5. Magique — 1992 Winter Olympics, Albertville
Magique is, according to Wikipedia, “a little imp in the shape of a star and a cube.”
A star and a cube! One three-dimensional figure simply wasn’t enough for ol’ Magique.
I’m gonna try my hand at designing an Olympic mascot (the one for the 2020 games hasn’t been announced yet). It’s a sphere, but also banana-shaped, and it has 12 arms, 26 ears, and wears a tin foil dress. Oh, and it can kill you with a single look. Am I hired?
4. Neve and Gliz — 2006 Winter Olympics, Turin
Oh, look! It’s a snowball and an ice cube with legs and arms!
The better to kill you with!
3. Izzy — 1996 Summer Olympics, Atlanta
Whaaaaaaat is going on here?
Izzy was the first computer-generated mascot and, in my opinion, the first official proof that maybe we should never have invented computers. Her eyebrows are lightning bolts. She has legs and arms…but is also just a giant mouth and eyeballs? There’s too much to unpack here, and honestly, I’m too traumatized to even attempt it. Let’s move on, shall we?
2. Wenlock and Mandeville — 2012 Summer Olympics, London
Wenlock and Mandeville are described as “drops of steel with cameras for eyes.”
Which is weird because I have had that literal nightmare several times.
Their giant camera eyes are actually kind of perfect considering the fact that London is one of the most surveilled cities on Earth.
And finally, the No. 1 most creepy, horrifying Olympic mascot of all time!
1. Schuss — 1968 Winter Olympics, Grenoble
Careful readers will remember that 1968 marked the very first time a mascot appeared at the Olympics. This is what they started with. A skier with a face that looks to have been peeled off. Somehow, people saw Schuss and thought, “Yes. Good. We need more Olympic mascots. We must haunt the children ’round the globe.”
Maybe it’s time we stop with the mascots and just give the kids candy.