The madness of mascots

Date: 22nd June 2015

EARLIER this week, Partick Thistle presented their new mascot — Kingsley — to the public following the confirmation of their new sponsorship deal with American firm Kingsford Capital, reported to be a
six-figure sum. The new scary-looking sun somewhat resembles the Kingsford badge, but this was a Turner Prize nominated-artist who designed Kingsley, besides, at the end of the day, mascots are only supposed to be a bit of fun.
Here the SFSA takes a look at some other memorable — and sometimes questionable — mascots found throughout Scottish football.
Before Kingsley, Partick Thistle graced the public with the introduction of Jaggy MacBee – an oversized bumblebee which funnily enough combined the sponsors — MacB — and the Jags — Thistle’s nickname. There was some precedence in this one, however, bees do have a tendency to sting — sorry, Jag — people now and again, so it can be understood how this one came about. Overall, Jaggy was a good little addition to Firhill and will certainly be missed by young fans who are a bit wary around Kingsley this term.
From an award-winning artist at Firhill to artists who worked with The Dandy and The Beano,
St Johnstone went one further than the traditional cuddly animal when Morris Heggie and Steve Bright concocted the idea of a superhero — aptly named SuperSaint. Having been around for over 20 years, this loveable hero is as much part of St Johnstone as McDairmid Park. Although lacking in powers, he can be seen at every home match day since his first appearance in a programme comic strip.
Next, we take a step towards the unknown at Hibs. Sunshine the Leith Lynx has been around since 2004, but why a Lynx? We get that the boffins in the boardroom thought about getting the ‘Sunshine on Leith’ reference in there, but why add a Lynx? Seems to us that a Lynx was, perhaps, the first animal they thought of that began with the letter ‘L’, seeing as Dundee United stole the glory in going for a lion called Terry the Terror — another questionable mascot choice. Perhaps both Hibs and United would have been better suited by a homage to the Proclaimers and a giant Tangerine respectively.
Not much be said about some clubs other than hats off to you! Clyde’s Bully Wee the Bull could have done fine with just Bully the Bull, but they are the Bully Wee and, sometimes, you just need to put that out there. Stenhousemuir did well with Wally the Warrior, seeing as they are the Warriors. Although, when many people think of Wally, they do expect to be looking for a man in glasses wearing red and white hoops, huddled amongst a remarkably busy public place, perhaps Willy the Warrior would have been better? But then again, maybe not…
Inverness Caley Thistle managed to successfully adopt Nessie as their mascot and Aberdeen did a good job using their famous local cow — Angus — to keep theirs local as well. St Mirren have the Paisley Panda in homage to their famous black and white home colours, so it was either a panda or a zebra… and let’s be honest, who really wants a zebra as their mascot?
Hold on a minute, however. East Stirling have Zed the Zebra… unlucky for them. The Shire could have quite easily chosen to adopt a hobbit for their mascot, which would certainly have given hours of pleasure to fans of Lord of the Rings and children alike. However, in 2009 Zed the Zebra was the plucky choice bestowed upon Shire fans and they’ve taken to him like a hobbit to a second breakfast.
The final one we are going to take a look at is the Dundee mascot – DeeWok. Star Wars fans will be excited to see the term ‘Ewok’ when referenced to a football club’s mascot. However, what is really upsetting is that the DeeWok bares very little resemblance to one of George Lucas’ creations. More like an oversized bear — rather than an extremely hairy dwarf — the Dens Park club went down the right lines with their clever use of a recognisable creation, but got it all wrong. Good effort, though.

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