The Top 10 Creepiest Commercial Mascots of All Time

October 8, 2009

Who says the only way to get a case of the creeps from your living room television is by tuning into old Twilight Zone episodes or staring directly into Nancy Grace's shrill Medusa-like face? Some of the most spine-twisting and stomach-churning moments don't happen on your favorite TV shows. They happen in between them.

Source: Palm, Inc.

By Danny Gallagher

10. Jack, the Jack in the Box CEO

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Source: Jack in the Box Inc.

Clowns are scary enough on their own. They don't need image enhancements. They need a full-blown facelift with a shovel. But Jack takes coulrophobia to an untreatable level. It's a clown with a giant globe head with the most inhuman looking face on a human body since Gary Busey. And he's everywhere. Every commercial features him in some new setting doing something that only someone with an inordinate amount of power, money, and resources can do. So he's not only got the looks of pure evil, but the money and resources of pure evil. He's his own axis of evil.

9. The Palm Pre Chick

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Cell phone ads are supposed to convey a message of hope for the future, that new technologies will help usher in a new age of enlightenment and understanding. The only thing the Palm Pre ads convey for the future are a recurring series of night terrors and ruined bedsheets. And that's the way the ad agency likes it! Modernista, the agency that created the creepy girl ad campaign, said they love that so many people are talking about their ads. So apparently if you create an ad campaign that features elves being tossed into a wood chipper and everyone talks about it, then you've done a good job. That concept only works if the product you're selling are wood chippers. 

8. Ronald McDonald

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Source: McDonald's

Only adults can smell evil. That's why one of the world's most iconic and beloved clowns by children slowly turns into one of its scariest the older you get. The McDonald's spokes-face has the kind of mug that even clowns find creepy, spends more time with a random group of rotating children than most public school teachers, and (worst of all) has the ability to control magic. So if you're on his set, don't badmouth the new Southern Style Chicken Sandwich when the cameras stop rolling or you'll turn that supposedly never-ending frown upside down and make you one of the 70 million who are literally served to his customers.

7. The Quiznos Singing Rodents

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Two genetic mistakes that appear to be rodents with bad teeth, even for street rats, singing about the joys and happiness that come from a discounted sub is a weird concept. But the design of these nightmare stars really sticks in your mind harder than a poorly thrown javelin. It's hard to imagine exactly what was running through the minds of the ad agency who came up with this ad concept. Then again, anyone who has ever been through college or Vietnam can probably guess.

6. Mr. Six, the Dancing Six Flags Guy

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Source: Six Flags, Inc.

Here's the challenge: your amusement park franchise is sinking. You need to make your customers feel as though they are welcome and taken care of when they enter your businesses. What do you do? The last answer to that question should be, "Prop up a creepy old guy who looks like everyone creepy old guy in every neighborhood in America in front of the camera who never talks and expresses every emotion possible through dance." Six Flags recently upgraded the creepiness factor by giving Mr. Six...(gasp!)...a voice! Now Hell officially has a new elevator music DJ.

5. Snuggles the Fabric Softener Bear

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Source: Sun Products Corp.

Imagine you're doing your laundry after a long hard day at work. You're pulling a giant load of warm fabric goodness out of the dryer and a bear suddenly jumps out of the pile. Whether that bear is a meat-eating grizzly or a cute and cuddly cub, you'd find the heaviest object you could and smash it to within an inch of its life just so you could make sure it could watch itself die. And if it talked, you wouldn't even give it a chance to plead for its own life.

4. Lamisil's "Digger the Dermatophyte"

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Source: Novartis

Digger is a role model for foot fetishists. He loves feet so much that he spends all of his free time living in them. Give that same guy a demon face that gives Satan the shivers and skin with a fungal hue and you've got perfect cartoon evil...or Gary Busey.

3. Enzyte's "Smilin' Bob"

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Normally, a guy like Bob would have the most punchable face in human history since Kanye West. But given the nature of the product that has Bob so smiley, you wouldn't want to lay a single finger on him. Bob's apparently so happy because of a little magic pill that has another part of his anatomy stretching from ear to ear, a claim that, uh, some friends of mine have heard a million times in my, er, their lifetime. Apparently, the Justice Department also fell for Bob's claims since the guy who created Enzyte is serving hard time, and probably wishing that his cellmates didn't benefit from the effects of natural male enhancement. Who's smiling now?

2. Tampax's "Mother Nature"

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Source: Procter & Gamble

Ads for feminine care products are already naturally creepy. They don't need a mascot. These Tampax ads that deal with a topic that makes Marines who served in the "big suck" quiver until parts of them start falling off actually gives a face to that one special time a month when women become women and men become physically ill, making that face the face of unholy evil. That's not a crack at the actress hired to play the part. Any face in the same position would be labeled as the face of pure evil. Tampax could have hired Eva Longoria to play their "Period Fairy" and guys around the world would still have a reason to need a prescription for Enzyte.

1. Quiznos' "Put It In Me" Oven

The goal of all advertising is to get your animal instincts riled up for something it didn't know that it needed. It drives your sexual desires to want, nay need, the thing it's advertising. It's hard to say exactly what sexual desires these confusing Quiznos' ads are driving you to desire: its foot long meat-sicles or its meat-sicle-loving ovens.

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If anything, it turns their audience away from buying their subs since it makes them think Quiznos employees are putting everything but their sandwiches in their ovens.

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