Two of the most beloved McDonald’s characters have made a surprising comeback at 2021 Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade after several years of being absent from the highly anticipated annual procession.
Grimace and Hamburglar joined Ronald McDonald at this year’s parade, bringing smiles and laughter to audiences on the streets and to those who were watching the festive event from the comfort of their homes. Seeing Grimace and Hamburglar again after a long time made a lot of fans realize how much they missed the two characters. Some of them even took to Twitter to share how they reacted when they spotted the mascots at the parade.
I glad they actually brought back Grimace and the Hamburglar alongside with Ronald McDonald during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and I am deeply impressed that they succeed it within the continuity therefore pic.twitter.com/HXbNJTp4D3
— 🍂🍁🦃Alex A De Los Reyes🍗🍽🌽 (@AlexADelosRey17) November 25, 2021
You’re damn right I said “HOLY SHIT!” out loud when I saw this. HE’S BACK! https://t.co/FXEAoZGf3i
— Erin Plays (@ErinPlays_Games) November 25, 2021
GRIMACE IS FUCKING ALIVE?????? pic.twitter.com/mBi6xdkqAU
— diddy (@WavePrism_) November 25, 2021
Welcome back Grimace! pic.twitter.com/QAf0NvRFtF
— Tiff's Turkey Time (@shyvioletisme) November 25, 2021
best part of thanksgiving was grimace in the macy’s parade:,) pic.twitter.com/Iae7fZeUvf
— rach :3 (@rachcardwell) November 26, 2021
i screamed as if grimace was a real celeb and my mom made fun of me saying “this is like when the beatles were on the ed sullivan show and people took photos of the tv” they ARE my beatles pic.twitter.com/6trtAUslRz
— Brianna (@goingbriannas) November 25, 2021
— JJonahJameyson (@j_jameyson) November 25, 2021
I just saw the Hamburglar for the first time in my life on tv . It’s like 1998 . pic.twitter.com/0b871HrYaq
— 𝔯𝔬𝔱𝔞𝔱𝔦𝔬𝔫ONLY Magazine 🇺🇸❤️😂 (@OhReeally) November 25, 2021
Aside from stirring up all kinds of nostalgia, Grimace and Hamburglar’s return also inspired some new memes and jokes.
Hey @McDonalds who payed for Hamburgurlar's parole? Haven't seen him hit the streets in years. Where Barney's love child Grimace been hiding? #MacysParade #macysthanksgivingparade pic.twitter.com/L4BLmpDCe9
— Peter Barbounis✈️🌍🧪🧬 (@PeteB973) November 25, 2021
— WDWManimal (@WDWManimal) November 25, 2021
Hamburglar with purple lips…and Grimace is right there. pic.twitter.com/K2Yx3zHRde
— Brian Heinz (@InGeekWeTrust) November 25, 2021
Hamburglar was lured to the #MacysParade in an elaborate sting operation.
— Bill Denneen (@bdenneen) November 25, 2021
Additionally, Grimace and Hamburglar’s reappearance made some fans appreciate McDonald’s even more for sticking with its decades-old characters despite their questionable looks and unclear origin stories.
I watched the parade and thought to myself;
“Good on them for sticking by Ronald despite clowns not being popular since the 1930’s”
Not to mention Grimace; a husky purple piece of blubber representing a fast food chain that had documentaries made about their unhealthy food
— Josh K (@TheKotsabulous) November 25, 2021
Here I am 40 years later still waiting on @McDonalds to provide me the backstory to The Hamburgler and Grimace.
— Brian Bowman (@DBrianBowman) November 25, 2021
Grimace and Hamburglar have both appeared in several TV and print ads for McDonald’s since 1971. Grimace was originally introduced as the “Evil Grimace,” a villainous character with two pairs of arms that he used to steal milkshakes. After that first marketing campaign, the character was revised to be one of the “good guys,” and his number of arms was reduced by two.
Like Grimace, Hamburglar also started out as a villain. As his name implies, Hamburglar was fond of stealing hamburgers. Even though he always attempted (and failed) to hoard all hamburgers for himself, he had always been looked upon as a valued member of the McDonaldland community. In 1985, the burger-loving character was revised to be someone who loved playing tricks on his friends.