All we’ve heard for the past few days is how “creepy” the new McDonald’s mascot is. The mascot “Happy” was instead dubbed “McScary”.
Anxious adults across the country have declared in conversations, news stories, and on social media that, “It’s a terrible idea!” and “It’s going to terrify children!”
Except…we don’t know that. Pretty much all the pearl-clutching happening at this point is courtesy of American adults.
It’s important to remember that children don’t see the world in the same way we do. Heck the things we think of as harmless or funny may in turn terrify them. At the same time, a goofy looking box with a too-big human grin might make them laugh.
It’s premature to say what this new mascot will or won’t do to your kids.
As noted by McDonald’s spokeswoman Lisa McComb, the mascot has already launched in other countries. Since 2009, the mascot has been “loved and well-received by children and families in Latin America and Europe.”
What that means is that millions of children all over the world are already familiar with the “McScary” mascot. Did you hear public outcry all over the internet? Did you see videos of children bawling and hiding under the table when the commercial aired?
Pretty funny that Americans are terrified by that new Happy Meal Box mascot.
— Michael Challis (@NoveltyRaging) May 20, 2014
The fact that Americans are more worried about Happy Meal's new mascot than the company claiming happy meals are "healthy" is worrisome…
— Sheridan Tihista (@2013MissMT) May 21, 2014
If anything, all this public outcry is doing is making us look like a nation of whiny cowards.
Rather than talk to our children like mature adults about how they feel about an image, we make the presumption based on our own feelings of fear and discomfort that they’re inevitably going to be represented in our kids.
Even worse, any fear that kids feel might not be their own, but a reaction learned from watching their parents freak out. After all, if a character is “scary” to mom and dad, maybe it is something to be terrified of.
Do you think this is cute? New McDonald's mascot scares instead of delights http://t.co/DRgamPoPjO pic.twitter.com/rOyVT1Hvfr
— STOMP (@stompsingapore) May 22, 2014
I think until we actually have a nation of petrified children, it’s best to get off of social media and stop making ourselves look like babies in front of the millions of other people in the world who are already familiar with the same mascot we’re so scared of.
And on Friday when the mascot launches and it doesn’t result in the meltdown we were anticipating, we can pretend that all the declarations about “McScary” never happened.
Image via YouTube