In Defense of Mutant Grundos
It’s that time of year again. The end of this month brings us the Grundo Independence Day, and a day after, as if to add insult to injury, Mutant Day is observed.
With these two holidays in mind, I’ve decided to bring you an article discussing a very particular pet. My goal is to dispel most of the myths and misconceptions this pet has garnered over the years, and who knows, maybe even convince you to take one home with you in these two special days!
You’ve read the title, so let’s get straight to the point. Today I wish to redeem the Mutant Grundos in the eyes of you, the reader. Yes, you read that right!
Are you out of your mind? Why would I ever want to get a Mutant Grundo?
The Grundos are very popular among owners. It’s not hard to see why, as their plump bodies, little arms and big eyes make for a very cute appearance. Couple this with their cheery and eager-to-please personality, and you’ve got yourself a pet you can’t help but just pick up and give a big hug to. I mean, how could you pass up the opportunity?
There lies the problem, though. You can’t hug them.
Grundos are some of the smaller pets Neopia offers and with a small size comes fragility. Squeeze too tight and you might just give your poor little Grundo a bad case of stiff neck. Not only that, but they’re more vulnerable to the dangers of Neopia. A regular Grundo just won’t be able to endure an icy blast from the Snowager as well as, say, a Tonu can.
Of course, you could just settle for a tougher species of pet, like a Grarrl or a Skeith, but while those two are very good choices in their own right, they just don’t have the same charm the Grundo does.
So what do you do? Why, get yourself a bigger Grundo! Not only will they’ll be able to endure even your fiercest bear hugs, they can also HUG YOU BACK!
But the Mutant Grundos don’t have any of the qualities that make the regular Grundos so cute!
I understand Mutant Grundos don’t have the same cuteness factor the standard Grundos do, trust me. They’re incredibly large and bulky, have bulging muscles, their voices deepen, and their brows become oversized, giving them that characteristic angry look in their face.
However, this doesn’t stop them from being cute! Putting other traits aside for later use in this article, some people find that misshapen appearance of the Mutant Grundo (and many other Mutant pets) to be so ugly it loops and goes back to being adorable!
Of course, not everyone has the same tastes, but for those of you who aren’t into the “so ugly it’s cute” aesthetic, you can’t argue that a pet’s personality doesn’t trump their appearance. As pretty and majestic as a faerie or an eventide pet might be, a terrible personality will eventually sour your appreciation for their looks. It just isn’t fun to look after a pet that treats you and everyone else with disrespect, is it?
So we just established looks aren't everything, why are you still unsure about getting your own Mutant Grundo?
Aren’t Mutant Grundos evil? I’ve heard they can be very temperamental and violent!
This is simply not true. However, I can’t blame you if you hold this or a similar belief. Mutant Grundos have garnered a bad reputation due to various factors. It doesn’t help that their debut in Neopia meant bad news for anyone involved, or that they’re Dr. Sloth’s signature Mutant.
Most Mutant Grundos are easy to handle, but sadly the majority of Neopians don’t seem to understand them or actively try to paint them as savages that are a pain to deal with. You’ll often see people claiming Mutant Grundos are not good for any owner who may be “weak,” describing them as quick to challenge your authority at best, and outright traitorous at worst.
For crying out loud, the Mutant Grundos once had their own entry in the Book of Evil! An entire group of pets were being paired with the likes of the Shadow Usul and Commander Garoo; it’s quite ridiculous when you think about it. Thankfully their entry is no longer there, but the damage is still felt to this day.
So where does all the hate come from? Does it hold any truth to it? To understand this we must first understand the Mutant Grundos’ history.
As you might know, all Mutants were the creation of Dr. Sloth, whose goal was to conquer and enslave Neopia. He couldn’t accomplish this on his own, however, he needed an army strong enough to overpower Neopians, but that was also unconditionally loyal to him.
It was with this objective in mind that Sloth took control of the Grundos. Unsatisfied with their strength, he subjected them to experiments with ray machines and putrid potions. Eventually, Sloth managed to create a super soldier out of the regular Grundo, which is the Mutant we know today.
Let us ignore the other pets in service of Sloth and focus on the Mutant Grundos for now. Why would Sloth invest so much time and effort in the making of Mutant Grundos if they were all as disobedient and dangerous as people make them out to be? Wouldn't it be counter-intuitive to create soldiers that actively try to defy your orders and challenge your authority the moment their strength is raised?
Sloth could have been many things, but he certainly wasn’t dumb when it came to mutating the Grundos. Mutant Grundos aren’t unpredictable or disobedient, in fact, they were mutated to avoid these two traits specifically. Sloth needed soldiers that could take orders without second thoughts, not giant green beefcakes that would beat him up on the spot.
Doesn’t their obedience to Sloth prove they’re evil, though? How can you be so quick to defend them?
To put it bluntly, Mutant Grundos didn’t know any better, and as all the other Grundos at Sloth’s command, they didn’t really have a choice even if they wanted one.
The Grundos are a very simple-minded species. Now where this comes from is not really important, all you need to know right now is that this makes them very impressionable and gullible. Couple this with the added traits Sloth gave the Mutant Grundos and you have a soldier that will never once stop to question what you’re telling them to do, and will eventually enjoy doing said things because you are enjoying them as well.
If you take advantage of your Mutant Grundo to perform misdeeds they’ll obviously become evil, and this is true for any pet. But if you treat them with love and care and set a good example your Mutant Grundo should be as pleasant as any other pet!
Okay, so they’re not evil, but they’re still Mutants! They’re probably all gross and full of diseases!
In reality, the Mutant Grundo is one of the “cleanest” Mutants out there. Their skin is as smooth as it was when it was still a regular Grundo, it lacks slimy tentacles, spikes, boils, or any other irregularities. They don’t slobber disgusting ooze and they barely smell. This again has something to do with their original purpose, Sloth needed WARM HUGS- ah, I mean, Sloth needed brute force, not puddles of snot all over Virtupets.
That must have gotten the attention of all you neat freaks out there, didn’t it? However I must be honest in that there’s a catch to their pleasant (relatively speaking) appearance. It’s their manners, or rather, lack of manners.
Mutant Grundos are very, very straight forward. Most of them are very pragmatic, and only focus on their goal without caring for finer details. They also really like food. I think you can see where I’m going with this.
If a Mutant Grundo is hungry and they are presented with food they’ll just… eat it, just like that. They won’t care about using cutlery or chewing with their mouth shut. So as you can see, proper etiquette classes are a must.
That said though, Mutant Grundos will never be picky about what food you present to them! They will never look at you with disdain for taking them out to eat anywhere else that isn’t Kelp, and will happily eat what you cook at home, too!
But what can Mutant Grundos do apart from looking mean?
The augmented strength of the Mutant Grundo allows them to do things they couldn’t do as a normal Grundo or as most other pets!
Never more will the Snowager blast you and your pets, just ask and your Mutant Grundo will gladly knock its lights out just for you! Ever wanted to piggyback ride your pet, for whatever reason? Well you can do that on your Mutant Grundo’s broad shoulders! Do you need a pet that can protect you, your other pets and your home? The Mutant Grundo is perfect for the job!
And most important of all, YOU CAN HUG THEM! AND THEY CAN HUG YOU BACK!!! THIS IS PERHAPS THE BIGGEST GAME CHANGER IN ALL OF NEOPIA!!!
The possibilities are endless when you are creative with your pets’ abilities, and with the Mutant Grundo it’s no different.
Besides, you don’t need to have a particular use for a Mutant Grundo just to get one. There’s nothing wrong with owning one as a companion since they’re just like any other pet, and like any other pet, they’re happy just being with you!
There you have it. As you can see, the Mutant Grundo is far from being an evil pet, they’re even far from being a pet that’s hard to handle. Despite their mutation, Mutant Grundos aren’t the savages they’re made out to be. They can think, speak and feel. Behind that intimidating exterior is a pet that just wants to be loved!
So what are you waiting for? I mean come on, how can you say you’re into the festivities if you don’t get yourself both a Grundo and a Mutant at the same time? Get out there, and give a Mutant Grundo the love (and HUGS!) they’ve deserved for quite a long time!
Happy Mutant Grundo Independence Day!