Clumsy White Bear mascot falls on ice and into our hearts

They’ve been laughing, too. The folks behind the viral video of a guy in a white bear costume—falling, falling, and falling again—have enjoyed hearing from people laughing all over the world.

In case you’ve been hibernating, unlike polar beers (which do not hibernate), a video of outtakes from a car commercial has been shared millions of times. White Bear Mitsubishi, a dealership in White Bear Lake, was behind the commercial, and released outtakes of its white-bear mascot struggling with gravity, hindered by freshly manicured ice.

“The ice was freshly Zamboni’d, which is super slick. And the bottom of the bear’s paws in the bear suit is really slippery, and he just kept falling and falling,” Richard Herod III, the general manager at White Bear Mitsubishi, told Fox 9. “And at the end, that face plant, we were like we should probably look at the blooper reel to see what we had.”

The white bear has been featured in the dealership’s ads for more than five years, and numerous employees have donned the furry costume. And the costume itself has changed.

Herod said he posted the outtakes on Dec. 23, and the video soon gained watchers, with a big boost when Bette Midler shared it. “I was like maybe Bette Midler is the White Bear’s wings.”

Herod credits the video’s success to two factors. First, it’s just funny.

“Obviously, there’s something hysterical about a huge bear having a face plant on the ice,” Herod said. “I think people were just ready for a good laugh, and slap stick is kind of where it’s at.”

And second, Herod thinks people needed something to distract them from the polarizing past month.

“It’s kind of cool to have brought so much joy to so many people.”

Herod says the most common question he gets: Is the bear is okay? Yes. He also gets asked: Are customers asking about the video? Yes.

“It’s been crazy. We’ve had phone calls and emails from not just around the Twin Cities, but all around the U.S., and even all around the world,” Herod said. “We’ve had journalists from Germany, Switzerland, the U.K. calling us about our white bear falling on ice.”