Sweet invention

In a recent post I mentioned the top ten foods most missed by Norwegians when away from home. One of the more mysterious items was Seigmenn, a kind of featureless, springy, sugar-covered version of the jelly baby.  How did this candy become so popular?

This advertising campaign, which equated the sweet with an imaginative, playful streak, produced a series of memorable and entertaining ads that certainly helped boost the appeal of seigmenn further. One obstacle to writing about Norwegian pop culture for English speakers is the language barrier, but there isn’t so much vital dialogue in advertising. If I remember correctly, this taxi ride was the first in the campaign.

The fare tells the driver that his friend in the back will pay her. He then asks for his change, but the driver says his friend said she could keep it. When he asks to speak to his friend, the cabbie bites down, says the friend is busy and flashes that incredible smile.

This is one of my favorites and it works well even without understanding the dialogue, (Release the hostages now! – is the only line before the end) but the final lines are very good.

After dispatching the ‘sick, sick man’ who has locked the group in the microwave, he opens the door and tells the hostages that they are safe now. ‘Well, maybe not you’, he says, eating one, and as the ad cuts to black he wonders how they would taste hot.

Now seigmenn (seig=tough; here, chewy)  have been joined by women and children. Seigdamer have breasts, and the kids (sure skrikeunger=sour crybabies) have sour flavors and are Sinnataggen shaped. If you want to learn more about the long and colorful history of the Seigmann, have a look around here.

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2 responses to “Sweet invention

  1. ikkenorskgirl

    Hmmm… I didnt try those out when I was there, nor did my boyfriends family seem to mention them – surprising being the big sugar guzzlers that they are! What I fell in love with, though, were Bamsemums
    http://ikkenorskgirl.wordpress.com/2010/01/03/bamsemums/
    and so, even though I am not Norwegian, I most certainly miss them!

    • Jonathan Tisdall

      Sweet blog you have! I will try to put in my Nordic list – it’s a nice way to learn a bit of Norwegian and 99.99% of the foreigners here have been charmed by a Norwegian and it’s good to have a place to start…

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