In late 1976, General Foods took the novelty candy world by storm with it’s new candy, Pop Rocks. It was such a hit, that a few years later they released a new similar candy called Space Dust, which was basically Pop Rocks, just crushed up into a fine powder.

It was a instant success also, but quickly parents complained that the name “Space Dust”,  along with the appearance of the candy, was too similar to illegal drugs such as Angel Dust. Accusations were even made that the candy, because of its similarity to powdered drugs, would lead kids into real drug use.
As a result, the name was changed from Space Dust" to “Cosmic Candy”.

That problem seemed to be solved, but more trouble was brewing. A rumor started going around that the candy was unsafe and that a kid died while consuming the candy while drinking a soda. These rumors once again got parents in an uproar over the candy. It got so bad that Bill Mitchell, chemist and creator of Pop Rocks and Cosmic Candy actually took out a full page newspaper ad in the Feb. 6th edition of the Pittsburgh Press in 1979, explaining that the entire thing was not true. He explained how he started making the candy back in the 1950’s for his kids, and how it was perfectly save despite all the rumors about it.

The candy remained wildly popular for a few years. Stores struggled to keep it in stock. But in a year or too, it seemed everyone lost interest in it. Stores who had stockpiled the candy suddenly found themselves stuck with boxes of it they couldn’t sell.


Candies — “Haru Chiban (The First South Wind of Spring)”, 1976

“He and mom hit it off from the time they met in 1942. They adored each other as friends always, but there was another kind of attraction between Frank and my mother that kept them in each other’s lives romantically at different times over the course of many years. I can almost chronicle the times by the flow of gifts coming to the house. I can still see them as late as 1970 dancing at the Candy Store on Rodeo Drive. They weren’t kids anymore, but there was still a spark between them. Why they never admitted to any romantic involvement I can only speculate. It was likely just an unspoken agreement between the two of them. And there was Ava. Mother and Frank never had an affair when Ava was in the picture. She was the love of Frank’s life and one of mother’s best friends.”

-Cheryl Crane, Lana Turner’s daughter