English football isn’t always known for its family friendliness but the West Ham United Football Club (known as the Hammers) in East London took a step in that direction Saturday by adding another mascot to sports pantheon of cute and fuzzy mascots.
The Hammers' new mascot, Hammerhead (at right), isn’t a shark but, yes, it is a hammer. A dancing, showboating hammer. Hammerhead had something to strut about Saturday as his team topped Barnsley F.C. Tykes 1-0. (And it’s not really nice to pick on tykes, is it?)
The team’s fans, though, weren’t sure what to make of Hammerhead, according to Metro.co.uk. On one fan forum, the site notes, one commenter stated, “Rarely have I been so embarrassed at Upton Park” while another wrote, “I personally thought it was much more entertaining than the game.”
And on another fan forum, WestHamonline.net, one poster wrote, “Sure it was a bit cheesy and comical but unlike most pre-match or halftime entertainment, it did make people pay attention and the kids enjoyed it and surely that's what matters.”
West Ham, of course, is looking to also make some extra coin from the addition of its new mascot and already is selling mugs and rubber magnets with its likeness on them. Don’t worry, kids. Hammerhead toys are coming.
The club clearly had a good time coming up with the backstory of Hammerhead, who, according to the club’s website, sprung to life when a bolt of lightning hit the Thames Iron Works (the former home of West Ham). Hammerhead also has all the skills of some of the club’s greatest players, making one wonder why they don’t just put him out on the pitch rather than strutting on the sidelines.