[SPOILER WARNING: I have not been watching the Olympics. I did not happen to catch any of the veddy, veddy British opening ceremonies everyone has been discussing passive-aggressively over tea, scones, and meaningful class-conscious glances. I have not caught even a glimpse of any of the competition so far. I am not really sure about anything that has been going on with anyone up to this point. Honestly, I am really not all that into the Olympics.]
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the Olympics.
Actually, what I’ve really been thinking about is that typical Thursday morning in the Marvel Universe’s New York, when the sun is shining and everyone is on his or her way to work. Suddenly, the earth beneath a thousand commuters crumbles and up thr0ugh the pavement pokes the ghastly visage 0f the Rhino, plowing his way through all and sundry en route to the First National Bank, as he so often does. Just when it looks like the Rhino is about to make a figurative killing, a gigantic spider web THWIPs through the midtown sky out of nowhere and snags his improbable horn.
A w0rld-class violent slobberknocker ensues. Threats are yelled. Quips are quipped. Gentlemen of questionable character are hurtled hither and yon into the private property of various other third parties until submitting and begging for mercy.
“I give up, Spider-Man!” the Rhino eventually says. “Please, officers, take me away!”
“No one will ever make restitution for all the cars and buildings that were just damaged,” the Rhino fails to add.
Meanwhile, the citizens of New York are thanking Spider-Man for his amazing, mind-melting feats in the service of their financial institutions by throwing things at him and yelling things like, “Great! Now I’m gonna be tree minits late ta woik, ya bum!” and “Who’s gonna pay for the heel I broke watching this fight?” and not ever “Holy smokes, a man on a web is punching a murderous beast and climbing that wall with the kind of ease you or I might have climbing a flight of stairs! Truly, we live in an age of miracles and wonders. It is glorious to be alive.”
What I’m trying to say is, these citizens are incredibly jaded.
If rhinoceros men and humans crawling on walls don’t get the job done anymore, what would it take to impress these people when the Olympics rolled around?
“Oh, he ran fast? Did he run really fast? That’s very impressive, because we live in a world where Quicksilver doesn’t exist oh wait. Call me when he turns into a bird or eats a bike or something.”
Sure, we’d keep participating. Don’t want to bow out of the global community, after all. Team players, and all that. Still….
What is the pinnacle of human achievement when the definition of “human” is in flux? Are mutants eligible? What about Steve Rogers? What is “juicing” in this scenario? Are cosmic rays better or worse than steroids?
“The International Olympic Committee has ruled that, in the case of a bite from a radioactive animal, provided that bite was demonstrably accidental, the contestant may receive 80% of all points awarded to the average human being, where ‘average’ is defined as ‘we are huge racists.’” [blows his little whistle] [everybody not in costume cheers] [gunshot] [Deadpool has killed the ref]
“Reports are coming in, and… wait, it seems that the American was an android who… wait, we are now being told the android has burst into flames and flown off to fight the Nazis and… so… Bronze. The judges are saying Bronze.”
“Controversy tonight, as it is revealed that Latveria’s star gymnast is actually a Skrull with a hastily issued Latverian passport, which technically was a part of her arm that she made look like a Latverian passport. The head of Latveria’s Olympic committee has been hospitalized for ‘exhaustion’ and will never be beheld by human eyes again.”
“A world record was shattered today when track and field star Ivan Bragowicz completed a 9 meter long jump. There to award the champion his medal was X-Man Nightcrawler, who reportedly patted him on the head and said, ‘Hey, guy, good for you.’”
“Today in London, the Sentry won every Olympic event, and has always won every event, and was there when the first Olympics happened, and came up with the Olympics while he was getting eighteen holes-in-one the very first time he played golf, and is the most glorious ruler North Korea has ever had.”
They basically wouldn’t do it anymore, right? The Olympics?
Or would the games embrace change and go to Crazytown? Maybe they’d just sanction a bunch of new events. The hundred-meter zoom. The Sentinel toss. The bullet catch. Nanopingpong. Archery still, for some reason.
Maybe they’d just keep doing it without us. Ninety percent of the world’s mutants and superheroes are American; they could just disqualify us, kick us out of the games, and proceed as normal. Of course, by doing so, they would have missed out on the majesty of Salt Lake City, Utah.
No matter what, I think we can agree that the Inhumans’ domination of track and field is a bunch of bullsh*t.
Jim Mroczkowski makes very poor use of his free time. See: Twitter.