'Woke' M&M Marketing Campaign Paused After Tucker Carlson and Others Slam It

The M&Ms candy mascots have been temporarily halted following criticism from conservatives, such as Tucker Carlson, for the updated characters being perceived as "woke" as part of the candy campaign.

The green candy, "Miss Green" was previously portrayed as sexy and feminine, but the new rebranding effort to make her more "inclusive" included reducing her eyelashes, eliminating references to her gender and giving her tennis shoes.

In a segment criticizing the brand's new image, Fox News personality Carlson made derogatory comments about the sexualization and weight of the candy mascots. "The woke M&M’s are back," Carlson said in early January. "The green M&M is now a lesbian maybe," he said, adding that "there is also a plus-sized, obese purple M&M.”

In January 2022, Carlson previously criticized the new marketing campaign. Mars Wrigley, the company behind M&Ms, stated at the time that the changes were intended to reflect their "Global commitment to creating a world where everyone feels they belong and society is inclusive."

Carlson strongly disagreed with Mars Wrigley's explanation. "M&M’s will not be satisfied until every last cartoon character is deeply unappealing and totally androgynous. Until the moment you wouldn’t want to have a drink with any one of them. That’s the goal," he said.

In response to the widespread criticism, Mars Wrigley issued a statement on Monday announcing another change to their marketing campaign.

“America, let’s talk. In the last year we’ve made some changes to our beloved spokescandies. We weren’t sure if anyone would even notice,” the statement read. “And we definitely didn’t think it would break the internet. But now we get it – even a candy’s shoes can be polarizing. Which was the last thing M&M’s wanted since we’re all about bringing people together.”

“Therefore we have decided to take an indefinite pause from the spokescandies. In their place, we are proud to introduce a spokesperson America can agree on: the beloved Maya Rudolph,” the statement continued.

The press release outlined the new role that Rudolph, a comedian known for her time as a cast member of "Saturday Night Live" and other film and television roles, will be taking on.

"We are confident that Ms. Rudolph will be an advocate for the power of fun to create a world where everyone feels they belong," stated M&Ms in the press release.

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