Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Hostess Scary Cakes

No matter how old I get, I'll never be able to get enough of Halloween cupcakes.  There's just something about a black and orange combo that gets my Halloween juices flowing.  I love walking through the grocery store aisles, looking at all of the Halloween/Fall themed products, and trying to decide which one was coming home with me this time.  Usually, I'll go with whatever is new.  If I've never seen or tried it before, then that's the way to go.  But, at the same time, I can never neglect the classics and, there's no denying, Hostess Scary Cakes are certainly classic!

Last year, I was unable to enjoy the Hostess Scary Cakes because they weren't released.  Well, that's not entirely true.  As Hostess tweeted me last year, Scary Cakes were under the disguise of Transformers.  Basically, that was just a nice way of saying "We sold out this year and decided to partner up with a big blockbuster movie instead."  So, for that reason, Hostess missed out on my few dollars.  I couldn't give in to the media giant and help aid the removal of these traditional treats.  As far as I was concerned, Transformer Cupcakes needed to fail so Scary Cakes could once again rise.  Maybe my plan worked.  Or maybe there wasn't any movie worth partnering up with.  Of course, ParaNorman, Hotel Transylvania, or Frankenweenie promotions would have been amazing.

Luckily for all of us, Hostess Scary Cakes are back this year and, I guess, they're much more Fall themed than Halloween related.  This bums me out.  What's so "scary" about this box?  There's a scarecrow, with a pumpkin head, surrounded by bats.  It also appears to be dusk or dawn.  Ohhhh spooky!!  Not in the least!  I absolutely love Hostess Scary Cakes for everything they represent and for my own nostalgic reasons, but what are they thinking with this box?  What happened to those amazing graphics?  Where did the "Scary" in "Scary Cakes" go exactly?  Just take a look at previous designs.

Regardless of what you think about the 2011 Scary Cakes, the "Chocwave Shockwave" edition was designed much better than the 2012 edition.  It's not amazing and is, overall, pretty plain.  But the change in cupcake makes up for everything else.  They went with a red frosting and silver sprinkles.  Not great for Halloween, but awesome for Summer months.  Either way, this was a nice box.

Now, in 2011, Hostess didn't leave us Halloween Fiends hanging completely.  Sure, we may not have gotten our Scary Cakes, but we did get "Orange CupCakes."  I covered this last year, and they were really good.  I like this box because it actually represented Halloween well.  I know, you're thinking that there isn't much of a difference.  Pumpkin head and bats again at dusk.  True, but that change in expression alters everything!  This pumpkin is angry!  He's evil!  He's mad and he wants you to know it.  That subtle change is the difference between Halloween and Fall.

Obviously Ding Dongs aren't Scary Cakes, but it goes to show how much Hostess has changed their designs over the years.  I don't own this photo and credit goes to whoever scanned it, but I remember seeing this box around 1994.  I was really young, but you don't forget things like this.  Those bats are pretty much the only things that haven't changed.  We have ghosts, we have a change in font, and the logo is colored to better represent the season.  Orange, green, and purple!  I love it!

I believe these Scary Cakes came out the same year as the Ding Dongs and you can tell that the background is similar.  It's a gloomy night and the bats are out in full force.  But, really, just look at this box and tell me it isn't awesome.  I will take 2-D animation/drawings over 3-D any day of the week and I guess it's because of boxes like this.  We have 4 characters pictured.  Top right, we have Frankenstein (who looks very much like Boris Karloff.)  With him, we have a female Vampire.  I'll name her Mrs. Dracula.  Then on the left, we have the Grim Reaper and the Wolf Man.  If that wasn't enough, the Scary Cakes logo is absolutely classic!  It's what reels you in more than anything else.  The contrast between colors mesh so well together and, in all seriousness, it's a masterful work of art.

Finally, I know we just talked about this Munster Pack recently, but it deserves to go here and be seen again.  I highly doubt this was the first Scary Cakes edition released by Hostess, but I could be wrong.  There's only so much I can learn about 20+ year old Cup Cakes from Google.  But, I know these were released in 1992 and, while you may be able to argue that this was also a "sell-out," at least it was Halloween related.  That I can understand and, in fact, actually appreciate.  It's also very simple, but in this case simple is effective.  It's all you need.  As I've said before, the "Munster Pack" logo is unbelievable and I love the way The Munsters are drawn.  Personally, it holds a very special place in my heart for nostalgic reasons.  But in terms of design and comparing it to this year's Scary Cakes box, it crushes the competition.  There's no doubt that the Hostess design team has fallen off the wagon.  They need to up their game!  After you look at the designs of yesteryear, it's actually sad to see how poorly the 2012 box was put together.

Fortunately, the cupcakes themselves are still awesome and, for most people, that's the biggest selling point.  Since I'm such a huge Hallowgeek, I would have liked to see a more orange frosting with traditional brown sprinkles, but that's not this year's theme.  Hostess is obviously going the Fall route and, like it or not, they hit the nail right on the head.  Orange, yellow, brown, and one red sprinkle resemble Fall foliage and the change in season.  The chocolate cake returns along with the the one thing that'll never change -- that cream frosting filling.

I do love the look of these cupcakes and I'm definitely happy to see them return.  While I'm sure many of you enjoyed the Transformers edition, I just don't want to see any of that during the Halloween Holidaze!  I'm all for it during the Spring and Summer.  But at this moment, I'm looking for the spooky feeling, not spooky dressed as transforming robots.  Thankfully, Hostess brought Scary Cakes back and they're just as good as ever.

It's a toss up as to which brand I enjoy more -- Hostess or Tasykake.  They're both really good and very similar in flavor.  Luckily, we don't have to choose!  We can go out and buy both!  We can go out any buy as many as we want and really soak in The Holidaze! 

I know I sounded like a big whiny complainer in this post, and I don't mean to sound like Andy Rooney, but I realllly miss those old boxes.  Those were the best!  I guess I'm a sucker for nostalgia, but I'll roll with the punches and accept whatever we get.  Hey, as long as we're getting something, you know I'm happy!

1 comment:

  1. *sighs* It is a big shame I could not find that Hostess DOTM Chocowave box anywhere. Ebay had it two years ago when I couldn't buy it. :( Nowhere online is the box being sold. Hopefully someone sell one in the future online. Anyways I'll keep searching. Thanks for sharing.


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