Wacky Wednesdays – Rotsa Root

This week I’m once again having my Tuesday column lead into Wacky Wednesdays.  I don’t think that’s going to become a habit, but sometimes it is going to make sense and when it does, I’ll go with it.

Rotsa Root was released in one of the last of the 1970’s Wacky Packages series.  It was series 14, released in 1975, when the title made the cut.   CollectingCandy.com visitors might recognize that this as a parody of Topps’ own Lotsa Loot candy, featured just yesterday.

Wacky Packages 14th Series - 1975 - Rotsa Root

Topps - Lotsa Loot - candy package - early 1970's

The humor used for this parody is one that would be met with a bit more controversy in 2012, than it found in 1975.  The politically-incorrect racial stereotypes included, such as “Ah-So” and the Rotsa Root name itself, would simply never be used now.  We appreciate them today by putting them into their historical context.

1975 was a different world, that also featured products like Riceland’s Velly Nice Rice.

Riceland Velly Nice Rice package graphics - early 70's

Over the course of the Wacky Packages parodies we plan to cover for Wacky Wednesdays, there will undoubtedly be more instances of humor that might best be left in the past.  When looking back at how packaging has evolved, I don’t want to overlook something just because it would not be done today.  I hope readers appreciate this approach, and understand that no offense is intended when presenting these historical pieces.

That’s it for today’s edition of Wacky Wednesdays.   See you next week for another edition, and right back here tomorrow for more CollectingCandy.com fun.


About Jason Liebig

A New York City based writer, editor and sometimes actor. After spending much of the 1990′s in the comic book business helping tell the stories of Marvel Comics’ X-Men as series editor, he has since split his time between developing his own entertainment properties while still consulting and working on others. Having been described as “the Indiana Jones of lost and forgotten candy”, Jason is one of the country’s premier candy collectors and historians with his discoveries appearing in countless blogs, magazines, newspaper articles, and books. Always happy to share his knowledge and unique perspectives on this colorful part of our popular culture, Jason has consulted with New York’s Museum of Food and Drink and has also been a featured guest on Food Network’s Heavyweights, France’s M6 Capital, and New York’s TheActionRoom.com. My Google Profile+
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2 Responses to Wacky Wednesdays – Rotsa Root

  1. Tom says:

    You have my support. Parodys like these were never intended to be racist or hurtful. There’s nothing I hate worse than censoring our past to meet current cultural attitudes. Too much is lost that way. History is remembering the good and the bad.

  2. Hendu says:

    Also agreed, not that offensive, but also, those were less complicated times.
    I am also reminded of Funny Face drink mix, with their Chinese Cherry flavor:
    slightly less politically correct than Injun Orange.

    I enjoyed how TOPPS always play off stereotypes by throwing every Japanese word that would be familiar to a 10 year old American kid.
    Wacky Packs were fun because they made humor out of familiar products, and they picked on everyone equally.
    I am sure the Run Tony Shells or the Hawaiian Punks wouldn’t mind…

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