How Grubhub customers are being tricked into ordering Chuck E. Cheese

When you think of Chuck E. Cheese, what comes to mind? Fun childhood memories of birthday parties, games, and fistfuls of prize tickets (approximately 10,000 of which could be traded in for a pack of gum)? Or does the name conjure up an interminable, slow-torture death by a thousand singing vermin from being forced to attend (or host) those same parties as an adult? If you're a gamer, Chuck E. Cheese will most likely bring to mind thoughts of everybody's favorite jump scare-o-rama, Five Nights at Freddy's.

The one thing you probably don't associate with Chuck E. Cheese, however, is pizza. Well, yes, they do sell it, since they have to feed something to the hordes of sugar-rushing party-goers who can't survive on birthday cake alone, but Chuck E. Cheese pizza is more the kind of thing that you eat because it's there — and perhaps because you have to stuff something in your mouth to keep from screaming — than anything that anybody anywhere has ever had a craving for.

Well, that's bad news for the franchise during these days of pandemic-prompted shutdowns. They can't deliver their games or animatronics door-to-door (and thank goodness for that — that's the stuff of true nightmares, to open your door and see a 6-foot-tall, T-shirt-wearing rat), but when they tried to keep their business afloat by delivering the one thing they can still provide, their pizza had few willing takers. What's a rodent to do? Resort to subterfuge, of course.

A Grubhub-listed pizzeria by any other name... might be Chuck E. Cheese in disguise

One Redditor in Philadelphia decided she'd do what we've all been urged to do once the nation's restaurants started closing their doors — she chose to support a small, local restaurant by placing a delivery order. When her Grubhub order arrived, however, she found out that Pasqually's Pizza & Wings is anything but a Philly mom and pop pizzeria. What it is, is an alias for a pizzeria that, in its other incarnation, bears the name of a mascot whose full name is Charles Entertainment Cheese (via Insider). A little further investigation unearthed the fact that "Pasqually" is another member of the Chuck E. Cheese cast of creepy characters — in fact, he plays a significant role in Chuck E.'s sad backstory, first attempting to murder the orphaned mouse and then exploiting his singing talent in order to flog pizzas.

When contacted by Food & Wine, a CEC spokesman characterized the company's rebranding of their delivery services came from a "desire to create a premium pizza while staying true to the CEC brand." Well, it may or may not be "premium" (or even all that different from the regular product), but it sure isn't local, since Grubhub lists dozens of Pasqually's locations throughout the U.S. If you really want to make sure that Chuck E.'s empire survives the pandemic, though, you now know where to place your next pizza order.