Phillie Phanatic Phree Agency Phuror
August 5, 2019 7:52 AM   Subscribe

Gritty sighed as he drew his katana.
posted by delfin at 8:06 AM on August 5, 2019 [24 favorites]

That last image of "Phillie Phanatic's Galapagos Gang" is some McDonaldland-esque worldbuilding.

I do hope there is some exhibit where the Phanatic is chucking batteries at Santa Claus.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 8:23 AM on August 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

"An injury to one is an injury to all." -- Gritty, probably
posted by supercres at 8:31 AM on August 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Given all the Gritty mentions, it's worth noting that the intern they mentioned playing the Phanatic originally used his experience to go on and build a consulting firm built around developing mascots for clients.

His biggest success in doing so? None other than Gritty himself.
posted by NoxAeternum at 8:43 AM on August 5, 2019 [24 favorites]

Having seen Gritty's eyes, Gritty might be eyeing the job.
posted by They sucked his brains out! at 8:48 AM on August 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

It seems like it would be pretty hard for the costume makers' to get around the ruling in Whimsicality(*) to successfully launch a copyright action against the Phillies in the future. That doesn't stop them from allowing other people to use the costume, but it would make it harder for them to stop the Phillies.

But allowing someone else to use the Phillies costume -- without any of the attendant trademark rights, which clearly attach to the Phillies -- is kind of valueless. There are about a kabillion formless blob mascot costumes out there. Why would anyone care about this one in particular, other than its association with the Phillies?

I don't think I agree, though, with the Phillies contention that because the forever contract was a second contract, s. 203 doesn't apply to it. I am not super well-versed in the litigation around US termination rights, though, so maybe there's something there that I just don't know about.

(*) The costume maker had registered costumes as soft sculptures instead of costumes, and the court threw out the case on the grounds that the registrations were invalid as a result of that misrepresentation. The same basic situation appears to be true here -- costume registered as sculpture.
posted by jacquilynne at 9:28 AM on August 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

I heard they were calling in Tommy Lasorda to sort things out.
posted by Abehammerb Lincoln at 10:23 AM on August 5, 2019 [4 favorites]

The owners of H/E must be getting ready to retire and sut down their agency- this kind of lawsuit, clawing back work that they already sold twice over, would be the kiss of death for a going concern once word got around.
posted by jenkinsEar at 10:27 AM on August 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Why would anyone care about this one in particular, other than its association with the Phillies?

Kidnapping mascots of rivals is an age-old plot/prank for high school and college sports TV. There's a lot of fun to be had if you want to dip into the WWE drama well and run some drama about the Phanatic either defecting to the Mets or being kidnapped.

Now I'm just imagining a plot line with the Red Sox's Wally as a stand-in Phanatic, badly disguised to pretend to cover.

There's a lot they could do in pre-game/seventh-inning skits if they wanted to run with it.
posted by explosion at 10:35 AM on August 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

But as soon as you claim the Phanatic defected to the Mets, you're trading on the Phillies' trademarks, and you're out of line, even if you bought the costume fair and square.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:37 AM on August 5, 2019

Has anyone gotten the San Diego Chicken's take on this?
posted by Badgermann at 11:03 AM on August 5, 2019

Which would be ironic, as the San Diego Chicken was only the San Diego Chicken for a handful of years due to a similar falling-out. He won a lawsuit enabling him to continue being a costumed chicken (and, man, isn't THAT something you'd like to have on your resume?), just not THE San Diego Chicken, and re-emerged as The Famous Chicken in a similar costume.

The Phanatic, meanwhile, has a Japanese cousin named Slyly, mascot of the Hiroshima Toyo Carp, created at the same time as the familiar green version.
posted by delfin at 1:16 PM on August 5, 2019

The right way to deal with any kind of forced sports mascot change is to introduce the new mascot as a fully supported sidekick to the original, then slowly develop a WWF-style narrative where the old mascot has gone rogue/no longer loves the team/is leaving for a new team/some other bad thing, culminating in a huge battle royale in the middle of the game where the old mascot gets its backside kicked. It is the only way.
posted by davejay at 3:24 PM on August 5, 2019 [5 favorites]

or for a desired change that isn't forced, the same thing only the new sidekick sucks at first, is publicly coached by the old mascot, then the coach mascot retires after the sidekick saves him from something. I'd watch a lot more sports with stuff like that going on.
posted by davejay at 3:27 PM on August 5, 2019

Why would anyone care about this one in particular, other than its association with the Phillies?

If they went with my approach, the rogue non-Phillies version of the mascot could be the one that attacks the mascot of another team, so that the sidekick could save that mascot. Basically opens up the door to making off-brand mascots the bad guys for other teams, I should think.
posted by davejay at 3:30 PM on August 5, 2019

Oh wait you could even have the old beloved mascot make some bad in-game choices for a few weeks then have the sidekick mascot pull off the old mascot's head to reveal it is a competing mascot in disguise and now I have a new career in staging mascot drama that I may need to pursue
posted by davejay at 3:33 PM on August 5, 2019 [5 favorites]

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