Mountain Dew Kickstart is released today, much to the chagrin and delight of bearded babyfaces all over the world. Maybe it’s just my curmudgeonly tendencies and complete inability to understand idiomatic phrases, but “Kickstart” doesn’t hold too much power for me. The last item I owned that functioned primarily via kickstarting was from 1978 and met an untimely death via theft, and vibrated weakly in between my legs for a mere $5 fill-up. Kickstarter is a scary company where the dreams of hipsters live and thrive, so you’ll have to excuse me for being a little dubious of Mountain Dew’s Kickstart, the latest in a long, quirky line of breakfast-themed sodas following slowly on the heels of the Taco Bell-exclusive Mountain Dew AM.
After a long day of copy-machine mangled documents and succumbing to the realization of how damned uncomfortable Hunter boots are in a mildly heated office environment, regardless of their animal magnetism and raw power, I needed a boost slightly more powerful than my regular combination of sweatpants and Elliot Smith. Enter Mountain Dew Kickstart in Energizing Fruit Punch, stage left, accompanied by the Bloodhound Gang. If anyone is a prime candidate for extra energy, it’s me. I mean, Birkin ain’t got nothing on those eye bags, if you catch my drift. Punchline: I’m exhausted!
Right off the bat, this is a drink you don’t want to confuse with regular fruit punch, because its kick of caffeine puts it in a category of danger even more lurid than the normal stuff. It’s not something you want to serve to toddlers, but also doesn’t seem to be nearly as potent as most energy drinks on the market. It’s sweet and sticky, like fruit punch and Mountain Dew, and ends up tasting a lot like the bug juice they used to pour into us at camp, minus the irritability and sunburn. As an aside, I like that the accompanying adjective to this is “energizing” rather than something creepy and implicit, like “rockin'” or “brain-meltin'”. It seems mature.
Would I serve this to teenagers? Only if I was making them perform hard manual labor. Is it for coffee drinkers? Well, the caffeine is equivalent to a cup of coffee, and somehow I can’t see my mom replacing her daily mug of joe with a can of this every morning before she heliskis to work. It seems inappropriate for kids, and it’s just not strong enough for regular energy drink users. Thus, it’s difficult for me to precisely envision who the core demographic for this group is- it seems to be best suited for the bicurious of drinkers, “bi” in this case referring to Vitamin B-curious, of which this contains 80% of your daily recommended value. Drink away, my minions. I’ll stick to my coffee and 90’s grunge.