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Poor Ronald McDonald. Not only are nutrition advocates trying to tamp out his iconic Happy Meals. Now, protesters are even turning up at the poor guy’s annual shareholder meeting. Sure, he and his fellow fast-food mascots are at least partially responsible for America’s obesity crisis. And yet, we can’t help but remember the cartoon and clown faces that adorned the food packages of our youth fondly. Won’t you reminisce with us?
5. Mrs. Butterworth: Ah, how your shapely curves and squeezable body always left us wanting more. In the commercials, you talked and winked, and we so longed for you to come to life on our breakfast table. They say high-fructose corn syrup is bad for you, but you were filled with it and you seemed pretty healthy to us. In a real-woman way.
4. The Noid: Funny, we hated this guy back in the ’90s. But now, he’s like that nerdy kid you picked on who with the gloss of nostalgia somehow seems cooler in retrospect. ‘Tis the era of geek chic, after all. We’re sorry we avoided you, Noid. You’re probably an Internet billionaire married to Swedish twins now.
3. Tony the Tiger: Like Captain America and, well, a tiger all wrapped into one. He made us feel like sugar-coated cornflakes could help us take on the world. And he, our muscled feline big brother, would have our back should things get soggy. And you’d have to eat pretty darn fast for them not to.
2. The Trix Rabbit and Sugar Crisp Bear: These guys are a tie for best suggestive, pervert-themed mascot. A rabbit who keeps trying to get into kids’ treats? A bear with a shirt but no pants? Something was shifty about these guys. You might not want to leave your niece alone with them, but they might be fun to hit the strip club with.
1. Grimace: Forget Ronald. The large, purple, amorphous blob that was Grimace was far more lovable. If only because he was so much less threatening. What was he, anyway? Part Barney, part Eeyore, he was sweet and innocent, too often getting a bum rap, ever the whipping boy of Hamburglar and the Fry Guys. We still dream of giving him a big, squishy hug.