In the iconic 1973 sci-fi movie Soylent Green starring Charlton Heston, the poor (the 99%) live off of this cheap food stuff called “Soylent.” Made from plankton, soylent comes in several varieties: red, yellow, and the titular green. And if you ever want to taste it in real life, here’s your chance:
No, seriously, Soylent is a real product.
If you haven’t seen Soylent Green by now starring Charlton Heston, you should at least know the most brain-bashingly famous line/spoiler that this film gifted to pop culture. If you don’t, that’s too bad and I think we’ve passed the spoiler safety deadline.
So I reiterate: Soylent is a real product. If this doesn’t give you pause and make you screw your face up a little, you’re a sick bastard. Either that or you’ve been on the Internet too long and nothing fazes you anymore. I’ll just remember not to invite you to dinner parties, Dr. Lecter.
When I first saw the video above, I had no suspicions that the “ad” was referring to a real product until I looked down in their description, which provided the link to the Soylent website. And even then, I was skeptical. It’s so easy to set up a legitimate-looking website these days and even this site gives up jokey vibes – but maybe that’s because I have been jaded by the interwebs. But after doing a little research, I can assure you that it is an actual product, something that will be made available for human consumption in 2014.
According to the “Soylent” Wikipedia article, the creator named it after the soylent food from the novel Make Room! Make Room!… which is what the movie Soylent Green was loosely based on. To be fair, Make Room! Make Room! did not have the twist of soylent being made of people. That was purely the movie. However, the novel and movie areinterlocked in history now and the movie is far more famous.
You cannot tell me the people behind this product did not think of the connection between the name of their product and the cannibal’s delight “soylent green.” That would be stupid to think that those people are so stupid. The world is capable of some pretty stupid stuff, but these people made a very conscious decision to name their nutritional paste “Soylent.” So why knowingly name your supposedly nutritional pasty stuff “Soylent?” Well, for one, it certainly has piqued my interest and was impetus enough for me to scribble away a little blog post about it. I won’t buy it or eat it. Well, if an acquaintance of mine ever got some, I wouldn’t be opposed to giving it a taste.
I mean, it wouldn’t actually be made of people… would it?
[And actually, it seems the creator himself tried it in the initial stages and experienced some noticeable side effects. Huh.]
Soylent, the food of the future for those of us too lazy to cook or eat off a plate. Who needs flavor when you’ve got more time to do all the other things you need to do like watching cat videos and reading up on the Kardashians? Actually there’s a whole demographic they should hand this out to: college students.
What do you think of the idea of Soylent? Would you eat it? What fictional futuristic product would you like to see made into reality? Leave your thoughts in the comment box below.
For more on Soylent, read on:
- Soylent: What Happened When I Stopped Eating For 2 Weeks (The Blog of Tim Ferris)
- Gruel today, gruel tomorrow (The Economist)
- Soylent Green is made out of people… and it’s coming to a grocer near you! (Josh Mosey | Writer)
- Soylent Month Three (Mostly Harmless)
- ‘Soylent’ Documentary Reveals What It’s Really Like to Go Food-Free For 30 Days (Huffington Post)