At first blush, the mascot’s name is rather endearing: Mr. Balls.
But for those who might find that descriptive title offensive, the scrotum-shaped character also answers to “Senhor Testiculo” in Brazil, where he is a spokes-thing for a group that is seeking to raise awareness of testicular cancer research.
An important mission, granted, and the rather graphic creation sponsored by Brazil’s Association of Personal Assistance for Cancer has done its job by propelling the issue into the media spotlight.
“Both children and adults loved taking pictures with the mascot, a friendly snowman in the shape of testicle,” says the non-profit organization’s website.
You’ve got to admire Mr. Balls’ bravery to let it all hang out. The character’s eyes have a kind of bedroom quality, and, thanks to the positive response to Sponge Bob’s dental occlusion, Mr. Balls’ buck teeth are almost fashionable.
Hundreds of men die from testicular cancer every year, so the effort behind Mr. Balls is no laughing matter. The American Cancer Society said recently that occurrences of testicular cancer are increasing, both domestically and elsewhere.