Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
#1
Old 08-03-2000, 07:57 PM
Guest
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: I'm right here!
Posts: 8,858
You know, the cream filled, chocolate covered, chocolate cake, hockey puck shaped things from Hostess.

When I was little, they were called Ding Dongs. Then they became King Dons. Then they were Ding Dongs again, then King Dons again. Now they're back to being Ding Dongs again. Why all the name changes?

The story I was told long ago was that the chocolate ones became King Dons when they incroduced the orange (and short-lived) ones as Ding Dongs. Even if this was true, why change the name of the chocolate ones?
__________________
It is too clear, and so it is hard to see.
#2
Old 08-03-2000, 09:20 PM
Charter Member
Charter Member
Join Date: Apr 2000
Location: Maine
Posts: 10,203
everything you ever wanted to know about ding dongs and king dons and the name changes is right here. Why any one person, let alone two, would give a darn, is the real mystery.
#3
Old 08-03-2000, 09:25 PM
Guest
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: Springfield
Posts: 1,190
I have a memory of them being called "Big Wheels". Their logo character was a very un-PC "Chief Big Wheel", complete with feathered headress and a vocabulary with "Ugh" and "How" in it. Not hard to see why they changed it, although they don't taste the same not having the same name I first drooled over them by.
#4
Old 08-03-2000, 10:41 PM
Guest
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: I'm right here!
Posts: 8,858
Thanks bibliophage. 1987 is about the time I noticed the switch and switch back.

On a side note, my wife bought a box of them a few months ago. My first Ding Dongs in a decade. Unfortunately, they're packaged in individual paper wrappers, not the individual foil wraps they used to have. No more foil thrones. No more trying to smooth out the wrinkles to make a little foil square. :sigh:
__________________
It is too clear, and so it is hard to see.
#5
Old 08-04-2000, 06:00 AM
Guest
Join Date: Jun 1999
Location: San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,019
I live in california, and they've always been ding dongs, but i've heard that in the 80s, a bunch of fundamentalists got themselves in an uproar because "ding dong" was a slang term for penis. so hostess changed the name to "king dons" in the south and midwest, while leaving "ding dongs" alone in parts of the country where nobody much cared whether or not unhealthy chocolate sugar snacks might be confused with a cock.

Eventually hostess changed the name back in the south, once the uproar died down. Where do you live?

I'm not sure what truth their is to the story, but it seems reasonable enough.
#6
Old 08-04-2000, 09:21 AM
Guest
Join Date: Feb 2000
Posts: 331
From bibliophage's link...

Quote:
The company answered and explained that back in 1967, when this wonderful product was introduced, the advertising campaign included a ringing bell. Hence the name Ding Dongs. However, in the eastern United States, Hostess opted to call them King Dons because a competitor had the same name on its products. They consolidated the Ding Dong and King Don name in 1987, packaging the cakes as Ding Dongs in all regions. Six months later, to avoid confusion again with another product, they went back to using King Don in the eastern U.S.
The "competitor" on the East Coast is none other than Drake's bakery, and their doppleganger product are those fine chocolatey hockey pucks called "Ring Dings." (See them square off against each other and the R.C. Cola of snack cakes, Little Debbie here.) Naturally, you can see why there might be some confusion between the two names, although I think a Congressional investigation into the inexplicable suffusion of the letter 'g' in both names. In fact, there is an eerie concordance of products between the two companies-- Ring Dings vs. Ding Dongs; Ho-Ho's vs. Yodels, etc.

Drake's Bakeries got started in New Jersey in the 1930's or so, and were a powerful competitor of Hostess in the Northeast for years. (Remember Elaine jonesing for a "Drake's Coffee Cake" in a Seinfeld episode?) However, Drake's was bought out by the parent corporation of Hostess, Insterstate Bakeries, about a decade ago, and the Drake's name is merely preserved for goodwill purposes.

It would be entirely possible for Interstate to collapse the two brands and just sell Ding Dongs under one brand and name, but for whatever reason, they choose not to. As you can see from the link above, some people have very heated preferences for the product of their childhood and will vehemently defend the Drakes version over the Hostess product (or vice versa), when, in reality, there is very little difference at this point.
#7
Old 08-04-2000, 09:46 AM
Guest
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: Suburbia, NJ
Posts: 932
Does anyone have any more information on Big Wheels? Those were the snack cake of choice of my childhood (there's many a "lunch" I had in high school that was merely a package or two of Big Wheels).

They were Hostess, too (Chief Big Wheel was really pally with Twinkie the Kid on saturday morning TV), and they seem to have been the same basic chocolate-hockey-puck snack cake as the Ding Dong/King Don.

Does anyone else remember these?

The hostess web page Who Is King Ding Dong? is not as helpful as one might hope, sweeping the whole matter under the rug with a "We are all Ding Dongs now." I clearly remember buying and eating two-packs of Big Wheels in the early '80s in New Jersey, which doesn't seem to fit with their all-Gaul-is-divided-into-three-parts explanation.

You know, I've never eaten either King Dons or Ding Dongs, but if I'd known they were really Big Wheels, I would have. (Loyalty to a single snack food cake is a strange and wonderful thing.)
__________________
Not just a wiseacre, a highly-paid professional wiseacre.
http://antickmusings.blogspot.com
#8
Old 08-04-2000, 04:31 PM
Guest
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 50,751
I'm sticking with Ho-Hos....
#9
Old 08-04-2000, 04:55 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Shakedown Street
Posts: 12,950
Quote:
I have a memory of them being called "Big Wheels"
and

Quote:
Does anyone have any more information on Big Wheels?

here is the question I posted on the subject of those delectable childhood morsels. I only got one real reply though from some obnoxious poster. Call ME a chucklehead will you!

Mmmmmm Big Wheels….
#10
Old 08-06-2012, 05:30 PM
Guest
Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 1
Speaking about Big Wheels

Here's a link about the "Big Wheels"

http://tinotopia.com/2001/01/ding_dongs_and_king_dons/
#11
Old 08-07-2012, 01:12 PM
Guest
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: The bunghole of WA
Posts: 12,348
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nurlman View Post
It would be entirely possible for Interstate to collapse the two brands and just sell Ding Dongs under one brand and name, but for whatever reason, they choose not to. As you can see from the link above, some people have very heated preferences for the product of their childhood and will vehemently defend the Drakes version over the Hostess product (or vice versa), when, in reality, there is very little difference at this point.
See: "Best Foods" and "Hellmann's" mayonnaise.
#12
Old 08-07-2012, 01:19 PM
Member
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 41,665
I've never heard of "King Dons", and I grew up on the East Coast. I've only ever heard of them as "Ding Dongs"
#13
Old 08-07-2012, 01:33 PM
Guest
Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: S. GA
Posts: 2,904
Dolly Madison Koo Koos were better.
#14
Old 08-07-2012, 01:33 PM
Guest
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: ATL
Posts: 3,136
Well, after 12 years they're probably all a bit stale...
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:11 AM.

Copyright © 2017
Best Topics: manly cat dick clits is 22 lethal pig's penis military bipolar shipping medications overseas bookshelf pegs target replacing toilet internals nagant revolver silencer hot fart monty means ventriloquist drinking water tom bombadil evil madelyn rhue ramanujan pronunciation dnd 3.5 dieties wd40 for fishing egwene pronunciation bluetooth phone ringer relocating chipmunks distance mapap vs tylenol dosage titration ref scores goal zaaz 20k review dog headbutt cvs photo scanner dune baron cross product inverse csl plasma taxable dye beard white my sweet nicole condenser paper lake niagara wines rattlesnake head maglite troubleshooting titles dr cost to aerate lawn nazi skull and crossbones bay vs sea scallops i cried in front of my girlfriend satellite dish hd antenna scooter for 300 lb man how to delete gmail account from computer return new jersey license plates japanese for you re welcome weapons of choice christopher walken how many gallons does a truck hold my friend in russian avatar the last airbender d&d 5e syracuse orangemen name change spanking paddles with holes bottom of foot numbness tingling does wolf urine keep coyotes away what is malta beverage bar names with puns tire balancing and rotation how do i stop someone seeing my posts on facebook without blocking them attach wood to chain link fence convert rural route to street address where to next meaning why do cats paw at glass duplex receptacle ground up or down what is the difference between dill and kosher dill pickles psilocybin mushroom spores legal how to dry out modeling clay what happened to adam on bonanza i drink a bottle of wine a day bolt vs lever action is two weeks notice 10 or 14 days