There was so much buildup to the return of the Mexican Pizza that we almost believed it would never come. But yesterday was the day, and the beloved menu item came back into our lives to little customer fanfare, perhaps as proof that we all love the drama more than the Mexican Pizza itself. Still, Taco Bell went all in on its marketing push with the premiere of Mexican Pizza: The Musical, presented live on TikTok—a perfect embodiment of what both TikTok and Taco Bell are all about. And yes, it had me craving a Mexican Pizza by the end.
How Mexican Pizza: The Musical succeeds beyond marketing gimmick
It’s natural to want to dismiss anything that feels too manufactured by a corporation to appeal to us. When I first heard about this fast food social media musical, I anticipated it would be a cringey attempt for the chain restaurant to “connect with the youth,” giving some real “how do you do, fellow kids?” vibes. (I should clarify that I am not TikTok’s key demographic, so maybe some younger people will view my take the same way I view corporate stunts.) But by handing off the Mexican Pizza musical project to TikTokers who already produce popular videos every day,Taco Bell was able to create something that felt DIY, authentic, and right at home on the app.
That’s not to say there aren’t moments that are eye-roll-inducing, such as the second act, which is all about how writing the perfect song will save the Mexican Pizza forever—it’s cheesy in the exact way that Hallmark movies about “putting on a show to save the town” are cheesy. But the songs genuinely slap, especially that opening number, and the choreography will surely inspire some new TikTok dance challenges.
You can watch the whole thing on Taco Bell’s TikTok page, where the musical is split into three different videos, each a different act. These were some standout moments:
Every second that Victor Kunda (one of the TikTokers who inspired this musical) is on camera. He is talented and charming as hell—I hope this jumpstarts his career beyond TikTok fame.
Dolly Parton as the voice of the Mexican Pizza. (Yes, really.)
The DIY effects, like the Mexican Pizza being lifted up to heaven on a pair of very noticeable wires.
The intensity of the ensemble, all of whom are performing like their lives depend on it.
“Can you believe Mexican Pizza got its own dang musical?” Dolly Parton asks at the end of act three. I really can’t, but I’m glad that it exists, if only to further prove that Taco Bell is by far the most artistically inspirational fast food brand out there.
WARNING: Even though this entire production revolves around the fact that the Mexican Pizza is back forever, there was some life-altering fine print at the end of the musical’s credits: “At participating US locations while supplies last.” Stop toying with us, Taco Bell! Better get started on the lyrics to Mexican Pizza: The Musical 2, just in case.