I'm not sure I agree with Fast Company's theory that the best Olympics have the worst mascots, mostly because I can't remember which Olympics were which. I mean, every Olympics I've ever seen has blended into a hazy melange of ski jumps and cute girls and either opening or closing ceremonies that seemed to focus on huge, vaguely sinister figural apparati being erected in stadiums while bad music played. But: If Fast Company is correct, the 2012 London Olympics are going to be awesome. Meet Mandeville and Wenlock, two shiny steel-ingot-based life forms:
We were created from the last two drops of British steel used for the London 2012 Olympic Stadium. That's why we're so shiny, reflecting the people, places and things we meet along the way as we travel around the UK. You might see yourself reflected if we meet you!
Yes: They have their own website.
You could argue that there's something charming about a country whose industrial glory days ended 100 years ago choosing steel ingots to represent itself. But the UK has made a rookie mistake here, because mascots made by animating inanimate objects are almost always terrifying. Check out Neve and Gliz (Turin 2006), a humanized ice cube and snowball, and tell me you won't have nightmares tonight. Britain should have stuck with animals, like we did in 2002 (Salt Lake City), with the cheery, cartoony Hare, Coyote & Bear. Animals are cute. People like 'em. Okay, maybe not coyotes so much. But Yogi? Bugs? Q.E.D., London Olympic Committee. Q.E.D.