Saturday, May 23, 2015

This disabled cat has her own media empire. What did you do today?

You've probably heard of-or at least seen pictures of-Lil Bub. If not, welcome to the Internet! You'll love this video of Charlie biting his brother's finger.

This disabled cat has her own media empire. What did you do today?

Mike Bridavsky

You've probably heard of—or at least seen pictures of—Lil Bub. If not, welcome to the Internet! You'll love this video of Charlie biting his brother's finger.

Those of you more well-versed in the Internetting probably know Lil Bub as the adorable little kitten that was born with osteoporosis and was nearly euthanized because the disease made it difficult for her to walk and she was in a lot of pain.

SPOILER ALERT: The cat ended up getting much better with some innovative therapy and a lot of TLC. Now, she's got a book coming out this month (seriously), her own documentary and (probably) her own line of action figures and lunch boxes. The cutest cat on the Internet has her own media empire.

Lil Bub rose to fame the way most internet cats do – through channels like YouTube and Tumblr. Bridavsky began posting videos of Bub back in 2011, when she was still a kitten. At the behest of friends he also began posting photos on a Bub blog. Within the next year the Twitter account had launched along with the Facebook page and by the summer of 2012 the cat-hungry internet was fighting over who had loved her longer. BuzzFeed posted about her. So did Jezebel, which called her “one of the weirdly cutest, Mogwai-looking motherf***ing cats you will ever see.” But it was Vice that touted that “we liked Lil Bub before anyone else did.” (Talk about marking your territory.)

Thankfully, Vice put its money where it’s mouth was with the Bub documentary, which investigates not only Bub’s life but the larger phenomenon of internet cats, especially underdogscats like Grumpy Cat and Maru. Lil Bub and Friendz premiered this spring and went on to win best online feature film at the Tribeca Film Festival. In addition to the doc and the book, Bub (with Mike’s help, we imagine) launched a series with Revision3 called Lil Bub’s Big Show. First guest? Whoopi Goldberg. “She was the easiest part,” Bridavsky says. “It was like, ‘Hey Whoopi, do you want to do this?’ [She responded] ‘Anything for you, Bub.’” In an episode airing later this season, she’ll collabo with Kelley Deal of the Breeders on Deal’s new single.

If you don't already feel inadequate because a crippled cat is more successful than you are, you can head over to Wired and read up on the rest of Lil Bub's upcoming plans, like an animatronic doll that plops. Yes, plops. Somewhere in Middle America people are already being trampled because K-Mart can't keep that toy on the shelf. [Wired]

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