Archive for the ‘furry’ category

“Godzilla vs. Kong” Arriving…

March 4, 2021


In these times of a deadly global pandemic and an insurrectionist attack on the U.S. Capitol, you probably figured that a Godzilla vs. Kong movie was inevitable.  We may even be jaded to it, kind of like “Yeah, it figures, whatever!”  But after years in the planning and multiple delays in 2020, Godzilla vs. Kong is at last set to open in late March.  

Described as a “massive monster brawl,” this latest installment in the MonsterVerse unites in mortal combat the iconic franchise figures of King Kong, who has appeared in a dozen films, and Godzilla, the veteran of three dozen flicks.  Both franchises began cinematic renewal and revitalization programs beginning in 2014, with Godzilla establishing himself as “King of the Titans,” and mankind in this universe being in fearful coexistence with them.  King Kong, for his part, has done well in his domain on Skull Island, and has demonstrated his ability to dominate in battle large reptilian creatures, including three T-Rexes at once.  This makes him a serious contender in any monster match, even if he is essentially a giant ape…

 

Now in the current crossover matchup, Godzilla has become seriously ticked off, and is rampaging around the planet, prompting mankind to recruit King Kong as a defensive agent.  Kong has the advantage of superior intelligence and agility, whereas Godzilla is elemental and practically indestructible, plus he has that radioactive breath thing going on.  You have to choose sides in this combat, and I confess to being a Godzilla loyalist.  He is just magnificent emerging from the sea, an unfathomable, breathtaking, and unstoppable force of nature!  Kong may be King, but Godzilla is…well, a god.  The Internet is having a field day over the upcoming battle royal, and we are at least promised by the producer that one of the combatants will win.  There’s nothing we monster movie fans hate more than ambiguous endings, which are all too common and very unsatisfying.  If I wanted a “write your own ending” conclusion, I wouldn’t be bankrolling someone else to write the script.

Regardless of who emerges victorious in the epic fray, we are promised more MonsterVerse films to come…and there is the revelation that some thing manifested as seismic activity within the hollow Earth may be instigating the fracas to begin with, like a cosmic conspiracy theorist. Perhaps there is a common, real enemy. All is probably not as it appears, with plenty of hooks to hang future movies on.  Producers do, after all, want your interest piqued, and your movie dollars supporting their efforts…Rawrr!  

 

 

Dr. Seuss Books in Racist Row…

March 3, 2021


Six Dr. Seuss books will no longer be published owing to racist images and references within them, specifically in regards to black and Asian people.  Not to excuse or condone such things, but they were common stereotypes of the time, and I did grow up with them while never becoming a white supremacist.  I far preferred the surreal iconoclasm of Dr. Seuss to the exclusive vanilla wholesomeness of the Dick and Jane readers, plus he drew awesome anthropomorphic animals!

Objectionable racist portrayals in kiddie lit and entertainment of the time were not by any means restricted to Dr. Seuss.  Consider Elmer Fudd as a ludicrous Native American in Hiawatha’s Rabbit Hunt.  Remember Disney’s Song of the South.  Visit the 1961 Dick Tracy cartoon series for stereotyped crime fighters Joe Jitsu and Go Go Gomez.  These are but a few examples, to be sure.

The discontinued Dr. Seuss titles are but a few books among many that do not have objectionable content, and generally are among his lesser-known works.  Dr. Seuss got a lot of kids reading, and eagerly so.  His art had furry roots, and could be quite thematic while wildly entertaining.   It largely holds up well today.  While Theodor Geisel was a product of his times as are we all, he was a pretty cool dude whose legacy remains a good one.

And all I know is that I’m keeping and cherishing my Fox in Socks book forever, even if the fox does appear to have some kind of strange unknown disease or genetic affliction…

 

 

 

My Daze As A Leopard…

February 27, 2021


I can’t really say that I was “seduced” by the furry fandom as I came willingly, nay, eagerly!  It was kind of like, “So a ‘furry’ is what I am?  All right, where do I sign, and do I get a membership card?”  

Perhaps it was the many hours I spent watching Warner Bros. cartoons as a kid, identifying with and relating to the characters I saw, liking them more than any human, and heck, wanting to be them!  I got to play a rooster in my second grade farm-themed class play, and I was like out of my mind with the part, although the teacher wouldn’t let me put my Foghorn Leghorn spin on the character.  Sadly, it wasn’t even a speaking part!  As Foghorn might have said, “Teacher, I say, oh Teacher!  You’re about to exceed the limitations of my medication!”  That could have been a breakout role for me, too…sad!

Then there were Halloween opportunities, when it was not only acceptable but required to role-play.  Forget skeletons, ghosts, and witches, too…I wanted to be an animal!  Back then, if your parents weren’t crafty enough to make you a costume, they’d pony up a few bucks, and you landed one of these Ben Cooper or Collegeville kid Halloween costumes.  The material of the body component might even be made of garbage-bag grade stuff, not even fabric, and I remember one tearing as I wore it.  The masks were thin brittle plastic, and it was almost impossible to breathe in them.  If unfortunate enough to wear glasses, they’d steam them up immediately, and you’d blunder around your neighborhood trick-or-treating with severely impaired vision.  Turns out, this was good practice for the COVID masks of today!  

Anyways, one year and the last that I went trick-or-treating, I wore a Ben Cooper leopard costume, identical as I remember it to the one pictured.  Although this was the world’s cheapest fursuit and looked it, I was in heaven…I mean, the costume even had a tail!  Thank God none of the other kids ripped my tail off, although a few grabbed me by it.  Nowadays, this would constitute harassment. And would you believe it?  The same vintage costume I’ve seen selling on eBay for $199, plus shipping.  Now I’m sure that my leopard suit wound up in the trash as I’d outgrown it and abandoned trick-or-treating by the following Halloween.  Maybe I should have said to my mother, “Hey, hang onto this!  It’ll be worth almost $200 in the future!”  But I didn’t know, and parents tend not to listen, anyways…they always know better, or think that they do!

It’s long gone, but I’ll always remember my leopard suit.  Then in a college production of Man of La Mancha, I got to play Don Quixote’s horse.  That had a much better full head mask to it, which unfortunately I was not allowed to keep, although the die was cast by that point. 

So hooray for Halloween, which unfortunately is rarely celebrated today as it was in days of yore.  If you’ve still got your old costumes, hang onto them…they might be worth some bucks today.  And as someone who’s worn the leopard suit, I can only conclude by saying…RAWRR!

 

 

 




 

 

 

Liberty Mutual’s “Interruption” Commercial…

February 13, 2021


Nature’s little creatures can be cute and appealing on a singular basis, but creepy and menacing when they swarm you in large numbers.  We saw this theme at play in an earlier Jiff peanut butter commercial when one young lady eating a peanut butter sandwich encountered a squirrel beseeching a bite, soon to become a legion of them led by a humanoid figure with a squirrel head; creepy and surreal!

In this Liberty Mutual variant with two versions, we see in the longer version a guy eating a sandwich on a bench overlooking the trademark Statue of Liberty who breaks the “fourth wall” by asking if he’s in a Liberty Mutual commercial, then asking what happens in this one.  “Seagulls,” he is told.  One appears on the bench beside him, which the guy likes…then he is swarmed by a flock of them, which he likes much less!  The spot evokes a little of Hitchcock’s The Birds, still a worthwhile view after many years.  If you’ve ever fed a French fry to a seagull at the beach, you’ll know what the experience is like.  What’s worse is having the gulls poop on you, oh the horror, the horror!

In the shorter version, the same guy is on the bench, sandwich in one hand, chips in the other.  He talks about how Liberty Mutual customized his insurance so he only pays for what he needs…what a great day!  Then a gull swoops in, stealing his sandwich, making it just an “OK” day.  Finally a second gull flies by to steal his chips, making it a “messed up” day.  And some days, as Al Bundy observed, won’t get better until you return to bed.

Seagulls…I’m reminded of what one character spoke at the closing of the original The House on Haunted Hill movie….”They’re coming for me, now.  And then, they’ll be coming for YOU!”  🙀

 

 

“The Masked Dancer” Arrives…

December 27, 2020

Whoever would have thought that an oddball show like The Masked Singer would prove so popular as to inspire a spin-off show, namely The Masked Dancer?  The new series, beginning December 27th on Fox after NFL football, will be much like Singer but without the song, and of course far more kinetic…gotta dance, gotta dance, woo! 

Now the costumes on Masked Singer often tended to be both massive and relatively inflexible, in some cases so much so that the contestants sometimes could do little more than stand there or move slightly.  Were they to really dance, participants might have fallen over or literally lost their heads, which would have been humorous and entertaining but undignified for the celebrities involved.  There were exceptions…among others, Wayne Brady, the winner of one season’s competition as The Fox, managed to demonstrate some pretty impressive dance moves, even orchestrating dance breaks with his back-up dancers.  He made me feel proud to be vulpine…


But The Masked Dancer is all about dance, and will feature extravagant but flexible costumes and oddball characters including for Season 1 Disco Ball, Ice Cube, and a number of furry characters, including the dazzling Zebra… 

Now it probably will be easier to identify the costumed celebrities based on their normal voices, and Paula Abdul is on the panel as the resident dance specialist familiar with many favored styles.  Dr. Ken Jeong will be there as a cross-over panelist from The Masked Singer.  Gotta love the guy, even if he’s occasionally annoying with his “I know who this is!” routines.  The series will also incorporate Ellen DeGeneres, who inspired the new series with popular masked dancer segments on her show. 

So you may want to give The Masked Dancer a look, although the character of Hammerhead may haunt your nightmares.  Then again, we’ve almost made it through 2020 at this point, so we don’t scare easily anymore…

 

Temptations Cat Treats and Holiday Catsequences…

December 25, 2020

Cats and kids just about rule the internet when it comes to the “Aww” factor; combine the two elements with a Xmas backdrop, however, and you can get something within a whisker of a Stephen King short horror story…

In our Temptations cat treats commercial, a curious boy is shown shaking a wrapped Xmas present by the family tree, making a sound that sounds all too similar to a cat treat container being shaken.- – Too late!  “A shake is all it takes,” and a multitude of cats pour into the room, chasing the boy down a darkened, holiday-festooned street, and there must be dozens, nay, hundreds of the felines in pursuit!

Our pre-adololescent boy barely stays in advance of the kitty horde, and we are not shown the outcome of the chase.  Some things it is perhaps better not to know, as it might not be pretty when the cats upon cornering the boy realize that he does not in effect carry treats; there might be catsequences, you see.  Draw your own ending, but the accompanying soundtrack of “Carol of the Bells” always did carry a note of darkness and menace to me, and I like to retain a bit of Halloween with me year-round.

So be careful what you shake this holiday season, however you may regard and celebrate it.  Do commemorate it safely, and best wishes of the season to all readers from Foxsylvania!

FanDuel Sportbook’s “Payout Falcon”

December 10, 2020

FanDuel Sportsbook is an on-line gaming company that in a recent commercial shows the lengths they’re willing to go to in order to deliver your winnings as quickly as possible to you; they’ve trained a peregrine falcon to deliver your winnings, on the fly as it were.  The falcon swoops down to the splendid outdoor location of a patron who retrieves his winnings from a tube attached to the bird’s leg, and before departing, the falcon swipes the guy’s sandwich, taking it with him for his return flight!

“Honey, I’ve come into some money,” the man tells his presumed off-screen wife.  “And I’m going to need a new sandwich!”  Undoubtedly, some will raise objections about this commercial.  Should the guy pictured be gambling?  And should his wife tell him to make his own damn sandwich?  He does have legs, after all…

I, for one, champion the peregrine falcon, who at least gets a sandwich as the wages of his forced servitude…fly free, magnificent bird!

VRChat Furry Hangouts!

November 13, 2020



When Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani erroneously booked the Four Seasons Total Landscaping business instead of the Four Seasons hotel in Philadelphia for a press conference, hilarity ensued as furries recreated a virtual reality version of the business complete with Trump campaign trappings on VRChat, and populated it with themselves as a hang-out! 

The virtual reality recreation of the event location is spot-on with great attention to detail, complete with Trump campaign posters plastering the outer wall, and even the podium at which Giuliani not-so-memorably spoke.  Instead of dour-faced Trump reality deniers populating the site, however, it is now virtually inhabited by furry avatars who can move about within the location while conversing with their fellows.  Truly, lemonade has been made from lemons, and art imitates life!

Talk even exists about expanding the site to include the adjoining real-life properties of a sex shop and a crematorium, which would make it truly a commentary on the human experience.  I wonder as well if Four Seasons Total Landscaping would offer attractive rates on raking up and disposing of my blasted leaves, since yard work is hardly one of my favorite things to do… 

 

“The Mystery of the Chupacabra” on MonsterQuest

October 29, 2020

 

 

The Chupacabra is one of those classic cryptic creatures whose supposed existence has been covered on a variety of programs since the 1990’s when reports of unexplained and unusual livestock killings first came in from Puerto Rico.  The new limited run MonsterQuest series recently took a fresh look at Chupacabra activity primarily in Texas and Puerto Rico, although reports have also come in from such places as Chile, Nicaragua, and even from such far-flung locations as Russia. 

The creature has appearances described differently in Puerto Rico and Texas, with the Puerto Rican variety related to be a bipedal creature standing on its hind legs with lizard-like skin, having a body somewhat like a kangaroo, and standing 4-1/2 to 5 feet tall with but three digits on each hand and foot.  The beast as seen in Texas and other American states is essentially a canid in appearance, dog-like but having hairless or almost hairless skin and rather wicked fangs.  Both variants of the creature are known for leaving puncture-type wounds on their kills, and usually leaving the flesh of victims intact but drained of blood.  Animals killed have included chickens, rabbits, and goats, with the name meaning “goat sucker.”

Now MonsterQuest was rather limited in the scope of its direct investigations in Puerto Rico, but sent two investigators to Cuero, Texas where Phyllis Cannion had numerous chickens killed, disturbingly found with their flesh intact but the bodies drained of blood.  The head of a road-killed specimen suspected of being a Chupacabra was also preserved by the rancher, showing unusual skin; samples were sent out for DNA analysis. 

MonsterQuest’s investigators included a wildlife expert and a cryptozoologist, who set out a steel cage trap baited with blood-soaked meat, later adding a live chicken to the cage and spraying coyote urine about as an additional attractant.  A number of camera traps were also set about in the hopes of catching an image of the elusive Chupacabra.  Well, the bait was taken, but only a possum was caught in the cage; camera traps had bait taken, and a pole was scratched where coyote urine was sprayed.  The failure to catch anything resembling a Chupacabra left only hair samples for analysis reportedly gleaned from sites of attacks in Puerto Rico, as well as skin samples from the Cuero unidentified creature.

DNA from the hair sample was a match for a domestic dog, whereas the skin sample from Cuero suggested a canine hybrid with coyote and wolf markers.  The only conclusion that could be reached from the available evidence was that the Chupacabra, at least the Texas variety, was either a hybrid from mixed breeding, or perhaps a mutant species.  The hairless, scabby skin appearances may be attributed to sarcoptic mange, and dogs have been known to bite prey animals on the neck, leaving puncture wounds and not consuming flesh.  Blood is not absent, but simply pools in the lower parts of the victim’s body when death causes blood pressure to cease and heart action to stop.

There wasn’t a whole lot of new information in this MonsterQuest episode, but rather repackaged stuff coupled with a failed investigation; it left me feeling oddly unsatisfied, and wanting more.  Chupacabra has been termed, “the first internet monster,” taking on a life of its own and shaped by misinterpretations and fed by a wealth of unreliable first hand witness accounts and hysteria.  Still, Sarcoptic Mange would be a great name for a metal band!

 

Political Animals…

October 26, 2020


It’s a misconception that all furry creatures are apolitical.  In a recent post, we introduced some of our readership to the Raccoons Of The Resistance, as seen in the work of the Australian cartoonist, First Dog on the Moon.  Now raccoons live by a simple credo; Live Fast, and Eat Trash.  But some politicians can push them too far, and they take action, becoming a grassroots force to be reckoned with…

Now felines too have become politically awakened, many of them by this book to which I exposed my cats, not wanting them to be ignorant, but wanting them to feel safe, even if I as a hybrid human was not.  It worked all too well, generating furry activists who have taken to the streets and backyards…

 

Talk about an awkward conversation!  It was equally uncomfortable when I talked to my cats about firearms.  Anyways, soon my cats were erecting lawn signs, and had discovered a wealth of resources in the Cats Against Trump merchandising line available on Amazon and other locations…

I’ll tell ‘ya, these cats have been mobilized, and mean business!  Can you see the determination in their faces?  And when my Trumper neighbor complains about my sign, I tell him he wouldn’t then want to meet my dog, who’s a socialist with anarchist leanings.  I can’t tell you too much about about Foxes Against Fascism, since we’re still in the process of arguing over our mission statement.  Foxes get far too hung up on semantics, but that’s my personal opinion.  But, what the hey!  We’re all political animals at core, right?  At least that’s what my old political science  professor told me…