BK’s Bacon Double: $3 of Pure JoyBy Todd • Jun 18th, 2009 • Category: Burger Blog
“When my belly starts a-rumblin’… and I’m jonesin’ for a treat…”
With those lyrics begin one of my all-time favorite commercials, the 2006 Burger King ad starring Darius Rucker of Hootie and the Blowfish. It was 60 seconds of Willy-Wonka-Meets-Wild-Wild-West surrealism set to country music, all to promote the Tendercrisp Bacon Cheddar Ranch, a downright tasty sandwich, for a non-burger.
If you don’t remember it (or, like me, just want to watch it and sing along), check it out here:
The ad got absolutely slaughtered by the masses (as did Darius Rucker for doing it), but I happen to love it. It just makes me happy. There are things that you hold onto, despite outward appearances, despite public opinion, and despite current fashions and trends because they just feel right to you, whatever the reason.
My favorite T-shirt is a grey, pit-stained Dallas Cowboys souvenir from a visit to Texas Stadium 10 years ago. When I need a musical pick-me-up, I can always count on something from the catalogues of Billy Joel or coincidentally enough, Hootie and the Blowfish. Can’t decide on a movie? Put in “Die Hard” for the thousandth time. As far as I’m concerned, those things just feel right. They’re automatic. They’re not flashy or sexy or cool. They’re dependable, go-to comforts.
And that’s Burger King’s Bacon Double Cheeseburger for me. I don’t even know if I can put my finger on exactly what makes it my favorite fast-food burger. Maybe it’s the right meat-to-cheese ratio. Or the bacon that doesn’t require any work to break off, but still lets you know it’s there. Or how it’s just the right size, so it can be nestled in one hand and eaten while you drive. Perhaps it’s the way some of the cheese invariably gets stuck to the wax paper so you can scrape it off with your fingernail and eat it like a little appetizer. Hell, I love the smell of a BK parking lot. It all just works.
Part of it may be pure nostalgia or blind loyalty. The “Have It Your Way” campaign really made an impression on me, as a guy who despised most of the crap that everyone else seemed to load up on their burgers. As I mentioned in my Top Burger Toppings countdown, I needed a stack of napkins taller than the burger itself just to prep a burger from most places for eating.
But BK never batted an eye when I ordered, “A bacon double cheeseburger… plain.” No pimply-faced teenagers punching dozens of buttons on the cash register while muttering under their breath, no calling the manager out front to override the trigger-happy new kid at the toppings station, no shouting out, “Special Order!” which is fast-food lingo for “Everybody check out the troublemaker at my register!”
It simply showed up on the tray the way I wanted it: Bacon. Cheese. And burger. Times two. I was hooked instantly, and have been ever since.
But when I want to switch on the auto-pilot and default to something that I know without question will make me happy, I throw on that perfectly-formed, never-been-washed Coca-Cola baseball cap, slide on those blue jeans that are just starting to rip across the right knee, cue up Track 1 on “Cracked Rear View,” and hit the drive-thru at the nearest BK.