Fourteen environmentally unfriendly television characters
Unless you've been hiding under an ozone-filled nuclear waste facility hidden in an Arctic glacier that has recently begun to melt, you know that today is Earth Day. Now, while other Earth Days have been important, this year's is down-right significant thanks to media reports letting us know that global warming is finally here. This is pretty serious, especially to those of us with young children. We certainly want to do anything in our power to stop global warming so all of the planet's resources aren't used up and we need to travel to another planet in a spaceship flown by Joey Tribbiani.
With that in mind, the environmentally-friendly folks at TV Squad (we write all of our articles on recycled toilet paper) have decided to point out those television characters who don't give the environment the credit it deserves. Some are actually trying to harm it on purpose (I'm leering in your direction, Rush Limbaugh), while others don't know that they are doing anything at all. Here are but a few of the most wanted.
Charles Montgomery Burns (The Simpsons) -- Mr. Burns is probably the worst offender on this list. Not only is he the owner of the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, which irks the environmentalists in so many ways, he is also quite negligent in the way he takes care of it. The result is fish with three eyes (Hiya, Bilnky!) and a number of sterile citizens (including one Homer J. Simpson). I wouldn't be surprised if no one needed a nightlight in the city as they all tend to glow.
Bruce Wayne (Various Batman series) -- One man and his butler live in that huge mansion outside of Gotham City. You would think that the lights would stay off. But, nooo! The exterior always looks brightly lit, no matter if Bruce is home or is away on, ahem, business. What about his Batcave? Oh, there have been rumors that the Cave's equipment is powered by geothermal taps within the Cave itself. Yea, yea, yea. What it comes down to is that he's pulling a ton of energy just for keeping his giant penny brightly lit. And, let's not forget the Batmobile, Bat-plane, Bat-boat, Bat-cycle, and Bat-pogo stick. If you think that he uses standard unleaded gas to power those, then you need to re-examine your feelings for the Dark Knight.
Superman (Various Superman series) -- Speaking about superheroes...The Man of Steel claims he's all for Truth, Justice, and the American Way, but what about for the Environmental Way? How many times has we pulled water from a nearby lake or reservoir to quench a fire without realizing that he was damaging the water table of the surrounding area? How about slamming a villain through a building, causing said building to collapse. Didn't he realize that the resulting dust from the collapse could be toxic. And, don't get me started with the proliferation of Kryptonite around the world!
George Jefferson (The Jeffersons) -- I know that George Jefferson used his dry cleaning business to move on up to a de-luxe apartment in the sky, and that's wonderful: it's good to see that the American dream is still alive. However, I bet he didn't know how badly he was damaging the environment with the dry cleaning chemicals he uses. That stuff can get into the soil and the ground water, causing some serious contamination to the eco-system. On the upside, the area polluted with the chemicals will be cleaned and pressed.
Pig Pen (Peanuts) -- Pig Pen is a walking environmental hazard. Why do I say that? Hello! The kid walks in is own living pile of dust and dirt. You can't even clean him up properly without him reverting to his old self shortly after. Face it, Pig Pen is a lost cause. And, while we're on the subject of Peanuts pollution you might as well add Lucy Van Pelt to the list for the verbal pollution she causes.
Human Torch (Various Fantastic Four series) -- 'Flame On?' How about 'Ozone Layer Off.' Let's face it, although Johnny Storm is considered a superhero, he's a polluter in my book. Just think of all of the damage his flames are doing to the Ozone Layer. Especially after he signals the Fantastic Four to arms with a flaming number four in the sky. Maybe he should just keep his abilities down to the point of being used to heat water for those who can't afford it, or help to make S'mores for underprivileged children. Now that's being a superhero.
Birdman (Birdman and The Galaxy Trio) -- He got his powers from the sun god Ra. Yet, did Birdman really know the consequences of putting his solar beams and solar shield to use? I speak of ultraviolet rays, of course. I wouldn't be surprised if many of his former friends and foes sued Birdman for the different forms of cancer they received. Hmm, I wonder if he became a lawyer for that reason.
Tim Taylor (Home Improvement) -- More Power! That's all that Tim Taylor wanted for his various appliances and tools. Yet, where does more power come from? Normally from an additional use of fossil fuels or electricity. Since he usually tripled or quadrupled the power the energy output would be tripled or quadrupled as well. And, let's not forget the many fires that Tim inadvertently started by giving more power to his creations. Hey, maybe I should have put him above Montgomery Burns on the list!
Norm Peterson (Cheers) -- This is not for certain but...with all of the beer Norm drank and all of the beef he ate at The Hungry Hefer, one has to assume that Mr. Peterson had a bit of a digestinal tract issue. This most likely resulted in a large amount of methane being released from Mr. Peterson's backside. In other words, he passed wind quite a bit. I am utterly shocked that patrons of Cheers were able to light matches without the place exploding.
Peg Bundy (Married With Children) -- Hey, that hair style of Peggy's wasn't all that natural. I'm sure it took several cans of hairspray a day to keep it as high as an Eskimo Pie. And, while we're on the subject of Bundys, Al wasn't that environmentally conscious, either. Think of all of the times he went to bathroom to release some methane.
Oscar the Grouch (Sesame Street) -- Add Oscar Madison (The Odd Couple) to this list as well. I was of mixed emotions when I added these two characters to this list. On the one hand they are extremely dirty characters who pretty much live in their own filth. On the other hand they manage to recycle much of the garbage other people throw away. So, it's almost like they should be on a list of most environmentally friendly characters. You decide.
Any Villain from Yogi's Gang -- All that Yogi, Boo Boo, and the rest of the classic Hanna-Barbera characters that resided on the ark wanted to do was live in a world without pollution. But, how could they do that when they kept meeting people like Mr. Sloppy, Mr. Waste, Mr. Vandal, Mr. Smog, Lotta Litter, and Dick Cheney? Of course, these evil-doers would lure Yogi and his gang in, thinking they were good, then they'd just turn on them. Well, except for Cheney...he just shot them.
Any Villain from Captain Planet -- Did you know that Hitler was on an episode of Captain Planet? Yes, I'm talking about the Hitler, not Bob Hitler from Parsippany (nice guy, by the way). How a cartoon goes from a character called Captain Pollution to one of the greatest mass murders of this era is beyond me. And, praytell, how does Hitler fit into a cartoon that features an environmentally-conscious superhero? Well, villains from the future introduce the atomic bomb to Germany during WWII. Atomic blasts cause radiation, which is inherently bad for more people.
Finally, the most environmentally unfriendly character...
Any commentator of Fox News -- Because of all the crap that comes out of their mouths.