Yesterday Fox announced that it would be cancelling its long-running crime-stopping series America’s Most Wanted. If you’re anything like me your reaction to the news will be sense of shock: “You mean, that’s still on the air?”
Indeed it is. Although the series which profiles wanted criminals has been on the air since 1988, I stopped watching it around 1990—and assumed it went off the air about a decade ago. But America’s Most Wanted is attempting to find a new home and become what Daniel Gross once dubbed a “zombie brand”—a dead or dormant brand that have been revived or trotted out for second or third chances.
Examples include the soft drink Tab (which I thought people stopped drinking in 1985) and Life magazine (which I assumed went out of print sometime in the 1970s). Zombie brands often leave us with a peculiar mix of nostalgia (“I remember that!”) and unease (“Why is that still around?”). For instance, I was shocked to find that Grit magazine—a staple of rural barber shops that my brother used to sell door to door—is still around, though in an all but unrecognizable form.
What zombie brands are you surprised still exist?