For some reason, fast food chains seem to gravitate toward the idea that a mascot is a swell idea. Maybe the thinking is that a cute, lovable mascot will appeal to children and that those children will, in turn, drag their parents into the restaurant.
Whatever the reasoning, the concept is a familiar one in the fast food industry and, also, an almost universally unsuccessful one.
With that in mind, here’s a look at five especially bad fast food chain mascots that gave customers pre-meal indigestion:
The Quiznos Rodents
Quiznos produces some tasty toasted subs, but their idea of using singing rodents as an advertising tool was a very questionable one. Officially referred to as “spongmonkeys,” these creatures looked like rats or hamsters in a state of decomposition, but wearing funny hats and burning with desire to sing the praises of the Quizno sub.
It seems as though the always-smiling purple blob of a creature was made to represent a happily-obese McDonald’s customer. Well, maybe that isn’t the case, but the fact is that Grimace is still an odd, slightly off-putting creature spawned in the somewhat eerie depths of that alternate universe known as McDonald’s Land.
It was never really explained why there was a demonic creature out to ruin my fast food pizza eating experiences, but not much really made sense in Domino’s “Avoid the Noid” campaign. All we knew was that this vile little creep was buzzing around our pizza, trying to mess it up for us. And, frankly, whether Dominos succeeded in thwarting the Noid’s evil plans or nor, it was still infinitely off-putting that someone was at least trying to do nasty stuff to our food.
Old-Time Ronald McDonald
It’s debatable whether the current Ronald McDonald can be regarded as a “hit,” but there’s no denying the fact that the original McDonald’s clown from 1963 was a great big, somewhat eerie, “miss.” With a cup for a nose, a “to go” box for a hat, and a mini-countertop inexplicably jutting out from his mid-section, the clown with the scary-garish makeup and homeless-disheveled hair looked more like an evil mutant born from a McDonald’s dumpster than a lovable fast food mascot.
Is the Burger King “King” a puppet, a costume, or a puppet-costumed person? Who knows, but this mascot is especially creepy and inspires about as much of an appetite as a dumpster-spawned evil fast food mutant.