Why Official Olympic Mascots Are So Damn Weird

A few weeks ago, amid the pollution- and Zika-filled media run-up to Rio, a press release issued by the Olympic organizing committee for PyeongChang, Korea (where the 2018 Winter Olympics […]

AT&T Ad Star Milana Vayntrub, Once a Soviet Refugee, Becomes a Voice for Syrian Victims

The actress behind one of today's most popular ad characters, AT&T's Lily, is taking on a new public role: an advocate for Syrian refugees.

Imgur’s Office Vibe Is Fun and Funky, Just Like the Internet’s Favorite Photo Platform

If you ever want to know what the kids are up to these days, head over to Imgur. The 6-year-old image-sharing and hosting community is home to millions of images, […]

Quiz: Can You Match the Mascot With Its Team?

A sports team's mascot does more than just rev up the crowd. It's a way for people to recognize a team, a part of its brand. In honor of Adweek's Sports Issue, we took a look at some beloved—and sometimes strange—team mascots. Do you know which mascot belongs to which team? 

Could Kool-Aid Man Really Bust Through a Brick Wall? Science Finally Has an Answer

The Kool-Aid man's explosive antics have been unquestionably cool since he busted through his first wall in the 1970s. But could he possibly survive such a dramatic entrance?

If the Rio Olympic Mascot Isn’t a Cat, Then What Is It?

The 2016 Rio Olympic Games mascot was unveiled Monday, and while we don't know what the name of the creature is, one thing's for sure. Following in the line of cat-like creatures that are not cats—pointing the finger at you, Hello Kitty—it's not a feline.According to its official description, the long-limbed, pointy-eared, tailed creature is a mixture of all the Brazilian animals including cats, monkeys and birds. It should come as no surprise that he is existentially pondering "Who am I?" on his description page.Likewise, his sidekick, the Paralympic Games mascot, is a tree that is not a tree. It's a combination of all the plant life in the Brazilian forests. Or it's an overenthusiastic artichoke that's turning blue from lack of oxygen. Take your pick.People echoed the same confused reaction on Twitter.

McDonald’s Mascot ‘Happy’ Becomes Even More Terrifying in Horror Poster Contest

Turns out we weren't the only ones that found McDonald's newest Happy Meal mascot, "Happy," just a tad on the frightening side.Online marketplace DesignCrowd challenged its graphic design community to a Photoshop contest that would drop the much-maligned mascot into horror movie posters. While tapping into the obvious unease over this character (who's been used internationally for a while but is just now appearing in the U.S.), DesignCrowd also used this chance to stump for its approach to crowdsourced creative:"The public reaction hasn't been positive to the new McDonald’s mascot, and the company would have spent big money on it," DesignCrowd spokeswoman Josephine Sabin tells AdFreak. "Had they gone through a crowdsourcing marketplace, like DesignCrowd, McDonald's would have received hundreds of original designs for a great price."The first place winner received $200, which should afford the winner something like 66 Happy Meals. Take a look below at some of the better entries, and DesignCrowd's contest page for more. The winner is at the bottom of our gallery.

McDonald’s New Happy Meal ‘Ambassador’ Just Might Eat Your Children

On the heels of a refresh that brought Ronnie McDonald some sweet new threads, McDonald's has just introduced a new crazy-eyed mascot—er, "ambassador"—named "Happy." (Presumably because "Nightmare Fuel" was

Complete Taxonomy of College Sports Mascots

We've been in love with taxonomies ever since the agency-name infographic a few months ago. Here's one that's truly stunning to behold—Pop Chart Lab's new Chart of Collegiate Sports Teams. For sale (at $30 a pop) as a 2- by 3-foot poster, the chart claims to offer "a taxonomic breakdown of every collegiate sports team in the United States. From Division I to Division III, from Banana Slugs to Little Giants, there are over 1100 schools charted in six square feet of higher learning." (My beloved Bears of Washington University in St. Louis are represented. Shout if your school's team isn't represented.) There sure are a crapload of Eagles and Tigers and Bulldogs, oh my. But the real gems are found in offshoots like Professions -> Resource Extraction and Self-Referential -> Abstractions. Best place to examine this masterpiece in more detail is on the Pop Chart Lab site itself.Via Co.Design.

A Treasure Trove of Great, Weird Advertising Characters

The Flickr group Weird Advertising Characters is misleadingly named. It should be called Awesome Advertising Characters, because every single picture in here is a winner. Whoever came up with Cheesus is due for some kind of design prize or presidential commendation, and the "Poo! Poo!" Whoopie Cushion graphic is a timeless piece of Americana, right up there with baseball and heart disease. Well, OK, I guess the Clown Motel is kinda weird, but it's probably no worse than any other unfranchised roadside hotel. More images after the jump. Via Laughing Squid.