If you have to use the word special, chances are, it isn't.
There are certain things in marketing that are instant giveaways to the reality of something being at odds with the way it is presented to the punters. Multi-star reviews with the name of the publication so small it can't be read, stellar survey results from survey sample sizes smaller than a football team and then there's the most overused one of them all... using the word 'Special' when the product really, by any single metric, just isn't.
And here we have one such offender... Whyte & Mackay's Special Blended Scotch Whisky.
How is this 'special'? I have no idea. It's cheap, but there are whiskies equally as cheap on the bottom shelf. If consumed in large enough volumes it will get you drunk but it goes without saying that this is true of all alcoholic drinks. It is not completely terrible, but this can be said of many similar whiskies (though not all). In short, this is a whisky that does the bare minimum in a very basic and dutifully competent way without once putting even a toe into any category that might somehow, against all hope, single it out as being 'special'.
Is it bad? No, not at all. it's a drinkable blended whisky in a world of blended whiskies that are and can be infinity better and worse. It has pleasant aspects to the overall character, there's a sweetness and softness that allow it to be sipped and maybe, just maybe allows the drinker to momentarily mull over the palate before being reminded that there's not enough going on to focus the attention. Maybe the kindest thing to say is that it is functional and honest for it.
This is a drink. Something you consume to enjoy the effects, something that makes a fine mixer. Something that can get you drunk without breaking the bank. This is as cheap as it gets without is being undrinkable. This is many things, none of then exceptional, none of them to be derided, scoffed at or looked down on either, but special is not one of them.