by Sarah Andert
Has anyone noticed lately that the long and multifarious (or should I say nefarious?) arm of the Reese's empire has been slowly and silently reaching its chocolate, peanut-buttery fingers into all corners of the candy market and tightening its grip on sweet-toothed minds in every demographic through a complex ideological apparatus with aspirations of global domination and hegemonic bliss?
Did anyone anticipate that the inchoate dreams of the tiny little candy-coated peanut butter gems of the Pieces would spawn such visions of supremacy in supermarkets and drugstores nationwide? Who knew that cashiers, shelve-stockers and vending machine maintenancers would be so mindlessly and effortlessly recruited as deputies in exercising the subaltern functions of this expansive chocolate-covered, peanut butter hegemony?
It has been observed in several corporate drug store chains around New Orleans that their sales and stocking work perpetuates and reinforces the idea that a Reese's product is overwhelmingly the best possible choice -- in that they themselves cultivate the spontaneous consent of the great masses of the population that daily pass through their aisles by imposing this direction on social life -- by affecting a level of prestige for the Reese's products in their prominent placements on shelves, counters and ends of aisles, their very physical and material position in the retail world.
The Reese's empire depends heavily on this fact that power can be maintained without force if the consent of the dominated can be obtained through smoke and mirrors, and much labor on the part of marketing strategists. The Reese's Ideology exists in this apparatus and its practices, and this existence is material. This ideology is continually recruiting subjects among individuals and transforming them into Reese's consumers through a complex set of tactics aimed to appeal to all types of shoppers.
If only those shoppers ensnared by the Reese's Ideological Apparatus were aware of what was happening. But those who are within the Reese's hegemony believe themselves by definition to be outside of it and immune to its nougat-y appeal. A wise man once wrote, "one of the effects of ideology is the practical denial of the ideological character of ideology by ideology. Ideology never says, 'I am ideological.'"We can take that to mean that those who don't think they're being tricked by the Reese's people really are being tricked by the Reese's people.
The Reese's empire is taking over the candy market slowly and surely and there is little that anyone can do to stop its saccharin sprawl.
Next Week: Photographic evidence of this fact and an explication of the ways in which YOU are probably under the thrawl of the Reese's right now.