News

McDonald’s new ‘Happy’ mascot dubbed McScary on social media

McDonald’s new ‘Happy’ mascot dubbed McScary on social media

McDONALD'S:In response to the criticism on social media, McDonald's spokeswoman Lisa McComb noted that since 2009, the character has been "loved and well-received by children and families in Latin America and Europe." Photo: Associated Press

By Mary Wisniewski

CHICAGO (Reuters) – McDonald’s restaurant chain says its new “Happy” mascot will bring “fun and excitement” to its children’s meals, but social media contend the toothy, red box-shaped character will have the opposite effect.

Twitter responses to McDonald’s mascot announcement on Monday complain that the animated red Happy Meal box, with its cavernous dark mouth and rows of large white teeth, is scary and will bring children nightmares instead of joy. “It’s the meal that eats you,” said one comment. Another said, “I didn’t want to sleep tonight anyways, it’s cool.”

The character will be introduced nationwide on Friday. Oak Brook, Illinois-based McDonald’s said in a statement that it will encourage kids to enjoy healthy food choices, like fruit, vegetables and low-fat dairy.

In response to the criticism on social media, McDonald’s spokeswoman Lisa McComb noted that since 2009, the character has been “loved and well-received by children and families in Latin America and Europe.”

“Social media is a great place to have a conversation and express an opinion, but not all comments reflect the broader view,” McComb said in an email on Tuesday.

The mascot announcement comes on the heels of the chain’s efforts to rebrand its popular “spokesclown,” Ronald McDonald.

The restaurant chain, which has its annual shareholders’ meeting on Thursday, has often been the focus of criticism over the fast-food industry’s penchant for offering indulgent, high-calorie food. In recent years, the U.S. food industry in general has faced government and consumer pressure to address the global obesity epidemic.

In March 2012, McDonald’s started automatically including apple slices and a kid-size fry in every Happy Meal and Mighty Kids Meal. This July, McDonald’s will also start introducing “Go-GURT” low-fat strawberry yogurt to children’s meals.

(Reporting by Mary Wisniewski; editing by Gunna Dickson)

Recent Headlines

3 mins ago in Local Sports

Washington beats Stanford to win NCAA golf title

Fresh
CHAMPS

Washington freshman Julianne Alvarez atoned for a three-putt bogey on the 18th hole with two tough par saves to win the decisive match in 20 holes and deliver the Huskies their first NCAA golf title.

2 hours ago in Local

Large power outage darkens Seattle downtown core

Fresh
Night time, city, space needle in Seattle
Photo Credit: Kimball Gainor

An equipment failure at a substation was apparently to to blame for the massive outage.

2 hours ago in Local

People are destroying river gauging stations in Whatcom County

skagit_river

Thieves broke locks to steal batteries, solar panels and satellite antennas used to up-link the river data in real time.

2 hours ago in Local

An Everson man sent sexually explicit texts to a 14 year old girl

police, jail, arrest, cops, sheriff

She initially said she was 21, then she told Brouwer she was 17 before finally admitting she was only 14.

3 hours ago in Local

Montana power plant needs new operator by May 2018

coal pile

Puget Sound Energy is also a part owner.