Remember When Slipknot Sued Burger King?
2005 marked the meat of Slipknot's cycle for their earth-shattering album, Vol. 3 The Subliminal Verses, which saw the release of now-classic cuts such as "Duality" and "Before I Forget." The former is currently the group's most-streamed song on Spotify, boasting over 142 million plays.
The decade's midpoint also brought the unveiling of Burger King's Chicken Fries menu option. The fast food company developed an ad campaign featuring a fake band called COQ ROQ whose members wore masks reminiscent to those of Slipknot (although, according to Burger King, they were intended to resemble chickens).
After fans began pointing out comparisons between COQ ROQ and Slipknot, Corey Taylor and Co. filed a lawsuit against the restaurant chain and ad agency for infringing on their trademark. The Smoking Gun broke the story by releasing a copy of the letter Slipknot's lawyers sent to Burger King.
An excerpt reads, "It is obvious that the television advertising and website are designed to conjure up the image and persona of a live performance of Slipknot. In addition to capturing the flavor and high energy intensity of a Slipknot performance, the members of Coq Roq wear masks that include a gas mask as worn by Slipknot's Sid Wilson, a kabuki style mask as worn by Slipknot's Joey Jordison and a mask with dreads as worn by Slipknot's Corey Taylor."
Here is a promotional video that was released by Burger King in support of their Chicken Fries campaign:
Burger King filed a countersuit asking for a declaratory judgment while arguing that Slipknot themselves were a parody of other masked bands that were also being spoofed in the spot. They cited groups such as KISS, Gwar, Insane Clown Posse, Mushroomhead and Mudvayne, among others.
In an anti-climatic turn of events, both sides ultimately dropped their respective cases and the ad campaign ran its course. Do you think Slipknot had grounds for their case against Burger King? Leave us a comment with your thoughts!
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