In addition to its unusual font, which looks like garbled Cyrillic and may appear as Russian to the Finnish eye, the festive merchandise features provocative, tell-tale names like "KGB," "Mega Stalin" and "King Vladimir."
Whereas some of the Russia-themed firecrackers' names are all in good fun (like "Leningrad Love," "Siberian Frost," "Grandmother Olga" and even the nonsensical "Glasnost Svetlana"), others are far more aggressive, such as the 36-charge firework entitled "Give Karelia Back, Now!" Some nationalistic Finns continue to resent Russia for territory lost during the short-lived Winter War of 1939-1940.
This year, the "favorite series" has been replenished with "Bad President," which, according to the marketing brochure, is "in vogue in the East and the West."
All in all, fireworks with clear references to Russia and the Soviet Union have been sold in Finland for about a decade and are still in high demand.
In Finland, fireworks and explosives are only allowed at certain times, namely from 6:00 PM on December 31 though 2:00 AM on January 1. Violators who use them outside these hours risk paying a penalty of €120. Importing firecrackers and other pyrotechnics to Finland is prohibited. Additionally, protective goggles must be worn when launching fireworks.