Category Archives: ignoble

Elephant seal

Elephant seal

Who is king of the beach? Is it the bully who kicks sand in the nerd’s face in the Charles Atlas ads? Is it the nerd in the last panel once he’s bought the Charles Atlas book and now looks basically indistinguishable from the bully? Is it seagulls?

For many a beach, the answer is the elephant seal.

Hail to the chief.

Hail to the chief.

Special powers

The milk of the elephant seal is hyper-fatty. Like three to five times fattier than half-and-half. You know what else is fatty? Bacon. You love bacon, right, internet? Maybe you should make some t-shirts with elephant seal milk mashed up with Star Wars on them. Maybe Lando has a glass of it and he has a milk mustache on top of his human hair mustache. I don’t know. I’m just brainstorming here.

Anyway, the elephant seal is just jam-packed with blood. You won’t believe how much blood fits in this bad boy.

Weaknesses

Due to the name it has been given, the elephant seal is very self-conscious about the size of its ears. It’s so worried about this that the elephant seal doesn’t even realize that it doesn’t have any ears. Body dysmorphia isn’t logical, folks. Be kind to each other. Don’t name each other after the elephant.

Number of legs

Do the flippers count?

How does it solve its problems?

The elephant seal solves its disputes through violence. Specifically, it employs an ancient fighting style which focuses on headbutts, body slams, and battle snores.

What if it fought a bear?

The elephant seal gets a lot of mileage out of its great size advantage, which is not so much a factor against the bear. It would not adjust its tactics well enough to face such a battle, and so lose.

Is it noble?

No.

Thievery

Thievery

Final rating

It’s truly unfortunate that the elephant seal’s insecurities express themselves through angry conflicts and gross snorts. This big sack o’ blood is just a few months of therapy from being a worthy beach king.

 

 

7/10

Tagged , , , ,

Drongo

Drongo

The drongo may appear demonic, but it is a wholly earthborn fiend.

Hell is not responsible for this.

Hell is not responsible for this.

The drongo uses alarm calls when there is no predator in the area to scare off other animals so the drongo can swoop in and eat the food they left in their panic. It will even mimic other species’ calls to accomplish its nefarious purposes. Basically the drongo took shouting “fire” in a crowded theatre and made that its primary way of life.

Special powers

The drongo is an impressive impressionist.

It can fly.

Weaknesses

The drongo is a compulsive liar. It claimed to have made a full court basketball shot. It claimed to have an uncle who works at Nintendo who told him MISSINGNO was playable in Super Smash Bros. It claimed to speak Portuguese. It claimed it invented Facebook. It claimed bears are just big raccoons. It claimed to be the inspiration for the lyrics of Carly Simon’s “Nobody Does It Better.” It claimed to have been in line first.

All these claims have been rated Pants on Fire by PolitiFact.

Number of legs

Two, plus wings.

Do I own a Beanie Baby of it?

The drongo sold me what it purported to be just that, but its tag describes it as a “Boinie Babby” by “Tyy Inc.” So, I’m inclined to guess no.

What if it fought a bear?

The bear has heard the lies the drongo spread about it, and it will have vengeance.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

The drongo has been lying so long, it doesn’t even know itself what is real any more.

 

 

 

2/10

Tagged , , , , , , , ,

John Dory

John Dory

Most animals don’t have human-style names. When they do, it’s often one a human gave them. And even then, it’s probably something like Snowball or Mayor Fuzzpants or Bella – names that very few humans actually have.

The John Dory is an exception.

It's like if somebody didn't play the fool sometimes.[1]

It’s like if somebody didn’t play the fool sometimes.[1]

Special powers

The John Dory has a name, social security number, and Ralphs card. It also has a false eye on the side of its body to trick predators and teachers who don’t know it’s really asleep.

Weaknesses

Its heavy plates slow it down.

The John Dory desperately wants to “go viral.” The only thing it has come up with toward this life goal is this image:

And what is .facebok?

This is the best it could come up with.

Number of legs

None.

Hollywood connections

You may not know that Zach Braff’s Scrubs character was loosely based on the John Dory.

What if it fought a bear?

The bear’s gonna fall for that fake-eye trick, I just know it.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

That “meme” is terrible, John Dory.

 

 

2.5/10

 

 

 

[1]That would never happen though. Bad example.

Tagged , , ,

Slowbro

Slowbro

To make it up to you for last week being bereft of animal ratings, today we’re featuring a double shot of sorts: the Slowbro.

Two for the price of one.

Two for the price of one.

The Slowbro is a Pokémon,[1] which means it can be domesticated, trained to fight or carry humans across bodies of water, and fits in a small ball or a madman’s computer network. It is essentially a Slowpoke that is being bitten on the tail by what the Pokédex describes as a Shellder. This is the widely accepted explanation, despite the fact that that thing on its tail is clearly not a Shellder.

This is a Shellder. I don't need to be a Pokémon professor to see the difference.

This is a Shellder. I don’t need to be a Pokémon professor to see the difference.

Special powers

The Slowbro has access to water and psychic attacks, along with all their respective type advantages.

Perhaps more notably, it does not feel pain. That’s not just something some trainer tells you when he’s trying to brag; that’s a real fact.

Under special circumstances, it can transform itself into something called Mega-Slowbro.

Weaknesses

This is what Mega-Slowbro is:

Come on now. This is ridiculous. Even the Slowbro looks upset by this development.

Come on now. This is ridiculous. Even the Slowbro looks upset by this development.

Also: Bug, Ghost, Grass, Electric and Dark Types.

Number of legs

Two.

Insightful Bulbapedia Quote

“Slowbro is a combination of slow and bro (short for brother).”

What if it fought a bear?

Given that the bear is a Normal-type, neither animal would have an advantage.

Is it noble?

The Slowbro, yes. That thing called a Shellder? No.

Final rating

The Slowbro is an amiable sort with an apt name. That mystery creature with intentions to devour it alive is some kind of demonic parasite attempting to pass for a real animal – and insulting us with the transparency of its deception.

 

 

Slowbro: 7/10

“Shellder”: 1.5/10

 

 

 

[1]You may remember hearing about Pokémon on an episode of ABC’s Norm.

Tagged , , , , , ,

Man o’ war

Man o’ war

When an animal also goes by the floating terror, there are going to be a lot of expectations on it. Will the man o’ war live up to either of its dramatic names? You be the judge.

Well, actually, I will be the judge but please feel free to write your own score down at home and show it to no one.

Well, actually, I will be the judge but please feel free to write your own score down at home and show it to no one.

Special powers

The man o’ war is equipped with a venomous sting.

Weaknesses

It has an extremely limited capacity to move itself. It floats on the ocean surface, subject to the whims of the winds and waves. It can manipulate gases inside itself to sink a little and use a “sail” on its body to give itself some direction. That is better than a stupid plant, but pretty pathetic for an animal.

Number of legs

Not applicable.

Nemeses

The man o’ war particularly despises the blanket octopus for its immunity to its venom, the loggerhead turtle for having skin too thick to sting (and for eating the man o’ war on the regular), and Meghan Trainor for canceling her planned concert in international waters in the mid-Atlantic. To a lesser (but still substantial) degree, it also hates everyone who has ever lived.

What is its secret?

The man o’ war’s deep secret is that it is not actually a single organism, but instead a colony of specialized “zooids” which cannot truly function individually.

What if it fought a bear?

That bear’s getting stung. Unless the wind gently blows the man o’ war somewhere else.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

It planned on trying to sting Meghan Trainor; I just know it. Fortunately for her and all us would-be victims, its aggression is balanced by its inability to move sizable distances with purpose. It is by far the animal most like if a piece of day-glo driftwood was holding a poison-tipped shiv and seethed with hatred at all life.

 

3/10

Tagged , , , , , ,

Red-handed tamarin

Red-handed tamarin

Because the red-handed tamarin has gold hands, it is also known as the golden-handed tamarin.

You can see why.

You can see why.

Because of its ability to turn everything it touches into gold, it is also known as the Midas tamarin.

Special powers

The red-handed tamarin turns everything it touches into gold. It is the richest, loneliest monkey.

It is an extremely nimble climber, strong jumper and wise counselor.

The locust pictured above got very good advice in the moment before it died a golden death.

The locust pictured above got very good advice in the moment before it died a golden death.

Weaknesses

It turns everything it touches into gold. You can’t eat gold. And neither can the red-handed tamarin. An unpaid intern feeds it smoothies every day to a) keep the red-handed tamarin alive and b) have more experience on her résumé. Some critics say the red-handed tamarin should just eat things with gold silverware[1], but the red-handed tamarin has blocked them all on Twitter.

Number of legs

Four.

Celebrity birthdays

The red-handed tamarin shares a birthday with…

  • Ian Craig Marsh, who convinced his bandmates in The Human League not to name themselves The Definitely Not Sentient Plants Bunch.

  • Emily Cranston, developer of the Rally’s “You Gotta Eat” campaign, which was the second draft of her original slogan pitch “It’s Better Than Starving!”

  • Spuds MacKenzie, the original party animal.

Potent quotables

“Major League is a slam dunk!” – the tamarin’s review of the 1989 film Major League

What if it fought a bear?

One touch and the red-handed tamarin has a new bear statue.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

Don’t touch the red-handed tamarin.

 

 

2.5/10

 

 

[1]Goldware.

Tagged , , , , ,

Chameleon

Chameleon

Have you ever seen the chameleon? How many times? What if I told you the real number was four times that, and you didn’t even know it? That would be crazy. It’s actually only twice what you guessed.

Special powers

Its toes and tail are perfect for clinging to branches. Its eyes swivel independently of one another. It has a long sticky tongue – longer than its body, in fact.

But I’m burying the lead. The chameleon changes color. It does so for camouflage, in reaction to temperature, or as an expression of mood. For example, when the chameleon is angry, it turns black. I’m sorry. It’s not politically correct; it’s just what it does. Blame the chameleon.

In an effort to attract females, the male will take on multi-colored patterns. Mostly plaids and ginghams. The chameleon pictured is on acid.

In an effort to attract females, the male will take on multi-colored patterns. Mostly plaids and ginghams. The chameleon pictured is on acid.

Weaknesses

The chameleon is very slow and deliberate when moving. Do not do a three-legged race with the chameleon. Do not even play a board game with it. It takes a long time to take a Chutes and Ladders turn. Chutes and Ladders! There’s not even decisions to make in that game!

Number of legs

Four.

Do I own a Beanie Baby of it?

Yes.

What if it fought a bear?

It did, and it shot the bear with a gun.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

The chameleon is a sneaky trickster. You can try to keep your eye on it, but it moves so slow, it’s hard not to get bored into ignoring it. But you gotta admit, those special powers are really cool. And it’s got a distinctive look for an animal known for going invisible. Trust me; I have the Beanie Baby.

 

 

8.5/10

Tagged , , , ,

Mudskipper

Mudskipper

The mudskipper rejects your preconceived notions. It won’t fit in your neat little boxes. Fish live in the water, you say? Screw your labels; I won’t do what you tell me, says the mudskipper. The mudskipper is straight up amphibious.

A creature of both water and earth. Ponder the duality of mudskipper. (Photo by K. Leonard)

A creature of both water and earth. Ponder the duality of mudskipper. (Photo by K. Leonard)

Special powers

Seriously, the mudskipper is a fish that can get up on land and walk around on its pectoral fins and breathe. It stores water in its gill chambers, trusty waterskin, and an adorably small flask so as to be both hydrated and aerated for its jaunts to the surface.

It puts the principles of good home decoration into practice in its burrow designs.

The mudskipper’s eyes give it an incredible field of vision – nearly 360 degrees. Don’t even try to do the thing where you tap it on the wrong shoulder. It sees what you’re up to. It’s seen all your tricks…

Weaknesses

…It’s seen perhaps too much.

The mudskipper made a Neopolitan pizza with non-standard mozzarella and was convicted of pizza fraud.

It is extremely bad at singing karaoke and doesn’t know it.

“UNDAH PRESSURE!”

“DON’T GO BREAKIN’ MY HEART!”

Number of legs

None, technically. But two, kind of.

Celebrity birthdays

The mudskipper shares a birthday with…

  • O. Henry, the writer who revealed on his deathbed that the O in his name stands for “Original Twilight Zone.”[1]

  • Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, hero airline pilot who secretly hates birds with every fiber of his being. “Y’ see this?” he screams every time he takes off. “You’re not better than me, you flapping sky garbage!”

  • Emperor Norton, the United States’ only emperor.

What if it fought a bear?

The mudskipper would refuse to fight.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

I’ve forgiven the mudskipper for its cheese crime. I gotta take my hat off to it for breaking down boundaries for fish. It’s a true pioneer and it doesn’t care how silly it looks in the process. Skip on, mudskipper

 

 

9/10

 

 

 

 

[1]What a twist!

Tagged , , , ,

Dementor wasp

Dementor wasp

I’ve said before that we here at Rate Every Animal don’t often cover current events. But sometimes there’s huge news in the animal world that can’t be ignored, and this week is one such time. A newly published report reveals 139 new species that have been discovered in the Greater Mekong region.

They include the color-changing thorny toad as well as new kinds of coral, bat, moth, and stick insect. Today, though, I’d like to talk to you about the dementor wasp.

May I have a moment of your time? (Photo: Michael Ohl/Museum für Naturkunde/WWF)

May I have a moment of your time? (Photo: Michael Ohl/Museum für Naturkunde/WWF)

The dementor wasp is named after a Harry Potter thing. I was more of an X-wing novel kid and I only ever saw the one movie where they go camping and a little bit of the one where one of the Harry Potters finds the Ryder Cup in the hedge maze from The Shining, so I don’t know much about that.

possible dementor (UNCONFIRMED)

Is it this one? Is this it?

Special powers

The dementor wasp’s favorite thing to do is sap other insects of free will, using its venom to make its prey into a “passive zombie.” That’s not my exaggeration; that’s in the words of the World Wildlife Fund.

Weaknesses

As a brand-new animal, there are still some glitches in the user interface, but most can be solved by a quick manual restart until the patch comes out.

Number of legs

Six.

Romantic ties

I heard the dementor wasp likes Karen as more than a friend.

What if it fought a bear?

We’ve only just discovered the dementor wasp. We don’t know how vulnerable the bear would be to its zombifying venom, but the last thing we need is a soulless undead bear. We must ensure they never meet.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

The dementor wasp is a figurative monster. And its name is super-nerdy.[1] But it is fearsome and looks pretty cool. And hey, it’s still in beta, so we can assume its rating will only increase with time and refinement.

 

 

7/10

 

 

 

 

[1]If you disagree, why don’t you name your next child “Dementor?” …That’s what I thought.

Tagged , , , ,

Blister beetle

Blister beetle

Only one animal was used in the creation of the world’s first stink bomb, and it wasn’t the skunk despite what it claims. It was the blister beetle, a.k.a. Spanish fly, a.k.a. Boss.[1]

Special powers

The blister beetle secretes cantharidin, a poison that causes blisters.

Weaknesses

It secretes cantharidin because it has no conscience and doesn’t care who it hurts.

Number of legs

Six.

Nemeses

The blister beetle has no enemies any more than it has friends. We are all just objects to its mind.

sociopath

Sociopath.

What if it fought a bear?

The bear hates blisters. It won’t bother with this beetle.

Is it noble?

No.

Final rating

The blister beetle may feel nothing for or against me, but I consider this sociopath my foe.

 

 

1/10

 

 

 

[1]It is called this by every single customer-facing male employee it meets. Even the judge at the blister beetle’s arraignment called it that.

Tagged , , ,