New Coke, the controversial flavor of Coca Cola released in 1985 and removed from sale quickly, is coming back this year for a promotional release tied to the upcoming season of Stranger Things.
Stranger Things Season 3 is set in 1985, the same year New Coke was released. New Coke will be featured in “several” episodes during Season 3, and it’s not being added for the sake of making an extra buck. “It was one of the first ideas in our Season 3 brainstorm. It was the summer of ’85, and when you talk about pop culture moments, New Coke was a really big deal,” creators Matt and Ross Duffer told The New York Times. “It would have been more bizarre to not include it.”
New Coke was introduced in April 1985, and it was removed from sale after just 79 days in the wake of a community outcry over the flavor. That same controversial flavor is now returning with the same exact recipe.
Additionally, the Duffer Brothers worked with Coca-Cola on a new advertisement that they directed, It showcases familiar Stranger Things characters drinking New Coke in a movie theatre.
“One thing that makes Stranger Things so special is its commitment to authentically portraying the decade in which the show takes place,” Coca-Cola North America boss Stuart Kronauge said. “When we heard that Season 3 would be set in the summer of 1985 and they wanted to integrate New Coke, we knew we had an opportunity to revisit that time period in a fun and unexpected way that would also allow us to be part of one of this year’s most anticipated pop culture moments.”
You can read more about the partnership between Netflix and Coca-Cola here on the Coca-Cola website.
All the main cast of Stranger Things return for Season 3, along with Princess Bride star Cary Elwes who plays the sleazy politician Mayor Kline. There’s also the offspring of some ’80s stars; Jake Busey, son of Point Break star Gary Busey, will play a journalist named Bruce, while Maya Thurman-Hawke (daughter of Uma and Ethan) is set to play a character named Robin.