Ford's now defunct Mercury division and I have a lot in common. My first car was a Mercury Comet. My wife was driving a bubble back Mercury Capri RS when we first met. My brother drove a 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis back in the early '90's. Most importantly Mercury and I are both "middle children". My wife is a middle child too.
Being a middle child can be tough. At worst you're either neglected and ignored or unfairly put in the cross hairs of demanding parents who are not happy that you're not exactly like the fair haired, much prized older sibling. At best, you're the star of the family rising above the train wreck that is your older brother or sister and becoming the solid example for how to get life done for your younger sib that your parents wished their first born was. Good or bad it's a different ride for us middlers. My wife and I came through fairly unscathed from the rigors of middle child-dom. Sorry to say, Ford's middle kid did not.
Mercury's, for most of their time here on this earth, were either a Fancy Ford or a "entry level" Lincoln. A Mercury, with the exception of the spectacularly unique and wonderful 1949-1951s, was never a "Mercury". My Comet was a slightly more upmarket Ford Maverick. I guess. I didn't think there was anything upmarket about it. My wife's Capri allegedly an upscale (tarted up) Mustang.
Pick a lane, Grand Pa. Ford never did. That confused buyers and ultimately killed you.