Sparks: 2002-2008

First, they came for Zima, and we said nothing. Sparks, the poor hipster's cocaine substitute, is no more. The disgusting caffeinated malternative beverage was six years old.

Apparently the Illinois Attorney General, Lisa "Candidate 2" Madigan, claimed MillerCoors was illegally marketing the "beverage" to underaged consumers, by sponsoring an air guitar champion, or something.

“These drinks are extremely dangerous in the hands of young people,” Madigan said in a statement. “They contain substantially more caffeine than coffee or soda and are marketed as a way to ‘power’ your nights by staying awake and drinking more alcohol. This is a completely inappropriate message to send to younger audiences.”

Sure, whatever. So long, shitty caffeinated malt beverages! You were not long for this recession anyway, because now there is no joy in being wasted and jittery at the same time, at 4 a.m..

We first encountered Sparks in the early 2000s, when broke-ass gutterpunks in Minneapolis suddenly began imbibing it. By the time the trend migrated to pretend-broke-ass scenesters in Brooklyn, the punks had switched back to cheap canned beer, and we'd still never tried the shit. It will be missed.

Sparks will live on as an easy, slightly obscure jokey "mid-2000s" reference point for comedy writers for years to come, beginning in 2010 or so. Someday, a future-version of The Wackness will make a point of having protagonists with orange tongues, and we'll chuckle, and people five years younger than us will be unamused. Kids today with their space-music and reasonably sized sun-goggles! They don't even remember the great commenter wars of '09!