Joey: Well I would invite my mom but she's goofy.
Jesse: Joey, that's a horrible thing to say about your mother.
Having to wear a "funny" costume.
According to television, the crappier your job is, the crappier the uniform is.
So appropriately enough, the worst job in the world is to wear a cartoon-character suit, either at an amusement park, a children's birthday party, as a sports mascot, or wherever else you may end up doing this. Not only is it humiliating in and of itself, but children will regard you as a fair target for punches, buckets of paint, flying anvils, etc. Sometimes adults decide the same, and they bring out the heavy artillery (sometimes literally).
Employers never, ever mind if their mascot gets assaulted, presumably because beating up the guy in the Goofy Suit
is one of the big draws that brings in the customers.
Getting sweaty and miserable under the suit is just extra trouble. In the worst cases, it's not even job you get paid for, when you have to wear the suit due to a wager or some other reason.
A subtrope of Bad Job, Worse Uniform
. Compare Burger Fool
, Suck E. Cheese's
, Playing a Tree
. Is not
necessarily a suit made to look like Goofy
- A few years ago there was a commercial for Snickers which featured a Deadpan Snarker dressed as dog mascot named Barkey. People asked him when the show started even though the sign was right next to him and he of course responds with sarcasm. When a kid asks if he's really Barkey he says "Barkey's a cartoon. I'm a grown man who's made a lot of mistakes."
- In the early 1980s, a story arc in Peanuts had Charlie Brown getting hustled into being the Pelican mascot for Peppermint Patty's baseball team. She won't even let him take the costume off between games, because that would mess with his ability to "think pelican...be pelican!" Marcie begs him to take it off "if not for your sake, then for someone who likes you." (Sally: "Kiss her, you blockhead!") Charlie Brown, of course, ends up wearing the costume until a wild ball beans him. (This arc was adapted into a segment of the Saturday Morning Cartoon The Charlie Brown and Snoopy Show.)
- MAD once suggested that a way to improve attendance at football games would be to add a new rule: each team would score extra points if the opposing team's mascot is tied up and held hostage by fans for a sufficiently long period.
- In Empowered, the titular heroine's original day job is wearing an elephant suit with a backwards baseball cap to advertise a department store, Value Mammoth. People make fun of her all day long, but she still finds it mildly preferable to wearing her too-revealing super-suit.
- In one issue of the Robin comic book, Robin's friend Ives is working as the mascot at a Suck E. Cheese's. He comes to school so bruised that Robin suspects he is being abused.
- Dogby Walks Alone is what happens when badasses have to wear a Goofy Suit.
- The National Lampoon ran a bizarre comic-book format PSA where two men are acting irresponsibly - drinking heavily and driving recklessly, littering, starting forest fires - they pick up an impressionable hitchhiker who joins in the fun, and they dress up in promotional costumes of Mr. Peanut, Speedy Alka-Seltzer, and the Pillsbury Doughboy and head off again, shouting rude things at children, tying up police emergency phones with pointless blather...
- Chazz Michael Michaels's occupation is this in an ice-skating show after the opening montage of Blades of Glory.
- Death to Smoochy has its naive hero performing in a Barney & Friends-esque Goofy suit, though (unusually for this trope) his face is always visible.
- In A Goofy Movie, a man in a possum costume at Lester's Possum Park tries to cheer up Max. Max responds by punching the mask backwards. Other kids then jump the performer and beat him up.
- The title characters on Bebe's Kids beat up costumed characters in Funland. The original stand-up routine was about the kids going to Disneyland and attacking Mickey and Donald, but naturally that got changed for the movie.
- In the Hungarian film Kontroll, Szofi spends nearly every scene in a bear suit. This is implied to be for her job, but we never find out what the job is.
Live Action TV
- In Dave Barry's Only Travel Guide You'll Ever Need (by Dave Barry, natch), it says that Walt Disney World enforcement puts people in the Goofy suit as punishment for breaking the rules — like trying to leave Walt Disney World (which is strictly forbidden) or not having a sufficient mood of childlike wonderment.
- British writer Tim Lott wrote a short story about an actor who has to do this once. He finds that no-one takes him seriously, even when his wife is in urgent need of medical help.
- Comedian Dave O'Neil's biography is titled It's Hot Inside the Bear Suit after his time playing Humphrey B. Bear on the Australian kids show Here's Humphey. The actors playing Humphrey are never credited.
- The Diogenes Club story "The Gypsies in the Wood" features a Victorian children's book entrepreneur who has invented Souvenir Land fifty years early. Diogenes agent Charles Beauregard has to go undercover as a teddy bear called Sir Boris de Bruin.
- 21 Jump Street, "School's Out." Officer Judy Hoffs is told that the police department needs someone for an "important PR position." Said position turns out to be giving safety tips to grade-school children as "Officer Milk Carton," in a stupid milk carton costume that doesn't even have arms.
- The Adventures of Pete & Pete, "Rangeboy." Big Pete doesn't want to be recognized at his summer job at a driving range, so he wears a bear costume and becomes the (non-speaking)golf bear. Unfortunately, he gets beaned several times — and then the golfers begin aiming at him. Before long, regular golf has ceased, and the sole sport is getting the bear with flying golf balls.
- In the Israeli TV series Arab Labor, newspaper reporter Amjad finally gets his big break in TV...as a children's TV host in a pink bunny suit. Later, due to a crisis, he winds up running out of the studio mid-filming...and winds up in the middle of a gay pride parade. His extremely conservative, traditionalist father sees his son on TV — in a pink bunny suit at a gay pride parade — and faints.
- Belker in Hill Street Blues worked undercover wearing a chicken suit in two episodes. He even made an arrest wearing it.
- In Degrassi The Next Generation, Paige (the Alpha Bitch)and Manny (The Starscream) are fighting for control of the cheerleading squad. Paige steals credit for Manny's work, kicks her off the squad, and makes her be the mascot. In retaliation, Manny's allies on the squad deliberately drop Paige during a game, breaking her leg — and we cut to the panther mascot doing a very triumphant dance.
- Happens in an episode of Roseanne when David gets sucked into a job at a local theme park known as "the Happiest Place in Illinois." He agrees to work in the park's art department, but ends up dressed as park mascot "Hans the Hare," being slowly, hilariously brainwashed into acting perky and enthusiastic at all times, about all things.
- An episode of Full House, as shown in the quote above.
- Cheers: Carla's husband is a pro hockey player, but he gets cut from the Bruins. He calls her to let her know he got a job as a Penguin. She thinks he means with the Pittsburgh Penguins, but no - he's in a penguin suit for the Ice Capades.
- L.A. Law: Dan Castellaneta note plays a man in a Homer Simpson suit who got fired because he removed the head while in public view - he was sick.
- In Blue Mountain State, Sammy manages to get a job as the team's mascot early in the series, which actually improves his social standing, but only because he was already the Butt Monkey.
- GARO: Perpetual career-switcher Kaoru has a stint working in an amusement park as a giant bunny, where (naturally) she is beaten up by a bunch of little kids. Later it turns out that her manager has a bit of a fetish for dressing up cute girls in costumes.
- Occasionally seen in The Apprentice as a ploy to boost sales.
- On Modern Family, Hayley finds her old boyfriend Dylan working at Disneyland, first as part of a Barbershop Quartet, then as Little John from Robin Hood. He's fired by the end of the episode, for fighting with the boy Hayley is currently seeing while in costume.
- America's Funniest Home Videos has featured many Real Life mishaps involving costumed mascots, theme park characters, etc. One $10,000-winning video featured a Chuck E. Cheese mascot becoming the victim of a kid's Groin Attack, whereupon he sinks to his knees and frantically signals to his assistant for a time out.
- On Big Brother, a common punishment from some veto challenges is to have to wear a costume, often representative of an animal.
- Where was Yuna during the opening sequence of Final Fantasy X-2? Outside the concert hall stuck in a moogle costume, of all things.
- RollerCoaster Tycoon allows you to hire such people.
- Dead Rising 2 gives up Brett Ernst, who only ever calls himself "Slappy", after the character he plays (a stereotypical "geek" character with a giant rubber head). He's one of the psychopaths, having gone mad after the girl playing Slappy's love interest was killed by the zombies.
- For some reason, Goto from Mana Khemia 2 has been wearing these 24/7 for years. He's previously dressed as a penguin and a raccoon, and currently wears what looks like a white dog/cat/bear hybrid that he claims is a pegasus. Despite this, he manages to be The Casanova.
- Resonance of Fate: The party is made to wear goofy costumes while on the Christmas Episode mission: Leanne wears a Sexy Santa Dress, whereas Zephyr and Vashyron wear reindeer costumes.
- The creators of Homestar Runner must like this trope, since they've stuck three of their characters into them at one point or another — Strong Bad with Bubs' hot dog clown, Homestar Runner with CGNU's mascot "the Jolly Dumple", and Coach Z with the Blubb-O's whale. Eventually they just made a short about the three of them hanging out together on their break. In another episode, the amusement park that Strong Bad dreams up needs to have "a bunch of costumed mascots running around antic-ing", so he comes up with costumes of the Tire, the Stop Sign, and the Chinese-food carton. They too are depicted being worn by major characters, and return in an Easter Egg in the aforementioned mascots-on-break episode.
- In this El Goonish Shive filler strip, Liz is made to wear a mouse costume as part of Dan's 20th birthday celebrations.
- Truth in Television, as Cracked listed it as a job that's harder than it looks. These mascot costumes can weigh up to thirty pounds — not including the giant bobblehead — can reach temperatures of up to 113 degrees or higher, and seriously restrict the wearer's ability to see and hear (leading to accidents and injuries).