"He withdrew his hand slowly and sat looking at a can of Coca Cola. What is it, Papa?"
Coca Cola
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeCoca Cola - Credit: cyclonebill

Emphasising the lack that the boy has always known, this episode also makes a stark statement about the consumer-capitalist society that came before the great unexplained catastrophe.

It also shows the great divide between the father and son, something that McCarthy no doubt considered with regards to his own young son, who was born when the author was in his late sixties, and to whom The Road is dedicated.