Fred Flintstone's favorite drink inspired a real-life soda pop
Cactus Cooler showed up in the late-'60s, after Barney and Fred guzzled down Cactus Coola.
A kid could survive on Flintstones-branded foods alone. A bowl of Fruity Pebbles and a few Flintstones Vitamins have plenty of nutrients. Okay, that might not be the healthiest diet. Especially if you threw in some Flintstones Push Up Pops. Plus, what would you have to drink?
Well, it might be a subtle nod — and in no way officially licensed — but a regional soft drink does exist for the Flintstones fanatic.
First, let's rewind to the fifth episode of the cartoon, "The Split Personality." Barney heads over to his neighbors and raids the Flintstone fridge. He pulls out a stone bottle.
"Mmm! A tall, frosty Cactus Coola," Barney proclaims. Cut to an insert shot of his hand holding the drink.
Cactus Coola popped up throughout the series as Fred's favorite beverage. In the late 1960s, around the time that Flintstones vitamins were taking off, Canada Dry launched a new soft drink called Cactus Cooler. The orange-pineapple soda came in a somewhat psychedelic desert can with green cacti against a backdrop of yellow and orange waves.
Yeah, it resembled the environments around Bedrock a bit, no?
But the packaging also served the market. Cactus Cooler was — and remains — a regional product of the Southwest, especially California and Arizona. You can still buy it today from Target.
The Dr. Pepper Snapple Group manufactures the modern product. The vintage Canada Dry cans seen up top disappeared long ago.
It may not have Betty and Wilma on the can, but those who love '60s television can pick up a six-pack and show off their deep knowledge of TV trivia.
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(I swear they had that in El Paso years before they got their own spokesdancers.)