adBlockCheck

McDonald's Drops 'Hammurderer' Character From Advertising

Top Headlines

Business

Brita Unveils New In-Throat Water Filters

OAKLAND, CA—Representatives from Brita, the nation’s bestselling brand of household water filtration products, held a press event Wednesday to unveil a new line of filters designed to be installed directly inside users’ throats.

Woman Leaving Meeting Worried She Came Off As Too Competent

OXNARD, CA—Silently chastising herself for the way she behaved in front of her colleagues and supervisors, Cobalt Property Insurance sales associate Leah Manning, 36, was reportedly deeply worried Tuesday that she came off as too competent during the company’s weekly sales meeting.

McDonald’s Announces New Spearmint After-Dinner Big Mac

OAK BROOK, IL—Calling the new menu item a cool, refreshing way for consumers to finish their meals, McDonald’s officials introduced the Spearmint After-Dinner Big Mac during a press event Tuesday at the company’s corporate headquarters.

NicoDerm Introduces New Nicotine Eye Patch

PHILADELPHIA—Praising the product as an effective and convenient means of helping individuals quit smoking, pharmaceutical manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline announced Wednesday the release of its new NicoDerm eye patch.

Disney World Opens New Ordeal Kingdom For Family Meltdowns

BAY LAKE, FL—Touting the new property’s wide variety of unique and imaginative attractions, representatives from the Walt Disney World Resort announced Monday the opening of Ordeal Kingdom, a new theme park specifically designed for full-scale family meltdowns.

Boss Wants Friendly, Relaxed Company Culture In Place By Friday

SAN MATEO, CA—Warning of severe consequences if he didn’t see results, Pantheon Digital Consulting COO Daniel Abelson, 59, told employees Monday he wants a relaxed, friendly company culture implemented by the end of the week, sources within the organization confirmed.

Coca-Cola Marketing Strategist Named New United States PR Laureate

WASHINGTON—In a ceremony at the White House this morning in which his work was praised for its unique contributions to the art of corporate communications, Coca-Cola marketing strategist Lawrence Shaffer was officially appointed as the new PR laureate of the United States, sources confirmed.
End Of Section
  • More News
Up Next
TV Listings
Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

McDonald's Drops 'Hammurderer' Character From Advertising

OAK BROOK, IL—Bowing to outcry from consumers and parents groups, the McDonald's Corporation announced Monday that it is discontinuing its new advertising mascot, "The Hammurderer," a mischievous, homicidal imp who kills McDonaldland characters and takes their sandwiches.

The discontinued character.

Developed by Chicago advertising agency DDB Needham, the Hammurderer made his debut two months ago and has since appeared in a series of Saturday-morning television commercials, as well as on Happy Meal bags and activity placemats. All appearances by and references to the violent, ill-tempered prison escapee will be dropped.

"Over the years, McDonald's has successfully introduced a number of new characters whose defining characteristic is a certain measure of comical, criminal intent," said Andrew Perlich, McDonald's vice-president of promotions. "Such shady characters as The Hamburglar, The Goblins, and the bloodthirsty pirate Captain Crook have all fit nicely into the McDonald's advertising universe. We had every reason to believe that the Hammurderer, with his long rap sheet of burger-related crimes and his signature cry of 'Stabble Stabble Stabble,' would take his place in this proud lineage of McDonaldland mischief-makers."

The Hammurderer's Jan. 11 debut ad—in which he seizes and devours the McDonald's Happy Meal Guys, oblivious to their frantic screams—earned poor marks from parents and child-development experts, who feared the spot might send the message to children that killing is acceptable. Several weeks later, more controversy erupted over the promotional coloring book "Shivved In The McRibs," in which the Hammurderer decapitates Mayor McCheese and eats his head. Responding to widespread public outrage, McDonald's executives defended the coloring book as "not nearly as violent or socially irresponsible as it has been made out to be, given that the Mayor's head is, in fact, a giant and conceivably edible cheeseburger."

But the uproar over the latest commercial, in which Birdie The Early Bird is garroted by the Hammurderer and her body tossed in a Dumpster, was vociferous enough to prompt the fast-food giant to pull the plug.

"We are sensitive to the concerns of parents and will immediately begin phasing out this character," Perlich said. "Whether we will remove him from commercials without explanation or write him out of the spots with a bloody police standoff, we have yet to decide. But we're confident the Hammurderer will be off the national radar by April."

Hammurderer toys and promotional items, which include dolls, T-shirts, ski masks, and spiked bats, have been recalled and are expected to become prized collectibles.

This is not the first time a McDonald's character has stirred controversy for its violent nature. In 1982, the company introduced "Shakes McJunkie," an emaciated addict who robbed characters of their possessions, which he then sold to buy McDonald's shakes. He was later reworked as "The Machead," a homeless, wild-eyed Big Mac addict who turned to panhandling and gay prostitution as a means of supporting his severe burger habit.

The Hammurderer is quickly becoming regarded as the worst-received advertising mascot since Kool-Aid's 1989 discontinuation of "The Grapist," a huge purple monster who sodomizes thirsty children.

Sign up For The Onion's Newsletter

Give your spam filter something to do.

X Close