It’s Mental Health Awareness Month, which means big brands are thinking up ways to join in on the mental illness conversation while trying to sell their products. This year’s stand-out so far (hold on tight, we’re only four days in) is Burger King.
This week, the fast-food chain announced the launch of “Real Meals,” a line of mood-inspired meals that are meant to recognize that “No one is happy all the time. And that’s OK.” There’s the Pissed Meal, Blue Meal, Salty Meal, YAAAS Meal and DGAF Meal. They all come with a Whopper, fries and a drink.
The campaign, which not-so-subtly pokes fun at McDonald’s Happy Meals, is in partnership with Mental Health America and branded with the hashtag #FeelYourWay, a play on Burger King’s classic slogan “Have it your way.”
It also launched with a video that begins with… yes, a man rhyming “happy” and “crappy” in a slam-poem.
Perhaps not surprisingly, millennials and other Twitter users quickly fired back on the social media platform, with wit.
Brands have a history of using trending social issues to promote their products — and receiving backlash for trivializing the complexities of those issues. And whether or not Burger King really thinks its “YAAAS” or “Pissed” meals will raise awareness of mental health, we understand if they make you feel a bit salty about the whole thing. And that’s OK.