The Origins of McDonaldland.

Things aren't always what they seem.
January 12, 2015
Ronald McDonald first entered our homes in 1963 as McDonald's mascot. I guess the 60s weren't filled with people with a fear of clowns like there are today. And like with most mascots, the original Ronald McDonald was a lot different than the one we are familiar with today.


Well, that solves everything, Coulrophobia (fear of clowns) exists thanks to the original Ronald McDonald. I mean, all that he's missing is the machete in his right hand and various body parts on the tray on his head and on his stomach and you've got a deranged killer clown.

Thankfully, that look didn't last long and by the end of the 1960s, we were introduced to the revamped Ronald McDonald that we all know and love.

Ronald gets all the chicks.

Along came the glorious 70s and with that came McDonaldland. In 1971, McDonald's introduced McDonaldland as this fun, imaginary place where all the objects were McDonald's food items. Think "The Land of Chocolate" from The Simpsons, but with McDonald's food.

Mmmmm chocolate dog. *drools*

At this time, they started introducing characters that we all grew up with such as Grimace, the Hamburglar, and The Fry Guys. Then, there were the characters who didn't last as long, but still have a special place in a lot of our hearts such as Captain Crook, Officer Big Mac, The Professor, Mayor McCheese, and others.

The McDonaldland Family Picture

However, this article isn't really about the history of McDonaldland and its characters, no, I'm going to be examining McDonaldland and get to the root of where it all came from.

Let us go back to when Ronald McDonald first debut. It was the 60s and drug use was pretty widespread. You have a guy, dressing up as a clown to promote hamburgers for a rapidly growing fast food chain. I mean, put those 2 circumstances together and you have a recipe for drug abuse.

During this time, Ronald McDonald met a McDonald's employee and after tripping on LSD, they made sweet McLovin. 9 months later, out popped little Ronald Jr.


A nice little family was created, right? WRONG. See, Ronald got so wrapped up in his work as the McDonald's spokesclown that he neglected poor Ronald Jr. However, Ronald was no deadbeat dad, oh no. You see, Ronald supported little Ronald Jr. by sending him and his baby mama with McDonald's gift certificates. Plus, he would still see little Ronald early on in his life.

That, though, would soon change once the 60s became the 70s. By this time, Ronald was so into taking LSD and promoting McDonald's, that he stopped seeing little Ronald Jr. completely. Ronald Jr. was getting older and he desperately wanted his dad to be in his life. Little Ronald knew there was one way to get his dad to come back into his life, he had to find a way to ruin McDonald's so that they would go out of business.

How would Ronald Jr. go about this scheme of driving McDonald's out of business? By stealing all the hamburgers! He started following his dad everywhere that would allow him to steal McDonald's hamburgers. However, because Ronald Senior had not seen his son in years, he didn't recognize him, so he thought he was just a common juvenile delinquent. So, Ronald called the police to keep an eye on everything.

Despite the police always around, Ronald Jr. always found a way to cause trouble. Something was missing, though, Ronald Jr. noticed that his dad never recognized him. That's when he realized that his dad hasn't seen him since he was a toddler. So, as was starting to be popular at the time, Ronald Jr. had plastic surgery in the mid 80s to look more like he did as a toddler.

Unfortunately, though, Ronald Senior still didn't recognize his son, but he did think it wasn't just a little kid, so he stopped having the police come around and he amusingly put up with his unrecognizable son's antics.
Much to Ronald Jr.'s surprise, a little girl starting showing up with his father at the beginning of the 80s. Over time he learned that it was actually his father's new daughter. He was distraught at first, because his dad was treating her better than he treated him, but he also knew of his dad's continuing drug problem. With the help of his mom, they spent 20 years trying to get Ronald off of the LSD.

There were breakthroughs and relapses, but slowly, Ronald Senior started to kick the habit. In the early part of the new millennium, Ronald finally kicked his addiction and went to rehab.

So what happened?

Ronald Senior reconnected with Ronald Jr. and became the father/son combination that Ronald Junior wanted all of his life. Ronald Senior paid for more plastic surgery to make his son look more adult like.

Needless to say, he only gets laid by saying he's Ronald McDonald's son.

Ronald and his Ronald Junior's mom, Gwenda, remained really good friends. Although, they did have a rough patch in the early 70s.

Ronald saw Gwenda as a money grubbing wench since she kept wanting money to "support" little Ronald.

Ronald's daughter, Emily, was a big help in his slow recovery. She had a habit of waking up early and thus waking up Ronald, who always slept in due to his drug binging, really early.


McDonaldland was an extension of Ronald McDonald's personal life mixed in with his LSD trips. He thought his son was just some mischievous hamburger stealer. Officer Big Mac was the police officer hired to keep the would be hamburger thief in line. Once, his son had the plastic surgery and looked like a younger kid, Ronald didn't want the cop trying to catch a little toddler, so Ronald dismissed him.

Ronald Senior saw Ronald Junior's mom as a big, ugly thing and Grimace depicted that. When they had the rough patch in the early 70s, that's why Grimace looked really evil as Ronald saw her as an evil, greedy monster. When they patched things up, he saw her in a slightly better light.

Of course, Birdie The Early Bird was his daughter, Emily. Due to her knack of waking up early, he saw her as a bird that will sit outside your window early in the morning chirping really loud.

Mayor McCheese was actually what Ronald imagined as Ray Kroc (he was the head cheese of McDonald's after all).

Captain Crook was the IRS as Ronald was getting hounded by them constantly trying to steal his money.

The Professor was actually Ronald's vision of HIS father, who died early in Ronald's life. Supposedly, Ronald's dad was really a professor of sorts and died while making some kind of pink substance that was suppose to change how food is made.

The other random characters over the years were just random characters that appeared during his LSD trips. Happens to the best of us.

Drugs are bad, mmmkay?
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