Pop Culture Pets

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Pumpkin insisted that he be the cover photo for a blog about pets. Such a diva.

This weekend, I received the sad news that dog of one on my dear friends had passed away. It wasn’t necessarily completely unexpected, but that didn’t lesson the sting of the announcement. Losing a family pet is a traumatic event, a concept that I’ve only really been able to understand since I’ve become a pet owner myself. Before I got my cat Pumpkin, I was always sympathetic to people who had to say goodbye to a pet but I don’t think I really processed how painful it can be. Pets really do become members of the family and even the thought of losing Pumpkin – who even I can admit can be a real jerk sometime – is enough to make me tear up. Now that I’ve experienced pet ownership, I get the depth of that bond in a way that I couldn’t before Pumpkin came into my life. It breaks my heart that someone else has to go through this.

So in memory of sweet Lulu (R.I.P.), today’s post will focus on some of my favorite pets from the world of pop culture. Humans tend to be front and center in most pop culture, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t show a little love for the furry companions that keep them company.

Brian – Family Guy

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It would be pretty easy to forget that Brian is technically the Griffin’s pet, since he is such a prominent and equal member of the family. The fact that he can talk doesn’t hurt either. But despite his human-like qualities – including a penchant for alcohol – Brian is in reality the family pet. This fact has been reinforced and addressed by storylines in some of the earlier seasons, where Brian bristled against the indignity of being treated like a normal dog. Though Brian’s relationship with Stewie may border on inappropriate, their connection mirrors the relationship that many kids have with their pets. Because Brian is such a fully realized character, his brief death last season packed a bigger wallop not only for the characters on the show but also for the viewer. Thank goodness that was short lived.

 

Garfield – Garfield

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Here’s an instance where the pet is front and center and the human is nothing more than a supporting character. If you spend any time around cats, you know that the depiction in Garfield is pretty darn accurate and I do have an obvious soft spot for orange cats. Also, like Garfield, I do not enjoy Mondays, diets or anyone even remotely as happy-go-lucky as Odie.

 

Eddie – Frasier

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For some reason, Eddie was the first pop culture pet that popped into my head when I thought of this blog topic. This is surprising since I wasn’t necessarily a huge fan of Frasier when it was on and Eddie was a pretty minor feature of the show. But he must have made some sort of impression on my subconscious, possibly because he is freaking adorable. Eddie may not have had a ton of screen time, but he made the most of what time he was given. I always enjoyed that Eddie was having none of Frasier’s nonsense; too many people humored his persnickety behavior.

 

Baxter – Anchorman & Anchorman 2

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I mean, he pooped in the refrigerator and ate a whole wheel of cheese. What more justification do you need?

 

Grumpy Cat

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I normally don’t keep up on Internet memes, but I made an exception for Grumpy Cat. He just so encapsulates the general grumpiness that so many of us feel on a daily basis. While most memes come and go, Grumpy Cat shows no signs of losing steam; she’s even getting a starring role in an upcoming Lifetime movie (which, sadly, is not a tell-all expose). As long as people continue to see the glass as half empty, Grumpy Cat will endure.

 

Toto – The Wizard of Oz

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Toto doesn’t enough credit for being a bad-ass. He showed no fear in a showdown with the Wicked Witch of the West and he is the one that discovers that the Wizard is a big scan. If Toto didn’t pull back that curtain, Dorothy and the rest of the gang wouldn’t have known that they were being duped. His bravery and cunning earns his a place on this list.

 

Hank – Milwaukee Brewers

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One of my favorite stories that came out of MLB spring training was Hank. A stray, he started hanging around the Brewers training facility. The team took notice of this adorable pup and he became part of their training activities. When spring training ended, the Brewers adopted the dog – who they named Hank after Hank Aaron – and brought him back to Milwaukee as their mascot. Everyone loves when a stray finds a forever home and in this case Hank lucked into living the sweet life. He resides with Brewers VP and general counsel and has been honored at a bunch of events at the ballpark. Last Saturday they even gave away a Hank the dog bobblehead which some pop culture blogger may or may not have procured off eBay 🙂

 

Dug – Up

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Dug was a loyal and fun-loving pooch who….SQUIRREL!

 

Mr. Jinx – Meet the Parents

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Oh man…do you have any idea how much easier my life would be if I could teach Pumpkin to use the toilet instead of a litter box? Mr. Jinx not only mastered that feat but he also managed to win over Robert DeNiro’s Jack Byrnes. That’s a special kind of cat.

 

Ser Pounce – Game of Thrones

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I obviously saved the best for the last. Game of Thrones is such a dark and bleak show that it is rare that anyone shows up who doesn’t have an agenda or ulterior motives. Maybe we’ll find out that Ser Pounce is Jon Snow’s father or that he is up to no good, but for now he was a brief moment of happiness amid all the death, violence and plotting. He was on screen for approximately five seconds, but that’s all he needed to win over Game of Thrones fans. Ser Pounce should be the new Hand of the King or we riot.

Now it’s your turn….who are your favorite pets from pop culture? I know I didn’t mention some obvious candidates, mostly because they aren’t my cup of tea (Lassie – I’m looking at you), but maybe I missed some of your favorites. Sound off in the comments on what pets from the world of movies, tv, books and comics that you’d want to adopt.

 I’m blogging this month to raise funds and awareness for the Children’s Tumor Foundation in honor of an 11 year old who has NF. If you liked this blog post – or the blog in general – please consider making a donation to the blog’s fundraising page.

Pop Culture Odds and Ends – I’m sick edition

So it turns out, dear readers, that I am indeed a mere mortal and occasionally I feel under the weather. Right now I’m battling either a nasty cold or a light flu; I’m not sure if it has made up its mind yet as to what it is. This has knocked me down for the count – my boss took one look at me yesterday and sent me home, where I slept most of the day and watched a lot of wedding-related programming which seems to comprise a lot of the daytime TV schedule. I’m feeling slightly better today, but I’m also hopped up on enough cold medicine to take down an ox. The good news is that I seem to have stopped coughing; the bad news is I’m exhausted walking from one room to the next.

However, I must soldier on. I couldn’t leave you without your pop culture roundup. That would be heresy. I just can’t guarantee that everything is spelled right and that the order of links makes total sense. I tried my best, but I can’t make any promises as to coherency. So while I try the difficult act of breathing without getting winded, kick back and enjoy the pop culture goodness that I’ve assembled.

  • Charlie Hunnam has quit the Fifty Shades of Grey film adaptation. I think this was a good career move for him, though he was the only reason I had any interest in the movie.
  • If you love those Will Ferrell as Ron Burgundy commercials for Dodge as much as I do, you’ll be happy to know that he made SEVENTY of them.
  • Watch Tom Hanks play around on a giant piano keyboard (with a little help from Sandra Bullock):

 

  • Bullock also showed off her rap skills:

 

  • The Simpsons will have guest vocals from Judd Apatow, Channing Tatum, Paul Rudd, Leslie Mann and Seth Rogan.
  • File this under things that make you go hmmm….Japanese school kids perform “Day Man” from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

 

  • The A.V. Club has a story on an old favorite of mine, Homestar Runner.
  • Britney Spears’ new album has a name – her name.
  • The cast of Modern Family played Family Feud on Jimmy Kimmel Live!

 

  • Lady Gaga and The Muppets are making a Christmas special. This could either be amazing or terrible. I don’t see any middle ground.
  • The showrunner for The Daily Show has left.

Trailers

  • Michael Bay and Starz are teaming up for a new pirate show:

 

  • Sarah Silverman’s new HBO special:

 

  • I’m really looking forward to Will Ferrell’s Spoils of Babylon mini-series on IFC

 

  • George Clooney and Matt Damon head up an all-star cast in Monument Men

 

  • This documentary on Calvin & Hobbes looks great

 

  • The trailer for Avalanche Sharks, SyFy’s newest terrible movie, has been released:

 

  • Ad Week has an interesting story on how much it costs to run a commercial on different TV shows.
  • The guy from Blur is working with actor Idris Elba on new music.
  • Elizabeth Berkley revisited her Saved By The Bell roots on Dancing with the Stars:

 

  • Alexander Skarsgard stars in the music video for Cut Copy’s “Free Your Mind.”

I would totally sign up for this cult.

As always, we end with the mashups and supercuts:

  • An Archer/Top Gun mashup:

 

  • Someone mad a Pokemon/King of the Hill crossover:

 

  • And finally, here’s a supercut that theorizes that Tom Hank’s career is just one long movie:

Pop Culture Odds and Ends – A.B.B. (After Breaking Bad) edition

I’m still adjusting to life in a world where Breaking Bad is over. I find that I’m having trouble getting into my Fall TV shows – I’ve already dropped Once Upon a Time, Boardwalk Empire and Modern Family from sheer lack of interest and I’m pretty meh on the new pilots (more on that later this week). Episodes of Sons of Anarchy are beginning to pile up as well and I haven’t bothered to watch the premieres of Revenge or Homeland yet, so their days with a season pass may be numbered. The good news is that this general apathy means that I have a lot more time to surf the web in search of pop culture goodness to share. So really, my loss is your gain. Kick back and enjoy the fruits of my labor in this week’s edition of my pop culture round up

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  • The cover for the upcoming Ron Burgundy memoir has been released.

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  • Peter Dinklage made a stop by Sesame Street:

 

  • Usher and Dinklage’s GoT co-star Lena Headey also recently made appearances.
  • I am not super impressed with Justin Timberlake’s 20/20 Experience, Volume 2. It just sounds like a lot of songs that were (rightfully) scrapped from the first album.
  • Who doesn’t love a Halloween themed programing? TV Tango has rounded up 360 of them airing this month. That seems a little excessive.

 

  • The opening credits for American Horror Story: Coven has been released and they are unsurprisingly terrifying.

 

  • Game shows are becoming sticklers for pronunciation – contestants on Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune were both penalized recently.
  • A new film starring Meryl Streep, Jeff Bridges, Alexander Skarsgard and…..Taylor Swift? Be afraid, Skarsgard. Be very afraid.
  • It’s been far too long since we’ve had a new Britney Spears video. The wait is over:

 

  • Construction has resumed on the monstrosity of a home that was featured in the documentary Queen of Versailles. Excellent film if you haven’t seen it.
  • I was a big fan of ALF back in the day. Watch him sing “Berzerk” by Eminem:

 

  • The Avett Brothers played some Metal on Fallon:

 

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Breaking Bad in over *sob* but that doesn’t mean I still don’t have some links

  • Sadly, I did not win tickets to the Breaking Bad finale viewing party. These photos from the event make it look like I missed a hell of a time.
  • This one is for my friend Brigette:

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  • Aaron Paul lends his vocal talents – and his catchphrase – to the single “Dance Bitch”

 

  • I would totally read this book:

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  • My pals over at Grantland put together an In Memoriam video for BB’s fallen:

 

  • See how you do on the Breaking Bad superfan quiz (I got 43/50).
  • A Breaking Bad tribute set to Green Day’s “Good Riddance”

 

  • Glee’s Naya Rivera was a proud sister when her brother scored his first touchdown in the NFL:

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  • You can read an edited excerpt from Dave Eggers’ upcoming new novel, The Circle.
  • Watching Conan play Grand Theft Auto V had me literally laughing out loud.

 

  • The Atlanta Braves did a “Blurred Lines” parody:

I enjoyed it, but I’m still not rooting for you in the playoffs. #TeamDodgers

  • For those of you who don’t normally watch baseball but want to get into the playoffs, GQ compares playoff teams to pop culture to help. Ha – the Red Sox are the Lannisters!
  • I may have to buy this Friday Night Lights fanzine just for the Tim Riggins paper doll.
  • Kelly Clarkson lost her fight for the Jane Austen ring that she won at an auction.
  • Watch The Hound from Game of Thrones sing the Rolling Stones. Wait – what??

 

  • The new Sleigh Bells album is streaming over at Rolling Stone.
  • Characters from Bob’s Burgers, Family Guy and American Dad got Simpsonized:

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Stop! Trailer Time!

  • HBO’s new comedy, Getting On:

 

  • A new trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug:

 

  • The latest from Chris Lilley, Ja’mie King: Private School Girl (I can’t wait!!):

 

  • Aziz Ansari has a special coming out soon on Netflix:

 

  • A Case of You with Justin Long, Sam Rockwell and Peter Dinklage:

 

  • This guy at a Willie Nelson concert apparent subscribes to “dance like no one is watching”

 

  • Guillermo del Toro made the couch gag for this year’s The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror.

As always, we wrap up with the mashups and supercuts

  • A mashup of MacGyver and Archer:

 

  • A mashup of Breaking Bad and Need for Speed:

 

  • Who can resist a Sesame Street mashup? Certainly not me.

 

  • “Get Lucky Wit It”

 

  • And finally – the cast of Breaking Bad sings the N’Sync classic, “Bye, Bye, Bye”