It’s been one year since the Philadelphia Flyers debuted their mascot Gritty, and what a year it’s been. He’s been on late night TV shows, descended from the roof of multiple sports venues, and has become a social media sensation.
There’s something special about Gritty. He (it?) debuted on September 24, 2018 and immediately horrified every one. Though it only took a few days for people to welcome the orange methed up muppet with open arms.
His Twitter page and Instagram have taken the internet by storm. He has taken aim at the Penguins, Kings, and Sharks, amongst others on Twitter, much to the delight of Flyers fans. His Instagram documents his travels, including meeting other mascots and posing with various Flyers roster members. Gritty has appeared on multiple late night shows including Jimmy Fallon’s “The Tonight Show” and Stephen Colbert’s “The Late Show”, as well as being spoofed by Conan O’Brien.
On the night he debuted at the Flyers home opener, he descended from the ceiling of the Wells Fargo Center to “Wrecking Ball” by Miley Cyrus, shot a fan in the back with a t-shirt cannon, got beat up by a kid during Mites on Ice before picking the kid up and carrying him to the penalty box, and slipped on the ice and fell down which became an iconic meme immediately.
He would later descend from the roof of the Lincoln Financial Field during the 2019 Stadium Series decked out in neon lights. He would later go streaking during an intermission.
Gritty would also take on multiple viral challenges, including the “Bird Box Challenge” where he made fun of Cody Parkey’s double doink. He also took part in the “Colton Fence Jump Challenge” from The Bachelor in an effort to get Kim Kardashian to notice him.
He went all Jack Nicholson on a march madness bracket, he took out multiple Santa’s during the holidays, sunk a half-court shot during a Rutgers game, carved a turkey on Thanksgiving, and wore a bubble bath costume on halloween.
He has had an ongoing twitter rivalry with with WWE star Elias, whom Gritty refers to as Jeff. Gritty has played in the snow, which he calls zamboni dust, he would adopt a hermit crab over the summer and name it Calwd Giroux, he would throw axes at Chopper’s Hatchet House, he has had multiple battles with the Mites on Ice kids. He has hung out with the Phantom’s mascot meLVin multiple times, including reenacting the “hold me Jack” scene from The Titanic on an ATV.
It is hard to remember what life was like before Gritty burst onto the scene. All these shenanigans and it’s only been one year. Who knows what Gritty has planned for the upcoming season, But one thing is for sure, we are all Gritizens now.
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)
photo credit: whyy.org