Review: Mountain Dew Supernova


As part of their summer marketing campaign called DEWmocracy, which we've explored extensively here on BevReview.com, PepsiCo has released the first of 3 "finalists" to be the next Mountain Dew flavor: Mountain Dew Supernova, Mountain Dew Voltage, and Mountain Dew Revolution. Let's take a look at Mountain Dew Supernova!

Mountain Dew Supernova

This flavor is described on the packaging as "Dew with a blast of Strawberry Melon Flavor and Ginseng". Alrighty, then! The beverage color itself is of the pinkish/purplish variety, but not as dark as something like 2004's Mountain Dew Pitch Black.

Mountain Dew Supernova

The label sports the traditional Mountain Dew logo, augmented by a pink/black color scheme, heavy on the black overtones. Think the design style of the recent Amp Energy flavors, specifically Amp Energy Traction.

Mountain Dew Supernova

It's specifically noted that this flavor is "Dew Drinker Designed", which is a reference to the DEWmocracy campaign.

Mountain Dew Supernova

To summarize for those who are to lazy to click a link, in Fall 2007 PepsiCo rolled out a "design your own Dew" initiative, but did it through online gaming and a social media-oriented storyline.

Mountain Dew Supernova

The Final 3: Voltage, Supernova, Revolution
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

The result was out of all these combinations, 3 flavors rose to the top, to be featured during the summer of 2008 and voted on by fans. The winning vote getter would be the new Dew.

Mountain Dew Supernova

Online Poster
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

Encouraging promotion of your favorite flavor is done through campaign tools… graphical banners that can be placed on MySpace, Facebook, e-mail templates, or blogs, each with a distinct tracking code. That way, everyone who is registered as part of the DEWmocracy site can have metrics assigned to their participation. I'm not exactly sure how the "vote" will take place, but I would imagine that it has to do with these tools.

Mountain Dew Supernova

But let's move beyond the marketing behind this product… which is ironic, because I think the whole reason it exists is marketing. It's a manufactured device designed to create buzz and brand loyalty, because it sure wasn't designed to taste very good. Mountain Dew Supernova tastes like a syrupy, fake-flavor strawberry soda, similar in execution to Fanta Strawberry, Tropicana Twister Strawberry, and Strawberry Crush. Despite the claim that it has a "strawberry melon" flavor, I really didn't detect a melon influence at all.

Mountain Dew Supernova

E-mail Template
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

The official DEWmocracy website makes some interesting flavor claims as it hypes up this drink:

When flavor goes supernova all you can do is "Brace for the Blast." Prepare yourself for Strawberry Melon Lime with a Ginseng tremor that'll knock your taste buds into the next dimension. This exciting new taste is here, so get a serious grip and launch yourself into the fray with our campaign tools. Mountain Dew® Supernova™ is the one.

Again, I didn't taste any melon nor did I detect the lime. It's just a lame soft drink that hardly has anything in common with Mountain Dew. I'd put it in the class of LiveWire.

Mountain Dew Supernova

Text of Campaign E-mail
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

Of course, if PepsiCo just released this drink on its own, it would probably fail. Thus it had to put a little extra "pop" into it by pulling the ole "it's a soda/it's an energy drink" scam that Coke has been been doing with Vault. In this case, the promotional materials behind Mountain Dew Supernova make note that it contains ginseng. This approach hearkens back to what they pulled off for Mountain Dew Game Fuel, which while it tasted bad, had a heck of a lot of caffeine in the bottle!

Mountain Dew Supernova

Virtual Bumper Sticker
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

What's the nutritional/supplement breakdown on Mountain Dew Supernova? Let's start with caffeine. The original flavor of Mountain Dew features 4.5 mg/oz. of caffeine. Competitor Vault has a higher level at 5.83 mg/oz. Mountain Dew Game Fuel topped both of those at 6.0 mg/oz. Meanwhile, the new flavor of Supernova has 4.55 mg/oz., just a fraction over the original flavor. While I'm sure that the addition of ginsing gives it a little more of an artificial "pick me up", I don't think it's enough to really push Mountain Dew Supernova over the edge as a drink that will succeed. The flavor is just too "adequate" to really make a difference.

Mountain Dew Supernova

Supernova as represented online
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

An entire 20 oz. bottle of Supernova will cost you 290 calories, 105 mg of sodium, and 76 g of sugars (though the Nutrition Facts claim that there are 2.5 servings per bottle… I'm sure that will be totally honored by those who drink it!)

Mountain Dew Supernova

Web Badge
(Source: Dewmocracy.com)

A full ingredient list is as follows:

Mountain Dew Supernova
Carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, citric acid, natural flavor, sodium benzoate (preserves freshness), caffeine, sodium citrate, gum arabic, calcium disodium EDTA (to protect flavor), brominated vegetable oil, panax ginseng root extract, Red 40, Blue 1

Overall, my take is that Mountain Dew Supernova is a dud. It doesn't provide anything new or innovative to the beverage market, and frankly, is just riding on the brand awareness of the Mountain Dew brand. The flavor is lackluster, it's "keep me awake" merits are weak, and frankly, the purple/pink color doesn't have enough "edge" to really fit the Dew demographic.

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Comments

  1. Overall, I agree with you. I think hot pink is a good color addition for Mountain Dew, but the flavor (which is the reason to buy a nice cold pop) didn't do much for me. I didn't get the "melon" either. As far as drinking it again, I could take it or leave it.

  2. Drinking down a Mountain Dew Voltage right now, and thought of your site. Bought the two blue'ish ones last night at walgreens, I'll try Revolution later. Voltage is quite good so far…

  3. It tastes pretty much exactly like mountain dew game fuel (halo 3), except mdgf was a little bit better than SuperNova.

  4. I love supernova… but what really sucks is that they put it out just long enough for you to get hooked on it then you can't find it anywhere… Supernova better stay

  5. kara is totally right! supernova is my favorite and now i'll probably never taste it again! i'm pretty sure they came out with the winner by now and it's voltage. that's my second fave, but to me it will never beat supernova!

  6. Michael Bowers says:

    Did Supernova come in 3rd place or 2nd place? I've heard that it came in 2nd place and may come back for a limited time one day.

  7. M. Suwanski says:

    I have searched all over for cans of SuperNova…..I live in Batavia Illinois and a few stores had them ….. and then they were gone. Where can I buy the cans???? thanks

  8. S bacon says:

    i tried this when it came out on market now im hooked i dont liek regular mountain dew but i do like this they now have in 12 pks here in salisbury md… they have my sale

  9. I wish they would bring supernova back

Trackbacks

  1. BevBoard says:

    DEWmocracy Reviews!!!…

    The other day I was on a walk and came upon a bottle of Mountain Dew Supernova at a Walgreen's here in Chicago. They didn't have the other two flavors yet, unfortunately. In any case, I picked up the bottle, and is my goofy custom, shot some photos of the bottle next to the "beverage tree"…

  2. [...] 'swirl' pattern. We saw these being used heavily last summer with the "DEWmocracy 3"… Mountain Dew Supernova, Mountain Dew Revolution, and Mountain Dew Voltage (by the way, Voltage won that [...]

  3. [...] very closely here at BevReview. The end result was 3 flavors deployed in Summer 2008 — Mountain Dew Supernova, Mountain Dew Revolution, and Mountain Dew Voltage — and placed to a vote by fans, with [...]

  4. [...] a permanent flavor. In the last DEWmocracy vote (Summer 2008), Mountain Dew Voltage prevailed over Mountain Dew Supernova and Mountain Dew Revolution. If you are curious about how the 2010 iteration of this campaign [...]

  5. [...] is just like the the last DEWmocracy vote (Summer 2008), where Mountain Dew Voltage prevailed over Mountain Dew Supernova and Mountain Dew [...]

  6. [...] This is just like the last DEWmocracy vote (Summer 2008), where Mountain Dew Voltage prevailed over Mountain Dew Supernova and Mountain Dew [...]

  7. [...] page they had a listing for the return of both Mountain Dew Pitch Black, as well as 2008's Mountain Dew Supernova. Those listings have since been removed, along with the mockups of the bottle designs, both which [...]

  8. [...] regular version of Mountain Dew Supernova was the oddity in the original DEWmocracy campaign, being the weird pink-colored drink against two [...]

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