We've seen lots of oddball candy selections for this Halloween season, but not everyone is skipping over the classics. Even at the top of Choco Mountain, three of the sales leaders have taken a bite out of the holiday spirit and filled the wound with all sorts of marshmallow slime and peanut butter creme. Hershey's, Reese's, and Snickers have all been given the Halloween treatment, and more striking than their similarities there is the fact that they've uniformly been souped up to look like pumpkins. No ghosts, no vampires, no witches or Frankensteins. Pumpkins, and lots of 'em. Their respected names will surely make these the season's top sellers and the most bragged about entries into any kid's trick-or-treat sack, but when all the chocolate is stripped and the bellies of our youth more bloated than a dead beached sea turtle, there can only be...one champion. Which of these three ace card contenders is the true leader of the pumpkin-shaped chocolate Halloween candy society? Let's find out.
First up, Hershey's "Marshmallow Pumpkin," a big chocolate shell containing an even bigger loaf of marshmallow gunk. Though it's the only one of the three magic pumpkins that isn't hideously unhealthy, it's also the most boring. The marshmallow filling is fine on the first bite, but subsequent bites will leave you craving the worse yet tastier types of fillings found in the next entries. There is such a thing as too much marshmallow, and this is edible proof. Worst of all, it's only shaped like a Jack O' Lantern in the vaguest of ways, looking as much like half a monkey's ass as it does a pumpkin. On the plus side, it's cheap eatin' and the royal purple foil wrapper might inspire you into grander themes for your future wedding parties. Truth be told, apologies to Hershey's -- this just ain't the candy I'd be willing to build my future around. Pass.
From flop to glob, here's Reese's "Peanut Butter Pumpkin," a takeoff on their classic peanut butter cups. If you like the cups, you'll love this -- it's the same thing, just with 80 times more filling. Again, the pumpkin shape is more subdued than it should be, but you'll be too busy eating way too much peanut butter creme to care. Besides, with this one, it's all about the free association. This is a Halloween peanut butter cup, right? For all intents? So, you'll bite into it, realize how much it tastes like the regular cups, and invariably be reminded of that old Reese's Peanut Butter Cups commercial, where Dracula confesses that "he likes to eat the peanut butter...first." Then you'll try to eat the pb-pumpkins just as Dracula, ultimately failing, but having an incredible amount of fun along the way. For 69 cents, all that shit's a bargain. Still, I don't think Reese's has successfully topped our last entry...
Presenting this year's champion, the "Snickers Pumpkin." If you're going to eat a candy bar, there's usually no better avenue than the almighty Snickers -- and every part of that enticing formula has been perfectly mimicked and modified into a pumpkin-shaped holiday concession. This time, the pumpkin actually looks right, with decisively pronounced triangular eyes, a gaping mouth, and a stem that makes you want to take a step back and thank the good lord for creating life intelligent enough to make something so wonderful. And there's caramel! And nuts and all that other stuff! Chocolate! You can talk up the marshmallows and peddle the peanut butter all you want -- anyone faithful to their objectivity can see that Snickers took the crown fair and square tonight.