This is a tale from my youth which created a fear in me that I hold to this day. When I was young, I was a huge fan of Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers, and I did my best to watch every episode when possible. Early on in the series, there was an episode titled "Food Fight" in which Ernie, the owner of the Angel Grove Youth Center, decided to host a Cultural Food Fair. During the fair, Bulk and Skull, the ne’er-do-wells of the show, start a food fight. This gives Rita Replusa, the show's villain, the inspiration to create a monster called Pudgy Pig.
Pudgy Pig starts to eat everything in sight and it's up to the Power Rangers to stop him before he devours all of Earth’s food. As always, I was thrilled to see the Rangers jump into action and try to stop this fiend, but what happened during the fight left me scarred for life. During the battle, Pudgy Pig eats all of their weapons, which turns out to be quite the problem. But then, he ate his first Ranger, and I was horrified. As this bulbous monster slowly devoured every one of our heroes, save for Trini the Yellow Ranger, I could not help but feel a great sense of unease wash over me. Naturally, the Rangers won the day thanks to some spicy food, but I had nightmares about Pudgy Pig for days.
Never before had I thought that a person could be eaten, and it deeply disturbed me. What at first I thought was cannibalism was actually something known as “vore” in certain niche communities. Now “vore” doesn’t come up in most media, for which I am thankful, but there is a horrifying trend in sports that is bringing back these terrible memories for me. I was browsing the internet and minding my own business one day, when I came upon a video labelled “Fun with Mascots.” The video showed a school mascot that resembled a salmon having what seemed to be a staged altercation with a member of the team. After the argument, the salmon mascot proceeded to open its gaping maw and eat the member of the team whole. As I watched the man’s legs slide into the mascot’s “throat” I was immediately taken back to my youth and those horrible images flashed back into my mind. The feeling of unease and horror swept over me and I closed the video as fast as I could. In my opinion, these trends should be stopped as soon as possible lest other people become scarred as I have.
Cengiz is a co-host of the You Shall Not Pass Go podcast, right here on Geekade.com