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Bazooka Joe Now “Firm Handshake Joe” To Avoid Promoting Violence

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Looks like an iconic piece of Americana is about to get a major overhaul. Bazooka, that gum that tastes delicious for nearly the entire five seconds it takes to read the comic, has been handed over by Topps, its owner, to the New York wing of Duval Guillaume. It’s cautious territory, you have to imagine, as it’s one of those things that people don’t care about until it’s about to change and then everyone comes out of the woodwork with pitchforks and torches (which are never safe when you’re in the woodwork — remember to light them after you exit). Let’s hope there are months and months of meetings, hundred pages briefs, and lots of late nights, which will all lead to Joe getting a slightly more modern haircut, and the reds being a little more “red.” Here’s the scoop:

The agency is developing a new marketing and communications strategy for Bazooka maker the Topps Company with an initial launch budget of around $4m (£2.3m). The product was best known in the UK in the 1970s when it competed with the likes of bubble-blowing Bubblelicious. Paul Cherrie, managing director of The Topps Company, said: “Bazooka is an American icon, a world icon for that matter. We’ve improved the product and are introducing new Bazooka bubblegum products and packaging in the coming months — a whole comprehensive marketing programme — and putting a concerted effort behind its revival.”

UPDATE: Yes, it’s exactly what we thought, new haircut and everything.

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