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December 5, 2008

Wikipedia: Costumed character

Filed under: — admin @ 5:36 pm
Millie, once costumed character mascot of the City of Brampton in Ontario, Canada, is now the Brampton Arts Council's representative.

Millie, once costumed character mascot of the City of Brampton in Ontario, Canada, is now the Brampton Arts Council’s representative.

The term costumed character sometimes refers to a costume that covers the performer’s face. These range from theme park “walk-around” or “meetable” characters, the mascots of corporations, schools, or sports teams, some novelty act performers, to personal fursuits. Some costumes cover the performer’s face; others, especially those in theme parks, may leave the performer’s face visible.

In theme parks

They are intended to add to the fantasy experience by enabling visitors to encounter and interact with fictional characters, such as mascots for the company. Meetable characters that have the performer’s face visible are allowed to speak (usually following a script by the people who train the performers), while characters that have their faces covered are not allowed to speak and can only communicate through pantomime.

They are a major feature of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, where the most ubiquitous of them is Mickey Mouse, but a wide variety of characters from different media franchises are portrayed at various parks. For example, Disney parks feature characters from their animated movies; Six Flags parks feature Time-Warner’s Looney Tunes cartoons and DC Comics superhero characters;[1]; Cedar Point, Knott’s Berry Farm, and other Cedar Fair parks feature Peanuts characters;[2][3] and Kings Island, California’s Great America and Canada’s Wonderland features Nickelodeon characters.[4][5] Some theme parks create their own meetable characters.

The characters are portrayed by park employees in costume. Some of the costumes consist of clothing and makeup (e.g. Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, Batman), while those for non-human characters generally conceal the performer entirely and include a full-head mask (e.g. Donald Duck, Goofy, Bugs Bunny, Snoopy). Park employee regulations are careful to prevent visitors from seeing performers out of character, and in the case of more elaborate costumes, to be seen “with their head off”.

On television

Current shows featuring a costumed character puppet include Big Bird of Sesame Street, Barney from Barney and Friends, and Bear of Bear in the Big Blue House. Less complicated characters include Hip Hop Harry or RAGGS Kids Club Band.

Older examples include New Zoo Revue, H.R. Pufnstuf, Banana Splits, and British series Gophers!

References

  1. ^ Six Flags entertainment website
  2. ^ Camp Snoopy at Cedar Point
  3. ^ Camp Snoopy at Knott’s Berry Farm
  4. ^ Nickelodeon Universe at Kings Island
  5. ^ Nickelodeon Central at California’s Great America

This text comes from Wikipedia. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. For a complete list of contributors for this article, visit the corresponding history entry on Wikipedia.

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