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Top 10 Crazy Olympic Mascots

Ryan Thomas . . . Comments

It’s Olympic season, which means only one thing: people dressed up in funny outfits. And that’s not referring to the athletes themselves. Ever since the first official mascot was unveiled in 1972 (‘Waldi’ the dachshund for the Munich Olympics in Germany), mascots have become a fundamental part of the Olympics; a crowd-pandering means to celebrate the hosting nation’s rich, historically-based sense of tradition, as well that of the Olympic games themselves. While that all sounds properly-motivated, sometimes the products of such overbearing enthusiasm aren’t quite as pleasant as the sentiment. And thus, here are ten of the craziest Olympic mascots to date.


Schneeman the Snowman


When Innsbruck, Austria hosted the 1976 winter Olympics, they needed a mascot that best represented their country as well as the chilly-season games, so they went with a stubby sort of snowman – who wears a Tyrolean, cowboy-looking hat – named Schneeman. He is, after all, supposed to represent what was referred to as the ‘Games of Simplicity.’ While Scheenman may indeed be categorically a snowman, he looks a lot more like one of the M&Ms mascots, with his torso-head hybrid and molded shoes/gloves where twigs and a large ball of snow should be.


Hidy and Howdy


Named deliberately after folky sorts of greetings, these cowboy-dressed polar bears aimed to represent Western Canadian hospitality. Employed during the 1988 Calgary Olympics, these giant, furry bear suits came off less hospitable than they did just plain creepy, looking like cheap teddy bears with five o’clock shadows – creepier still knowing a grown (and likely sweaty) man was hiding inside.




The 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France brought another weird winter symbol to the proverbial snow lodge via ‘Magique the snow imp,’ which was a part-man part-star hybrid, that sounds biochemically impossible. And for that reason, this mascot represents imagination, dreams, and the idea of ‘shooting for the stars’ – a sort of reminder that these games aren’t all about the scoreboards and rulebooks. Side note: Magique was opted for over a much more earthbound ‘Chamois the mountain goat.’


Hakon and Kristin


These Norwegian children served as dual mascots for the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway. While their innocence is implied – shown holding hands, smiling and waving – it is lost to a degree as they are also shown wearing traditional viking clothing; vikings, of course, renowned for their brutality and savagery (at least according to popular conception, and largely biased historical accounts). Topically Norwegian as it is, you’d think a more pleasant slice of history could be evoked.



Atlanta Mascot

Izzy might as well have been a giant question mark. Izzy was first introduced at the end of the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, at the time going by the name “Whatizit.” Created by a design firm called DESIGNefx, the mascot was later modified into its final form – an oblong, amorphous, indefinite blue mess of thing with a face and tennis shoes – for the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. Not reflective of any kind of U.S. nationalism or tradition, it was the first computer-designed mascot and likely meant to somehow represent the budding silicon age, although it look more like a melted computer mouse. Izzy has been the subject of T.V. specials and video games, all of which underscore the overall meaninglessness of the mascot.


Athena and Phevos


The 2004 Summer Olympics were the second official Olympic games held in Greece since the ancient games, held originally by the Greeks as a means to honor Zeus. This tradition of traditions had to be honored somehow, and the way they elected to do it through two children – named Athena and Phevos – who were supposed to be from present-day, but also fashioned after ancient Greek dolls (as a way to merge the ideals of antiquity and modernity). The result is a Erlenmeyer flask-looking pair, with disproportionately wide feet and long necks. Maybe children actually looked like this in ancients times… (unlikely).


Neve and Gliz


Cute as these mascots are – used in the 2006 Olympics in Turin, Italy – Neve and Gliz symbolized winter. And how simply: Neve (meaning ‘snow’ in Italian) was a man with a personified snowball for a head; Gliz (short for the Italian word meaning ‘ice’ – ‘ghiaccio’) was Neve’s ice cube-equivalent and counterpart. The two in the end looked something like the Blockheads from Gumby. Oh yeah, and the snowball is supposed to be a chick, while the ice cube is most definitely a dude.


The ‘Fuwa’


As if one mascot (or even two weren’t enough), here are five. Named Beibei, Jingjing, Huanhuan, Yingying, and Nini (in order) – and appearing during the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, China – the names are arranged to form the Chinese phrase “Beijing huan ying ni” which means ‘Beijing welcomes you.’ As far as each personality goes – a fish, a panda, an Olympic flame, a Tibetan antelope, and a swallow – they represent each of the five Olympic rings, as well as the five Feng Shui elements.


Miga, Quatchi, Sumi, and Mukmuk

Mascots Quatchi Miga And Sumi

As Olympic mascots have started becoming more Yo Gabba Gabba!-like, these four (well, three and a ‘sidekick’) are no exception; created for the purposes of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia in Canada, they each represented mythical creatures appearing in Canadian and Northwestern U.S. urban legends (which makes sense seeing as how they were designed by a Canadian and an American pair, which comprises Meomi Design). Miga is a sea bear (Orca whale-kermode bear hybrid) that likes to surf and snowboard in the Vancouver region. Quatchi is a big-foot- or sasquatch-type character that carries a camera, likes to travel, and dreams of being a hockey goalie. Sumi, a ‘spirit animal’ with Thunderbird-wings and black bear-legs, is a nature-lover. Mukmuk is a friendly Marmot (a.k.a their under-developed side-kick), whose name comes from the Chinuk Wawa word which means ‘food’/’to eat,’ Mukmuk being typified by his large appetite.


Wenlock and Mandeville

Olympic Mascots %28Cropped%29

This year’s mascot for the London 2012 olympic games boasts a certainty to be as head-scratching as tradition will allow. Named Wenlock and Mandeville (as tributes to the locations of the first two London-hosted Olympics), the two are characterized simply as ‘steel drops with cameras for eyes,’ symbolic of the Industrial Revolution in London (although the Terminator/T-1000 are evoked more effectively).

  • Ness2k


    • Tryclyde

      Wouldn’t it be, Laaaaaaaaaame? Having a plethora of “e’s” doesn’t make sense.

      • Blargh

        Don’t you just hate when people stock up on the wrong letter!

        • Tryclyde

          Yeah, it’s right above “hangnails” on my pet peeve list.

  • Ness2k

    I never been first. Yay for that!

    • asad

      Never had a girlfriend either…

    • Sexual Harassment Panda

      And you’re STILL not first! LOL

      • Panda raper

        You should probably check the first comment.

  • Hmmm… Mascots are getting wierd-looking as years goes by.

  • Will Trame

    I watch the Olympics for the Olympics….not the mascots.

    • Well I watch the Olympics for the mascots… no the the Olympics.

  • oldirtykoala

    I actually thought China’s entry was quite well thought out, though still weird.
    As for London’s entry (no.1) I am pretty sure that is just Kang and Kodos in disguise.

  • abu bkr

    the current london mascots represent the one-eyed dajjal, or antiChrist

    • Except they forgot to add a right blind eye.

  • Happyguy

    The French one was the worst. I knew London will be the worst, everything British has turned really sucky over the years. There is no American mascot either but 2 Canadian ,

  • Salo Hes

    Chinese and Italian mascot are alright. Izzy look like a giant pe.nis with balls attached on the tip… Wait most of them look like weird male genitals… Or is it just me? I do admit I was checking out a few porn sites before I step in

  • vvgirl110

    this list is okay and I can definitely see that some of these mascots weren’t good ideas but, the list writer could really use some proofreading and editing skills. There’s only a small paragraph to describe each item listed, and it was difficult to read some of it since it wasn’t written properly. I really don’t understand how this happens so often.

    • Asad

      And this is why a comment board is the only place you’ll ever be published. Enjoy it.

    • Craig

      Ironic how you begin your paragraph with a lowercase letter.

  • Silas Mungo

    Misha – Moscow 1980 – Best Mascot Ever!!

  • Izzy was the ultimate in laziness. You could almost imagine the designers sitting around with time running out “What the f*ck are we going to have as a mascot? ‘Sam’ the Bald Eagle – no, too American. ‘Stripey’ the USA Flag? No, too diversive. Screw it, we’ll just stick eyes on a blue strip of something and call it Izzy because we can’t think of what it actually is”. They should have gone with Homer Simpsons’ “Springy”.

  • “Izzy” sounds like the word “easy.”

    Isn’t it ironic?

    • Tim

      No, that is not ironic at all.

      • Evan

        It’s like rain on your wedding day.

    • Tassie Devil

      That depends upon your accent. It’s a bit of a stretch with my Aussie accent.

  • If mascots keep getting lamer every game then what would happen in the future. My guess a Justin bieber shaped mascot.

  • Xyroze

    Do you think anyone still thinks that comment is funny?

  • Tryclyde

    The London mascots are the worst because organizers have had the most time to look back and reflect on how ridiculous past mascots have been. However, they still failed miserably with their creations.

  • Mr Fallout

    I love the wierdness of some Olympic mascots, but Izzy the “Thing” was just stupid. Everything about it screamed laziness and unotiginality, terrible creation.

    • It is like easy, most Asians will not differentiate the two while speaking.

  • Sage

    Pedobear should have been an honorable mention

    • Pauly


  • Ol Smoky

    Man, i think the 2012 mascots are creepy as hell.

  • Sam

    Much Wenlock isn’t a location of the first London Olympics. Firstly, it isn’t in London (nowhere near it!). The bloke credited with inventing the modern Olympics first held an event in Much Wenlock.

  • Aaron

    Where’s Fatov?

  • New superstar

    Enjoyed reading the list….. Good one… RT…..

  • So, the later we get into society, the crazier the costumes are? These are odd, odd times.

    • Will Trame

      Strange days have found us……

  • Ironman

    I think you guys are a little too harsh on th mascots… Blame the creators not the mascots.

  • Maggot

    Apart from it being such a lovely shade of blue, I would say that it appears Mandeville has soiled himself. Who can blame him though, as the other one looks like he just took a .50 caliber exploding-tip shell to the chest.

  • Anon

    I think The Fuwa was actually pretty clever!!

  • Miss Rosa

    Doesn’t it look like Wenlock, er, peed his pants?

  • Someone

    I think #3 actually looks kind of cool.

  • WilfredfromAus

    Nothing was worse than the sickly & saccharine mascots for the Sydney Games, Syd, Olly & Milly. The Australian people so objected to these ridiculous & thoroughly un-Australian mascots that when a TV station came up with Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat as an alternative mascot, he was adopted by the public with gusto. Most Australians still think of him as the real mascot for the Games.

  • Murphy’s Dog

    Still cant get past that astonishing London 2012 logo that looks amazingly like Lisa Simpson giving someone a blow job. Cack myself laughing everytime I see it.

  • Bruce_Uppercut

    Both Wenlock and Mandeville are named after the towns in England (not in London) where forerunners for both the modern Olympic and Paralympics were held. Wenlock’s design is said to be inspired by the small clock tower in Much Wenlock town centre.

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  • Dio

    They should have a olympic mascot olympics.

  • Sassmansmith

    These are very funny and Impressive List for the Olympic mascots.

  • CN

    #1 look more like mutant bowling pins to me

  • carimbo

    #1 have illuminati/fremason written all over!!!

  • Bobissa

    Long Live Fatso the fat-arsed Wombat!! He finally
    got his own statue outside the Olympic village before being stolen in 2010.

  • livi1906

    I can’t even see it that is how stupid this is if you see this turn this webste off that’s how crap it is

  • This year’s masc0ts lo0k like a p0kem0n

  • yellowfox220

    1. Kang and Kodos in disguise

  • adafa

    lulz, the london ones look like patapons

  • Missy

    Wenlock & Mandeville sound like two towns 200 km east of Nowhere.
    Olympic mascots…of all the dumb things!

  • name

    There is going to be a terrorist attack during the opening or closing ceremonies of the London Olympics, the opening ceremony will be tomorrow on the 27th. This will be a false flag operation to get America, the EU and NATO to go to war with Iran and Syria. If you live in London you should get out immediately.

  • crimanon

    Am I the only one to notice that there are two 92’2?

    • crimanon


    • Maggot

      Nothing too unusual about that. Both the Summer and Winter Games had always been held every four years, but originally both occurring in the same year every time. 1992 did happen to be the last year of that scheduling arrangement, as two years later another Winter Games was held so to enable the current scheduling arrangement of having an Olympic Games every two years, alternating between Summer and Winter events.

      • crimanon

        Wiki to the rescue. I never noticed that.

  • Kaeberry

    I am kind of embarrassed that two Canadian pairs are on this list… My apologies to the world. Though I still think Izzy should have been higher on the list than the Vancouver mascots…

  • Carmellasmith

    These are very amazing and interesting List for the Olympic mascots.

  • Shermaine

    The Beijing ones are the cutest!

  • Ric

    What about unofficial mascots? Fatso the Fat Arsed Wombat was more popular than the official Sydney 2000 mascot! Inspired many tattoos, and was a champion of the bomb in diving events…a truly awesome mascot. Created by Roy&HG who were also the greatest commentators of all time “Hello Boys” was a manouver in gymnastics that scored quite well

  • mx

    2nd place is really cute.
    the only thing worse than Athena and Phevos is its subtitle.

  • Ice Angel

    OMG! The London Olypmic Mascots are scary… O.o
    I read somewhere that they represent the ‘ALL SEEING EYE’?

  • Ice Angel

    2nd place is very cute and smart ^.^ :D

  • Wytch

    I agree that number 1 is perhaps the oddest mascot however all the information in that entry is wrong. They are tributes to Olympics held in the villages of Wenlock and Mandeville in England not tributes to London hosted Olympics, though there have been two modern Olympics in London (including this one). Also the Wenlock and Mandeville Olympics were not the modern Olympics, they predate them, inspired them and were not a worldwide event. They don’t represent the industrial revolution, they are representing the digital ag

  • Karl J

    Illuminati alert! Mascots at #1!

  • chickenman

    According to some conspiracy theory psychos on Facebook, Wenlock and Mandevillle actually mean “We unlock mad devil”. I wasn’t sure how to make them aware of their stupidity. Now I know. Too bad they blocked me from their little group

  • I don’t know if the person who wrote this is a bully or a racist or whatever…

  • I think the newest mascots are incredibly phallic.