We are now confronted with one those strange hybrid products that are increasingly popping up here on the other side of the weirdness singularity. When reviewing these, what do I need to go for? How well these jelly beans mimic the taste of Peeps? How well these jelly beans mimic the taste of the flavors they’re saying they are? Well, the first one is going to be hard because I cannot remember the last time I consumed a Peep. I’m no peepologist eating these for science (you know, like I normally am), instead I bought this because it looked like a potential abomination and nothing is more enticing to a weirdo like me than a candy abomination. Besides, last time I checked Peeps were marshmallow-based, and the idea of eating an entire bagful of marshmallow-flavored jelly beans is both boring and more boring.
Anyway, usually when it comes to jelly beans there are two brands: Jelly Belly and everybody else. And the everybody elses of the world aren’t so much bad as just…bland. I have never been excited (read: found addictingly shoveling into my mouth) non-Jelly Belly jelly beans. These Peeps-branded ones, however, are a weird and rare exception. Rare because this is the first time I’ve actually not shrugged at some other brand jelly beans and wandered away from them. Weird because the flavors are not bad…just off. And not necessarily off in bad way. I shall endeavor to explain.
The four flavors included are lemon, strawberry, marshmallow, and blueberry. But the flavors weren’t bad they were just indirect. The lemon made me think of Lemonheads candy. The strawberry made me think of those strawberry hard candies that you probably only ever saw at your grandmother’s house. The blueberry…made me think of how gum is not a direct flavor export, but more of the concept of a flavor in a concentrated form. (That is, of course, for the forty-five seconds it takes for the gum to lose its flavor.) Oddly, the marshmallow flavored ones taste the most like…well, marshmallow. And those were just as boring as I had anticipated.
I’m not sure what strange occult ceremonies the Jelly Belly people use to make their jelly beans so spot-on flavor-wise. But it’s hard for me to fault these for not being directly flavored…because they’re from Peeps for crying out loud. It would almost seem off-brand for them to completely nail anything but the marshmallow flavor. (For all I know, Jelly Belly made these for the Peeps people and hit their brief dead-on.) Regardless, they are not unpleasant and I would pick these over actual Peeps any day of the week. That being said, throwing the Peeps brand name around is something that needs to be taken seriously. If I find a collaboration between Peeps and Pringles or Peeps and Budweiser, then action will need to be taken.