Anything as horrifying, yet hilarious as the Edible Mascot being devoured by a victorious college football team was bound to get memefied within minutes, and the dark humor did not disappoint. One person captioned a screenshot of the Pop-Tart as if it were a scene from “Hunger Games” and posted it to X (formerly known as Twitter) complete with an altered sign reading, “I Volunteer as Tribute,” while another quipped that the mascot’s flesh and blood now ranked right alongside s’mores and frosted blueberry as one of Pop-Tart’s most popular flavors.
Of course, one parallel that was not lost on the meme makers was the line that could be drawn between the Pop-Tart’s untimely end and certain sacred rites that have been performed throughout human history. The most obvious comparison is to the Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation, something that did not escape X’s memesters, although ritualistic cannibalism has also been practiced by the Aztecs, among other cultures. According to one X user (who also happens to be a psychology professor), the willing sacrifice of a victim destined to be consumed by conquering warriors “isn’t dramatically different from how some major religions are started.” And thus begins the legend of the Edible Mascot: man, meme, and myth in the making.