Zomething Zhitty

Add your own electric buzzing sound effects...

Add your own electric buzzing sound effects…

I think I’ve said this before on my blog, but I don’t drink alcohol.  I’ve never drank alcohol.  Even when I was in college, I never had anything harder than a Pepsi.  But if I did drink during my college days of the mid 90’s, I could have enjoyed this popular, well-liked, manly new malt liquor that had just hit the scene….

Now of course, if you remember the infamous drink called Zima that was introduced to the beer drinking world in 1993, you realize that my last sentence contained a lot of sarcasm.  Not that you would ever expect to find any sarcasm at The Nest…

I'm always a perfect little angel!

I’m always a perfect little angel!

tuesday tvBefore we discuss why Zima went down as one of the most laughed at products of the 1990’s, let’s look a bit into its history.  Zima was created by the Coors brewing company, back when they were still associated with mountains and streams instead of recklessly running ice covered trains through crowded city streets.  It was marketed as an alternative to regular beer, and was made as unbeerlike as possible by adding a shot of carbonation and taking all the color out of it.  So instead of pouring an ice cold beer, it looked like you were going to drown your troubles in an ice cold 7-UP…

Don't drink the Zima, kiddies!  HAHAHAHAHA....

Don’t drink the Zima, kiddies! HAHAHAHAHA….

Zima was an offshoot of the craze among beverage companies in the early 90’s to make clear versions of their popular drinks.  Pepsi was one of the first to try this by removing the cola color from the soda and naming the resulting mess Crystal Pepsi.  Nobody who didn’t work at Pepsi HQ thought this was a good idea, and it was quickly discontinued since more people were buying crystal meth than buying Crystal Pepsi.  Soda drinkers didn’t much care for the idea of a see-through cola, so what in the world made Coors think beer drinkers wanted to drink something clear and fizzy, at least before they got their hangover…

I can't remember if this is my Alka Seltzer, or that Zima I didn't drink last night...

I can’t remember if this is my Alka Seltzer, or that Zima I didn’t drink last night…

Despite the uphill battle Coors faced, they charged full steam ahead in nationally advertising Zima beginning in 1994., and went straight for the young male demographic most beer commercials are geared towards.  As you can see from the ad I included above, there’s a straight up mid-90’s barbecue party going on there among a bunch of multicultural friends who just got out of college and like taunting the group vegetarian by slapping their meat around.  And of course, the cooler is full of ice cold Zima.  It couldn’t be more taken from the time period if there was some Skee-Lo playing in the background…

Dezpite the guy who narrated the early commercialz’ annoying tendenzy to change S’s into Z’s, Zima actually became quite zuczezzful…. for a very short time, at least.  And by short, I mean like as soon as the novelty of drinking a clear beer wore off, people quit ordering the shit.  It just didn’t fit in with the bigger, badder drinks that dominated the bar.  In the normally rugged bar scene, Zima was like a hippie who tried to fit in at the VFW Hall…

I don't just put any bottle in my brown paper bag!  I have standards, you know!

I don’t just put any bottle in my brown paper bag! I have standards, you know!

But even more damaging for Zima was that it quickly got a reputation for being the official alcoholic beverage of the metrosexual.  No matter how much we may try to blur the traditional gender lines these days, if there is one place where a man never wants his sexual identity to be called into question, it’s in a bar where he’s not only trying to impress the girls, but his guy friends as well.  Ordering a Zima at the bar now carried with it a stigma with it that couldn’t have been more damaging had you walked in the place wearing a pair of assless chaps… unless the bar you were drinking at happened to be playing this music

I wish I didn't have to dress in drag just to enjoy my favorite alcoholic drink!

I wish I didn’t have to dress in drag just to enjoy my favorite alcoholic drink!

About the only thing propping up Zima sales in the late 90’s were the urban myths that the alcohol in Zima would not register on a breathalyzer, or that it was just a fancy version of O’douls, the beer industry’s most infamous non-alcoholic beer.  Underage drinkers and drunk drivers continued to drink Zima until they wound up getting arrested for DUI’s, dancing on top of police cars, or dying from embarrassment after their friends caught them drinking a Zima…

Had Facebook existed in the 90's, this guy would have had to move to Antartica...

Had Facebook existed in the 90’s, this guy would have had to move to Antartica…

Despite all the mockery that was unleashed on Zima in the 90’s, it somehow managed to remain on the shelves of fine liquor stores across the country right up until 2008.  That’s right, even just five years ago, you could have still purchased a Zima, while kissing your reputation goodbye.  However, if you are thirsting after an ice cold Zima after reading this week’s Retro TV Ad Tuesday post, just hop a plane across the pacific, because you can always buy some in Japan, where it is still marketed to this day…

Gotta (hic!) drink 'em all!

Gotta (hic!) drink ’em all!

If there are two things we love here at The Nest, it is products that are both retro and totally ridiculous… so it is with a touch of fizz that we salute the near-beer sensation Zima for making the 90’s just a bit more fun and a whole lot more mockable.  We fear not the girly-man reputation of your liquid fool’s gold, and would proudly order a bottle at the roughest bar in town while wearing our Rainbow Donkey T-shirt.  The Nest would also like to nominate Zima as the official alcoholic beverage of the Brony!  Bottoms up, fillies!

I got 99 problems, but a drink ain't one....

I got 99 problems, but a drink ain’t one….

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About evilsquirrel13

Bored former 30-something who has nothing better to do with his life than draw cartoon squirrels.
This entry was posted in TV Commercials and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to Zomething Zhitty

  1. NotAPunkRocker says:

    Zima, Boone’s Farm and Mad Dog 20/20 were the things to get your legal-to-drink friends to buy if you were underage. We had such impeccable taste back then.

    No kidding, I heard “I Wish” on the way home yesterday afternoon. Now I wish I could get that song out of my head.

  2. Mental Mama says:

    Even when I was drinking I had way better taste than that – like warm Jack Daniel’s, right out of the bottle.

  3. merbear74 says:

    I loved Zima, always got a decent buzz off of it…and perfect angel my ass. 🙂

  4. merbear74 says:

    Winner winner chilleh dinner, lmao!

  5. Juliette says:

    You’re making me laugh again!

    Hey, I didn’t realize you have Rainbow Donkey and Cute Squirrel shirts shirts! I couldn’t even spell squirrel correctly before I started reading your blog.

  6. C.K. Hope says:

    For the record, Zima isn’t strong enough to make anyone dance on a cop car, that takes whiskey and guinness and er … stuff. Zima was weird and had a nasty aftertaste.

    • Whiskey, and Guinness, and er… stuff….. got it! 😉

      That’s funny that you say it had an aftertaste, because I almost compared Zima as being a bastardization of beer on a par with diet sodas being a poor imitation of real sodas… and I will NEVER resort to drinking diet soda because of the nasty aftertaste it has…

      • C.K. Hope says:

        That’s EXACTLY the aftertaste, the same nasty as diet soda! Beer was nasty too really, I couldn’t stand it and never drank it. Guinness was not beer 😉

  7. goldfish says:

    Ugh. Zima was disgusting.

  8. Thanks, ES, I like shiny things.

  9. Twindaddy says:

    Lol, I hate beer. And liked Zima. Tasted like Sprite.

  10. draliman says:

    I feel left out. I’ve never even heard of the stuff, and back in the 90s I was still drinking. Certainly if they served it at the Students’ Union bar at university, I never saw it.
    Boo 😦
    Although from the sounds of it I had a lucky escape.
    Hooray 🙂

  11. I am fascinated my bronism. 🙂

  12. ksbeth says:

    wow, i haven’t thought about zima in an awfully long time. ‘awful’ actually sums it up.

  13. PigLove says:

    WOW! Mommy says that she remembers that barbaric stuff called Zima. Someone she knew used to drink the stuff. They are now in a Witless Protection Program – snorts.
    We at the Hotel Thompson are hardcore drinkers. We take our Coca Cola straight up in a cold bottle. XOXO – Bacon

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