Why did my stomach just jump out of my body, grab my phone, and call for an ambulance? Oh, it's because it knows I'm about to eat far more Halloween candies in a single sitting than any human being should, so it wants to have a trained medical staff nearby with a stomach pump. I've been collecting candies over the past two months of the 2011 Halloween season and now it's time to put them (and my digestive system) to the test.
I know that the only thing more important to you on Halloween than coming up with a good costume to wear is knowing which candies to be on the look out for. Well, it has been the honor of my life knowing that you all depend on me, year after year, to let you know which candies belong in your stomach and which ones belong six feet under. Wait, did I say the honor of my life? I meant drain on my life. I feel like every time I eat all of these candies, my stomach acids are dissolving away years of my life rather than the candies themselves. But hey, you guys are far more important than my health, right? Right.
If you haven't ready my past Halloween candy coverage from 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 make sure you do, because many of the candies from those years are still in production. Alright, let's get started!
Russell Stover "In Goblins We Trust" Note
You know something? I'm looking forward to the afterlife, because now I know that chocolate is considered legal tender. And holy crap, this single piece of chocolate is worth ONE BILLION DOLLARS! I only bought it for fifty cents, so that's one hell of an investment if you ask me. I have to say that I was a bit disappointed that the chocolate itself didn't mimic the outer packaging - it doesn't even say "In Goblins We Trust" and the ghost is no longer depicted in the center of the bill. Chocolate design aside, it's still as tasty as any piece of Russell Stover milk chocolate, so no complaints here.
out of 5 floating eyeballs
It's Alive! "Eye Popping Pie"
Last year, Flix candy gave us some crazy horror-themed marshmallow treats based on our favorite foods (pizza, hot dogs, etc.), but this year Riviera Brands has released their own "It's Alive!" line of similar Halloween treats. First up, we have the Eye Popping Pie which has a big eyeball peering out from the center and wrapped in what I can only presume are sinews. Upon opening the package, I was surprised as just how good this marshmallow treat smelled. Unfortunately, the marshmallow itself is quite flavorless despite the fact that it's coated in sugar crystals.
out of 5 Phantasm Sentinel Spheres
Brach's Assorted Halloween Mellowcreme Candies
Now here's something pretty cool. You guys already know how much I love Brach's Mellowcreme Pumpkins every year; well this time around, I found a variety pack of other Mellowcreme Halloween candies. The candies come in a variety of seasonal colors and shapes including a black cat, a pumpkin, a vampire bat, corn on the cob, a jack-o-lantern, a bundle of hay, a crescent moon, and a cider jug with "Brach's" written on the side. The flavors vary with each color as well - yellow tastes like banana, light brown tastes like caramel, dark brown tastes like a Tootsie Roll, and orange tastes like the classic mellowcreme pumpkins. I'm definitely liking these a lot, especially the banana ones since the flavor is a lot like the banana flavored Runts candies made by the Wonka company. Plus, there's no denying that these candies wouldn't also double as decorative table sprinkles for any Halloween or fall season festivities. All that said, I still prefer the classic Mellowcreme Pumpkins more than these additional flavors, but it's always nice to mix things up a bit, so I'd definitely recommend giving these a try.
out of 5 Uncle Festers
Looney Heads Candy Finger Pops
These Looney Heads lollipops are new this season and I instantly appreciated the fact that they came with their own plastic bubble domes for when they're not being devoured. They also have multi-colored, flashing led lights built into the base of each ring, and there's no denying that lights are always a nice addition to any wearable Halloween candy. The finger pops come in two varieties - a green razor-toothed monster that looks like a relative of the Creature from the Black Lagoon (sour green apple) and a melted red guy (sour strawberry) who may or may have not been shaped like another monster at one point in time. And yes, I checked all the other strawberry ones in the store at the time, but they all looked the same.
Flavor-wise, they're actually not bad at all, which is surprising since when you find a candy with built-in lights, it usually means the candy itself isn't anything to write home about. Of the two varieties, I'd recommend the green apple flavor more than strawberry. I certainly wouldn't call these things "sour" though... they're really quite mellow. Even classic Jolly Ranchers are more sour than these are.
On a side note, I found it amusing that they had to print separate sticker labels to put on the outside of the packages, since the bubbles covered up the flavors from being easily read. I also think it's funny that the green apple flavor text was written in red, while the strawberry flavor was written in green. To correct this grievous error, I think they should print yet another set of labels to place on top of the other ones they already attached to the packages.
out of 5 pumpkin candles
Ghouloween Halloween Lollipops
These new Ghouloween lollipops are undeniably adorable, what with their happy little vampire bat, jack-o-lantern, and ghost designs. Of course, as with all lollipops of this nature, the white coloring of those designs vanish as soon as you take your first lick. Unfortunately, the real problem with these lollies is that their flavor is extremely bland. The package describes them as "artificial fruit flavor," so you know they're not going to be great when even the company that produces them doesn't know what they taste like. It's somewhat orange, but not quite. The one thing they do taste is very artificial. So points for the nice little design, but the flavor is just too lacking.
out of 5 Pennywise clowns
Pumpkin & Ghost Light-Up Lollipops
Looks like they had a lot of problem with the packaging of these pumpkin and ghost light-up lollipops, because the bubbles on almost every package had been re-glued onto them. Not that the packaging is anything to brag about, since it looks more like something you'd find sitting next to Polly Pocket and Barbie dolls in a toy store, rather than in the Halloween section. But hey, that's just the packaging.
The lollies themselves come in nice pumpkin and ghost containers, which light up by pressing a button in the base. The buttons are a bit difficult to push in, but at least they work. The pumpkin lights up extremely well, even in daylight, and the ghost isn't too bad either. I should also note that the pumpkin pop is actually two pumpkins stacked on top of each other, the top one being carved to look like a cyclops. It's the little things that count.
When you remove the lids, you find that the lollipops inside aren't wrapped very well, and there's already candy residue on the inside of the container - not a good thing if you're hoping to get decorative use out of these long after you've devoured the lollipops. And speaking of devouring, it's probably going to take you a while to do so, because both the blueberry and strawberry flavors leave much to be desired. Between the shoddy packaging, the poorly wrapped lollipops, and the overly bland flavoring, I can't say I recommend these unless you're buying them solely as cheap light-up Halloween decorations. And even then, be prepared to scrub the insides of each one out, because they're covered in lollipop residue.
out of 5 full moons
An I-Mockery reader alerted me to these new Blood Lollipops from Target, and wow... they just look plain nasty. The only way I can describe it is to say that it looks like one of H.R. Giger's aliens drooled all over the ground after eating some poor guy's face. A gross looking concoction of blood and translucent slime, each lollipop being completely unique in shape, you just can't get more Halloweeny than that.
While the appearance of these blood lollipops may be grotesque, the cherry flavoring is not. I admit, it's a bit weird licking something that looks like this, and tasting a cherry flavor... especially when licking the clear parts on the outer edges. A bit overpriced at $1.99 if you ask me, but these are certainly a unique addition to the 2011 Halloween season, so I'd recommend trying them out.
Also, can you imagine having a Halloween dinner party and laying a bunch of these out for all your guests on a white table cloth? $1.99 may be a lot for a lollipop, but it's cheap for a bloody table decoration.
out of 5 pumpkin carving tools
Tom & Sally's Boo Doo Champagne Bubbles Candy
You know, if you're going to eat poop, it might as well be from a ghost. One candy company has set out to give you that rare opportunity in the form of Boo Doo - tiny white gum drops covered in little white sprinkles. And you know what? They're actually pretty damn good - and I'm not even a big fan of gum drops, so that's saying a lot. The chewy, sweet tropical fruit flavored center mixes nicely with the crunchy outer sprinkles layer.
But let's be honest here, the best thing about Boo Doo is the look of UTTER SHAME on the face of the ghost right there on the package. Normally when a ghost makes that face, it's supposed to scare us, but in this case, with his little poop trail behind him, that face is the face of shame. SHAME!
So yeah, it's safe to say I pretty much love these.
out of 5 brains in jars of formaldehyde
Witch's Finger Lollipop
This Witch's Finger looks great. The purple nail, the bone sticking out of the bottom with blood around it, and even a wart. You don't even need the label... if you saw this finger lying on the ground, you'd know it came from a witch. Sadly, much like a real witch's finger would taste awful (or so I presume), this may be the worst tasting lollipop I've had this year. There's no discernible flavor other than pure artificial chemicals. Great design, but come on... a witch appendage or not, at least give us a semi-decent taste to go along with it. It's not asking too much.
out of 5 Gremlins
Sweet Cosmos Frankenstein's Monster Lollipop
I gotta say, Frankenstein's Monster lollipops are a dime a dozen come Halloween, but this is one of the nicest, most detailed ones I've seen. The dark circles under his eyes, the stitches upon his brow, the bolds in his neck... fantastic. The colors don't fade quickly either, unlike other lollipops whose designs vanish quickly after being in your mouth. I can't say the flavor is anything spectacular, as it's a somewhat bland green apple flavor. It's nothing too bad or to chemical-ish, it just doesn't hold a candle to many other green apple flavored candies that are out there.
out of 5 maggots
Oh but there's more!
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PAGE 2 OF THE CANDIES!
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