Remember That Time Coca-Cola Ripped Off R2-D2?

The year was 1980, and the world was enchanted with all things Star Wars. Desperate to get in on some of that sweet Skywalker coin, Coca-Cola created in the image of series star R2-D2 their own funky astromech droid named “Cobot.” Did Coke sell tiny remote-controlled versions of Cobot to clueless children all across the land? Of course they did. Did Coke build life-sized versions of Cobot for personal appearances at malls and grocery stores? C’mon, did you really even have to ask that question?

Here’s video of a restored Cobot in action; note how he is nowhere near as expressive, emotive, or interesting as R2-D2:

I’ve spent thirty-three years loving Star Wars and carbonated beverages. I have no idea how Cobot’s existence managed to elude me until today. I am not proud.

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5 responses to “Remember That Time Coca-Cola Ripped Off R2-D2?”

  1. RoBeastRollie says :

    Where is his best frenemy Pepsi-3PO?

  2. Random person says :

    That thing scared the bejesus out of me as a kid!

  3. Anonymous says :

    So here’s what’s weird. The moment I google coke a cola and r2-d2, I land on this site. And this guy did, indeed, come to my school to “perform” when I was in kindergarten (whitestation, Memphis, tn).

    It performed on stage in an auditorium where we normally held plays and what not. The thing was a MASSIVE hit. Star wars sounding music was playing in the back ground along with up temp coke –themed music. A light show with all of the laser sound effects and the like.

    Now looking back, the thing just kind of rolled here, and then there, then spun around chirping – and the kids went absolutely nuts. I mean, mother f’ing R2-D2 was at our fregging school – right in front of us – but dressed in coke logos. I even remember yelling “I love you” to the thing. Kind of reminiscent of girls freaking out over the beatles back in the day. Seriously, kids were really freaking out over this thing.

    And it was a huge surprise too. We were all herded to the auditorium for what would normally be something incredibly boring…. And bam – R2-D2.

    Now I’m surprised that a beverage company would be allowed to market themselves like that to freggin kindergarteners (but we loved it).

  4. jamesgreenejr says :

    This is the greatest comment I think my blog has ever received. That you can admit yelling “I love you” to an R2-D2 clone…that’s hall of fame material right there. Thank you.

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