"Hey, I love your site. Can I write a few bad candy reviews of my own for you?"
"Nope, sorry. The bad candy concept doesn't work very well if you're not here, actually eating the stuff with us."
"Aw, come on! Can't you bend the rules for me just once?"
"Damn it, I said no!"
"Pretty please with a light dusting of confectioner's sugar on top?"
"Arrgh... if we print your reviews, will you shut the hell up already?"
"Sure, I can do that!"
"All right. We'll find a place for them in the reader submission section, somewhere. Now go away."
After months of prodding, whining, and generally being an obnoxious sonuvabitch, I was finally able to convince the fine folks at www.bad-candy.com to accept a few of my humble contributions. And to thank them for their kindness, I've decided to help them prove to the world that they are, indeed, not racists, by fixing my crosshairs on the worst American products I've put in my mouth since waking up one morning and accidentally brushing my teeth with Desitin (don't ask).
Today's victim is Sixlets, an M&Ms rip-off originally created by the Leaf Corporation, a company that's been associated with mediocre candies since they filled their first gumball machine with stale, discolored jawbreakers. Recently, Leaf was swallowed up by the much larger Hershey Foods, and frankly, I'm amazed that they were able to hold them down for so long. Sure, Leaf has a few almost OK products under its belt, like the famous malted milk balls Whoppers, but it's farted out at least twice as much garbage, usually straight into those red candy dispensors you see with Jerry Lewis and that handicapped kid on the front. The way Leaf's products taste, it's no wonder the kid's been in that wheelchair for so long.
Sixlets, however, are so legendarily awful that no gumball machine could contain them. Instead, they're sold in a rather unpleasant yellow package with a picture of a centipede on the front. The colorful bug is shown balancing a Sixlet on one of his many feet, blissfully unaware of how terrible the candy he's whoring for tastes. Below him is the caption "Candy Coated Chocolate-Flavored Candy", which is of course Hershey's polite way of screaming "M&Ms RIP-OFF!!!" at the top of their lungs. Of course, as you'd expect from any product that's derivitive enough of another to be popular but just different enough to avoid a lawsuit, Sixlets differs from M&Ms in the following ways:
* IT DOESN'T TASTE GOOD. I mean, at all. If by some freak mishap you find a Sixlet in your mouth, don't even take the take to figure out how it got there... spit it out ASAP! If you leave it on your toungue for any length of time, the candy shell starts dissolving, leaving behind a sort of bitter, sort of sour flavor. My guess is that this taste comes from the seven different chemicals they used to dye the shells. In fact, half the ingredients in Sixlets are either food colors or synthetic substances with names the kids who eat this crap couldn't hope to pronounce.
* IT'S MADE FROM CAROB. If you've ever been dragged into a health store as a child, you're familiar with carob. It's that icky stuff your health-conscious relatives were convinced could take the place of chocolate in a kid's sugar-filled diet. In reality, it's the Vege-Links of chocolate. Sure, it may have the same texture and color as chocolate, but the instant you put carob in your mouth, you'll know the difference. And you'll want to set fire to that health store, too, just to make sure that nobody makes the same mistake you did.
* IT'S ROUND. I fondly remember a game my brother and I made up when we were tired of eating M&Ms. It was called, imaginatively enough, "M&M Wars", and involved pressing two M&Ms together in a fight to the finish. The first one to crack under the pressure (literally) was declared the loser and gobbled up for its failure. We'd get excited whenever we found a champion M&M that defeated three rivals... of course, we'd think nothing of retiring the champ to our mouths when he lost his belt to a hungry young challenger. Wait, there was a point to this... oh yeah! You can't play M&M Wars with Sixlets for two reasons. First, they're not M&Ms, and you'd be sued for copyright infringement. Secondly, they're round, and it's impossible to squeeze two of them together without one shooting out of your fingers and into your eye. However, you could probably use them in a pachinko machine, if you don't mind clogging it up with the remains of broken Sixlets and pissing off the attendants at your local arcade. That's when you drop a handful on the floor and make your cunning escape while they're slipping, sliding, and knocking over all the Tekken machines.
So, to put it succintly, Sixlets are third rate M&Ms, without all the great things that have made M&Ms so popular. To put it even more, uh, succintlier, Sixlets suck lots. I'm not even sure I'll be able to eat the entire package... they'll probably end up in a drawer along with my bag of half-eaten cut rock candies. At least those look cool, with those little designs embedded inside each and every piece... in fact, they tasted all right, too, if you avoided the mint and peach flavors. You know, now that I think about it, maybe I'll just drop the Sixlets into the garbage can instead. And while I'm in the kitchen, maybe I'll dig up some pesticide for our "friend" the Sixlets centipede, too.
At least the bag is a nice preview of coming attractions... if you're dumb enough to buy Sixlets after taking a close look at the gruesome yellow package, you deserve to eat them. And the badly drawn centipede on the front looks like Steve Urkel, except with even less shame.
OK, I'll admit it. Sixlets look like something you almost might want to put in your mouth. I wouldn't try it if I were you, though.
The carob inside Sixlets has a sweet-but-not-a-good-kind-of-sweet quality to it. It should be contained within a nuclear waste drum, not a thin candy shell that turns to bitter grit when you chew it.
The texture of the carob is insidiously close to that of chocolate, but the candy shell is far too thin, only partially masking the terror that lurks beneath it.
Hershey's is digging itself a nice, deep grave by producing this crap under its brand name. Just because you bought out Leaf doesn't mean you have to continue making all of their products, guys.