for Star Trek III: The Search For Spock. I find the idea of a bubbly Taco Bell employee mentioning the Vulcan ritual of Fal-tor-pan in a TV spot terribly amusing.

In 1994 Jack In The Box did a promotion for Star Trek Generations that also featured collector's cups, this time of the more common plastic variety. Their kids' meals included Star Trek themed versions of those mid-nineties staples, temporary tattoos and pogs. I do remember when Generations was released but I don't have any memory of this Jack in the Box promotion. During that time period I would have taken any and all pogs that I could get my hands on.

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