Slime Time Live was a staple of my childhood television watching habits, and while I wasn’t the most inquisitive little brat in the bunch, I did genuinely always wonder one thing:
What the hell is the slime made out of?
It can’t be paint because that would stain. It’s gotta have some sort of thickening agent thrown in there for viscosity, and it can’t smell because otherwise no one would agree to getting slimed. So what gives?
According to Bull Buchanan, a crew member on You Can’t Do That on Television via Mental Floss, Nickelodeon’s green slime was originally more or less a giant vat of toxic waste. One day a script called for “this kinda disgusting slimy green stuff” without any further details, so one of the propmasters “just went with his gut and mixed up a whole garbage can full of slime.” What was in it? We don’t know for sure. Buchanan says he “knows the color came from green latex paint,” but also that “bits of sausage may have been floating in it.”
Once they found out that the slime was supposed to be dumped on someone, a second batch was made to ensure that none of the components in the “recipe” could make anyone who found themselves covered in the stuff sick. “This second batch was made mostly from green Jell-O that had been set in the fridge, then pulled out the day before shooting to liquefy and get mixed with flour,” reports Mental Floss. Unfortunately, this version of slime took too much preparation time because they had to wait for the Jell-O to set, which led to the third version of slime:
They needed a way to make lots of slime on short notice, and turned to Quaker Oats Crème of Wheat for the next generation of slime. They’d basically stir the cereal up cold on the spot in whatever amount they needed, and then dump in green food coloring. The problem with that recipe was that it turned pasty as it dried, and the actors found they couldn’t get it out of their hair. They countered that problem by adding a couple of drops of baby shampoo to the mixture, and stopping tape after a sliming so the actors could rush off the set and into the showers before the slime hardened.(via)
The recipe continued to evolve over the years, with cottage cheese and vegetable oil sometimes being thrown around as ingredients. Double Dare host Marc Summers notes, however, that the slime used on his show was primarily made from “vanilla pudding, applesauce, oatmeal, [and] green food coloring.”
Not as bad as latex paint, but I think I can live the rest of my life happily without ingesting any part of that concoction, don’t you?
[H/T Mental Floss]