Chester Cheetah

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Chester Cheetah
Chester Cheetah.png
First appearance1986
Voiced byJoel Murray (1986–1997)
Pete Stacker (1997–2000)
Chris Phillips (2000–2008)
Johnny Michaels (5 spots; early 2000s)
Christopher Murney (2006)
Adam Leadbeater (2008–2017)
Max Koch (2017–present)
In-universe information
SpeciesCheetah
GenderMale
OccupationMascot of Cheetos

Chester Cheetah is a fictional character and the official mascot for Frito-Lay's Cheetos brand snacks as well as Chester's Snacks which consists of flavored fries, popcorn and puffcorn.[1]

History[edit]

1986–2003: Traditional animation[edit]

Cheetos' original mascot was the Cheetos Mouse,[2] who debuted in 1971 and disappeared around 1979. In 1986, Chester Cheetah was created by Brad Morgan, who art directed the commercials and designed the character, and Stephen Kane who wrote the original scripts for television commercials. The original 24-frame animation was done by Richard Williams. After Chester's introduction, the sly, smooth voiced cheetah began starring in more commercials and eventually became Cheetos' official mascot. He used the slogans "It's not easy being cheesy" and "The cheese that goes crunch!" from 1986 to 1997",[citation needed] until it became "Dangerously cheesy!" from 1997 onward.[3]

From the mid-1980s to early 2000s, television adverts often featured Chester's desperate attempts to eat other people's Cheetos. The self-described "hip kitty" would often speak in rhyme and sneak up on an unsuspecting stranger at a beach or public park. The result would always involve cartoon violence in the vein of Looney Tunes, such as Chester riding a motorcycle off a bridge, getting thrown to the top of a coliseum, or plunging miles through the air to unwittingly grab a hang-gliding bodacious babe, only to cast her aside in favor of Cheetos. These spots were first directed by Keith Van Allen and later by Cow and Chicken creator David Feiss.

In 1992, Chester's own television program called Yo! It's the Chester Cheetah Show! was under development for the Fox Kids Saturday morning fall lineup. However, an ethics debate erupted over Chester's status as an advertising character, and likely due to the protests of Action for Children's Television, the show was prevented from airing.[citation needed] Their petition marked the first time that the organization protested something before it actually became a program. In 2019 a petition appeared on change.org for someone to make the series happen sometime for Nickelodeon.

Chester's character underwent slight revamping in 1997. With the introduction of the "Dangerously cheesy!" slogan and Pete Stacker replacing Joel Murray as his voice actor (who would later be replaced by veteran voice actor Chris Phillips in 2000), Chester began appearing in live-action/animated hybrid advertisements where he entered the real world. During this time, the ads began portraying him in a less antagonistic manner; he went from being bumbling to suave and cool, and he actually managed to eat Cheetos unlike in the older commercials.

2003–08: Jump to CGI[edit]

In the United States in 2003, Chester was rendered as a computer generated character, but he continued to appear in his old animation style in other countries.

One particular commercial series in 2006 had Chester defeating rival Chef Pierre in a baking contest to create Baked Cheetos. This led to an advertising campaign titled Chester Goes Undercover, in which Pierre, disguised in silhouette, steals the Baked Cheetos recipe, and Chester gives chase by finding clues that lead him to Pierre's minions: Twisty McGee, Flamin' Hot Fiona, and The Cruncher. Upon confrontation with Chef Pierre, Chester signaled his agents to appear and apprehend Pierre and his minions, recovering the stolen recipe. These commercials were linked to an interactive online campaign.

2008–present: OrangeUnderground redesign[edit]

By 2008, Cheetos took aim at an adult demographic with a series of ads featuring the mascot in promotion of OrangeUnderground.com.[4] In this incarnation, Chester (originally a puppet) is computer generated but now with photorealistic textures/detail; he speaks with a mid-Atlantic accent and encourages people to use their Cheetos in acts of revenge or to solve problems (e.g. plug the nostrils of a snoring man or dirty the cubicle of a neat freak), sometimes referring to himself as "Papa Chester". In this incarnation, Chester is voiced by Adam Leadbeater.[5]

Creation[edit]

According to an article in The New York Times, DDB Needham Worldwide was responsible for the creation of Chester.[6] However, an episode of Unwrapped claims that the mascot was created by Hawley Pratt, the same man behind the Pink Panther.

Merchandise[edit]

Chester starred in two video games produced by Kaneko for the Sega Genesis and Super NES: Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool in 1992 and Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest in 1993.[7][8]

Chester Cheetah makes a cameo appearance in Archie Comics' Sonic the Hedgehog series[citation needed].

A promotional plush doll was produced, featuring dark sunglasses and lace-up shoes. It was 18" tall. A 10" doll is still available today.[citation needed]

Video games[edit]

Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool
Chester Cheetah - Too Cool to Fool Coverart.png
Cover art (Super NES)
Developer(s)System Vision
Publisher(s)Kaneko[9]
Platform(s)SNES, Sega Mega Drive
ReleaseSuper NES
Sega Genesis
Genre(s)2D action platformer[10]
Mode(s)Single-player

Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool[edit]

Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool is a 1992 video game that starred Cheetos mascot Chester Cheetah, only released in North America.

The game is composed of simple side-scrolling platform levels. On each level there is a hidden "scooter" part. In game, Chester can dash and stun enemies by jumping on their heads.

The instruction manual contains a popular Engrish recognized by many gamers: "As is Chester Cheetah way, is one-person play." The Engrish spawned due to bad translations and an attempt to rhyme in anapestic tetrameter like Dr. Seuss.[original research?] No actual mention of the Cheetos snack food is made in the game, but Chester's health points are represented as Cheetos Paws.

Electronic Games gave the SNES version 82%.[11] Consoles+ magazine gave it a score of 77%.[12]

Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest[edit]

Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest
Chester Cheetah - Wild Wild Quest Coverart.png
Cover art (Genesis)
Developer(s)Kaneko
Publisher(s)Kaneko
Platform(s)Super NES, Mega Drive/Genesis
Release1993 (Genesis)
March, 1994 (SNES)
Genre(s)Platform
Mode(s)Single player

Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest is a 1993 video game by Kaneko for the Super Nintendo and Sega Genesis. The game stars Cheetos mascot Chester Cheetah and is the sequel to Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool.[8][7]

The player dies in one hit unless they have a cheese puff on hand.[13][14] Collecting 100 paws per level results in a new continue,[13] and there are three difficulty levels.[13] Some stages involve controlling vehicles, like a car or a motorcycle.[15]

The game was shown at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in 1994.[16]

After breaking out of a zoo, Chester Cheetah is going to Hip City when Mean Eugene tears up his map into 10 pieces and scatters it across the United States. Chester Cheetah must then travel across America to recover the map.[17][14] Chester visits fictional cities in states such as Nebraska, California, Florida, Arkansas, and Alaska.[14][13][15]

The game was released only in America.

Both the Genesis and SNES versions of the game received mixed reviews. Electronic Gaming Monthly reviewed both the versions.[18] They gave the SNES version a score of 28 out of 50, and the Genesis version 24 out of 40. The reviewers praised the graphics and animations but cited poor control as a negative.[18]

Sega Visions gave it a score of 12 out of 20, and gave it strong score for sound and music.[13]

Nintendo Power reviewed the SNES version and stated it had stiff controls, low challenge, but had good audio and graphics.[19] They gave it an average score of 3.3/5.[19]

GamePro magazine called it "High on the list of unnecessary sequels" and said "like the cheese puffs themselves, Chester might sound like a tempting idea, but you'll get no nourishment and you'll soon be hungry again".[15]

Just Dance 4[edit]

Chester Cheetah made a cameo appearance in the background of the redeemable version of the song "You Make Me Feel..." featured on the Just Dance 4 video game.[20] The track could be unlocked with a code found in a Cheetos bag, having exclusive traits on its background like a throne, and Chester Cheetah appearing sometimes on the back pillars and dancing along with the coach.[20] Since the offer expired, the map it became available as a downloadable track for all consoles in all regions, however, without the special characteristics, equivalent to following games said map is featured in, such as Just Dance Now and Just Dance Unlimited.[20] Along with the redeemable version, a commercial was released to promote it.[21]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "CHESTER'S® FLAMIN' HOT® Fries Flavored Corn & Potato Snacks". www.fritolay.com. Retrieved 21 June 2018.
  2. ^ Whiffer [brandon, Waffle (March 31, 2006). "[:::] Waffle Whiffer Zone: The Cheetos Mouse".
  3. ^ "DANGEROUSLY CHEESY Trademark of Frito-Lay North America, Inc. Serial Number: 75226133 :: Trademarkia Trademarks". trademark.trademarkia.com.
  4. ^ Stevenson, Seth (March 17, 2008). "The delightfully creepy new Cheetos ads". Slate Magazine.
  5. ^ "Home". www.adamleadbeater.com.
  6. ^ Elliott, Stuart (March 5, 1992). "THE MEDIA BUSINESS: ADVERTISING; Commercial Cartoon Furor Grows" – via NYTimes.com.
  7. ^ a b "Chester Cheetah Leaves His Cheesy Fingerprints On Plants Vs. Zombies". Game Informer. Retrieved 2018-07-28.
  8. ^ a b "Seven Corporate Mascots Who You Never Thought Would Get Their Own Game". Game Informer. Retrieved 2018-07-28.
  9. ^ a b Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool information (Super NES) at GameFAQs
  10. ^ Chester Cheetah: Too Cool to Fool information at MobyGames
  11. ^ "Electronic Games 1993-01". archive.org.
  12. ^ "Super NES Review". Consoles+ (18): 124–125. March 1993.
  13. ^ a b c d e "Chester Cheetah... Wild Quest". Sega Visions: 84. February 1994.
  14. ^ a b c "Wild Wild Quest Fact File". Electronic Gaming Monthly (53): 271. December 1993.
  15. ^ a b c Lance, Boyle (March 1994). "ProReviews". GamePro: 59.
  16. ^ "CES Showtime". Mean Machines Sega (17): 12. March 1994.
  17. ^ "Chester Cheetah: Wild Wild Quest". SNES N-Force Magazine (9): 10. February 1994.
  18. ^ a b Carpenter, Danyon; Manuel, Al; Semrad, Ed; Sushi-X; Wiegand Mike (January 1994). "Chester Chetah: Wild Wild Quest Review". Electronic Gaming Monthly (54): 43–47. ISSN 1058-918X.CS1 maint: uses authors parameter (link)
  19. ^ a b "Chester Cheetah: Wild Quest". Nintendo Power (58): 105. March 1994.
  20. ^ a b c "You Make Me Feel..." Just Dance Wiki. Retrieved 2020-07-13.
  21. ^ "You Make Me Feel..." Just Dance Wiki. Retrieved 2020-07-13.