The Memetastic Mr. Mongoose

The thing about the internet is that it’s stupid. The stupid things get popular, and the really interesting or fantastic things don’t.

What do you think is most likely to go viral? A video of a science lecture on the origins of the universe? A news story about a man saving a child from a burning building? Or a picture of a cat with a misspelled caption on it?

I got news for you, it won’t be the first two. And that makes me sad.

But it’s the nature of humanity, we find the dumbest things funny, so we keep coming back to them. So what do you do? Well, you exploit it of course.

That’s how most websites operate. They exploit some lowest common denominator, and earn millions off it. Whether it be funny top ten lists, videos of idiots talking about bullshit to no one or stories about people being stupid. And the fact is, they’re all pointless. They’re just wastes of time that produce no economic, political, or artistic value. Except for the Business Cat thing, that’s just adorable.

Heehee! He thinks he’s people!

Which brings me to the concept of memes, which is from the Greek meaning ‘joke overused to the point of meaninglessness.’

Memes are nice in small doses, but I find all too often they get thrown into internet conversations while missing the original context. So it’s just shitty pencil drawing someone threw in for no reason. Which is why I hate memes. They’re not funny, they’re just annoying.

But when a new one pops up, it can be halfway amusing for a few minutes. Then the point comes crashing down. It’s the 15 minutes of fame scenario. Unfortunately, for some people, those 15 minutes can be the scariest 15 minutes of their lives.

Which brings me to a recent episode of Littlest Pet Shop. See how everything ties together?

Our tale begins with nail-clipping day, and I’ll inform you from experience, that’s not an easy task. Especially with a cat, cats are vicious. But the trick is to be firm. Hold them down, under your arm, and, without hurting them, try to finish the job as quickly as possible. If they get too agitated, let them go, you can finish the job later.

Or, failing that, just have an assistant who can talk to animals, that’ll work too.

So, it goes off without a hitch… mostly. Sunil, on the other paw, is getting quite nervous. I guess he’s afraid it’ll hurt. But assuming they know what they’re doing, it shouldn’t be an issue.

You know, if I were Blythe, I’d be a bit insulted. I thought we were friends, asshole! Now you don’t trust me!? Prick!

So, our resident hanger-on, Jasper, decides to give the little guy a pep talk, which doesn’t work, but it inspires him to take a photo, which he promptly uploads to the web. With a memetic caption.

It quickly goes viral. Which according to Jasper means, “everyone in the world is seeing it and sending it to their friends!”

Well, that’s a bit redundant, if everyone in the world has already seen it! Hey, I’ll send you this! I already have it. Oh…

Anyway, this shocks the hell out of… well… everyone! Particularly Zoe and Sunil… and me, because it’s not even that funny.

Sunil feels overwhelmed at the attention. It’s a feeling I understand all too well. The difference is, his fame is for basically doing nothing, while my fame was for writing a story that, in retrospect, wasn’t that great, and is still unfinished. Thankfully, I only have one more chapter to go, but I honestly can’t be asked.

Zoe, on the other paw…

Seems she’s not taking it well. Yep, turns out the green monster hit her like a freight train, and she’s bitterly jealous of the mongoose.

Meanwhile, the craze is building.

Worrying Mongoose for President! He’s got my vote! Probably blow up fewer countries!

Also, business at the shop is booming, since apparently everyone heard that the Worrying Mongoose lives at the pet shop. Which begs the question: Where are his owners? You’d think Sunil’s owners would show up, and try to relish the fame, even if it’s just for a little bit.

On that note, I find it odd that Twombly and Blythe are referring to him as ‘Worrying Mongoose,’ and not ‘Sunil.’ They know him personally, why are they calling him that? I mean, that’s gotta be disheartening for the little guy. Who would want to be referred to merely by an adjective and an extremely generic noun?

Oh, right, half the internet.

But back to Zoe. Her jealousy reaches it’s zenith (or nadir, depending on how you grade these things), as she starts to desperately claw for attention. She gives Pepper a list of all the various things she could do to upstage Sunil. All of which are stupidly unfeasible. And that’s not even mentioning the fact that these kinds of things happen more or less randomly. If everyone who wanted to be famous got famous, then there’d be millions of famous people, and it’d be fucking meaningless.

Meanwhile, the Biskits are also getting a bit jealous, and decide to try to also to upstage him. They order Francois, their butler, to look up something popular, and he finds an auto-tuned music video.

Yep, that actually seems like an appropriate response, especially since the mute button wasn’t working, and it’s a Mac.

So the Biskits are inspired to make a music video of their own. This is gonna be good!

BWUAHAHAHAHAHA!!! AHAHAHA! HAAAA-HAHA! OH! That is hilarious!

The high point is when Francois raps about how spoiled they are, basically taking the piss, and the girls don’t notice.

Back at the pet shop, Twombly and Sunil are making an appearance on a morning news show, when Zoe has a nervous breakdown and begins licking everyone.

As Blythe admonishes the little doggie, Jasper arrives with a tablet, playing the Biskits’ music video, showing they got three and a half million thumbs down!

It’s the Rebecca Black scenario.

Actually, that begs the question: Who does that? How would anything get 3.5 million views if it’s that bad!? How does something like that go viral!? Oh, man, look at this horrible music video! I can’t wait to send it to my friends because I hate them! How exactly does that happen!?

Anyway, as the song is playing, Zoe starts reacting to it.

So, that’s another thumbs down. Which Jasper decides to record.

Now, as anyone who knows the internet is aware, in any normal situation, this would be enough to go viral. Natch!

And this makes everyone happy, since Zoe’s famous, and Sunil’s been overshadowed. Well, everyone except the Biskits, who are still the butt of every internet joke. But thankfully for them, they got one ‘like.’

Only one? That’s odd, I would expect a bit more from the clueless dipshit demographic. Even 0.01% of 3.5 million is 350 people.

But no, only one. And sadly, it’s Twombly.

You know, you have to admit, it is catchy… and fucking hilarious!

And you also have to admit that this is the best episode of the season so far. Not only was it laugh out loud funny, thanks to the Biskits; but it also told a great story, showing how animals become famous, and egotists become infamous.

It’s something I’ve noticed over the years. Those who become famous-in-a-good-way typically do it by accident, and those who become famous-in-a-bad-way typically do it by trying too hard, and looking like idiots.

Then you have commenters, which are another can of worms that I won’t get into.

But it’s a rule I prefer to live by: Don’t try to be famous, try to be yourself. Don’t try to be a YouTube star, just try to make something people enjoy. And if enough people enjoy it, it’ll happen automatically.

I operate this site by writing what I want, and hoping that anyone reading it gets something out of it. I’ve fallen into a routine with these posts on My Little Pony and Littlest Pet Shop, and it’s a routine I kinda like, even though very few people actually read them. But I don’t write them because I want an audience. I think that’s the wrong way to go about this stuff.

I do want an audience, but that’s not why I write. I write because I like writing.

But with all that, this was a good episode. It had a great message, and it was a message it didn’t feel the need to bonk us over the head with, My Little Pony. And it was one of those stories that works because of the setting the show is placed in: Modern-day ersatz-New-York. As great as it would be, we’ll never see Pinkie Pie pulling out a smart phone, will we?

That doesn’t count, and you know it!

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