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Original Coke vs New Coke

Stranger Things season 3 brought back New Coke, the concoction that Coke came out with that bombed miserably.

With the release of the new season, Coke re-released small batches of New Coke, since ST3 is set in 1985, the year New Coke was released and also discontinued. Here’s the scoop from Wikipedia:

New Coke was the unofficial name for the reformulation of Coca-Cola introduced in April 1985 by the Coca-ColaCompany. In 1992, the drink was renamed Coke II.

By 1985, Coca-Cola had been losing market share to diet soft drinks and non-cola beverages for many years. Blind taste tests indicated that consumers seemed to prefer the sweeter taste of rival Pepsi-Cola, and so the Coca-Cola recipe was reformulated. However, the American public’s reaction to the change was negative, and “New Coke” was considered a major failure. The company reintroduced Coke’s original formula within three months, rebranded “Coca-Cola Classic“, resulting in a significant sales boost. This led to speculation New Coke formula had been a marketing ploy to stimulate sales of original Coca-Cola, which the company has denied.

Coke II was discontinued in July 2002. It remains influential as a cautionary tale against tampering with a well-established and successful brand. In May 2019, it was announced that the 1985 formulation (bearing the name “New Coke”) would be reintroduced to promote the third season of the Netflix series Stranger Things which takes place in 1985.

So there you go. Doc and I try New Coke again to see if it still tastes as bad as people remember.


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