Friday, July 18, 2014

The Internet’s most famous felines

online celebs

They’ve spent years asking if they can haz cheezeburger, looking down from ceilings, playing people off on their keyboards, and generally being the overlords of the Internet, and their popularity is showing no signs of waning. Cats very emphatically rule the Web. No matter what they look like or where they come from, post their photos online and the Internet is bound to collectively fall in love with them. Some in particular have won global fame. Here are a few of the most famous kitties in the online world:

The Internet loves Maru, and Maru loves cardboard boxes. If there is a box, Maru will try to squeeze into it, and viewers will be endlessly amused by his antics. The Scottish Fold feline, who is nearly 7-years-old, lives in Japan with his owner who goes by the pseudonym Mugumogu, and isn’t just a big celebrity in his own country – where he appears in commercials and releases books and DVDs – but is loved by Netizens (and YouTube viewers in particular) all over the world.

Colonel Meow
The late great Colonel Meow bid farewell to his loving minions earlier this year, but his legacy prevails on the Interwebs. Before his life was cut short because of health problems when he was just 2-years-old, the Himalayan-Persian crossbreed started gathering followers around the globe after pictures of his scowling face were posted on the Internet by his American owners, slave beasts Anne Marie Avey and Eric Rosario. And he even found home in the record books for having the longest fur (9 inches) in the feline world.

Lil Bub
When she isn’t busy starring in her web series, making documentaries, appearing in other television and web shows, and doing meet and greets and photo shoots, Lil Bub lives in Indiana with her owner Mike Bridavsky, who adopted her despite her unusual looks which have since made her a star. Born with several genetic mutations and a bone disorder that have given her a “perma-kitten” appearance, the adorable cat who is almost 3-years-old has won hearts the world over since first appearing online in late 2011. And just like Tard, Bub has also “written” a book: Lil Bub’s Lil Book: The Extraordinary Life of the Most Amazing Cat on the Planet (2013).

No, that’s not the magic of Photoshop; it’s just a wonder of nature. Half her face is black, the other half orange; one eye green, and the other blue. And with her stunning chimera characteristics that have given her such distinctive looks, Venus the “two-faced cat” has attracted the Internet’s attention since photos of her first appeared online in 2012. And the kitty has even inspired a stuffed toy, a cuddly plush version of herself.

He is the star of the best cat videos ever made and his existential musings have captivated viewers. The subject of the excellent short films by Will Braden (who has also authored Henri, le Chat Noir: The Existential Musings of an Angst-Filled Cat) since 2007, this 10-year-old tuxedo cat from Seattle may not have opposable thumbs, but he opposes everything. Yes, it clearly isn’t easy being Henri, but where would we be without his take on the emptiness of life?

Tardar Sauce
And then of course there is the queen of grumpiness herself: Tardar Sauce. Ever since her picture was posted on Reddit by her owner Tabatha Bundesen’s brother Bryan nearly one and a half years ago, Tard has become an internationally recognised superstar. Feline dwarfism and an under-bite have given this 2-year-old mixed breed cat the grumpy look that has made the Internet fall in love with her. And even though she is very calm and nice in real life, her sardonic online persona and sarcastic take on life never cease to offer laughs to her fans. Add to that her growing empire (estimated to be worth a million dollars!) that includes merchandising deals and even a planned feature film adaptation, and you have a feline that doesn’t actually have too many reasons to be grumpy after all!

By Sameen Amer

Us Magazine, The News - 18th July, 2014 *

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