The McDonald's Happy Meal has been a part of our food culture for as long as most of us can remember.
In a new partnership with Mental Health America, however, Burger King has decided to release a new set of meals that both raise awareness of mental health issues and take a not-so-subtle swipe at their largest competitor.
During May, at select locations, Burger King will be selling an assortment of "Real Meals" in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month.
Burger King is spoofing McDonald's with "Real Meals," saying that "no one is happy all the time." The campaign's pu… https://t.co/JunWULgFh5— CNN (@CNN)1556777764.0
These meals include the "Pissed Meal, Blue Meal, Salty Meal, Yaaas Meal and DGAF (Don't Give a F---)".
Most Twitter users, however, were less than thrilled about the campaign, which they saw as a ham-fisted marketing tool.
"Burger King claims to take an 'intimate and raw look into the reality of feeling your way.'" if your marketing s… https://t.co/BYS3Au1Mjx— Michael Green (@Michael Green)1556813810.0
It's frustrating to think a marketing manager and a team sat around and thought of ways to capitalize on mental health awareness month.— PerfectNomad (@PerfectNomad)1556813359.0
Each "real meal" comes in a box designed to match its label and includes a "Whopper sandwich, french fries and a drink."
Hello I would like to order one “catastrophically horny meal” ma’am this is a wendy’s... burger king is down the street heyyyo— Brandy Jensen (@Brandy Jensen)1556812018.0
Burger King release a statement Wednesday, saying:
"Burger King restaurants understands that no one is happy all the time. That's why they're asking guests to order a Whopper meal based on however they might be feeling."
Umm, F you @BurgerKing. This video/marketing strategy is disgusting. Yes, it's okay not to be happy all the time,… https://t.co/xe2ONzw5Ly— Aaron Jay Ledesma (@Aaron Jay Ledesma)1556806410.0
Burger King's new marketing strategy is "chicken nuggets is therapy and eating burgers is woke!" We love the commod… https://t.co/VZNSHiDjl7— Brittany Van Horne (@Brittany Van Horne)1556813855.0
The new meals obviously serve a dual purpose.
While they do a good job of acknowledging mental health, they're also a clear jab at McDonald's.
In a new ad, Burger King said:
"No one is happy all the time. And that's OK."
if burger king wanted to do something about mental health problems they could pay their workers more. https://t.co/Cjiged0PvT— Superkick Paulty (@Superkick Paulty)1556816574.0
Though Burger King's catch-phrase is normally "have it your way," the ads also swap this out for a slightly more appropriate, "feel your way."
In their ads, the restaurant claims the meals take an "intimate and raw look into the reality of feeling your way."
it's ok to #feelyourway https://t.co/JiMDnzWCaI— Burger King (@Burger King)1556731096.0
Paul Gionfriddo, President of Mental Health America, commented to NBC:
"While not everyone would think about pairing fast food and mental health, MHA believes in elevating the conversation in all communities in order to address mental illness Before Stage 4 (when someone has severe symptoms)."
Some Twitter users were more approving of the campaign.
I gotta have those #BurgerKing 's 'Real Meals' for everyday of the work week. Believing in fast food again may not… https://t.co/EsgP53hP2F— Tintin (@Tintin)1556808399.0
I Really love this! It's whimsical sure! Silly? YUP! Is it pointless? NAH! It's for mental health awareness and h… https://t.co/CtMipc0tER— TrafficJammin (@TrafficJammin)1556808442.0
@Burgerking I was super EXCITED when I saw you doing this.. but then I felt REALLY BUMMED out that you are only all… https://t.co/IqlmATtwDo— MotherOfGamersTV (@MotherOfGamersTV)1556815885.0
Gionfriddo is glad Burger King has stepped up to become part of the conversation.
"By using its internationally known reputation to discuss the importance of mental health, Burger King is bringing much-needed awareness to this important and critical discussion — and letting its customers know that is OK to not be OK."
In honor of the first day of Mental Health Awareness Month. We all know someone who has a hard time dealing and som… https://t.co/lIRpz7obnm— yelladude (@yelladude)1556737331.0
@BurgerKing - you have my attention. As someone who deals with anxiety AND who doesn't eat fast food burgers, I'm o… https://t.co/1wIqJBoyyh— Kitty Hootz (@Kitty Hootz)1556816612.0
The meals will be available during May in "Austin, Seattle, Miami, Los Angeles and New York City."