We are wrapping up the first round of action in our Character Bracket today. This time around we’ll see all the characters that didn’t quite cut it to make their own respective regions. A legendary gunslinger tries to shut down, um, a couple animals riding each other, goofy cartoons hit the hardwood, and much more. Hear our winners and thoughts below, and remember to go to our Instagram and vote via our story, or to our Twitter and vote via the polls there.
(1) Roland Deschain vs. (8) Baby Monkey Going Backwards on a Pig
Pat: Roland Deschain of Gilead, Son of Steven, line of Eld. And his opponent? Baby Monkey Going Backwards on a Pig. One sounds just slightly more impressive than the other. But what good are fancy titles when it comes down to putting away buckets?
Roland seems like the obvious winner here, right? After all, he’s human, tall, and actually has hands, while his opponent is a swine/simian combination, and a backward one at that. And while Roland is a man of many abilities and talents, none of them will give him any advantages on the court. First, with Roland hailing from Mid-World, there are many things that don’t quite translate to our world. Something tells me nobody was playing basketball in the Inner Baronies, where paper is a commodity and aspirin doesn’t exist. So while he may be technically human, Roland would likely have no idea what to do with a basketball, and would likely even mistake it for one of Maerlyn’s Rainbow. Next, while it depends on when Roland would be drawn to our world for such a game, he likely would be missing two fingers from his dominant hand, as well as his right big toe, (compliments of the lobstrosities) as well as an ever-persistent problematic hip which would be doing him no favors in the paint. Can he rely on his talents as a Gunslinger to overcome his physical setbacks? Well, unless he plans on shooting and killing a tiny pig and a baby monkey, or shooting and popping the basketball, there isn’t much headway he can make with his big old sandalwoods. That basically leaves him with his cleverness and cunning to win the game. Problem is, by his own admission, Roland isn’t very good at “thinking around corners”, and greatly lacks in imagination. To make matters worse, he’s quite impatient and doesn’t tend to overthink any plans of action. Much like the world has, it’s best that Roland moves on from this sport, after all, there are other sports than these.
While it may seem absurd to put my faith in Baby Monkey and Pig, just hear me out. First off, these two are inseparable, which makes the duo a synergistic force to be reckoned with on the court. These two, stars of the hit viral video and successful video game know each other’s strengths and weaknesses and balance each other out perfectly. Pig has the endurance of a freight train and never tires, even with a monkey on his back. And while he may not have the proper hands to do any dribbling, thankfully, that’s where Monkey can step in and start pulling his weight. Once Monkey is fixated on something he wants, there is no stopping him. I imagine he’ll dive and run after any loose balls with the same determination that he runs with when separated from Pig. Due to Monkey’s backward orientation on Pig, the team has the added bonus of total visual coverage of the match, they’ve got eyes on the front and back end of the court. These two would out man the grizzled old gunslinger and with Pigs speed and Monkey’s ups, alley-oop their way to victory.
My winner: Baby Monkey Going Backwards on a Pig
(4) Shrek vs. (5) WALL-E
Austin: There is, and I can’t stress this enough, ZERO percent chance WALL-E, our sweet lovable world-cleaning robot, wins this game. He is too slow, too short, too kind. While he is good at picking up trash, and would reasonably understand to pick up the ball (the trash) and place it in the hoop (the garbage can), he just doesn’t have that competitive drive or athletic ability to beat the slovenly, disgusting beast that is Shrek (mad shoutout to Pat for using a pic of Shrek from Shrek The Musical, the most terrifying and hilarious thing I have ever seen).
Shrek is, as I said, a beast. The man eats raw animals for breakfast, lunch, and dinner (can you say GRIT???) and trudges through the swamp every single day (hello, meaty thighs and an explosive lower body). He’s got immense strength as seen in his takedown of all the suitors in the first Shrek when coming upon Lord Farquad’s competition. He’s got speed, seen when he escapes the as-yet-known-to-be-lovely dragon. The ogre has got it all. The only worry are his smarts, but that worry won’t matter this round.
My winner: Shrek
(3) Scooby-Doo vs. (6) Spongebob
Austin: Oh my. My dear GOD. Look at that picture of Scooby-Doo. I mean, just admire the LENGTH (read as LENTH, per every basketball commentator). Scoobert Doo might be 6 feet long/tall, with lanky legs propelling his wingspan to at least the high 6 foot/7 foot range. He reminds me of my pup (Carbon, the famous ibuprofen pill popper and 100k+ like getter on the ol’ Instagram machine [yes, I am slightly salty he will be more famous than I ever will but thankful he is alive so it is a wash]), and I simply cannot rule that as a loser to this maniacal, pathetic sponge.
Spongebob is, for all intents and purposes, the root of all evil in cartoons. There was a shift in cartoons around the time good old Sponge boy became a sensation. He was unbearably annoying, with a nails-on-chalkboard voice and idiotic sidekick. Kids loved the show because it featured wacky voices and annoying, but repeatable jokes. Kids are stupid, and funny noises and goofy looks are the easiest way to grab their attention. Don’t get me wrong, Spongebob was originally very smartly written, with great in-jokes and humor that appeased to adults. But the reason it ran (is still running???) as long and as strong as it did is because kids love the stupidity and brutal, causing-ears-to-bleed sounds that come from the show. Its success spawned dozens of other annoying characters and shows, and I will never forgive it for doing so. I shudder as I write this and hear the faint scream of Spongebob’s laugh in the distance.
The only way this little turdsack could win is if he annoyed Scooby enough that Scoob gave up and left to preserve his own sanity. Thankfully, Scooby-Doo is one of the most chill characters ever created. Never mind that he may be stoned out of his mind a lot of the time thanks to his partner-in-toking Shaggy, but he just doesn’t mind too much that is going on around him. He’s notably easy to scare, but there’s nothing scary about this boxy, yellow fuck. Scooby would dunk this little bitch into oblivion point after point, bucket after bucket, steal after steal. It’s a good thing Spongebob is, well, a sponge. Because he’ll need to soak up all the tears he lets rain down when Scooby is done with him.
My winner and my KING: Scooby-Doo
(2) Mega Man vs. (7) Octodad
Pat: Imagine an entity so powerful that every time it bested another life form it gained their power. Now, imagine a lanky, clumsy, wacky, waving, inflatable, flailing arm tube man. That’s the best way to set up this matchup.
Mega Man, who looks like an innocent enough robot child, actually has the ability to become one of the best basketball players in this tournament. While he much prefers spending his time playing soccer, Mega Man could easily adapt to almost any sport. Every time Mega Man faces Dr. Wily, he doesn’t start off all-powerful. He has to work his way there by besting the Robot Masters, acquiring their powers, and using their strengths against the other’s weaknesses. When he starts off, he doesn’t know the first thing about basketball. So he goes to a middle school basketball game and beats the kids there. Now he’s got the basics down. Works his way up to high school. Gets some more talent there. Now he’s onto college level ball. Works his way from the bottom up until he’s conquered the top talent there. Now, this is where Mega Man really starts to show his skills. Maybe he hunts down Shaq and suddenly he’s got some mad scoring and rebounding talent. Maybe he falls short against Kobe Bryant’s ability to put points on the board. No problem, he’ll just track down Scottie Pippen, defeat him and earn his legendary defensive capabilities to put the squeeze on Kobe. He won’t touch Jordan though. Nobody can touch Jordan. Do you see where I’m going with this? He can just keep slowly building up his pool of experience and skill acquired from other greats until he has all the talent he needs to get to the top.
And then there is Octodad. Who is basically terrible at everything (although he does prove to be a loving husband and surprisingly great family man). Having this guy do the simplest tasks proves to be a patience-trying exercise of coordination and spaghetti limbs. It’s like watching a lanky, awkward, pre-teen try to dance hip-hop—sure there’s a lot of movement, but none of it is very effective. The best thing he could do would be to try to find his way up to the hoop and just hope that nobody notices him cheating as he tentacles the ball in and out of the basket over and over again. However, something tells me that the game would be over before he could even get to the rim and he’d probably have a few tennis shoes and maybe a bag of popcorn stuck on his noodly appendages.
My winner: Mega Man