Archive for the ‘furry’ category

Nigel the Wise Owl…

March 28, 2017

 

Owls have long held our respect and are associated with wisdom, and they are increasingly being used as advertising icons.  Their presence in the Harry Potter movies further spiked their popularity to the extent that some misguided people sought them as pets…bad idea, at least for most people!  

Recently used memorably to sell eyewear for one company, owls have now entered the rather competitive allergy medication OTC market.  Enter then Nigel the Xyzal Wise Owl, pictured above.  This feathered guy has class; in one spot, he’s shown in a library with books, wearing a natty jacket, a monocle, and speaking with a British accent! Clearly, this guy is no flyweight, and knows his stuff; he appears to have the right credentials.

With many allergy medications having transitioned from prescription to over-the-counter status, recruiting a feathered sage with the voice of authority like Nigel might help carve out a niche for another product…

Kong:  Skull Island

March 15, 2017

Magnificent, isn’t he? – – And that’s as it should be, because it’s hard to imagine an imaginary creature with the history and pedigree of King Kong.  This is not a “monster,” but rather royalty…and from his cinematic origins in the 1930’s original, Kong has spawned a variety of movies, such as the 1976 and 2005 versions.  Nothing breeds imitation like success…

While we aren’t going back to the world of 1933 in this version, it’s set in the era of 1973, and is part King Kong reboot and part homage to such Vietnam era movies as Apocalypse Now and Platoon, complete with period cultural references.  The movie runs almost two hours, and we’re introduced to the big guy after about half an hour. Most of the human characters are two dimensional stereotypes and are basically monster chow, although such notables as John Goodman appear as a “tinfoil hat” crazy theorist. There’s lots of good mayhem, with Kong not only taking on humans but also a giant octopus and Huey gunships, one of which he spikes like a volleyball.  We visit also a gigantic water buffalo and enormous ants; Kong isn’t even the baddest creature to inhabit this lost world.

Kong:  Skull Island is also a launching pad for a “MonsterVerse” of additional but related movies which will include the re-emergence of Godzilla, and of course the inevitable battle royal between these two cinematic icons.  It should be a fun ride, and it’s playing now in theaters…

 

Deer Motorists…

February 2, 2017

 

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It’s an all-too-familiar scenario; out driving late at night, when suddenly deer appear on the road, blundering into the way with negative consequences to both the deer and the vehicle.  Since turnabout is fair play, we are shown a reverse case safety promo where two deer are motoring when a clueless human walks onto the road, totally absorbed in his texting.  The deer are forced to brake sharply, and honk their horn.  The clueless human looks up from his texting, startled, and hastens to finish his transit across the road.  The deer couple look at one another, and shake their heads.  A moment later, a trio of texting humans perform the same stunt before the now-stopped vehicle. They often travel in groups, you know…

“Don’t text while on the road,” the public service announcer then intones.  “It’s bad for deer, and for humans”.  Some humans are every bit as self-absorbed, location inappropriate, and clueless as those portrayed, too…

Lactaid “Balloons” Commercial…

December 10, 2016

She’s baaack, and becoming a bit crude…the Lactaid “Annoying Milk” cow, that is!  Sitting in a respectable-looking kitchen with a woman, the Lactose Cow makes inquiry about how that lady’s cafe au lait is, and then sits there with inflated balloons (first red, then yellow) making flatulent noises.  After the first balloon is deflated, the Cow appears contrite, asks seriously how the woman’s coffee is, then produces another balloon, continues her show, and laughs maniacally! I guess we’ve got to expect this kind of thing, what with the Trump presidency looming and all…

but not to worry!  The very proper and demure Lactaid Cow appears, propels her ill-mannered sister roughly to the side, and launches into a subdued conversation with the woman about how that milk was really messing with her.  You see, Lactaid is real milk that won’t mess with you.  For entertainment value, however, I continue to prefer the Annoying Milk cow, who wears red lipstick and appears slightly demented but very capable of doing a manic stand-up comedy routine… no use crying over a little spilled milk, right?


Geico’s “C’mon, Try It!” Raccoons…

November 20, 2016

Raccoons have kind of come into their own lately, and they’re a rather alluring and likable lot.  Rocket Raccoon in “Guardians of the Galaxy” was pretty awesome, and now Geico is treating us to a trio of articulate anthropomorphic ones who are dumpster diving at night.  

Whoa!  This is awful…try it!,” says one, encountering a repugnant morsel.

Oh no…that looks gross! – – What is it?,” responds a second.

You gotta try it.  It’s terrible!,” counters the first.

I don’t wanna try it if it’s terrible,” reasons the second.

It’s like mango, chutney, and burnt hair,” describes the first raccoon.

No thank you,” refuses the second.  “I have a very sensitive palate.”

Just try it!,” insists the first.

Guys, I think we should hurry up,” interjects the third raccoon.  A dog is heard barking…

“When you taste something bad, you want someone else to try it.  It’s what you do.”  Likewise when you want to save 15% or more on car insurance, going to Geico is what you do…

I can’t get this taste out of my mouth!,” complains the first raccoon.

Shhdog!,” warns his compatriot.  

(And when we last see the raccoon trio, they are ambling away across the pavement, repeating “Dog…dog…dog!)

They’ll never be food critics, but you gotta love these guys!

“Werewolves in America…”

November 5, 2016

 

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A recent episode of Werewolves in America airing on the Destination America network covered several classic werewolf tales, most of which we’ve heard and seen packaged elsewhere.  The Beast of Bray Road in Wisconsin has been seen more than 100 times, with a flurry of sightings in 1989 of upright wolf creatures.  In fall of 1989, for example, a local bar manager when driving home saw an animal on the road holding road kill.  It locked eyes with her, and she barely got her car restarted in time to escape the creature.  Animals have been reported found suspiciously dead and dismembered by the creature.  A sanitation worker reporting a sighting in 2006 described the creature as standing about 7′ tall, and looking like a wolf on top of a bear’s body.  

Slidell, Louisiana features the Cajun Werewolf, perceived as a person who’s been cursed.  Such creatures may be set forth by the swamp as a warning.  In Chauvin, Louisiana a 13-year-old boy went hunting on All Saint’s Day despite admonitions not to, encountering what he described as a dog shaped in human form which chased him. Werewolves have also been reported in Montegut, Louisiana where they are also seen as cursed souls.

The town of Holly near Detroit, Michigan reports “the Man-Dog of Holly,” also known as the Michigan Dogman. Described as a spirit-based creature rather than one of flesh and blood, over 500 sightings of the Dogman have been reported, including one reported in 2005 by a repo man seeking out a vehicle late one night.

Whether sighted in the old or new world, werewolves and their legends continue to fascinate and intrigue us…

 

 

“Animal Apocalypse” on Monsters & Mysteries Unsolved

September 27, 2016

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Episode 10, Season 1 of Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved looked  at a global increase in animal die-offs, a phenomena referred to as the “Animal Apocalypse.”  Several examples of this were then investigated.

On New Year’s Eve 2010 in Beebe, Arkansas, blackbirds swarmed all over the town, impacting with buildings and other objects, and dropping dead on lawns and streets.  The next morning, residents found 5,000 dead birds in the city.  In a scene reminiscent of The X-Files, crews in Hazmat suits were called in, collecting the birds and taking them to a wildlife health center in Madison, Wisconsin where experts examined the bodies and found that birds were not ill but had impact injuries, dying from blunt force trauma.  The question was why had blackbirds bruised and battered their bodies in Beebe; nothing like a little alliteration to liven things up!  The best answer was that New Year’s Eve fireworks displays had scared hundreds of thousands of birds, forcing them into flight at night when the species couldn’t see, causing them to simply fly into things, which did not go well for them.  

Elsewhere in Ozark, Arkansas 80,000 drum fish were found dead along the Arkansas River. No abnormal toxins were found in the water, but examination of the fish revealed that they had over-inflated swim bladders, a condition referred to as gas bubble disease.  This condition was felt to have been caused by an abnormally high number of gate openings at a dam on the river.

Some entire species of bees are disappearing at a furious rate in a phenomena referred to as “Colony Collapse Disorder .”  Such things could pose a direct threat to the world food supply of fruits, nuts, and vegetables where pollination by bees is critical.  The mystery of the vanishing bees remains unsolved.  “White Nose Syndrome” has also ravaged bat populations in the eastern U.S., causing strange behavior such as bats flying out during the day and in winter.  Five to seven million bats were lost during the winter of 2008, with the afflicted bats showing a fungus which eroded through tissues and made them thirsty during normal hibernation times.

Time was given to a Pastor Wohlberg, who felt that species die-offs were part of Biblical end times prophesy.  By this viewpoint, it’s all a reflection of corruption of the Earth due to human immorality…

Wildlife die-offs have been noted globally, in countries that have included England, Brazil, Italy, the Philippines, and Peru.  Pandemics are likely to happen as animal diseases jump to human populations.  This occurred with the Black Death that ravaged medieval Europe, as well as with the 1918 Influenza epidemic, the West Nile virus, the Swine Flu, and others.  Pathogens getting into the human population increases every year, so we can reasonably expect more of the same in the future, with animal populations providing an advance warning.