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Breaking: Do NOT try to eat the Wonka float at the 97th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

The float is not edible, but there will be candy

Gene Wilder as Willy Wonka, sitting amongst giant candies. Photo: Paramount Pictures
Joshua Rivera (he/him) is an entertainment and culture journalist specializing in film, TV, and video game criticism, the latest stop in a decade-plus career as a critic.

Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is one of our funniest holiday traditions, a kitschy paean to commercialism that is the only place I can think of where you can find Goku, Sonic the Hedgehog, and the Jolly Green Giant all in the same place, cheerily introduced by Al Roker. Part of the fun is in seeing who made the cut, and who, sadly, did not. (Someday, Vegeta…)

One of this year’s additions will be a float inspired by the forthcoming film Wonka, starring Paul Atreides Timothée Chalamet. The “Deliciously Delectable World of Wonka” float will feature “delicately detailed and delectable confections adorning the shop’s counters that line the way to a majestic cherry tree,” with illuminated candy jars that “contain approximately 592,000 pieces of prop candy.”

Prop candy is an interesting phrase, and can be taken one of two ways. The first, less preferable way, is “prop” as in “fake,” meaning candy-shaped and -colored objects only suitable for looking. However, it’s also possible that “prop candy” in this context means “real, edible candy being used as a prop,” which would both rule and be lore-accurate to Willy Wonka’s oeuvre.

Since I would not sleep a wink between today and Thanksgiving unless I knew the answer, I reached out to representatives of the joint interests of Warner Bros. and Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, with one question: Is the prop candy edible?

Friends, I have terrible news: Per a PR rep, it is not, “but the cart on the side will have edible treats for the public.”

The Wonka float for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, which includes a faux chocolate cherry tree. Image: Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade/Warner Bros.

Reader beware: If you see the Wonka float anytime between now and Thanksgiving (or afterward, I don’t know what they do with these when the parade is over) do not eat it.

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