The House Hippo

The house hippo is the subject of a Canadian television public service announcement (PSA) produced by Concerned Children’s Advertisers (now known as Companies Committed to Kids) in May 1999 and reintroduced by MediaSmarts in 2019. The original sixty-second clip was directed by Tim Hamilton of Avion Films. Effects were produced by Spin Productions.

The narration of the piece is spoken in the style of a Hinterland Who’s Who spot, showing footage and describing the behaviour of the “North American house hippo”, a fictional animal found “throughout Canada, and the eastern United States.” The hippo is shown foraging for the crumbs of peanut butter toast in a kitchen, escaping from a house cat, and making a nest from lost mittens to go to sleep.

Their stated intent is to educate children about critical thinking with regard to what they see in television advertising, and remind them that “it’s good to think about what you’re watching on TV, and ask questions”. Nevertheless, some viewers on social media have expressed that as children, they completely believed that house hippos were real based on this commercial.

Famous Monsters Magazine Covers

Famous Monsters of Filmland is a genre-specific film magazine started in 1958 by publisher James Warren and editor Forrest J Ackerman.

Famous Monsters of Filmland directly inspired the creation of many other similar publications, including Castle of FrankensteinCinefantastiqueFangoriaThe Monster Times, and Video Watchdog. In addition, hundreds, if not thousands, of FM-influenced horror, fantasy and science fiction movie-related fanzines have been produced, some of which have continued to publish for decades, such as Midnight Marquee and Little Shoppe of Horrors.

 

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Famous Monsters of Filmland was originally conceived as a one-shot publication by Warren and Ackerman, published in the wake of the widespread success of the package of old horror movies syndicated to American television in 1957. But the first issue, published in February 1958, was so successful that it required a second printing to fulfill public demand. Its future as part of American culture was immediately obvious to both men. The success prompted spinoff magazines such as SpacemenFamous Westerns of FilmlandScreen Thrills IllustratedCreepyEerie, and Vampirella.

FM offered brief articles, well-illustrated with publicity stills and graphic artwork, on horror movies from the silent era to the current date of publication, their stars and filmmakers. Warren and Ackerman decided to aim the text at late pre-adolescents and young teenagers.

 

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Weekly World News Headlines

The Weekly World News was a largely fictional news tabloid published in the United States from 1979 to 2007, renowned for its outlandish cover stories often based on supernatural or paranormal themes and an approach to news that verged on the satirical. Its characteristic black-and-white covers have become pop-culture images widely used in the arts. It ceased publication in August 2007.

In 2009, Weekly World News was relaunched as an online only publication. Its current editor-in-chief is Neil McGinness.

These headlines are from the online incarnation.

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Winnipeg Jets play by play guy sounds like Marvin the Martian

Dennis Beyak is a wily old hockey broadcaster who does the play by play for the Jets. He has been around since before the invention of the jet engine. The old dog is likely on his last few laps around the NHL.

One thing about the guy is that he sounds like ‘Marvin the Martian’ from Merry Melodies cartoons fame. Beyak does not have a deep man’s man voice, but rather a high pitched squawk. Check it out.

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