According to USA Today, Mr. Six is the creation of Doner Advertising of Southfield, Michigan. The success of the ad became such that Six Flags toured the vintage bus featured in the ad to all of its 31 parks and sold t-shirts based on the Mr. Six advertisement. Mr. Six also appeared on the nationally broadcast morning show Good Morning America.
Meme and CancellationEdit
Soon after the character's introduction in television commercials, Mr. Six became an established pop-culture meme. Parodies of the commercials appeared on television shows and on video sites such as YouTube, while media outlets and blogs attempted to unmask the identity of the actor, also noting his striking resemblance to legendary Hollywood agent Irving "Swifty" Lazar and KKK member Edgar Ray Killen. The popularity of the character continued even after Six Flags officially cancelled the ad campaign.
After the character's cancellation, as a prank, a dummy representing a dead Mr. Six appeared in the "Brutal Planet" haunted house at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom in Vallejo, California during Fright Fest 2006.
Mr. Six impersonatorsEdit
On July 9, 2004, Six Flags Great America held a contest to find the best person who could impersonate the new "Ambassador of Fun" Mr. Six and dance like him. The reward would be $2,500 cash and other small prizes. About 200 people dressed in tuxedos and red bow ties went out onto the stage and danced. The winner of the contest was 13-year-old Jordan Pope.
Jim Crowley, Six Flags Great America marketing director, said, "Jordan truly embodies the spirit of Six Flags!...He had Mr. Six's unique dance moves down to a science, the crowd went wild when he took the stage!"
Retirement and RevivalEdit
On November 29, 2005, Daniel Snyder, owner of the NFL Washington Redskins football franchise, took over Six Flags and on the very next day announced the retirement of the ad campaign. Snyder said that Mr. Six was "pointless." Mr. Six and the "It's Playtime!" motto would be dropped and Six Flags' next ad campaign would be called "Friendly, Clean, Fast, Safe, Service." Despite this, he was still prominently featured at Six Flags theme parks on merchandise until his revival in 2009.
On February 2, 2009, Mr. Six began appearing in place of the previous unnamed Asian character in the "More Flags, More Fun" ads on the Six Flags website. In March 2009, Six Flags announced the return of Mr. Six to promote their parks 2009 season opening in numerous press releases. Mr. Six also began appearing in a number of new television commercials where he speaks for the first time, alongside his sidekick Little Six, a much younger version of himself.
The character is not universally popular, however, being regarded as "creepy" by some, and the character's reintroduction criticized.
Mr. Six was parodied on a 2008 episode of Saturday Night Live hosted by Tina Fey. In the sketch, NBC has over-scheduled The Apprentice and dozens of spinoffs have been created, including one in which the contestants are TV commercial characters. Donald Trump (played by Darrell Hammond) asks Mr. Six (played by Amy Poehler) if he would dance for him. Mr. Six says he'd rather not, but the skit ends with Mr. Six next to Trump dancing to "We Like to Party."
Mr. Six is also parodied in the Robot Chicken episode "Celebrity Rocket". In a sketch, Mr. Six appears at the site of car accident and whisks all involved to Six Flags (including a woman, a cop, and a fatality in a body bag.). At one point he dances behind the woman in a very provocative manner causing the cop to yank him away from her. At the end, Mr. Six begins driving them away from Six Flags only to cause another fatal accident. As the bus passengers look on at the horrifying results, Mr. Six begins dancing again. The cop gets annoyed and shoots him in the head.