What is your favourite fast-food chain?

“It is the most successful fast-food company on the planet, feeding us on every high street. It’s part of the landscape, in 120 countries…

McDonald’s is the biggest brand in the world.” Yes, that’s exactly right. Arguably, never has a letter been so universally iconic. You see that “M” off in the distance, it can only mean McDonald’s, and it immediately gets the world’s mouths watering uncontrollably. 

As the above quote from the channel 5 documentary – titled McDonald’s Vs Burger King: Burger Wars – suggests, it’s always there, but then again, so is another: “But one company is constantly challenging it [McDonald’s], Burger King!

It’s the thorn in the side of McDonald’s. The annoying little brother.” For over sixty years, the two have been in competition for the affection of the population’s stomachs. In an incredibly entertaining 45-minute exploration, this doc explores the past, present and future of the burger battle. 


McDonalds Vs Burger King: Burger Wars

It’s the Big Mac vs the Whopper – the big showdown. 

As the documentary explores, foodies and critics on YouTube have long flocked to the two restaurants to compare the two. Of the big selling burgers, the Whopper is the only one which stands in the way of the Big Mac’s unparalleled reign. You often hear people say that Burger King is more filling, but it doesn’t stop people from enjoying a Big Mac. That’s why this documentary is worth the time – it’s a dive into something which we’re all familiar with, and that we’ve all argued at least once.

Journeying back into the past, the McDonald’s opened their first restaurant in 1940, but there was so much on the menu that service was slow. At the time, they wanted to target people in cars, driving around and looking for something to do. Going back to the drawing board, they revolutionised fast-food – quick service and satisfying food. 


The rivalry builds…

The doc singles out the importance of characters in the battle of the chains. Of course, it wasn’t just the burgers competing, but two familiar faces. This was that of Ronald McDonald and the Burger King. Even saying their names, you’ll have a crystal clear image of them in your head, and while they don’t seem quite as important as they used to in terms of the brand, they were once incredibly important in building it. 

There are so many elements to account for when considering their rivalry, and they’re touched upon here. One of the these is size: “The Burgers are bigger at Burger King” was the slogan Burger King used, and this was the selling point of the Whopper.  

On the other hand, there’s the idea of consistency, and it’s arguable that McDonald’s is more consistent with their theme. It’s the iconic golden arches, and it just leads from there. As the tensions mounted, even the adverts from the two food giants began to target the other, with Burger King taking a particularly claws-out approach. 


What is the conclusion? 

They talk about Super Size Me, the 2004 Morgan Spurlock documentary which saw him eat nothing but McDonald’s for thirty days. Obviously, this had a real damaging effect on his health, and in turn, the film had an effect on McDonald’s image for a time. 

As well as chronicling the rivalry – “have it your way” etc. – and including vloggers’ comparison videos, it’s a really entertaining look at two icons doing battle. In the end, it’s important to mention that veganism is rising and rising, and both of these fast food giants need to adapt. Healthy living has never been such a driving factor in the food industry, and it’s improving every day. 

It’ll certainly be interesting to see how things go in the next five years, and with Burger King’s Impossible Whopper building its reputation, we could potentially see a shift. The doc suggests that big changes are inbound, but all in all though, it’s safe to say McDonald’s and Burger King are both winners. 

Be sure to check out the documentary on My5.

In other news, where is Marianne filmed?