Skip to main content

Apparently This Matters: The new Ronald McDonald

Behold! Ronald McDonald's big wardrobe makeover includes cargo pants, a technical vest, and a red and white striped rugby shirt. Behold! Ronald McDonald's big wardrobe makeover includes cargo pants, a technical vest, and a red and white striped rugby shirt.
HIDE CAPTION
The all new Ronald McDonald
The all new Ronald McDonald
The all new Ronald McDonald
The all new Ronald McDonald
The all new Ronald McDonald
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Ronald McDonald was recently re-introduced to the public with a fresh wardrobe
  • Since 1963, Ronald has been the face of the McDonald's corporation
  • Ronald is also tasked with a mission: Fun makes great things happen

Editor's note: Each week in "Apparently This Matters," CNN's Jarrett Bellini applies his warped sensibilities to trending topics in social media and random items of interest on the Web.

(CNN) -- For a long time it feels like we haven't seen much of Ronald McDonald. Not for nothing, but I heard he shanked Grimace in a back alley somewhere down in Mexico.

That's the rumor, anyway.

However, now the famous fast-food clown is back in the spotlight, and everything seems right in his world.

\
"Apparently This Matters" Is Jarrett Bellini's weekly (and somewhat random) look at social-media trends.

McDonald's re-introduced Ronald on Wednesday, stating that he is "setting out on a global mission to rally the public through inspiring events."

I'm sort of hoping this involves feats of strength, motorcycles, and explosions. And maybe some AC/DC.

But probably not.

Either way, good for him. It's hard to find honest work, especially when your LinkedIn skills include applying heavy makeup and crying yourself to sleep.

Of course, Ronald McDonald, who's been the face of the company since 1963, is more than just a clown who goes on global missions. Because behind all that face paint lies a ruthless hamburger kingpin with a never-say-die attitude, capable of striking fear into his trembling sales team.

"Put that McCafe Coffee down! McCafe coffee's for closers only."

Yes, some may criticize Ronald for being too influential, as he entices kids to eat unhealthy fast food. I don't know the exact psychology behind it, but, presumably, it works like this:

"Hey kids, look at the funny clown. Wee! How 'bout a Happy Meal?"

And I'm OK with that. They're overseeing a restaurant business. It's not like McDonald's is a tattoo parlor.

"Hey kids, look at the funny clown. Wee! How 'bout a koi fish on your neck?"

So, he's a hamburger salesman. Big deal. A little diabetes never hurt anyone.

But as major companies move forward with trends in society, sometimes even cultural icons need a dramatic makeover.

So, a major part of the big rollout was some new, updated clothes. And when you're talking about the one and only Ronald McDonald, that requires strategy and careful planning.

You can't just throw this guy in a car and drive him down to Old Navy.

"Here's 50 bucks. Go nuts."

I mean, the man is a legend. He deserves only the best.

Which is why Ronald's new wardrobe was created by Ann Hould-Ward, an accomplished theatrical designer who won a Tony Award for "Beauty and the Beast."

That said, it's entirely possible that the marketing team simply threw Ann in a car and drove HER down to Old Navy, because Ronald's new getup includes cargo pants and a technical vest, as well as a red and white striped long-sleeve rugby shirt.

Your Old Navy basics.

Though, in all fairness, it looks OK. Somehow, Ronald does sort of come off as fairly modern and relaxed, like a 20-something heading out to see the Dave Matthews Band.

Still, it's worth noting that, amongst all these major changes, his iconic giant red shoes haven't. And he also now has a "whimsical" new blazer for special occasions.

Say, perhaps, a bris.

"Nice work, Rabbi."

"Thanks, Clown."

But it wasn't just a wardrobe makeover. When McDonald's revealed Ronald 2014 to the world this week, the company also shared a new mission: Fun makes great things happen.

The idea, McDonald's says, is that moments of fun and enjoyment bring out the simple pleasures in life and can lead to acts of goodness.

And it's true.

The other day I walked out my house without pants. Next thing you know I'm volunteering at a bake sale.

It feels nice to give back to the community.

Beyond his updated clothes and new personal mission handed down from the Filet-O-Fish gods, what's most fun about this whole new and improved Ronald is that now he's even taking on social media. In fact, Ronald's actually been given the password for the official McDonald's Twitter account.

That's a lot of trust for a guy who hangs out with somebody named The Hamburglar.

While Ronald won't actually have his own personal Twitter handle, he has been authorized to use his full name as a hashtag, marking the first time he's taken an active part in the company's social media strategy.

Really, the whole thing seems perfectly harmless. At least until he comes home buzzed after a Tinder date.

"Boom! Two words. BIG MAC. #RonaldMcDonald #Legendary"

Ask anyone with questionable morals: Fun makes great things happen!

Follow @JarrettBellini on Twitter.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
Apparently This Matters...
updated 8:22 PM EDT, Fri September 19, 2014
If you asked me -- and God knows nobody has -- I would have to guess that never in the history of humankind has anyone ever actually slipped on a banana peel.
updated 6:23 PM EDT, Fri September 12, 2014
I'm a napper.
updated 8:44 AM EDT, Mon September 8, 2014
Since the beginning of time, man has looked up into the cosmos at those shiny, twinkling stars and thought, "I wonder if lizards would do each other up there?"
updated 11:28 AM EDT, Sat August 23, 2014
We all have weird, irrational concerns.
updated 10:25 PM EDT, Sun August 17, 2014
"What does this thing do?"
updated 1:48 PM EDT, Fri August 8, 2014
Despite all the political tension in Crimea, it's nice to know things are still safe enough at the zoo for a zebra to get it on with a donkey.
updated 9:41 PM EDT, Fri August 1, 2014
Justin Sylvester's wife is pregnant. With a baby.
updated 8:10 PM EDT, Sat July 26, 2014
There's a famous scene in the movie "Titanic" where Rose turns to Jack and says, "I want you to draw me like one of your French girls."
updated 4:15 PM EDT, Fri July 18, 2014
For several months in 2003, I did the whole European backpacker thing. Which is to say I've seen nearly every cathedral within 1,000 square miles of the Danube.
updated 3:17 PM EDT, Fri July 11, 2014
The other day I saw a death metal band hanging out by their tour van in the parking lot behind a club. They were all dressed in black, and may or may not have been working on lyrics to a new song about fire and lamb meat.
updated 9:05 AM EDT, Mon June 23, 2014
There are two good reasons to own a giant trampoline.
updated 6:51 PM EDT, Fri June 13, 2014
I would love to say my dog is intellectually qualified to be a service animal. But he's not. There's barely enough brainpower there to be a lamp.
updated 11:23 AM EDT, Sun June 8, 2014
I've never really needed an extra ear.
updated 4:32 PM EDT, Wed June 4, 2014
I never actually caught a glimpse of the Tooth Fairy when I was young, but she was definitely real and in cahoots with my mom. This, due to the fact that I never woke up to find a Nintendo.
updated 3:57 PM EDT, Fri May 23, 2014
Have you ever seen a man running in a marathon, bleeding from his nipples?
updated 3:52 PM EDT, Fri May 16, 2014
Brace yourselves, because this week's story is about sperm and poop.
ADVERTISEMENT