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BTS the latest musicians to reveal their “signature” McDonald’s meal

By | Published on Tuesday 20 April 2021

BTS McDonald's

McDonald’s is continuing its line of limited edition celebrity-endorsed meals, following previous collaborations with Travis Scott and J Balvin. Starting next month, BTS fans will be able to eat like their heroes, including sampling a couple of sauces not previously available in the US. Imagine! Sauces!

The conceit of these celebrity meals is that you get to eat exactly what the musician in question consumes whenever they go to McDonald’s themselves.

So for Travis Scott, that was a beef quarter pounder with cheese, bacon and lettuce, medium fries with BBQ sauce, and a Sprite. For J Balvin, it was a Big Mac with no pickle, medium french fries with ketchup, and an Oreo McFlurry. I know, wild right?

That all works fine with solo artists, but once you start doing it with a seven-member boyband, it starts to fall apart a bit. Has McDonald’s ignored that and powered ahead anyway? You betcha. So, what every single member of BTS orders whenever they go to McDonald’s – because they all have exactly the same favourite McDonald’s meal – is: Ten Chicken McNuggets, medium fries with sweet chilli and cajun sauce, and a medium Coke.

At least they ordered a drink. J Balvin – the absolute maniac – didn’t get a drink. Anyway, I suppose there being two sauces is a nod to the fact that more than one person apparently chose this meal. It’s not seven sauces, but it’s not one. And what’s more, these are sauces not currently available in the US. They’re not exactly available in BTS’s home country either, but McDonald’s says that they are “inspired by popular recipes from McDonald’s South Korea”. So that’s good.

I’ve referred to the US a couple of times so far. That’s because McDonald’s makes very clear that these sauces are new to the US. However, the BTS meal will actually be available in 49 territories around the world, including Romania, Austria, Paraguay, Canada, India, Indonesia, and South Korea itself. Not the UK though, if that’s what you were hoping I was going to say. If you want to get this meal in the UK you’re out of luck. It’s just not possible.

I mean, sure, you can order McNuggets, fries, Coke and some sweet chilli sauce, but there’s no cajun sauce on the UK menu. So, while you might feel like you’re eating what every single member of BTS eats whenever they go to McDonald’s, in your heart of hearts you will know that you’re actually a complete fraud.

Anyway, what have BTS said about all of this? Well, nothing. Not one thing. But their label, Big Hit Music, says in a statement: “The band has great memories with McDonald’s. We’re excited about this collaboration and can’t wait to share the BTS Meal with the world”.

They have “great memories” of McDonald’s? This is supposed to be a big celebration of the fast food chain, and they’ve already made it sound like they’re paying tribute after a company shut down. McDonald’s has previously admitted that these pop hook-ups aim to get young people through their doors – people under 34 these days “becoming more and more challenging for brands to reach”. Now here’s BTS’s record label talking like the doors are locked and the keys have been thrown away.

Anyway, that’s not the only comment on this collaboration. Chief Marketing Officer for McDonald’s USA, Morgan Flatley, says: “BTS truly lights up the world stage, uniting people across the globe through their music. We’re excited to bring customers even closer to their beloved band in a way only McDonald’s can – through our delicious food – when we introduce the BTS signature order on our menu next month”.

That confirms it then. McDonald’s is definitely still in business. For now at least. Although Flatley also sort of suggests that McDonald’s is the only company in the world that serves food, which kind of swings things in the other direction. Other places serve food, you know. I’d imagine even BTS eat food from other restaurants and fast food joints. Maybe they even cook for themselves sometimes. That would bring you even closer to BTS, surely; if they actually cooked you a meal themselves.

Anyway, the only thing we can do now is to sit back and wait to see what controversy arises from this partnership. When Travis Scott fronted the brand’s first celebrity partnership for 30 years last year, McDonald’s was accused of using the deal to divert attention from two racial discrimination lawsuits.

A couple of months later, it launched J Balvin’s “signature” meal, but in January this year it cancelled orders for accompanying merch because “production issues” meant it all came out looking a bit shit – or it “did not meet our expectations”, as Balvin’s management company Vibras Lab put it. Instead, everyone got a refund and a free beanie hat. A real shame for anyone who had ordered slippers that looked like burgers or a temporary tattoo that looked like a McDonald’s receipt.

So far, no BTS-related McDonalds merchandise has been announced, but it’s coming. You know it’s coming. Because who wouldn’t want to commemorate the meeting of two titans of their industries with a merch purchase? The meal will be available from 26 May.