7 Corporate Mascots With Terrifying Implications
Like the sun, some beautiful things will hurt you if you stare at them for too long. Mascots, for example. They all have dark sides, and they're not even hiding them; they just hope we're too busy to think about them for too long. But I've got all the time in the world, baby, and you won't believe what happens when you stare at a mascot for too long. You start to see things. Dark things.
The Hamburglar Is Eating Children
This all started when I fell down an internet rabbit hole one night and thought for a little bit too long about the Hamburglar, the thieving McDonald's mascot. First off, a child who has to steal food to survive is not a whimsical mascot. That's someone in the deepest throes of desperation. Can anyone just, like, give him a nibble of their Quarter Pounder? But wait, that's not the dark part.
After some more thought, you realize that the Hamburglar, a character whose sole defining characteristic is that he steals hamburgers, exists in the same universe as Mayor McCheese and Officer Big Mac, both of whom have hamburgers for heads. So now the question you have to ask yourself is this: "Is the Hamburglar stealing people's heads? Is he actually a Headburglar?"
Wait, if cheeseburgers and Big Macs are people, and the Hamburglar who's eating them is a murderer, does that mean we should stop eating them too? If Mayor McCheese is a gigantic hamburger, does that mean we're eating the children of his species? Yes. YES IT DOES. We're EATING THE KIDS.
See the truth that you can't unsee. It's canon in the McDonald's universe that hamburgers are children. They are talking, learning, sentient children, who are being slowly picked off by an evil clown ... wait a second, this is starting to sound familiar. A town where children routinely disappear, while the mayor and law enforcement are no help. There's a clown who's taking the children away. IT and 1980s McDonald's commercials have the same overarching plot. IT was written in 1986, right around the heyday of the McDonaldland commercials. So it's official: IT was inspired by McDonald's commercials. There is nothing more horrifying than those. Except ...
Franken Berry Is The Result Of A Godless World
Obviously I'm not sugarcoating anything for you guys, so let me come right out and say that Franken Berry is a pile of stitched-together corpses that we use to sell cereal to children. We harness the powers of the dead to bring them one unhealthy breakfast after another.
But he's not necessarily stitched-together corpses. He could be constructed from the corpses of some race of berry people. But we do see him get struck by lightning and come to life in his very first commercial appearance. So he was definitely dead at one point, and now he's definitely alive again, and his sole purpose seems to be to get you to eat this cereal. And that sounds highly suspicious to me.
I'm not sure who thought what was originally an allegory for the horrendous repercussions of man playing God would make a great company spokescorpse, but I have to say, that person knew their shit. I feel morally obligated to eat Franken Berry now. For me, coming back from the dead would, I imagine, spark questions like "Who am I?" or "What is the meaning of life?" or "Do I deserve to exist in this state?" But I guess "Hey kid, let these sharp strawberry squares tear up your mouth!" is pretty important too. In it's own way.
Snuggle Bear Is A Furry Pervert
When I was a kid, I was terrified of Snuggle Bear. I refused to go near piles of laundry for fear that he might be hiding in there. My mom tried to tell me he was a "good bear," so I shouldn't be afraid of him, but I feel like you shouldn't try to guess a bear's moral alignment. That's literally the first rule of camping.
There's no such thing as a good bear or a bad bear. There are just bears. They are animals, and you shouldn't let them in your house, unless you're also a bear. It will definitely poop in there, and probably also try to eat you. However, it's hard to avoid a bear when it can apparently teleport into laundry piles, so that's bad. Surprise! "There's a bear in your laundry" is literally never a good surprise.
Then there's the fact that he sneaks into people's houses while they're gone to sniff their laundry. Soooo he's at least a little bit of a pervert, right? If anyone else does that, they are definitely a pervert. Why is it OK for Snuggle? Is it because he's a bear? I don't watch a lot of nature documentaries, but is that something bears do in the wild? Do they also send you weird DMs on Twitter and give hugs that last too long? I'm just trying to find the line when it comes to bear perversion.
Or is the Snuggle commercial making the point that bears are OK as long as they are perverts? They obviously can't harm us, because they need us to create that yummy-smelling laundry they want to huff. So don't forget, kids: If you see a bear in the woods, make sure it's a pervert before you approach it.
Mrs. Butterworth Needs To Shut Up
Mrs. Butterworth is a pleasant-looking woman of syrup that might as well be your grandmother, if she was filled to the brain with syrup. And her ad campaign asks the question "What would you do if a tiny woman showed up in your kitchen and just begged you, absolutely begged you, to drink her blood?" What if she was all, "My blood is the tastiest blood in the world! Just try it! Try it once! Please, please drink my blood."
OK, Mrs. Butterworth Corporation, you want to make your bottle look like a lady, and I get that. It's kind of a cool-looking bottle. But I DO NOT want it to come alive and speak to me. Sometimes I like it when inanimate objects come to life. Toy Story is cute, but if Buzz were constantly begging Andy to put him in his mouth, it would be significantly less appealing.
If you go to YouTube and binge-watch Mrs. Butterworth commercials, which I did because again, so much time on my hands, you'll start to feel like Mrs. Butterworth is a little bit full of herself. In her efforts to convince you to drink her blood, she just will not shut up about how thick and rich she is. I've got news for you, Mrs. Butterworth: There is only one thick rich woman whom literally everyone wants to see at breakfast and her name is Rihanna. So you can just chill.
Chuck E. Cheese Will Give You All Diseases
Why would I want to eat at a restaurant owned by a mouse? I don't care how many skateboards Chuck E. Cheese rides; I'm not buying pizza from a rat, no matter how down with the rad kids he seems to be. I've worked in restaurants before. Every time I sit down to eat somewhere other than my own home, I'm actively suppressing an image of a kitchen full of Chuck E. Cheese's bastard children Tony Hawking all over my food.
If eating out is difficult, eating at Chuck E. Cheese's is impossible. I know 500 children have directly licked, snotted, or bled on every surface in that place. I've met children, and I know their ways. Then Chuck E. Cheese's hangs a smiling mouse giving me a thumbs up over my table, as if to say, "I approve of how many of my little mouse babies scuttled all over you pizza!" That's how the Bubonic plague was started, I'm pretty sure.
Couldn't they have chosen any other animal that enjoys the X-Games to be their mascot? Isn't there any fun animal that doesn't famously invade kitchens and give people leptospirosis? Here, Chuck E. Cheese's, I'll pick a new mascot for you. What's the first sport that pops into my mind? Snowboarding! And the first animal? Filth! Oh shit, this is actually harder than it sounds.
Charlie The StarKist Tuna Has Earned A Glorious Death
Writing this article has taught me that we as a culture apparently have an insane hidden urge for our food to beg us to eat it. Charlie the StarKist Tuna mascot is a suicidal tuna who begs for death in every commercial. All that he wants is to be eaten. He has no other aim or goal in life. He tries and tries to prove to StarKist that he is worthy of consumption, but they will not allow him the sweet release of death.
With the heartless pragmatism only a large corporation could muster, StarKist denies him the death he so craves every time, and they do it with such joy. "Sorry Charlie," they say. "We don't want fish with good taste. We want fish who taste good." HAHAHAHA, you bland asshole.
How do they know what Charlie tastes like if they won't give him the dignity of at least slicing off part of his side, mixing it with some mayo and onion, and tasting it like a true American? I don't know about you, StarKist Tuna, but I believe in a country where everyone is given an equal opportunity to pursue their dreams. If Charlie wants to die by being shoved into a can of your fine tuna, I think you should at least give him a chance! Please join my letter-writing campaign to StarKist Tuna, asking them to show someone publicly killing and eating their mascot. It's just the right thing to do.
The Pillsbury Doughboy Is A Valiant Anti-Hero
The Pillsbury Doughboy is made of dough, but he's also a baker who tries to get you to eat things made from dough. He's the Hannibal Lecter of mascots. Well, we never see him eat the product he advertises himself. That would be weird, as again, he's made of dough. He can't be a dough cannibal. So I guess he's more like the Sweeney Todd of his universe. He just wants us to eat his people. I say this because he has a tiny chef hat and he's occasionally seen assisting in baking, but why?
First of all, you should know his real name is "Poppin' Fresh," and he has a family. It's a pretty large extended family which includes his wife Poppie, his grandfather Granpopper, and a son named Popper. Did the Arrested Development theme just start playing in anyone else's head? That's a lot of people depending on him. People he would have a strong urge to defend from, say, others who may want to consume their tasty dough bodies. Maybe Poppin' Fresh is just doing what needs to be done to keep his family going?
In a mascot world of child thief clowns, reanimated berry corpses, and pervert bears, Poppin' Fresh is actually kind of a Walter-White-esque antihero. Sure, he's joyously feeding the flesh of his kind to others, but he's doing it for his family, and you kind of have to love him for it. Also, sometimes his commercials say "wiener" a lot:
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