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From Johnnie Walker to Oreos, Brands Are Going Ham on ‘Game of Thrones’ Merch

Plus, McDonald’s takes a knife to its late-night menu, and more news to start your day

Johnnie Walker/Official

Also: GoT burgers, Mountain Dew, and sneakers

The eighth (and final) season of Game of Thrones premieres April 14, and all of the brands from distilleries to athletic wear companies are angling to squeeze some relevance and profits out of it.

With nine days to go, fans can invest in a range of GoT-branded products that have absolutely no relevance within the world of Westeros whatsoever. Game of Thrones Oreos, with insignias from the show? You got ‘em. A Raven Symoné-approved Mountain Dew can that is just regular Mountain Dew but with words from the show printed on it? Sure thing! Perhaps the most cumbersome is this secret menu at a New York Shake Shack location with a spicy bacon cheeseburger and “Dragonglass” shake, which can only be ordered in the Valyrian language from the show. Then there’s sneakers, a $2,700 leather jacket, underwear, and even GoT wine and Johnnie Walker whiskey, which at least have a very tenuous connection, given that alcohol actually exists in Westeros (as compared to Oreos). Of course, none of these products will appear on screen, unless a final twist reveals that the entire Game of Thrones universe was actually the fever dream of a Mountain Dew advertising executive.

And in other news...

  • Nestle wants in on the fake-meat-burger trend pioneered by Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat — it’s rolling out its own soy-based veggie disc in Europe, with the unimaginative name of “the Incredible Burger.” [Reuters]
  • McDonald’s is reportedly taking an ax to its late-night menu at the end of the month, reducing offerings from midnight to 5 a.m. down to basics like Big Macs, Quarter Pounders, and nuggets, with items like salads, grilled chicken sandwiches, and the Filet-O-Fish being chopped. [Business Insider]
  • With ultra low unemployment rates across much of the country, Taco Bell is throwing hundreds of “hiring parties” in April, with thousands of jobs available to candidates. New employees will get dubious “perks” such as free meals while working. [CNN]
  • Donald Trump is trying to make Godfather’s Pizza CEO and one-time Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain relevant again, as Trump plans to nominate Cain to the Federal Reserve Board. [NYT]
  • Shake Shack is now in Kyoto, Japan. [Twitter]
  • Gordon Ramsay’s family just grew a little bit, with Tana Ramsay giving birth to son Oscar overnight, complete with Academy Awards joke. [Twitter]
  • Finally, here’s your daily dispatch of corporate dystopian vibes, starring Potbelly. [Twitter]

All AM Intel Coverage [E]