It’s called soft-chunk! Or when Bubblicious was “New!”

Before I get to the subject of today’s post, I wanted to thank everyone for giving such a terrific response yesterday.   Thanks for the Tweets, the site mentions, the comments, and the e-mails.

I approached that first article with the goal to write the kind of history that I would want to read, but had never really seen before.  I’m gratified that people enjoyed my approach.     I think this is going to be a lot of fun.

My post today is kicked off by a piece of packaging I only acquired this week.  I’ve been looking and hunting for this one for the past few years, and finally tracking it down was pretty exciting.   It’s an example of the very first Bubblicious bubble gum wrapper – Bubblicious’ “rookie card” if you will.

Bubblicious - New! - 15-cent bubble gum pack wrapper - 1977

It was 1977, and following the huge success of Bubble Yum’s earlier launch in 1975, Warner-Lambert answered with Bubblicious.  [Note: Wikipedia identifies Bubblicious as following after the success of Hubba Bubba – but that’s not accurate.  Hubba Bubba followed later, in 1979.  We will forgive the Wiki – candy history is tough – but we are here to help.]

Bubblicious was the second major brand to enter the blockbuster new “soft chunk” gum category at the time.   For the next 25 years, Bubble Yum, Bubblicious, and Hubba Bubba ruled the category.

Though I’m going to put together a comprehensive feature on soft-chunk gum for CC down the road, I did want to share a cross-section of packaging to enjoy today [Note: Even this is incomplete – also, the third pack from the bottom is not technically part of the timeline – it’s a 1980’s Canadian package design.] :

Bubblicious Watermelon packaging timeline - 1979-2012

While soft-chunk is no longer the category leader that it used to be, it’s still out there.  It can be tough to find, and you might get the idea that the flavor assortment is more limited than it used to be.   If you do enough hunting, though, you might find all of the flavors currently available (I’m a big fan of the cotton candy flavor).

Bubblicious flavors and packaging style on shelves in 2012

That’s all for today’s post.. well… okay, one more visual — my collection of exotic Bubblicious flavor packs from Japan.

Japanes Bubblicious flavors and packages - 2009-2011

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 My Google Profile+
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13 Responses to It’s called soft-chunk! Or when Bubblicious was “New!”

  1. cosine says:

    Man, the watermelon packaging gets worse every year, same with those horrible new Big League Chew pouches.

    For my money Bubble-Yum is way the best, tougher to find in Canada but their Cotton Candy is drool-worthy.

  2. phairhead says:

    Bubbalicious Cherry Cola was the best thing ever in 1987…..they don’t make it anymore 🙁

  3. That 2012 watermelon package IS an atrocity! Very fun to see the older packages, back in the days of funk.

  4. Dex says:

    Wow it’s amazing how much something as simple as a candy wrapper can take you back in time. That original yellow wrapper really brought me back.

  5. Steve says:

    Love the Japanese versions… there’s so much going on with each one.

  6. Peach says:

    I still mourn the loss of banana Hubba Bubba.

  7. Wayne Ratcliffe says:

    As an “international visitor” from over the pond… I don’t remember any of these wrappers but as a Candy wrapper collector I can relate to this sight very well. I know only too well the excitement of opening my post and smelling the faint smell of 1970’s bubble gum and opening a wrapper to see a truly mint card which has never seen day light in over 40 years. The top card is often spoilt by the gum and the wrapper worn by constant shaping and ware. I am not too excited by the images and design I have seen today as they have no nostalgia for me (except Popeye!) but the editors commentary, passion for the hobby and charm make a interesting read. I look forward to seeing more. The bench mark has been set 

  8. James says:

    Two significant events relating to bubble gum occurred 35 years ago this very month–the official launching of Bubblicious gum by Warner-Lambert and Life Savers’ rebuttal of the infamous rumor that its revolutionary Bubble Yum gum contained spider eggs.
    In the latter case, LS had hired private investigators to look into the matter and had to spend $100,000+ to publish its case in 30 newspapers. As it turned out, the source of the rumor was never found.

    • jasonliebig says:

      James – Thanks for that great piece of info. I recall well the spider eggs story, but it never kept me from my Bubble Yum. Fantastic stuff…

  9. Lani says:

    I remember all of these wrappers! Bubblicious bubble gum has always been my favorite growing up, and it still is! By the way I just finished chewing some tropical punch. ^_^

  10. Pingback: Bubblicious Bubblegum Packs from Japan! |

  11. Angela Bohl says:

    I think they should bring back banana favor and I have to say the cotton candy is awesome. How about a carmel apple or a pumpkin flavor for October?

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