Who will be our post-Zizmor subway mascot?

by -
Can anyone hope to fill these shoes? via Yelp user Jice E.

After nearly 40 years in the business of making people look different than they normally look, Dr. Zizmor, the most culturally-referenced dermatologist in New York City, is retiring. Even though nothing can truly stop the driving arrow of time (as evidenced by Zizmor’s current appearance), the good doctor had us all mystified and even comforted by his gaudy, rainbow-colored ads that adorned the subway cars of New York City.

So, who will come to be New York City’s next bastion of banner advertising in Zizmor’s wake? Whose mug will manage to interrupt the ever-increasing streams of Seamless ads and Oscar health insurance puns as our new mascot? The Brokelyn staff put their heads together and came up with a few ideas.

Dan Smith: The seemingly immortal man Who Will Teach You Guitar doesn’t just have his own music lesson business; he’s got a Wikipedia page dedicated to his iconography, prolific in bodegas and on community bulletin boards everywhere. We foresee him moving up in the world now that Zizmor’s gone, and taking out an equally low budget series of subway ads to up his game.


Of course, in Dr. Zizmor's 'after' version of this ad, these bubbles would be gone. via CUNY
Of course, in Dr. Zizmor’s ‘after’ version of this ad, these bubbles would be gone. via CUNY

The CUNY Fellowship winners: By this point, there are too many successful CUNY fellows to reduce to a single recurring poster. But, as one of our staff points out, “They have already had a taste of success,” and so any one graduate might rise easily to the occasion if called upon to take Zizmor’s place.


We also don't know what the doctor does yet, but we can't stop thinking about chocolate for some reason. via CUNY
We don’t know what the doctor does, but we’re getting really hungry. via CUNY

Dr. FEEDZMORE: Ah, the one-time Snickers campaign in 2009 that captured hearts everywhere. Even though there’s no photo yet available of this mythical doctor, we can be sure that his practice is legitimate, because it’s backed by a name-brand chocolate company (which by now is more than we can say for the Mast Brothers).


The nutcracker man: He may not realize his potential reach, but the A train’s friendly late-night salesman who hawks boozy juices, DVDs and loosies could definitely increase his hold on the commuter market if he invested in some subway ads that featured his smiling, technicolor face mid-scream, holding up his magical concoction that makes your life so much better on the way home. The copy could even be as straightforward as his oral spiel: “Wake up, drink, eat, drink, smoke, drink.”


The king and queen of chastity. Photo by AHF, via The Guardian
The king and queen of chastity, coming to a poster near you. Photo by AHF, via The Guardian

The terrifying new faces of STI awareness: You’ve already caught sight of these two silhouettes facing each other, almost like a phonetics tutorial but gone all wrong. Placing words like “Tinder” and “Chlamydia” adjacent to one another, these posters sponsored by the AIDS Healthcare Foundation are enough to scare you abstinent for the rest of your days. But maybe their influence is lasting enough to land them a spot in the annals of MTA advertising, and we’ll learn to love these shadow-people of unprotected sex.


And he could learn to love a whole city, if we let him. via Wang Post
And he could learn to love a whole city, if we let him. via Wang Post

Lucas: He doesn’t just use Venmo, you know. Lucas also does magic, buys a round, takes the stairs, has dreams, and does a whole lot of other stuff we should all be so ambitious as to do in our daily life. He’s the perfect candidate for a citywide hero. And Lucas may not have a facelift business, or testimonials from any of his friends, but he definitely has friends. Otherwise he wouldn’t have anyone to buy a round for.


#StandwithSI. via NPR
Now that Zizmor’s out, we #StandwithSI. via NPR

The birth control you left in Staten Island: It’s a timeless message about the hot messes we all are. And even though it’s uncomfortably skewed towards a particular borough, the pill we left in Staten Island would do us well plastered all over NYC’s subways for years to come — if only to get people to stop complaining about seeing the word “period” on subways.

Got any suggestions for the new mascot? Tell us in the comments section!

Mascot candidates provided by Lilly Vanek, Eric Silver, Tim Donnelly, David Colon and Sam Corbin

Related Articles


A legendary Philadelphia boxer who looks a lot like Sylvester Stallone once told the son of his most famous rival that "time takes everyone...


http://youtu.be/BwOoYHNFdA0 We've all seen New York City's ubiquitous "Dan Smith Will Teach You Guitar" flyers hanging up in subway stations and on phone booths, but...


Before it rode off into the TV sunset, 30 Rock was known for a being sitcom that was in love with New York. We...


Leave a Reply