Recognizing that nobody is happy all of the time, Burger King has introduced new boxed meals for adults called “Real Meals.”
Subtext: “Ooh, take that, McDonald’s — with your smiley, cheery Happy Meals.” Burger King is getting salty. Commence the fast food fight.
On a serious note, though, the “unhappy” meals that are being served at select locations do serve a greater purpose. They are part of a mental health campaign that encourages people to be authentic and to show their true emotions, Burger King explains in a press release.
“A natural extension of encouraging people to ‘be their way’ is encouraging them to ‘feel their way,'” the release says. “With the pervasive nature of social media, there is so much pressure to appear happy and perfect. With Real Meals, the Burger King brand celebrates being yourself and feeling however you want to feel.”
The brand also released a YouTube video bringing attention to the cause on its @Burger King site:
Burger King’s meals come in a variety of moods including: “Pissed Meal,” “Blue Meal,” “Salty Meal,” and “DGAF Meal.” (Not hip to the lingo on the last one? It stands for “Don’t Give A F…” — but this feels like a trap that will get me in trouble with my editor and my grandma who prints out my articles and sends them to me with red pen commentary). If you are in a good mood, Burger King also has a “YAAAS Meal” to celebrate.
No matter the box, though, each meal comes with a Whopper, fries and a drink. (There’s no mention of a toy.)
Burger King has partnered with Mental Health America, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting mental health, on the Real Meals campaign. The initiative launched this month because May is Mental Health Awareness Month.
Now, some bad news: The Real Meals will be pretty tough to track down. They can only be found at five participating restaurant locations while supplies last. Here’s where you can find them:
- 3301 Fourth Avenue South, Seattle, Washington
- 474 7th Avenue, New York, New York
- 4918 West Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, California
- Farm-to-Market 969, Austin, Texas
- 1100-5th Street, Miami Beach, Florida
Also, we realize we’re serving a side of womp-womp with the whopper, but it’s worth mentioning that a growing number of studies have linked fast food consumption with depression. For example, a study published in the Public Health Nutrition journal in 2012 shows that eating fast food is linked to a greater risk of suffering from depression. Consumers of fast food, compared to those who eat little or none, are 51% more likely to develop depression, the study found.
So, which of these Burger King Real Meals are you feeling today?