Mr. Peanut, the fancy monocle-wearing mascot for Planters peanuts, has “died” at the age of 104 following a car crash involving actors Wesley Snipes and Matt Walsh, according to a new viral ad ahead of the Super Bowl.
“It is with heavy hearts that we confirm that Mr. Peanut has died at 104,” read a tweet posted to the mascot’s Twitter account on Wednesday. “In the ultimate selfless act, he sacrificed himself to save his friends when they needed him most. Please pay your respects with #RIPeanut.”
The long-running face of Planters “dies” in a new commercial posted online Wednesday, which has quickly gone viral on social media.
The commercial shows Mr. Peanut riding in a Planters car with Snipes and Walsh. The car suddenly veers off the road to avoid an armadillo and plunges off a cliff, leaving Misters Peanut, Snipes and Walsh dangling precariously from a tree branch over the abyss. Mr. Peanut ultimately lets go of the branch so it won’t break under the weight of his friends.
“Don’t do it, Mr. Peanut!” Snipes says with desperation in the commercial.
Mr. Peanut lets go and falls to his death without a word.
It’s unclear if his body turns into peanut butter when he strikes the ground, but whatever nutty remains there might have been are quickly destroyed when the Planters truck explodes.
Mr. Peanut’s Twitter account has changed its name to “The Estate of Mr. Peanut.” It spent much of Wednesday afternoon retweeting condolences from other popular brands, such as Oreos and Snickers.
Mr. Peanut was “born” in Suffolk, Va., in 1916, according to a biography of the billionaire legume mascot in Parade magazine. Antonio Gentile, 14, submitted an image of a fancy peanut for Planters’ mascot contest, and won $5 when his sketch was chosen the winner.
He is survived by millions of nuts. He also outlived many more, after sending them to be devoured by humans for over a century.
Mr. Peanut’s death will air on American television during the Super Bowl pre-game show on Feb. 2, Planters said in a news release. The company says it will air a follow-up “funeral” sometime in the third quarter of the game, “so the world can mourn the loss of the beloved legume together.”
The seemingly wealthy peanut’s demise has sparked sympathy, anger and more than a few nutty conspiracy theories on Twitter.
“Mr. Peanut knew too much,” tweeted user Sam Thielman.
Several people echoed the viral meme about the late billionaire Jeffrey Epstein, who was found dead in a prison cell last year. “Epstein didn’t kill himself” has become a tongue-in-cheek conspiracy theory on the internet, and people have started applying the same approach to Mr. Peanut.
“Mr. Peanut didn’t kill himself,” they’ve been saying.
The wealthy nut’s demise left many allergy sufferers elated.
Planters has successfully buttered up its audience for Mr. Peanut’s funeral, but a few questions remain.
Will Mr. Peanut have an heir? Is he even dead?
Fans, critics and conspiracy-theory nutcases can find out on Feb. 2.
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