Oh, football season — the most masculine, yet homoerotic of all seasons. Think of all the Sundays spent shouting while in the vicinity of drunk and rowdy men. Ponder the countless hours debating whether those feelings you have for Tom Brady are natural admiration or unfettered lust. There is really nothing else quite like it.
For years, the folks at Campbell’s have capitalized on the season’s excitement by using football players to promote their Chunky Soup. I have no problem with sports leagues promoting products, but I can’t quite make out the connection here. After all, this is a brand of soup based solely on the premise that large men enjoy a steaming hot bowl of soup after a grueling practice. Who needs a frosty Gatorade or a sandwich when you can have a boiling hot bowl of soup with processed meats and vegetables that melt in your mouth? While this may seem surreal and absurd, nothing is quite as insane as what they are pitching with the Fully Loaded soup variety.
Apparently Chunky Soup, the soup that eats like a meal, wasn’t meal-like enough to satisfy the hunger of football players after they were done frolicking in mud as rain poured down on them. Instead of wondering who the hell pitches these commercials, I’m going to try to decipher exactly why this thing product is considered soup. I suppose the Chunky Fully Loaded takes after athletes and is a soup on steroids and human growth hormones. However, they have taken their approach way too far and have created a proverbial monster. You see, this is clearly rigatoni and meatballs, and unless I have been mistaken for my entire life, pasta is not soup. In fact, unlike crock pot meals and shepherd’s pie, it’s not even close to being soup. You might as well sever your own testicles and call it chicken cordon bleu. It really makes absolutely no sense.
Speaking of testicles, Campbell’s has finally accomplished what they have always strived to do — give soup some serious balls. While that statement is indeed a terrible joke, it’s also what I think this “soup” is really made of. The meatballs have an abnormally chewy texture that I could only assume mirror the texture of a certain questionable organ meat. Maybe this is to appeal to the people with giant Oakland Raiders vinyl decals and metallic ballsacks hanging from the back of their trucks, but nobody knows for sure. I understand that they can’t use the finest cuts available, but this is bordering on unappetizing and disturbing.
Luckily, I am less than picky about canned pasta and can safely say that I would much rather eat this than Chef Boyardee. The rigatoni is not mushy like many canned pastas and actually has some texture to it. They are also large enough to make me feel like a really big man while I’m eating them, which is probably worth the price of purchase on its own. The meatballs, strange texture and all, are not completely awful and are edible enough. The tomato sauce, which I suppose would be the soup in this case, has actual chunks of tomato and has a good acidic bite that is a refreshing change from the saccharine taste of the tomato sauces in other canned pastas.
What I appreciate most is the fact that the soup has a pop-top lid. Most of the people that buy this type of food do not own a can opener, so I like that they are saving us from the humiliation of stabbing it with a knife and jamming a spoon in to get it open. Even still, I can’t forgive them for completely messing with my sense of reality. When certain things in my worldview become distorted, I can’t help but feel despondent. If I ever go to Olive Garden and get “Fettuccini Alfredo” as the soup of the day, you will know why I tried to hang myself with the noodles.
(Nutritional Facts – 1 cup – 220 calories, 8 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 20 mg of cholesterol, 800mg sodium, 24 grams of carbs, 6 grams of dietary fiber, 8 grams of sugar, 13 grams of protein, 4% Vitamin A, 8% Calcium, and 10% Iron)
Item: Campbell’s Chunky Fully Loaded Rigatoni & Meatballs Soup
Purchased at: Ralph’s
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: A lot of food for a decent price. Rigatoni and sauce taste pretty good. Not mushy. Tom Brady.
Cons: Meatballs have strange texture. Eating soup after strenuous exercise. Raiders fans with truck nuts. Things that aren’t soup being called soup. Trying to hang yourself with noodles.