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Advertising / M&M's

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M&M's (named for Forrest Mars Sr. and Bruce Murrie of Hershey's) have been a staple of chocolate candies since their introduction in 1941. They were known by the slogan of how they would "Melt in your mouth, and not in your hand" (which has since been disproven). In addition to creating a chocolate product loved across the world, M&M's is also known for its extensive advertising campaign featuring "spokescandies". Among the first were the sardonic Red and the dim-witted but sweet Yellow. This cast was later extended to the prideful Blue, the alluring Ms. Green, and the paranoid Orange (originally Crispy). In 2012, they were joined by another M&M named Ms. Brown, a no-nonsense M&M who has been overseeing operations since the beginning.

All the spokescandies were redesigned in 2022 with their flesh-colored skintones changed to an off-white tinted to match their shell color, all prefixes are removed and Green's go-go boots were traded in for sneakers. Their personalities were also changed; Red is not as sardonic as he once was, while Green and Brown are now friendlier with each other (despite said dynamic not appearing in the commercials). In September 2022, another M&M, Purple (Amber Ruffin), was introduced, though only in spokescandy form. In January 2023 during the lead-up to Super Bowl LVII, M&M's mounted a stunt announcing that they were taking an "indefinite pause" on using the spokescandies in the United States after polarizing responses to the recent changes to them, with Maya Rudolph becoming their new spokeswoman. This subsequently led to a campaign featuring the spokescandies exploring other jobs and pursuits, such as Green becoming a spokeswoman for the shoe retailer Zappos, and Orange becoming a "meditation consultant" for Spotify, all while Rudolph began to institute increasingly weird changes to the candy. After the Super Bowl, the spokescandies returned for good.

See Spacix for an alternative use of M&M candies as promotional characters.

No relation to Eminem.

M&M's Advertisements contain examples of:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Red toward Green, to a degree.
    • One ad for Pretzel M&M's has the pretzel trying to convince the M&M to hook up with an attractive woman across the party (played by Antoinette Nikprelaj). The M&M protests, but the pretzel points out they exist to be eaten, "and I'd rather go with her than Hungry Eyes over here." The camera then pans back, showing a very unnerving man (played by Nathan Barnatt) staring at them as "Hungry Eyes" plays.
  • Amusing Injuries: And bite marks.
  • Animals See in Monochrome: In one commercial, Yellow finds a bloodhound to hunt down the Grey Impostor. But since dogs only see black & white, the dog mistakes Red for the imposter and swallows him.
  • And I Must Scream: Pretzel's fate within Orange, in order to promote the Pretzel M&M's.
  • Anthropomorphic Food: That advertise and are not above eating (non-sapient) M&M's.
  • Big Damn Movie: Spoofed with an ad often seen in theaters which appears to depict the M&M's characters in a movie trailer for a Big Damn Movie involving espionage, acrobatics, and defusing bombs. Then someone's cell phone goes off, revealing the trailer to actually be a "No Talking or Phones" Warning. Red storms away in disgust exclaiming "This is why we don't make movies".
  • Body Horror:
    • Played for Laughs in several instances. Like Yellow removing Red's eyes and putting them onto a red Ice Cream Treat to show how it "looks like him". Or Red making Orange a jack o' lantern costume by carving the eyes, nose, and grin out of his back.
    • There's also Pretzel, whose fate is being grafted right inside Orange to promote Pretzel M&M's.
  • Body Paint: When Blue was added to the array of colors in 1995, Red and Yellow were left out of the commercial because they weren't blue. When the two come across several cans of paint, Red gets the idea to paint him and Yellow blue. At first, their plan seems to work, but their ruse is exposed when it's revealed that they only painted their front sides.
  • Brought To You By The Letter M: This has been used a few times in reference to how an M&M isn't one without their "m".
  • Butt-Monkey: Yellow takes a lot of abuse from Red. Not that Red is safe from being put into this role, such as when they are tasked to track down the M&M's Minis. There's also Crispy/Orange, whose shtick has consisted of being stalked.
  • Call-Back: The 2021 Super Bowl commercial has Dan Levy promise Green and Brown that he won't eat any more of their friends, before cutting to him locking a screaming Red inside a car, calling back to the 2013 Super Bowl commercial "Devour" where an attractive woman locks Red inside her car to eat him.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Blue hits on ladies a few times, but hasn't really snagged anybody. He even tries to hit on a Lost Tribe M&M but ends up getting her attention too well.
    Ms. Green: Way to go, Cassanova.
  • Cephalothorax: The M&M's spokescandies and all related characters.
    • This is even lampshaded during the "Lost Tribe" campaign, when Yellow worries about the cannibalistic M&M's tribe shrinking his head:
      "My whole body's a head."
  • Comically Missing the Point: Yellow is prone to moments like this. Such as the time he, Red, and several regular people are held up at a convenience store, and their captor threatens to eat one of his hostages. Yellow automatically assumes he's intending to eat one of the humans. Also, there's this bit from a Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade teaser:
    Red: Coming up next, the new Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloon of everyone's favorite celebrities!
    Yellow: Oh boy! A Law & Order balloon?!
    Red: (Beat, annoyed) I was talking about us.
    Yellow: (Beat) We're gonna be on Law & Order?
  • Cool Shades: Blue is sometimes shown wearing them, especially when portrayed as playing an instrument.
  • Crossover: "15 Minutes" features an encounter between Ms. Brown and the GEICO Gecko as she tries and fails to get insurance coverage due to not being human. The "Hump Day" Camel also appears, although Ms. Brown cuts him off before he can get to "Hump Day!" This is odd as GEICO is a motor vehicle insurance company not offering life insurance.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Red, Blue, Pretzel, Ms. Green, and Ms. Brown all have moments of this.
  • Death Seeker: Compared to the other M&M's that actively work to avoid being eaten, the M&M's Minis actively seek out people who will eat them.
  • Defenestrate and Berate: One of the "Colour Break-Up" adverts had Yellow chucking Red's stuff out a window in this manner. Until Red points out that Yellow's throwing out his own stuff.
  • Disembodied Eyebrows: They all have them, though they sometimes appear to be partially touching the face depending on the angle shown.
  • Does Not Like Men: Ms. Brown seems to have this going on, primarily because of Red.
  • Don't Eat and Swim: In one commercial, Orange is at a pool, where a lady tries to eat him. Orange reminds her that she's not allowed to eat and swim, at least for half an hour, but to no avail. He also tries to alert the lifeguard, who tells him "No running!" when he runs out of the pool.
  • Double Entendre: Being Anthropomorphic Food, the instances of phrases like "Eat me!" and "Bite me!" are certainly appropriate.
  • Double Standard Rape: Female on Male: The 2013 Super Bowl advert "Devour" features a female associate of Ms. Brown warning her that a female friend loses control around chocolate. Ms. Brown sets up Red with said female friend, who then locks Red in her car and attacks him in a manner disturbingly evocative of this trope.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness:
    • Early M&M's ads were more subdued with the characters in an early design form talking to celebrities on how they eat their M&M's and asking which ones are their favorites. They also had a different dynamic between Red and Yellow.
    • Red and Yellow were voiced by Jon Lovitz and John Goodman before Billy West and J. K. Simmons took over in 1996.
    • One of the first commercials that had Red and Yellow hijacking Blue's commercial gave him a plain Blue sidekick who never shows up in any other ads.
    • A 1997 Burger King tie-in toy portrayed Orange as a female.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Played with in one advert where Ms. Green is hit on by several men and women alike. Assuming the women aren't just jealous.
  • Faeries Don't Believe in Humans, Either: One Christmas ad had Yellow checking to see whether Santa Claus had arrived, while Red obviously thought this was a waste of time. However, they run into Santa at their tree, and...
    Red: AAH! He does exist!
    Santa: They do exist... [Both of them faint]
    Yellow: Uhh, Santa?
  • Faint in Shock: Played for Laughs in a Christmastime television commercial for M&M's candies. While Red and Yellow discuss Santa Claus in someone's living room, they suddenly come upon the man himself. Red exclaims, "He does exist!" and faints from shock. Santa Claus also burbles, "They do exist!" and topples over supine. Poor Yellow is left to inquire "Santa?" uncomfortably.
  • The Fatalist: Pretzel shows signs of this as he bluntly sees being eaten as unavoidable.
  • Feel No Pain: In one Halloween advert, Red makes Crispy a jack o' lantern costume by carving the face in his back and hollowing out some of his body. Crispy oddly doesn't seem to register any pain.
  • Fire-Breathing Diner: The commercial for M&M's' 75th anniversary flavors has Yellow consuming their appropriate ingredients. For Honey Nut he eats a jar of honey and gets attacked by bees. For Coffee Nut he drinks several cups of coffee and gets jittery. For Chili Nut he crams his mouth with red peppers, setting it on fire.
  • Flanderization: The result of the M&M's further developing their personalities. Red became more cocky, Yellow became dumber/simpler, Ms. Green became more flirtatious, Blue became more arrogant, and Orange became more paranoid.
  • Four-Fingered Hands: The M&M's characters have only four fingers per hand.
  • Fridge Brilliance: An actual In-Universe example of this in a commercial tied in to a contest where people could win $2000 as a tie-in with the turn of the millennium. Red changes it to $2,000,000.
    Yellow: What's that got to do with the millennium?
    Red: (Walking away) Believe me, they won't care. (Yellow is seen scratching his head, thinking, "Hey that makes sense.")
  • Fridge Logic: Some of the "Become an M&M" ads address some of the Fridge Logic regarding what it's like to be an M&M. Such as whether or not they can hear without ears, and how their diminutive size might leave them at a disadvantage here and there. invoked
  • Gender Scoff: Ms. Green is annoyed by both men and women for gawking at her.
  • Get It Over With: In one commercial, Crispy is caught by a woman, and after failing to get away, tells her, "Okay, make it quick."
  • The Ghost: Blue's agent, Marty, whom he often talks to over the phone, but we never see or hear
  • Gleeful and Grumpy Pairing: The main duo of the dim-witted but sweet Yellow and the sardonic Red fulfill these respective roles.
  • Groin Attack: In the Netherlands' promotion for the M&M's "Peanutball", Red kicks it to demonstrate its durability. The Peanutball proceeds to bounce around, and then hits him right between the legs. Red reacts appropriately.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Red and Yellow are both male and spend a lot of time together.
  • Hostile Show Takeover: After the spokescandies got replaced by Maya Rudolph, she proceeded to rename them to "Ma&Ya's", and change them to be candy-coated clams.
  • Humanity Ensues: An ad for the 2018 Super Bowl features Red, tired of people always wanting to eat him, wishing on a lucky penny that he were human and turning into Danny DeVito in a red M&M suit. Red rejoices in the fact that no one wants to eat him before getting hit by a truck. In a follow-up ad, he decides to go back to normal by wishing on the penny to be an M&M again. And he becomes an M&M again...a normal sized, seemingly non-sentient M&M candy that sits motionless on the ground and gets stepped on. "Ow" indeed.
  • Hypocritical Humor: The M&M's are shown doing everything they can to avoid being eaten and declare that they shouldn't be eaten. Yet they are frequently shown eating and promoting (non-sentient) M&M's to be eaten. A hilarious example of this occurs when Patrick Warburton calls Red, Yellow, and Orange out for eating M&M's. The three merely switch bags so they're not eating their specific kind of M&M's.
  • Ignoring by Singing: Orange does this at one point in the M&M's Break-Up Registers when the other spokescandies start arguing with each other.
  • I'm a Humanitarian:
    • The M&M's are frequently shown eating other (non-sentient) M&M's. This has been lampshaded a few times by commentators. And so many people in YouTube comments sections that one could make a (probably fatal) Drinking Game out of it. Although there are also examples like when Red and Yellow lick a paranoid Crispy to taste him (with Crispy angrily catching Yellow's tongue).
    • This trope was taken to an interesting height during the "Lost M&M's Tribe" Australian contest. Following clues left by his late uncle, Yellow and company discover a tribe of savage M&M's that try to eat them at every opportunity.
    • This is lampshaded in a commercial with Patrick Warburton finding Red, Yellow and Orange eating plain, peanut and crispy M&M's respectively.
    Patrick: What are you doing?
    Red: What?
    Patrick: You're eating M&M's.
    Red: Yeah? So are you.
    Patrick: I'm not an M&M. You don't eat your own kind, it's unnatural.
    (The M&M's stop eating and look at their bags, then switch bags with each other so they're not eating their own flavors)
    • In the ad for Hazelnut M&M's, the new spokescandy is eaten by the entire gang (except for Ms. Brown). Yellow even admitting that "He was tasty."
    • One ad had Red, Yellow, Blue and Orange voting to eat the only human on the raft they were stranded on... before laughing about how they were just joking and that Orange actually lost the vote.
  • Inherently Funny Words: The Masterfoods "Wheredafungo" promotion features advice to insert fun into one's work, such as funny words in a business call.
    Yellow: Our numbers indicate that sales are way up in Lake Titicaca.
  • Insistent Terminology: A commercial features people at their jobs suggesting more politically correct names over their original ones.
    Girl: I'm not a babysitter; I'm a domestic caregiver.
    Man: I'm not a clown; I'm a child entertainer.
    Red: I'm not a plain M&M; I am a milk chocolate M&M.
  • It's All About Me: Red and Blue. Lampshaded in the M&M's Election adverts:
    Blue (Australian version): Ask what you can do for your candy!
    Red (American version): Vote on one issue this election. Me!
  • It's Not You, It's Me: Said in at least two commercials:
    • In one NBC promo, when Yellow can't correctly guess Donald Trump's catchphrase in The Apprenticenote , he uses this phrase as one of his incorrect guesses.
    • This is also done in one of the "Break-Up" commercials in Australia.
      Yellow: (to Red) Is this the bit where you say, "It's not you, it's me"?! Because I don't wanna hear it! We're through, Red! (bawls hysterically)
  • Jerkass: Red and Blue. Ms. Brown also qualifies as of recent ads, especially toward Red.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Red, Blue, and Ms. Brown have some big egos, but they’re still genuinely good guys. Heck, Red might even be better than Ms. Brown on this, since he is starting to grow out of ditching Yellow, which Ms. Brown does to Red in most of her appearances.
  • Karma Houdini:
    • The M&M's Minis are never punished for the chaos they cause (unless being eaten—which is what they want anyway—counts). The Lost M&M's Tribe manage to get away with nearly murdering the spokescandies multiple times. But it's a given since they're on an island anyway.
    • Ms. Brown sets Red up to be attacked by a rather insane chocoholic and gets away with it.
    • Optimus Prime throwing an entire truckload of M&M's and receiving only a sarcastic Slow Clap from Red certainly counts as such.
  • Least Rhymable Word: In one ad, a woman is coming up with rhymes for the M&M's characters. She can't rhyme Orange, prompting him to ask if he still gets paid.
  • Leaving Food for Santa: The Christmas ad starts with Red and Yellow leaving out Christmas colored M&M's.
    Yellow: So, you think Santa will like these red and green M&M's?
  • Let's Meet the Meat: There is a Running Gag of the adverts where the M&M's are aware that people want to eat them, and are constantly avoiding such people as a result. However, some instances play with this, such as the Pretzel saying he'd rather be devoured by an attractive woman than by a creepy guy eying him.
    • "M&M's Minis! Tons of Chocolate Candies Searching for a Mouth!"
  • Literal-Minded: "Fans" which is about Yellow telling the "fans" in the office that Crispy M&M's are back.
    • From the movie trailer ad:
    Agent: [hands Red and Yellow a manila envelope] This is your mission.
    Yellow: No, this is an envelope.
  • Losing a Shoe in the Struggle: In "The Chase", Red attempts to catch the Minis in a box. The minis fly into the box and carry Red away, leaving his shoes behind, much to Yellow's bewilderment.
  • Lustful Melt: The M & M's Premiums ads (which always depict Red, Yellow and Blue filming Ms. Green and enjoying her seductive performance) had this occur in the Raspberry Almond commercial, which ends with Red, Yellow and Blue melting after shooting the commercial, to Ms. Green's surprise.
    Ms. Green: This wasn't supposed to happen.
  • The Mafiya: Appears in one commercial, about to chop up Yellow for ice cream.
  • Major Injury Underreaction: Yellow falls over saying a weak "Oops, uh-oh!" when taking damage in The Lost Formulas. Subverted when falling into milk, chocolate, or dyes, where he gives a more panicked "Woah!"
  • The Merch: In-Universe, Ms. Green has promoted several memoirs.
  • Mid-Battle Tea Break: This commercial shows a montage of Red and Yellow trying—and failing—to capture the M&M's Minis, and in-between shows a brief scene of them playing cards.
  • Ms. Fanservice: Ms. Green, especially in the sensually charged M&M's Premiums adverts. She also appeared several times of the back cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue taking off her shell.
  • Mythology Gag: Ms. Green losing her temper when asked about "what they say about the green ones", as well as her generally provocative nature, is a Shout-Out to an urban legend formed in the 70s that green M&M's raise testosterone levels.
  • Naked People Are Funny:
    • An Australian advert features Red and Yellow in a game of strip poker. When Yellow loses, he mentions quietly that he doesn't want to show his "peanut" in public.
    • In one advert, a stagehand accidentally walks in on a naked Ms. Green in her trailer.
    • The "Bare All" promotion was geared around this, with the M&M's spokescandies going shell-less in a private nude camp. There are also other gags of the like, such as a stagehand walking into Ms. Green's trailer as she's changing and scenes where Yellow covers his midsection.
    • A scenario promoting M&M's Ice Cream Treats shows Red and Yellow trapped in a frozen wasteland that is revealed to be the inside of a grocery store freezer. Yellow then notices his 'M' is much smaller than usual.
    Yellow: Hey, what happened to my 'M'?
    Red: It's called "shrinkage".
    • Ms. Brown's debut advert showed her annoyance with people assuming she's naked because her shell is brown. Cue Red walking in, declaring "So it's that kind of party!" and stripping off his shell while dancing to "Sexy and I Know It".
  • Negative Continuity: What essentially saves the M&M's from being permanently eaten, endangered or both.
  • Nice Mean And In Between:
    • Nice: Yellow and Orange
    • Mean: Red and Blue
    • In-Between: Green and Ms. Brown
  • Nude-Colored Clothes: Ms. Brown's first advert features her getting annoyed with people assuming she's naked because her shell is chocolate brown, asserting that "only a fool would think [she'd] show up naked". Cue Red coming in and stripping his shell to "I'm Sexy and I Know It" because it appears to be "that kind of party".
  • Only Sane Woman: Ms. Green and later Ms. Brown
  • Painted Tunnel, Real Train: In "The Chase", Red and Yellow chase after the Minis in a rocket car. The Minis then form a landscape, but fly away when the rocket car catches up to them, revealing a cliff that Red and Yellow fall off of.
  • Paper-Thin Disguise: Some of the M&M's attempt to hide themselves in this manner. One advert shows Pretzel bluntly telling Orange that wearing fake mustaches won't be enough to hide their identities.
  • Pokémon Speak: The Lost M&M's Tribe's language seems to consist entirely of variations of "M&M".
  • Properly Paranoid: Given how many people have attempted to eat the M&M's over the years, Orange's constant paranoia and distrust is pretty understandable.
  • Real Trailer, Fake Movie: The M&M's star in a trailer for a fake movie featuring many send-ups of action movie tropes, such as Red knocking himself out with a swinging desk lamp while interrogating a suspect. Eventually, it reaches its peak wherein Red is working to disable the missile the others are chained to, which is ticking down as a Time Bomb. However, the trailer then reveals itself as a "No Talking or Phones" Warning when Red becomes frustrated with someone's cell phone going off during the "most intense part of the movie". He complains that "this is why we don't make movies."
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red is, appropriately, Red Oni, while Yellow is Blue Oni.
  • Road Runner vs. Coyote: In the Minis commercials, The Minis are the Road Runners to Red and Yellow's Coyotes, as Red and Yellow try unsuccessfuly to catch the Minis with various traps.
  • Roger Rabbit Effect: Most commercials feature the animated spokescandies interacting with real life people.
  • Santa Claus: He appears in two commercials. It airs on TV every year since 1996.
  • Santa's Existence Clause: In the Christmas commercial, Red clearly doesn't believe in Santa and is just going with the red and green M&M idea because Yellow believes in him. Than Red sees Santa and is shocked to learn that he does exist.
  • Sarcastic Clapping: Red does this after Optimus flings a trailer full of strawberry flavored peanut-butter M&M's into the distance.
  • Saving Christmas: In 2017, 21 years after the famous "They do exist" commercial, a follow-up was made, where after making Santa faint, Yellow feels emotional guilt and decides it's up to him to save Christmas by delivering the presents. He tries his best, but ends up accidentally giving the presents to the wrong people. Santa is awakened the next morning by his advisors, who inform him of this. Yellow worries that he messed things up as usual, but upon seeing people give each other their presents, Red says "Actually, Buddy, I think you made it even better.", since Yellow's act brought them together.
  • Saw a Woman in Half: Red replicates the act in one advert with Yellow as the unwilling woman. In a disturbing and darkly amusing manner, he literally cuts Yellow in half.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: What Blue became personality-wise after Flanderization. While he does have a relatively big name, his ego would have you believe he was the only important spokescandy.
    • There's also a one-time example with an anthropomorphic chocolate bar who tries to show up the M&M's, despite being generic (and not immune to melting).
  • The Smurfette Principle: Originally, there was only Ms. Green. Currently, she is joined by Ms. Brown.
  • Something Else Also Rises: The M&M's Premium adverts play up Ms. Green's Ms. Fanservice role, and conclude with a gag of Red, Yellow, and Blue stricken with pause. One features them melting, while another ends with the bulb on Blue's stagelight exploding.
  • Straw Feminist: This concept is parodied with Ms. Brown. She is shown berating people (particularly men) for assuming things about her because of her appearance rather than her intellect. This is best demonstrated in an advert where she criticizes William Levy for liking her chocolate over her other qualities. However, she then states that she's just as superficial regarding his looks.
  • Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: The an commercial that introduces a Chocolate bar character that flirts with Tia Carrere, The character melts in a lounge chare while sunbathing when Red and Yellow aren't effected because of their candy shells and even if they were effected the shells would keep their chocolate inside unless they get cracked open.
    • In one add campaign where Yellow trains a dog to track a Gray imposter M&M, The dog instead chases after Red and he proclaims that "Dogs can only see in black and white". Although in recent years it's proven that dogs can see color but can't see red.
  • Too Kinky to Torture: Red sings "I Would Do Anything for Love (But I Won't Do That)" as he is subjected to things such as being baked into a cookie, and slathered with frosting. Then at the end, he is being bitten by three hot girls, and he shouts, "It hurts but I kinda like it!"
  • Trash Landing: Happens to Red and Yellow in this Minis commerical. Yellow even lampshades the trope saying he hopes they don't land in garbage.
  • Two Girls to a Team: Of the six main M&M's characters, only Green and Brown are female.
  • Unfortunate Names: While talking with Patrick Warburton:
    Red: Aww, man. "Plain" is the worst name ever.
    Warburton: No, that would be "Dick".
    [Red is visibly taken aback.]
  • The Unintelligible: The M&M Minis just say fast-paced gibberish.
  • The Unreveal: What did the Hazelnut spokescandy look like before the other spokescandies ate him?
  • Unusual Euphemism: An ad campaign where Red and Yellow quit their jobs through a strongly worded letter to Brown. Among the things they want to do with their free time are "breaking down in public and going into rehab". The letter ends with "Go fondue yourself".
  • Viva Las Vegas!: The setting of the 4D Show I Lost My 'M' in Vegas (shown, of course, at the Las Vegas M&M's World).
  • White Gloves: All M&M characters have worn white gloves since the 1980s.


Im Brittish

Wow epic fail

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