“These burgers are bringing everyone out” is the tagline for McDonald's new commercial for the limited-release Sirloin Third Pound Burger. But what's bringing out the buzz on social media is the reappearance after 13 years of the burger-stealing mascot the Hamburglar.
The old Hamburglar was moon-faced thief who loved McDonalds. The new Hamburglar looks like he doesn't own a TV. pic.twitter.com/vhCjid0YiO
â€” Brian Gaar (@briangaar) May 6, 2015
He's been called a sexy dad, a hipster who "only steals artisanal locally sourced hamburgers" and a creepy-looking cosplay guy. GQ has even tried to determine if his red sneakers were Yeezy Boosts, Kanye West's collaboration with Adidas.
— GQ Fashion (@GQFashion) May 6, 2015
"These days, he’s a suburban dad," McDonald’s U.S. marketing VP Joel Yashinsky told the Daily News. Yashinsky told Mashable that the Hamburglar “had some time to grow up a bit and has been busy raising a family in the suburbs and his look has evolved over time.”
And evolution is something that McDonald's needs associated with its brand. Last year, the fast-food chain was compelled to create a YouTube campaign to prove it used real meat in its burgers -- in an era when Chipotle boasts it uses"responsibly raised" meat and organic produce. And in February, Donald Thompson stepped down as McDonald's CEO after the company suffered one of its worst financial years in decades. He was replaced by Stephen Easterbrook, the company's chief brand officer.
Although the new Hamburglar took a lot of people by surprise, his reboot was predicted by satirical news outlet the Onion in January. In a fake article outlining McDonald's brand transformation "[a]fter months of declining sales amidst competition from rivals Chipotle and Panera Bread, which are increasingly attracting millennials with healthier and more customizable food options," the Onion foretold that the brand's first item of business would be a "darker, edgier Hamburglar wearing a Guy Fawkes mask."
Wait, is this who we think it is??! https://t.co/rc9xhQrAUi
— McDonald's (@McDonalds) May 6, 2015