The family of the late academy-award winning actor, Ernest Borgnine, is suing the makers of the popular expectorant Mucinex, for their continued use of a green spokesblob that lawyers argue is a clear appropriation of the actor’s face and body type.
Mucinex’ parent company, Reckitt-Benstiller, has relied upon the phlegm character in both TV and print since 2004 to communicate the unpleasantry and discomfort caused by the common chest cold.
“It’s unfortunate that these marketers would take my grandfather’s wonderfully lumpy face and unique looks and equate that with some pesky phlegm wad than needs to be disposed of,” said granddaughter Eloise Borgnine of Decateur IL,, who requested anonymity at the behest of her lawyers advice. “And we plan on fully fighting these guys until they either retire the phlegm man or make significant amendments to his face. I mean, right down to that silly little hat teetering on the Phlegm’s head…that’s a grandpa Ernie trademark too. He had such a difficult time finding caps that fit his enormous head, what with his cranial gigantism, but they’ve managed to turn it into a cute little accessory.”
The law firm of Yastremsky, Fisk & Burleson will be handling the case. A decision is expected by mid summer.