White Castle’s Impossible Burger slider went nationwide last month, and now the bite-sized vegan sandwiches are going interplanetary. A new web series from Impossible Foods and the chain known for tiny burgers (and feeding hungry stoners) features Wu-Tang Clan as they hover high above the earth in a throwback spaceship, dispensing advice to all the people.
The first of four episodes introduces the crew of the Wu-F.O., a schlocky, logo-shaped vehicle made of cardboard and sparklers in true 1960s fashion. There’s GZA and Ghostface Killah, both decked out in two-tone uniforms and Wu-Tang combadges. They’re joined by the RZA 9000, “an all-knowing supreme data system” voiced by RZA. “We are on an interstellar quest to spread earthly love, seek new perspectives and prime our world for the Knowledge Infinite,” the introspective computer opines, as a quick title sequence channels the opening to the original “Star Trek.”
Wu-Tang was a natural fit for the campaign. “They love White Castle. They grew up on it,” says Sam Spiegel of Hey Wonderful, who directed the series and is friends with RZA, a vegan. “Ghost and GZA are both vegetarian. And they’re Impossible [Burger] fanatics.”
The trio answers questions from real people, solicited through a teaser video released a few weeks ago that directed viewers to an 800-number where they could leave a message. The answers are a combination of pre-scripted response and improvisation. “GZA and Ghost actually wanted to join us for a couple of writing sessions so they did, which was awesome. They had a lot of say in the scripts,” Spiegel says.
Then things get adorably weird. Sometimes it helps to have the perspective of a child, so RZA 9000 transports a 6-year-old girl named Jolee, chair and all, onto the bridge to help explain where ideas come from. But her commentary is cut short for a battle on the moon between two kaiju--Japanese-style giant monsters.
“RZA is just a huge movie buff,” Spiegel says. “He put me on to a couple of old Japanese sci-fi films from the ‘60s when we were prepping this, namely, ‘Destroy All Monsters,’” a flick that includes scenes of foam monster-on foam monster violence.
For a White Castle branded film, there’s little mention of the chain or the burgers, aside from a bit of munching during the moon fight. But Wu-Tang fans will appreciate the philosophical musings, existential tone and slew of pop culture references. New spots roll out in the coming weeks. Next up, Wu-Tang goes to Mars.