I caught the news yesterday where the new Olympic mascots for Vancouver 2010 were unveiled. I haven't been that underwhelmed in a long time. In fact this brought to mind the closing ceremonies of the 2006 Olympics. You remember, where our presentation to the world involved ice fishing, snowmobiles and hockey. It was honestly embarrassing. Then Avril Lavigne sang and I nearly died. I had to change the channel.
And I had such high hopes for these mascots. I was expecting at least a Spirit Bear, considering it's unique to BC and would raise awareness about the fact they're a threatened species.
But instead we got Quatchi, the shy Sasquatch. I don't know about you but when I think BC, sasquatch doesn't immediately jump to mind. And I link sasquatch with people who have conspiracy theories, aluminum hats and an overactive imagination. And is that a tattoo on Quatchi's arm?
There's also Miga, the Sea Bear. This character is supposed to be a killer whale that turns into a bear on land. It was only after I learned this that the dorsal fin on Miga's head started to make sense. *shakes head*
Then there's Sumi, the Thunderbird, that really just looks like another bear but one dressed up in clothes. Why would they have another bear? I don't understand. If Sumi is supposed to be a Thunderbird why not make the mascot an actual Thunderbird instead of bear dressed as one?
And why are there three mascots instead of one? It's very simple. Money. How will your child decide which one is their favourite. They'll have to get one of each and that means $90-135 out of your pocket.
What I did love was the fact that Native mythology had been incorporated into the mascots. To me that is represetative of BC but that's where it stopped. These guys looked like anime characters. Now I have nothing against anime but what does that have to with BC? One of the developers mentioned the large Asian community in BC and that's why the mascots have an anime style. But people from BC are Canadian and not everybody from BC has an Asian background. I know that the Asian community has been a big part of BC's history, but to me, anyone looking at those mascots will think they're associated with the Beijing games. The only indicated they don't have anything to do with Beijing 2008 are Miga's scarf and Quatchi's earmuffs. And those are general items. Now I have to say I'm glad they didn't pick a moose or a beaver or a polar bear because those are stereotypical animals associated with Canada so I will give them that.
But the track record for these games is poor at best. Our demonstration at the closing ceremonies in Turin sucked fudge, our symbol is an Inukshuk that I associate with the far Canadian north and I don't think has anything to do with BC. What did I expect from the mascots.
What do you think about the new mascots?