This Halloween, choose Burger King eating places in Denmark and Sweden will resurrect the previous horror trope whereas twisting the knife within the competitors. For diners who dare, they’ll be capable to stroll into a rest room at these secret places and say “canceled clown” thrice to the mirror. The lights will shut down, the room will flip darkish, and patrons will shortly come head to head with a raggedy clown with eyes that glow crimson. To be trustworthy, the apparition seems extra like Carrot High after a very harsh bender.
Anyway, the stunt in Sweden and Denmark (the unofficial motto of Scandinavia: “Our tax rates scare Individuals greater than clowns”) is a not-so-sly reference to Ronald McDonald’s present employment standing. For those who’ll recall, the world’s largest fast-food chain informed Ronnie to pack up his fright wig and go in 2016. He wasn’t formally retired, however he was relegated to parades and charity occasions, the place he might get pleasure from an emeritus standing with out horrifying the youngsters or invoking reminiscences of the creepy clown scare of 2016.
The truth is, this 12 months, Burger King India ran a lonely hearts ad by which Ronald McDonald sits by himself on a park bench whereas a solo violin sighs within the background. Textual content flashes on-screen to undercut the melancholy: “It sucks to be lonely. Particularly on Valentine’s Day.” To stave off loneliness, BK India urged diners add a selfie with Ronald to earn a free Whopper, which after all are beef-free.
The Scandinavian stunt trades on the identical theme as a 2017 Halloween BK promotion, dubbed #ScaryClownNight, by which diners dressed as clowns would get a free Whopper. “Come as a clown, eat like a king,” the advert promised. Each play up the inherent creepiness of clowns, these jesters with the painted faces, bulbous crimson noses and toes so massive they might function paddle wheels.
Burger King clearly understands the irony of demonizing mascots when it has one of many creepiest within the biz. The chain appears to get pleasure from enjoying up the disquieting qualities of its king. Keep in mind the advert by which the common man wakes up subsequent to His Majesty of the Perpetually Laughing Face? Creep issue: off the charts. And who can overlook the Burger King Kong ad? (Extra necessary: Who would like to overlook it?)
I don’t know. Within the present political local weather, with the rise of autocrats and their threats to Western democracy, the Rascal King mascot doesn’t play prefer it as soon as did (if it ever did). I imply, peddling Completely happy Meals to children isn’t nice. However once I watch a dude, decked out in robes, a crown and many jewellery, passing out calorie-laden morsels to the lots, I see a lot darker issues than a clown in a mirror.