When Taco Bell Promoted Fanzines (1993)

I’m not sure if it’s easier or harder to believe today, but in 1993 the grunge-driven corporate cooptation of the 1980s underground music scene – now watered down and repackaged as “alternative” – had reached such a level that even fast food was getting into it. Taco Bell issued a paper placemat, apparently based on a piece from Spin, so their customers could familiarize themselves with important aspects of the “alternative” culture, including fanzines.

‘Zines. Now that an entire overqualified-but-unquenched generation is firmly entrenched as self-hating clerical, word-processing, and proofreading drones (just ask Douglas Coupland), everybody’s getting access to office Xerox machines, fax machines, mail rooms, cool computers, etc. Technology has fallen into the wrong hands, and as a result, fanzines are everywhere – thousands of pointless, stapled pages of goo-goo-ga, written for losers by losers. Nor surprisingly, the best of the batch over the past couple years have not been music-intensive. It’s not yet a revolution, but it’s cheaper and more fun than therapy.

It was strange days, indeed.

Taco Bell - back

Taco Bell - front

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1 Response to “When Taco Bell Promoted Fanzines (1993)”


  1. 1 Brian January 28, 2016 at 6:07 pm

    Thanks for sharing this! Working on a taco bell fanzine actually!

    tacobellfanzine@gmail.com !


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