We love a fast food outlet that can get in on a joke, especially when that joke also involves a conspiracy theory, aliens, and a plan to storm a military base that’s being orchestrated on Facebook. Which is why we were excited to learn that Arby’s will be catering the storming of Area 51 on September 20th.
In case you’re reading this and thinking we’ve misplaced our minds, here’s the TL;DR version to bring you up to date. Vox reported that it started in the week leading up to Independence Day, a day that will forever be associated with aliens (thanks to the Will Smith 1996 movie) as well as, like, the founding principals of the United States. That week, a couple of jokers started an event called Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us, with the date set for September 20th, 2019.
The not-entirely-serious idea is that if enough people converge on the Nevada military base known as Area 51 — rumored to be the site of secret military experiments on aliens — the guards will be overwhelmed and we’ll finally know what’s really going on behind the barbed wire. As of this writing, 1.9 million people had confirmed that they were going, with another 1.4 million interested. (You never know if something better than meeting aliens might come up.)
But even joke vigilante militias can’t storm on empty stomachs…
Do y’all think there’s food near Area 51 or should I bring some snacks?— baby💋 (@baby61927345) July 26, 2019
….so one of America’s fast food providers stepped up to the challenge. On July 25th, Arby’s tweeted a cryptic hint that they would be attending, with a special menu in tow:
The Chief Marketing Officer of the roast beef-loving restaurant, Jim Taylor, said, “We can’t confirm if there are aliens at Area 51. But, if they do show up, they deserve the best meats on Earth.” At least one person agrees:
i wasn't down to go to area 51, u til i heard arby's was catering. @Arbys— hanna⚡️ (@hollaitshg) July 25, 2019
Apparently potential aliens were not really a draw:
We’re not the only ones who like a brand with a sense of humor:
I love how the brand is having fun right now. Very creative. Arby's Is Driving Its Food Truck to Area 51 and Will Feed Anyone Who Shows Up to Raid It https://t.co/SNkrA3bbMG— Barbara Castiglia (@bcastiglia44) July 26, 2019
Although some people did not see the funny side.
Arby’s is supporting this. What if people die. Not a smart move. Arby’s Is Bringing A Food Truck To The Storm Area 51 Raid https://t.co/lzcZcXfu7U— Jerry Courtney (@JerryCourtney14) July 26, 2019
Others think that Arby’s has more important matters to be dealing with:
And frankly, so do fast food fans.
Instead of the Area 51 raid I say we raid fast food restaurants to serve sweet potato fries. #Area51Raid— XALA (@xalamusic) July 25, 2019
According to one insider, they’re already there… No, not the aliens, Arby’s.
But another person supposedly on the inside sounds like they could use some quality food… and a new job.
Yo someone come take my place for 5 months. You get crappy food and work long hours, but you get access to Area 51. Pls it’s just 5 months— Jorns (@soJorny) July 25, 2019
Maybe Arby’s shouldn’t get the credit for this idea. This tweet was posted 10 days before they announced their intentions…
Other fast food places are keen to cater to our alien guests/invaders:
Working in social media marketing is cool because sometimes you'll show up to work on a Tuesday and your boss will say "Hey 400 thousand people are storming Area 51 how can we use this to sell burgers?"— Blue Bear Creative (@BlueBearCreates) July 25, 2019
And awkwardly, Twitter users are putting in requests to rival chains:
@Wendys Are you supplying food for the area 51 raid?— Noah Macias (@_Noah2k) July 25, 2019
Let’s not blow the aliens’ minds with square burgers right out of the gate, OK?
Even if no extraterrestrials show up, Taylor promised that there would be food to commiserate over. “If not, Arby’s will still be there serving the planet’s best meats to everyone else attending this historic event,” he said. And the man who started it all is excited:
This is exactly how I imagined the guy who started the Storm Area 51 movement would look like pic.twitter.com/e6vlZaKKRT— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) July 20, 2019
Go for the aliens, stay for the Arby’s.