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Western Animation / The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald

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Ronald McDonald and the gang...ANIMATED!

The Wacky Adventures of Ronald McDonald is a Direct to Video series of animated films depicting McDonald's mascot Ronald McDonald going on wacky adventures.

The first three videos would begin with live-action actors playing Ronald himself and his dog Sundae in their home, usually doing something that would foreshadow the main plot. The Call to Adventure would arrive in the form of a call from one of their friends, and Ronald and Sundae would depart their home and enter the outside world — getting animated in the process. The rest of the film would show whatever adventure they got up to with their group of friends, whether it was being chased by a bear, enduring the Hamburglar's schemes, or welcoming aliens from another planet, and at the film's conclusion, Ronald and Sundae would reflect on the lesson learned.

The next three videos featured a slight shake-up to the formula: whilst the first three films would be a contemporary story, the latter three films' stories would be presented as events that had already transpired. Sundae also stopped appearing in the live-action segments (though his voice is heard in the fourth and sixth ones), and Ronald himself would sing the opening theme song.

The VHS tapes could be purchased at your local McDonald's, usually with the purchase of a Happy Meal or an ice cream (depending on the restaurant). The final film is notorious for being very rare; it was only available by ordering off of the Klasky-Csupo website, and it already being in limited supply didn't help things either. For the next thirteen years, searching the Internet was useless, but as of late 2015, the sixth and final video was finally found and uploaded to YouTube for all to see.

Films in order of release:

  • Scared Silly: Ronald and friends go camping with their friend Tika (who seems to be hiding something), but end up forced into a spooky mansion by the weather. When trapped inside, they try to find their way out of the labyrinthian mansion, solving riddles along the way.
  • The Legend of Grimace Island: Grimace finds a map to the fabled Grimace Island, an island populated by his own kind, where supposedly a great treasure awaits. The gang sails off, followed by a pair of greedy pirates.
  • The Visitors From Outer Space: Hamburglar's latest scheme to hoard burgers destroys his friends' trust in him just as he's abducted by a family of aliens on their way to a distant space resort.
  • Birthday World: Hamburglar forgets to get a gift for Ronald's birthday, and brings the gang to a dilapidated theme park run by a Mad Scientist out to Take Over the World… by way of turning the world's population into infants.
  • Have Time, Will Travel: While helping clean up Dr. Quizzical's lab, Hamburglar accidentally activates his time machine, taking the group along for a journey through the ages.
  • The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch: The group goes to the eponymous loch to get a sight at a mysterious beast rumored to dwell within it, but the beast turns out to be real, and wants its existence kept a secret.

The Wacky Tropes of Ronald McDonald:

  • Abandoned Catchphrase: Hamburglar in this continuity never once says "robble robble".
  • The Ace: There's not really anything Ronald can't make his way out of.
  • Adaptational Badass: Birdie is a black belt in karate, when the standard McDonald's ads gave no indication of her being a combatant of any kind. In addition, her tendency to have difficulty landing after she's flown isn't brought up.
  • Adaptational Heroism:
    • While Hamburgler still loves burgers and is up to a scheme every now and then, he is one of Ronald's friends in this series.
    • Iam Hungry was hostile and trying to steal food from Ronald in the one commercial he initially appeared in. In "Visitors From Outer Space", he is called by Ronald to help clean their ship of space dessert.
  • Adaptational Wealth: While it isn't brought up at all in the subsequent videos, the first two videos "Scared Silly" and "The Legend of Grimace Island" drop hints that Birdie comes from a wealthy background, such as the former having her state that most of her travel experience has consisted of visiting five-star hotels and the latter having her bring a lot of her belongings onboard the boat trip, including a collection of expensive perfumes. In contrast, the Birdie of the standard McDonaldland ads had no indication of her being rich.
  • An Aesop: One for most of the videos.
    • The Legend of Grimace Island: Have faith in yourself.
    • Visitors From Outer Space: Appreciate your friends and what you have, and don't lie to them.
    • Have Time, Will Travel: It's best to get the hard work out of the way before having fun.
    • The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch: Some things have to be kept secret and you can't assume that everyone who doesn't know you will hate you.
  • Aliens Speaking English: Org and his family are aliens who are able to speak English in spite of apparently never being on Earth prior to the events of "Visitors from Outer Space".
  • Ambiguously Gay: In "Have Time, Will Travel", after King Murray is accidentally stripped and left in his tighty whities in front of Ronald's gang and the Royal Court, the King's head knight appears to peak through his fingers at the king, even after ordering everyone else to cover their eyes and look away to spare the king any embarrassment. He appears to be very eager to get a look at the king in his underwear.
  • Ambiguously Related: It isn't made clear whether the Fry Kids and the McNuggets look similar to each other and are hardly seen apart because they're family or if it's just a coincidence.
  • Amusement Park of Doom: The titular Birthday World is an amusement park run by Professor Pinchworm, a Mad Scientist out to take over the world by turning its population into babies. He gives Hamburglar invitations to the park for Ronald and his friends as a present for Ronald's birthday, and once they arrive, he traps them inside, then tests his age ray on them during one of the rides. Now, Ronald and his friends have to find the ray so they can foil Pinchworm's plan and return to their normal ages, all the while making their way through a maze of rides and attractions.
  • Animated Adaptation: Of McDonald's characters and McDonaldland.
  • Are We There Yet?: This very question is repeatedly asked by Sundae during the first song in "Scared Silly".
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking:
    • In Scared Silly, Grimace mentions that he's too scared to watch television because of movies about vampires, monsters, and baby ducks.
    • When Hamburglar finally apologizes for his actions in The Visitors from Outer Space, he expresses remorse for fibbing, stealing burgers, and painting Sundae's tail.
  • Art Shift: The opening sequence for the first three videos show portraits of the McDonaldland gang Ronald changes from how they're portrayed from the commercials, to their looks in the cartoon.
  • Audio Adaptation: A promotional radio play that fell into obscurity (because it was only distributed through United Airlines' in-flight radio) titled The Wacky Musical Adventures of Ronald McDonald: Intergalactical Magical Radio was produced, which curiously omitted Sundae and the McNuggets, replaced Tika and Franklin with a different set of kids and had Grimace, Hamburglar and Birdie voiced respectively by their standard commercial voice actors Frank Welker, Carl W. Wolfe and Russi Taylor rather than Kevin Michael Richardson, Charlie Adler and Christine Cavanaugh.
  • Back for the Finale: The irascible car from the first video returns for the final video.
  • Baby Morph Episode: Birthday World involves Ronald and friends being de-aged into toddlerhood or infancy by Professor Pinchworm, who gets turned into a toddler himself after the gang foil his plan and return to their normal ages.
  • Bears Are Bad News: As the group finds out in Scared Silly, when Hamburglar accidentally summons a fierce bear using a bear call.
  • Be Careful What You Wish For:
    • Hamburglar hopes that his bear call will work. It does, much to his horror.
      Bear: Oh, it works alright.
    • Hamburglar ends up regretting crying wolf about aliens arriving on Earth when they really do show, and take him with them to a distant corner of the universe - though in this case he willingly went along until learning how long he'd be gone.
  • Behemoth Battle: Between Simon, the Monster O'McDonaldland Loch, and Stiles' robotic monster.
  • Big Bad:
    • Scared Silly has the McDonaldland gang trying to solve riddles while traveling through a haunted house to confront a Phantom Head, who turns out to be a hologram controlled by Franklin.
    • One-Eyed Sally is the antagonist of Grimace Island, using a forged letter to try and manipulate Grimace into going to Grimace Island so she can follow him and take the last remaining treasure there.
    • Professor Pinchworm is the central threat in Birthday World due to his scheme of using his Babe-O-Matic Ray to turn everyone on the planet into infants so that being the oldest human alive would enable him to rule the world.
    • Stiles is the main villain in The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch, as his plan is to create a fake, robotic Monster O'McDonaldland Loch and use it to scam everyone so he can be wealthy enough to continue concocting evil schemes in style.
  • Big Eater:
    • Hamburglar, if his stealing all the burgers in McDonaldland at the start of "Visitors from Outer Space" is any indication.
    • Iam Hungry from Visitors From Outer Space, who is called in specifically to eat a huge mess up (that is, the dessert toppings Org covered the gang's rocket with).
    • Grimace isn't that far behind either, stating he wants a "bevy" of Ronald's birthday cake in "Birthday World" and asking to stop for food in "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch".
  • Big "WHAT?!": Hamburglar exclaims "What?" in "Birthday World" after being informed over the phone that it is Ronald's birthday today, as he had forgotten to get him a present in time.
  • Birthday Episode: Ronald celebrates his birthday in "Birthday World".
  • A Birthday, Not a Break: "Birthday World" has Ronald having to suffer himself and his friends getting mixed up with Professor Pinchworm's plan to achieve world domination by de-aging the rest of the world's population on his birthday. Fortunately, they manage to defeat the mad scientist, thwart his scheme and go home to celebrate his special day without any further interruptions.
  • Book Ends: All videos started and ended with a live-action segment starring Ronald.
    • Ronald's talking car only appears in the first and final videos.
  • Bread, Eggs, Breaded Eggs: "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" has Birdie state that she determined Simon was the titular monster because he's too small to be a whale and too big to be a guppy. Simon responds by asking if Birdie would believe he was a wuppy.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: Every video ends with Ronald directly addressing the audience and stating how he hopes to see them live and in person at McDonald's. Starting with "Birthday World", the live-action portions of the videos would have Ronald directly talk to the audience throughout rather than waiting until the end.
  • Brick Joke:
    • As the gang is being chased by a bear, Ronald manages to turn his map into a door and lure the bear into it. When the gang is in the Quizzical mansion, they open multiple doors to find a way out. Guess who was behind Grimace's door?
    • "Birthday World" has Baby Grimace ask Professor Pinchworm to define the word bevy in response to the mad scientist stating that he's going to use his Babe-O-Matic Ray to turn the world population into a bevy of babies. Later at the end, Grimace states that he wants a bevy of cake when it comes time to cut Ronald's birthday cake.
  • The Bus Came Back: Mayor McCheese, one of the earlier McDonaldland mascots who had to be phased out because of lawsuits from Sid and Marty Kroft, makes a surprising return in "Have Time, Will Travel".
  • Calling Your Bathroom Breaks: Sundae makes two such remarks in "Birthday World" after Ronald and friends have been de-aged. The first time is when he states that he needs to find a fire hydrant while the gang are panicking at the realization that Professor Pinchworm is coming their way and the second time is when the gang are hiding in a hedge maze and Sundae complains about being surrounded by bushes before he grins mischievously at what he just said and states that he needs to be excused for a second.
  • Canines Gambling in a Card Game: "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" has a scene where Sundae's cousin Scotty shows Ronald and friends some parodies of famous paintings where the subjects are anthropomorphic dogs. The last painting shown is a spoof of Dogs Playing Poker that depicts bearded human men at the poker table.
  • Canon Foreigner: Just about every character aside from Ronald and the established McDonaldland cast didn't exist in any prior commercials and were created for the videos, the most notable new characters being Tika, Franklin and Ronald's dog Sundae.
  • Character as Himself: All six videos credit Ronald as playing himself.
  • Changed My Jumper: Averted in Have Time, Will Travel - the whole gang are inexplicably changed into period-appropriate garb for every time period they're dropped into.
  • Cheesy Moon: The live-action portion of Visitors from Outer Space ends with Ronald suggesting possible adventures he, Sundae and the others can go on the next time they journey into space, with one possibility Ronald suggests being that they go to the moon and look for cheese.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Hamburglar uses a Quizzical bear call maker near the beginning of Scared Silly, which foreshadows the revelation that the haunted house was merely the result of Franklin fooling around with the technology created by his father Dr. Quizzical.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome:
    • The Fry Kids are never seen or acknowledged again after the first video "Scared Silly".
    • Tika was dropped after her second appearance in "Birthday World".
    • Franklin and his father Dr. Quizzical disappeared after "Have Time, Will Travel".
  • Comedic Underwear Exposure: At the end of the "Day in the Life of King Murray" number in "Have Time, Will Travel," King Murray's clothes are accidentally torn off by Grimace as everyone falls. This leaves the embarrassed King in only his tighty whities in front of the entire Royal Court.
  • Covers Always Lie: The VHS cover for "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" shows a screenshot from "Scared Silly" of Ronald and friends singing in the car and includes stock art of one of the Fry Kids on the back. This is contradictory towards the fact that not only do neither the Fry Kids nor Tika appear in the video, but that the Fry Kids were dropped after the first video "Scared Silly" and Tika stopped appearing after "Birthday World".
  • Crappy Carnival: What the Birthday World theme park really is. There's even a whole song by the gang about how terrible the rides are.
  • Crying Wolf: In the third video, Hamburglar is caught giving a false alarm about aliens to distract the others while he goes on a burger-stealing spree. So, naturally, when he begins being hounded by a real flying saucer and gives a genuine distress call, they brush him off.
  • Cut Short: The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch ends with yet another announcement to look for the next video even though it was the last video ever made. It stands out from the other videos' trailers because we aren't even given the slightest bit of information on what kind of adventure the McDonaldland gang would go on next, when every previous video would give the title and basic premise of the next video.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Sundae's main role in the series.
    • Hamburglar and Birdie have their fair share of being this trope. Mostly towards each other. Surprisingly, even Ronald has moments of this in "Birthday World" when he was a toddler. To be fair, you'd be too if a creepy scientist used you and your friends as guinea pigs on your birthday. There would some snark left in the beginning of "Have Time Will Travel".
  • Delayed Reaction: After Hamburglar discovers his bear call has summoned a real bear, he bursts from the bushes screaming. Everyone responds with relief briefly before panicking and running.
  • Depraved Dwarf: Professor Pinchworm from Birthday World is a rather short man and wants to achieve world domination by turning everyone else on the planet into babies so he'd be the only adult left and therefore the only one with the freedom to do whatever he wants.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: Ronald McDonald sings the second theme song used for the last three videos.
  • Dogs Hate Squirrels: Sundae at one point tries to chase after a squirrel in "Scared Silly", only to be intimidated by a much larger squirrel in camouflage pants.
  • Dogs Love Fire Hydrants: When de-aged into a puppy in "Birthday World", Sundae remarks that he needs to find a fire hydrant when Ronald and friends panic at the realization that Professor Pinchworm is coming their way.
  • Don't Eat and Swim: At the end of "Visitors from Outer Space", Org begs his dad to let him jump into the pool. Org's dad tells him he has to wait 30 minutes because he just ate.
  • The Dragon: Blather, Captain Sally's first mate. Not that he's competent, mind you…
  • Dull Surprise: Tika, especially during her part in the songs during Scared Silly.
  • Dwindling Party: In Scared Silly, as the group gradually falls one-by-one to the mansion's traps.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: The first three videos (Scared Silly, The Legend of Grimace Island and The Visitors from Outer Space) have the live-action Framing Device start with Ronald interacting with Sundae (represented as an animatronic suit worn by Verne Troyer while dubbed over by Dee Bradley Baker) before the pair go down a pole into a ball pit to transition to the animated portion of the video. The last three videos (Birthday World, Have Time, Will Travel and The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch) change the live-action portion so that Ronald had already experienced the adventure, directly talks to the audience and runs a projector to show the story's events to the audience.
  • Embarrassing Old Photo: The home movie variant is alluded to in the ending of the live-action portion to The Legend of Grimace Island, where Birdie scolds Hamburglar for laughing at Grimace's home video of his infancy for showing Grimace wearing a diaper by reminding Hamburglar that he has an embarrassing video of running through the sprinklers (while it isn't directly explained what's embarrassing about the video, the most likely implication is that the video shows young Hamburglar running through the sprinklers naked).
  • Enfant Terrible: King Murray in "Have Time, Will Travel" is blatantly a child and has the exact temperament you'd expect from a ruler who's barely a preteen. He threatens to throw a tantrum if the knights' efforts in making him happy don't work and even has Ronald and friends sent to the dungeon for humiliating him.
  • Even the Loving Hero Has Hated Ones: Ronald as always is friendly and hardly gets mad at anyone, but becomes visibly angry when facing Professor Pinchworm in "Birthday World". It's likely because Ronald is personally enraged by Pinchworm getting the clown and his friends mixed up in the mad scientist's nefarious plot during Ronald's birthday.
  • Every Episode Ending: All six videos have the live-action portion end with Ronald McDonald telling the audience that he hopes to see them live and in person at McDonald's.
  • Everyone Laughs Ending: Nearly every episode has this. Grimace lampshades this in "Have Time, Will Travel".
    Grimace: Duh, why are we laughing?
  • Everything's Louder with Bagpipes: "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" features two jokes about bagpipe music being unbearable, with Sundae remarking he still has a headache from when Muffy McIntyre played the bagpipes and complaining that Ronald's attempt at playing the bagpipes sounds like the time his Aunt Fritzi got her tail caught in the doggy door.
  • Evil Chef: During the gang's trip in medieval times in "Have Time, Will Travel", Birdie is in danger of being baked into a pie by the royal chef, who doesn't appear to care that Birdie is a sapient avian.
  • Evil Laugh:
    • Professor Pinchworm breaks into a fit of evil laughter after just about every other sentence. It's a wonder this habit didn't blow his cover before the McDonaldland gang fell into his trap.
    • Stiles in The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch enjoys laughing maniacally a lot and even gets mad when his henchman Pip tries to interrupt him during it.
  • Exit, Pursued by a Bear: One-Eyed Sally and Blather were last seen in a rowboat, surrounded by sharks (which destroyed the oars).
  • Fear Song: In "Scared Silly", Ronald and his friends take shelter in a haunted house after it rains during their camping trip. They sing two similar songs addressing the house's creepy nature. One describes the fact that they have no other choice for shelter, while the other reassures them that they'll be fine if they stick together.
  • Feather Fingers: Birdie's wings tend to be drawn like large yellow hands with tapered fingers, and are used as such, when she's not flying.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Tika is dripping in this trope from her first few lines during Scared Silly, and nearly blows it right before The Reveal.
    • Have Time, Will Travel begins with Birdie wanting to go on a medieval adventure, Grimace wanting to go on a horseback adventure, and Hamburglar wanting to go on a "disco adventure." Three of the eras the McDonaldland gang end up going to in Dr. Quizzical's time machine are The Middle Ages, The Wild West, and McDonaldland in The '70s.
  • Formal Full Array of Cutlery: Discussed by Birdie in "Scared Silly" in response to one of the Phantom Head's riddles.
    Birdie: "Finished when your plate is full"? That's crazy! You're finished when your plate is empty, and you always start with the salad fork.
  • Fountain of Youth: Birthday World concerns a Mad Scientist's plot to Take Over the World by turning the entire world's population into helpless babies via a giant ray gun, with the McDonalds gang as the first test subjects.
  • Framing Device: All six videos have the animated portions bookended by live-action segments with Ronald McDonald, who in the first three videos have the segments consist of him interacting with an animatronic suit of Sundae as well as monitors displaying CGI animations of Tika, Hamburglar, Grimace and Birdie and transforming into an animated version of himself as he jumps into a ball pit to signify transition to the animated portion, while the last three videos instead depict live-action Ronald as having already experienced the adventure before starting a projector to show the audience the animated portion, interactions with other characters here being almost excised with the exception of Sundae's voice being heard from off-screen in "Visitors from Outer Space" and "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch".
  • The Ghost:
    • Ronald's unnamed uncle is only mentioned once in Scared Silly thanks to having a hedge maze that would give Ronald the idea on how to get out of Franklin's mirror maze. This fact may considered a Call-Back in Birthday World where a toddler Ronald uses his magic to create a hedge maze to distract Pinchworm.
    • "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" has Sundae and his cousin Scotty mention a terrible bagpipe player named Muffy McIntyre as well as Sundae mentioning an Aunt Fritzi when complaining about Ronald's skill at playing the bagpipes.
  • Going Commando: When the gang ends up in the Wild West in "Have Time, Will Travel", Birdie's outfit apparently doesn't include underwear, as made evident by a brief glimpse up her skirt when everyone jumps into a barrel to hide from the angry mob wanting to get Hamburglar. Considering that Birdie's normal apparel is a pink jumpsuit (making it impossible to determine what articles of clothing, if any, she wears underneath) and most of the time periods visited are ones where it wasn't common for women to wear underwear (i.e. prehistoric times, the medieval era and the aforementioned Wild West), it's anyone's guess whether Birdie goes without underwear normally or if she was only lacking undergarments for her Wild West ensemble.
  • Go-Karting with Bowser: One-Eyed Sally is apparently a notorious villain, but that doesn't stop the McNuggets from going along with her for the sake of being pirates.
  • Goofy Print Underwear: Hamburglar is shown to wear underwear with burgers printed on it in The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch.
  • Halloween Episode: Scared Silly is this, being a more creepy film released on October 9th, 1998. Odd in that it's also the first episode of the series.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Franklin, after being the Big Bad of the first film, becomes a Sixth Ranger to the group.
  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: Ronald arguably has two: one in the form of Sundae (who's frankly more of a roommate than a pet) and another in Grimace.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: Pinchworm winds up hit by his own "Babe-O-Matic Ray" that he was going to use on the rest of the world, in addition to being chased by the same robot dog he tried to send after Ronald and friends when they tried to escape after he de-aged them into toddlers.
  • Hollywood Prehistory: "Have Time, Will Travel" shows dinosaurs co-existing with caveman counterparts to Ronald and friends when they travel to the stone age. Hamburglar actually acknowledges that this wasn't how prehistoric times were actually like.
  • Honesty Aesop: "Visitors from Outer Space" has the moral revolve around the consequences of telling lies. Hamburglar gets under the rest of the McDonaldland gang's skin by lying to them about aliens being in McDonaldland, then ends up being taken with a family of aliens on their vacation after lying that McDonaldland is called Hamburglarland and that he is the leader. When the others come to his rescue, Hamburglar admits that he wouldn't have gotten into this mess if he didn't fib so much.
  • Hypocritical Humor: In the beginning of the third film, both Ronald and Sundae were reading newspapers and calling out on how the articles are baloney, one of those articles being "Woman Teaches Dog How To Read Newspaper".
  • I Am Big Boned: When Birdie is brought to the royal chef by King Murray's knights in "Have Time, Will Travel", the chef declares that Birdie is good and plump. She responds by objecting that he's staring at her problem area.
  • I Heard That: The closing live-action segment of "Birthday World" has Sundae complain "I heard that" after Ronald remarks that Hamburglar and trouble go together like Sundae with a chewbone. Ronald gives the defense that he was only joking.
  • I Want My Mommy!: As his contribution to the gang's "trap" rhymes during the last musical number of "Birthday World", Baby Grimace states that he wants his mommy's lap.
  • "I Want" Song: Hamburglar singing his desire to be rescued during the third video.
  • Identical Grandson: In Have Time, Will Travel, Ronald and friends encounter caveman versions of themselves during the stone age and Hamburglar is mistaken by an angry mob for his great-great-grandfather Henry H. Burglar II when the gang travel to the Wild West.
  • Idiotic Partner Confession: In "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch", Stiles tries to set up his assistant Pip as the fall guy by lying that he is the real brains of the outfit. Pip ruins it by mindlessly thanking Stiles for generously giving him all the credit for creating the robotic monster before admitting to the police that Stiles did most of the work.
  • I'll Never Tell You What I'm Telling You!: "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" has Grimace ask that Birdie not tell the others about his fear of ducks. He is relieved when Birdie answers that she didn't tell anyone about his fear, not realizing that the others just heard him admit it.
  • Imprinting: In The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch, a bunch of sheep mistake Grimace for their mother.
  • Indy Escape: The title sequence for the second half of the six videos features a clip of Ronald McDonald running from a giant bowling ball.
  • It's All My Fault:
    • Grimace feels guilty about about this in The Legend of Grimace Island that he lead the pirates to Grimace Island, although it's not really as he had no way of knowing the pirates were following them (or that the letter he received was written by the pirates and not the Grimaces).
    • Hamburglar in Birthday World when he wanted to give Ronald the best present, and gets the gang stuck with Pinchworm.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold:
    • Hamburglar is a mischievous prankster, but he still considers everyone else to be his friends.
    • Sundae always makes dry remarks about everything, but he makes it clear that he does care about Ronald.
  • Karma Houdini: Because the gang prioritize time-warping out of every time period they go to the moment they're trapped or imperiled in "Have Time, Will Travel", King Murray receives no comeuppance for sending Ronald and friends to the dungeon, the royal chef isn't punished for attempting to make a pie out of Birdie and the angry mob in the Wild West face no consequences for going after Hamburglar due to mistaking him for his ancestor Henry H. Burglar II.
  • Lampshade Hanging:
    Hamburglar: Oh, that time machine is messed up! It's got people and dinosaurs living at the same time! That's not how it was!
    • By the fifth video, Sundae dryly notes Ronald's enthusiasm for adventures that often nearly get them killed or otherwise exhausted.
    Sundae: What is it with you and adventure? I chase my tail a few times and I'm done for the day.
  • Laughably Evil: One-Eyed Sally handily defeated an entire island of Grimace's and Ronald's group with a cannon full of fish. And she's scared off by threat of tickling by feathers.
  • Lighter and Softer: The first film had a rather eerie atmosphere, despite still being light-hearted for kids, and had a slightly more complex plot with a lot of Foreshadowing throughout. The subsequent films get simpler and much more whimsical, never quite getting as creepy as Scared Silly.
  • Locked in the Dungeon: During the gang's visit to medieval times in "Have Time, Will Travel", they all wind up being sent to the dungeon by King Murray, Birdie being sent there when she agrees to entertain the king with her singing and fails miserably at doing so and the rest of the gang going to the dungeon when they put on a show for the king while trying to rescue Birdie and end up ticking King Murray off when they accidentally humiliate him in front of his subjects by exposing his underwear.
  • Magitek: What Ronald's various magical and technological skills boil down to.
  • Mailman vs. Dog: Sundae is mentioned to have chased a mailman offscreen in "Birthday World".
  • Man in a Kilt: After his pants get torn, Hamburglar spends the rest of The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch wearing a kilt. Ronald also wears a kilt in the first portion of the live-action framing device.
  • Missing Mom: Franklin is the son of a scientist named Dr. Quizzical, but his mother is nowhere to be seen and isn't even mentioned.
  • Mona Lisa Smile: "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" features the gang observing a painting that resembles a canid version of the Mona Lisa.
    Birdie: Ooh, the Mona Lhasa Apso. I like this one!
    Ronald: I've never seen a dog smile like that before.
  • Musical Chores: "Have Time, Will Travel" features the gang singing "Cleaning Up the Lab" while working to clean up Franklin's dad's lab.
  • Mythology Gag: When Ronald and friends time-travel to the 1970s in "Have Time, Will Travel", some of the gang's appearances reference their earlier depictions in the McDonaldland commercials, with Hamburglar's 1970s outfit including a necktie, Grimace wearing a green suit with shamrock-like patterns in reference to his Uncle O'Grimacey and Birdie having longer pigtails like her earliest design.
  • Nervous Wreck: Grimace is portrayed as a very timid, easily frightened worrywart in the cartoons, in addition to his typical characterization as The Ditz.
  • Nice Guy: Ronald, as always, is a friendly guy who hardly ever gets mad and doesn't hold it against his friends when they mess things up.
  • No Name Given: When the gang encounter their prehistoric ancestors in "Have Time, Will Travel", Ronald's caveman counterpart Rumfald McDumfald is the only one who is given a specific name.
  • No Song for the Wicked: The videos all have several musical numbers, but none of them are sung by any of the villains (One-Eyed Sally in "The Legend of Grimace Island", Professor Pinchworm in "Birthday World" and Stiles in "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch").
  • Noodle Incident: Sundae mentions a "chewbone incident" in response to Ronald saying that Birdie can always be counted on to do the right thing at the end of the live-action portion of "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch".
  • Nothing Is Scarier: When the group explores the mansion in Scared Silly, Grimace notices a pair of eyes watching him from behind a door. We never learn just what was watching him. Though it was ultimately revealed just to be another one of Franklin's tricks, it doesn't make the moment any less creepy.
  • Obviously Evil: The Mad Scientist, Professor Pinchworm, seems utterly incapable of controlling his maniacal cackling, even when in the midst of trying to deceive the gang. Heck, when he first approaches Hamburglar, he barely avoids introducing himself as a "world-renowned evil scientist."
  • One Phone Call: When Ronald and friends are in the medieval era in "Have Time, Will Travel", Hamburglar makes several pleas before he is thrown into the dungeon with the rest of the gang. One of the demands he makes is to get a phone call, forgetting that he's in an era long before telephones would be invented.
  • Period Piece, Modern Language: In "Have Time, Will Travel", during the segment where the gang is stuck in medieval times, Grimace accidentally pulls off King Murray's robes, leaving the king standing on the throne in nothing but his white briefs. Aside from the fact that briefs never would've been worn during medieval times (they were not manufactured until the 1930s), this is followed by having the King's knight order everyone to "peak not at his majesty's royal tighty whities." "Tighty Whities" is a derogatory term for white briefs that was not used until the 1990s, when the rise in popularity of boxer shorts and boxer briefs made white briefs seem uncool by comparison. The term certainly never would've been used by someone living in medieval times.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: Hamburglar is male and wears a blue jacket, while Birdie is female and wears a pink jumpsuit.
  • Pokémon Speak: Iam Hungry's only dialogue consists of repeatedly saying his own name in contrast to his commercial.
  • The Prankster: Hamburglar, especially in the first video, likes to pull pranks on the other characters.
  • Psychopathic Man Child: Professor Pinchworm wants to rule the world by turning everyone into toddlers and is shown at some points to not be particularly mature or stable, if his penchant for gloating and taunting is anything to go by. Assuming his tantrum over his defeat isn't a side effect of being turned into a toddler himself at the end, he also isn't mature enough to accept when he's lost.
  • Reclining Venus: During the scene in "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" where Hamburglar scares Birdie and ends up tearing his pants, a nude painting of an anthropomorphic female dog reclining is seen in the background, with drapery obscuring any parts of her anatomy that are inappropriate.
  • Recycled Soundtrack: The episodes seem to re-use music cues from another Klasky-Csupo series, Rugrats.
  • Remember the New Guy?: Ronald and the core cast are perfectly familiar with newcomer Tika, as well as Dr. Quizzical and One-Eyed Sally.
  • Replaced the Theme Tune: The series had a different theme song for the final three videos Birthday World, Have Time, Will Travel and The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch.
  • The Reveal: In Scared Silly, Tika was luring Ronald to the Quizzical mansion to see how he'd fare in Franklin's maze of riddles and puzzles. Everything in the mansion was just smoke and mirrors.
  • Revolting Rescue: When Iam Hungry saves the gang in "Visitors from Outer Space" by licking their spaceship clean of the dessert toppings Org covered it with, Birdie is grateful that they are saved, but grossed out that it was done by Iam Hungry licking the entire spaceship.
  • Schmuck Bait: In "Birthday World", Baby Hamburglar is duped into leading the rest of the gang into a trap because of a sign depicting Pinchworm pointing in the direction of the trap that reads "Ronald and Friends Hide Here".
  • Single Malt Vision: "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" has a bit where Grimace gets hit in the head and thinks that two Ronalds are asking him if he's okay.
  • Slippery Skid: Birdie tries to delay the royal chef's attempts at cooking her in "Have Time, Will Travel" by tripping him with a bowl of nuts.
  • Snarking Thanks: Hamburglar sarcastically thanks Birdie for revealing he sleeps with a teddy bear in "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch" after the McNuggets proceeded to make fun of him for his secret.
  • The Stinger: Each video would feature a trailer for the next video at the end of the feature and before the credits. Yes, even the last video.
  • Stock Ness Monster: The Monster of McDonaldland Loch is a very obvious pastiche of the Loch Ness Monster.
  • Stock Sound Effect: A high-pitched cucco crowing noise can be heard in the first opening sequence.
  • Stylistic Suck: The old scary dinosaur movies Sundae watches are deliberately cheesy.
  • Super-Breath: Ronald is shown to have powerful exhalation in "Birthday World" and "Have Time Will Travel".
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: One-Eyed Sally appears to be a substitute for defunct McDonaldland mascot Captain Crook, primarily in that both characters are pirates who antagonize Ronald and friends.
  • Talking Animal: Sundae the dog is able to speak.
  • Theme Song: There were two different theme songs, one for the first three videos where a female singer sang about what exciting new adventures are in store for Ronald McDonald and his friends in this new series of animated videos, with the other three videos having a different theme song sung by Ronald himself that still has the same theme of spelling out the series' premise to the audience.
  • Time Travel: The main plot in Have Time, Will Travel concerns the McDonaldland gang using Dr. Quizzical's time machine to travel to four different time periods (prehistoric times, the Middle Ages, the Wild West and the 1970s).
  • Toilet Humour: "Birthday World" has a few potty jokes after the gang are de-aged into toddlers and infants, which includes Sundae as a puppy wondering if he's still housebroken and immediately putting a newspaper beneath himself, Sundae excusing himself after observing they're surrounded by bushes and grinning mischievously after realizing what he just said (implying he intends to pee on the bushes) and Ronald's addressing of the urgency that they thwart Pinchworm's scheme ending with him bringing up that Tika is on the verge of dirtying her diaper.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Grimace and Hamburglar have their moments. Hamburglar's most notable instant is using a bear call in "Scared Silly" in hopes of getting Ronald to use his magic by convincing him that there is a bear nearby, not realizing that the call would attract a real bear that actually would cause everyone harm.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Franklin, after his Heel–Face Turn. He goes from a bratty Control Freak to a kind, if uninteresting protagonist.
  • Toon Transformation: The Framing Device for the first three videos have Ronald and Sundae go through this, sliding down poles into a ball pit and transforming into cartoon versions of themselves to signify the video transitioning to the animated portion.
  • Two of Your Earth Minutes: Org's father in "Visitors from Outer Space" explains to Hamburglar that the family's vacation will only last a Kreplick, which he clarifies lasts 3,000 Earth years.
  • Uncertain Doom: "Birthday World" ends with Professor Pinchworm being turned into a toddler by his own Babe-O-Matic Ray and left at the mercy of his own robot dog Cogster. Since he's never heard from again afterwards, it's not clear where Pinchworm managed to get away from Cogster unscathed or met a grisly end.
  • Uncool Undies: In "Have Time, Will Travel," King Murray is inadvertently stripped of his clothes, leaving him on the throne in his tighty whities in front of his entire royal court. His head knight orders everyone to cover their eyes, telling them to "peak not at his majesty's royal tighty whities." This implies that the king's embarrassment is exacerbated by his choice to wear "uncool" tighty whities instead of a "cooler" type of underwear (such as boxers, boxer briefs, etc.)
  • Unmanly Secret: Birdie reveals that Hamburglar sleeps with a teddy bear in "The Monster O'McDonaldland Loch", with Hamburglar rather peeved that Birdie let his secret slip.
  • Vague Age: It is difficult to determine how old Birdie and Hamburglar are supposed to be in this continuity. The evidence suggesting that they may be kids like Franklin, Tika and Org includes Hamburglar being around Franklin, Tika and Org's height, Birdie being even shorter than how she appears in the standard McDonaldland advertisements and Visitors from Outer Space showing Birdie attend a karate class where the other students are clearly children (assuming Birdie isn't simply the token adult student of the class like Johnny Bravo). The evidence in favor of Birdie and Hamburglar being adults includes neither of them being indicated to attend school or live under adult supervision and Birthday World showing them de-age into toddlerhood like the rest of the McDonaldland gang as opposed to babies who can barely walk and talk like Tika and Franklin (which suggests that Ronald and friends are supposed to be around the same age).
  • Vile Villain, Saccharine Show:
    • Professor Pinchworm's actually got a pretty nasty evil plan when it comes down to it. He wants to rule the world by turning the world's population besides himself into infants, leaving him as the only adult. He's basically asking for the extinction of humanity, who will be reduced to relatively helpless infants. And he also has a robotic attack dog that not only tries to eat the younger gang, but presumably eats him at the end of the short (and after he had been de-aged into infancy himself).
    • The bear from Scared Silly may also count, considering he was happy to chase down Ronald and the gang presumably to maul or kill them.
    • Another example would be King Murray's royal chef in "Have Time, Will Travel", who attempts to bake Birdie into a pie with no regard for the fact that she is a sapient avian.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: The gang acknowledges this as their relationship with Hamburglar. On a more direct note, Hamburglar is this with Birdie; most of their interactions boil down to the two bickering and taking snarky jabs at each other, especially when aged down to toddlers in Birthday World.
  • "Wanted!" Poster: During the gang's trip to the Wild West in "Have Time, Will Travel", they realize that the angry mob has mistaken Hamburglar for his great-great-grandfather Henry H. Burglar II by coming across the latter's wanted poster.
  • We Are as Mayflies: If Org's family in "Visitors from Outer Space" consider 3,000 years a short vacation time, then their species obviously lives way longer than humans do.
  • Weather Manipulation: It's implied that Ronald can do this in "The Legend of Grimace Island", thanks to his Super-Breath.
  • X-Ray Sparks: In The Legend of Grimace Island, Ronald at one point gets struck by lightning and has his skeleton visible.
  • You Don't Look Like You: All of the established McDonaldland characters are redesigned to some extent so that they better fit the standard Klasky-Csupo art style, but Hamburglar's is the most drastic. Except for retaining his iconic hat and at least having his shirt retain his trademark black-and-white stripes, he is almost unrecognizable due to looking less like his usual depiction and more like a distant relative of Chuckie Finster.
  • You're Insane!: The McNuggets outright tell Pinchworm to his face that he's mad for planning to achieve world domination by turning everyone else on the planet into infants in "Birthday World".
  • You Won't Like How I Taste: In "Have Time, Will Travel", Birdie tries to convince the royal chef not to go through with cooking her.
    Birdie: Wait! I'm not tasty! I'm salinized, I'm gamy and, truth be told, kinda chewy!


Video Example(s):


Birdie Isn't Tasty

Out of desperation to keep the royal chef from cooking her in "Have Time, Will Travel", Birdie tries to trip the chef up with some nuts and subsequently resorts to making several claims of being unappetizing.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (3 votes)

Example of:

Main / YouWontLikeHowITaste

Media sources: