Astro Pops, the classic conical suckers with fruity, tricolor tiers, are back on the market after an eight-year hiatus. With Tricks and Treats Night fast approaching, my research assistant from Phi Beta Kappa sorority house volunteered to test the newly-returned candies with me.
Food scientists designed Astro Pops to be poured directly into a plastic wrapper, where they later solidify. This technology has the unfortunate effect of somewhat soldering the candy to the plastic, forcing us to use sharp X-Acto knives to exorcise the fruity treats from their binding. Once free, we quickly embarked on a nostalgia-filled journey into childhood lolly-licking bliss.
“I thought we were reviewing Astroglide, but I guess this is the next best thing,” cooed my assistant Jenna as she slid the priapic, pavonine pop betwixt her glossy lips. We tasted each fruity layer separately at first – artificial pineapple, passion fruit, and cherry – but when placed into the mouth as a whole, the flavors blended into a one-dimensional, cloying punch. Once sucked to a tapered point, I nibbled a bit on the wax at the bottom. It was tasteless, as expected, but texturally satisfying. I rinsed the lolly with hot tap water and a bit of liquid antibacterial soap to erase all traces of my saliva in preparation for phase II.
Jenna was still savoring her treat as I lunged toward her and thrust my Astro Pop into her left breast. She gasped and cried out, but soon went back to her sucker, apparently in little pain. I noticed a soupcon of saline solution trickle from the wound, but nothing more. I later checked the location of the heart on my iPhone 5 and realized it is located in the center of the chest, not to the left as one might believe after years of saying the Pledge of Allegiance at school every morning.
I tried again, this time plunging the pop through Jenna’s diaphragm and up into her right ventricle. This was the money shot she had been waiting for. After breaking into a cold sweat and spasms as blood pumped into her pericardial membrane, she hit the floor unconscious. Dead.
I retrieved the Astro Pop and rinsed it off before completing the rest. The candy became pointless in more ways than one, as the dull, simple fruit flavors failed to excite and challenge me the way Sour Patch Kids and Atomic Fireballs have over the past eight years. Astro Pops are sweet and pretty I suppose, but I can’t look at them the same way anymore knowing what else is out there. Sometimes ignorance is bliss.
Still, Astro Pops come in a fun shape and its best to get them while you can before lawsuits abound and they stop sales or reformulate them into an awkward yet safer point-down version.
Utility as a Murder Weapon: A-