Mutant Kacheeks: A Mutant Day Anatomical Debate
The majority of Neopia's population regards mutants as vile, twisted creatures that slide more towards the monster end of the scale than being actual Neopets. But let's stop and think about this rationally for a moment. From a technical standpoint, just how different and deformed is a mutant pet from the so called "average" pet of its species? There are many myths, legends and misconceptions that surround mutant pets, but this article shall focus on only one thing: the analysis of the physical traits that distinguish- or relate- a mutant species to its basic form. And since I so happen to be the proud owner of a Mutant Kacheek, we shall be focusing on the various mutations in the Kacheek population, as well as receiving information from my pet himself. Introduce yourself, Tails!
Tails: Salutations, most cultured bibliophiles of the illustrious Neopian Times! It is of the most paramount reverence in which I contribute perception upon the inner workings of a mutant's personage.
...I almost forgot he talks like that; he stays in his library so often. Let's begin our analysis of the Kacheek physique, before I have to get out a thesaurus and translate Tails's ramblings.
1: Mind over Matter
The first thing any person will notice when looking at a Mutant Kacheek is the enormous pulsating mass of grey matter protruding from their head.
Tails: Which, through copious amounts of irony, is not grey in any sense, but both a bubblegum pink and pale, sickly blue, with the colors intersecting haphazardly about the cranium.
Hey, who's the one doing the analysis here, me or you?
Tails: And who is the one that inhabits this deformed constitution? I believe it is I.
Now when compared to a basic colored Kacheek, the difference between the two is stark and obvious, since the average Kacheek- and average Neopet for that matter- have their brains neatly tucked away in their skulls. However, this isn't to say having a giant brain doesn't have its advantages and disadvantages. An obvious positive benefit is an increased memory capacity and a higher cognitive function, kind of like the difference between a calculator and a supercomputer.
One downside though is how delicate that squishy head ornament is, making Mutant Kacheeks one of the least suitable Neopets for hand-to-hand combat.
Tails: I wish to politely object.
Oh come on, you're not a Battledome pet and you know it.
Tails: That point I do not argue; however victories are procured by more than brute strength. A mutant Kacheek more skilled and trained in the arts of war than I, he or she could effortlessly become a battlefield strategist of intensely high caliber. History has revealed time and again that the most successful warriors also possess the most ingenuity.
...Okay you have a valid point there. But can we agree that in battle, you don't want to be hit on your noggin?
Tails: This I can compromise on... And attest to. Battling alongside the Seekers was poor choice on my part. I seem to have forgotten the ending of a book succeeding one particular bludgeoning via the Rent-A-Brute.
And that's why you're not a Battledome pet.
2: The Eyes Have It
Another obvious and, frankly unsettling, difference between a Mutant Kacheek and its more normally shaped brethren are the unmistakable facial features, most notably the black hollow eyes with striking, glowing orange pupils... That seem to gaze into your soul... In the name of Fyora, stop staring at me like that, Tails!
Tails: There is no more abnormality or ill intentions in the way I am gazing on you than any other particular moment.
It's still creepy. Especially when you get angry, I've seen your eyes glow a disturbing shade of yellow.
Tails: I was unaware of such an alteration occurring in exposure to stressors! How anomalous...
Speaking of anomalies, let's look at some other strange facial features. Most will notice straight away the large protruding fangs hanging out of a Mutant Kacheek's lip, causing a constant scowly expression.
Tails: "Scowly" is a fictitious word.
Oh you know what I mean; you look like you're frowning at everyone all the time.
Tails: Frown, glare, grimace, glower-
I get it, I get it! Can we continue now?
Tails: If we must.
...Anyway, another odd and often overlooked detail of the Mutant Kacheek is that their tongues are, I kid you not, naturally purple. My research indicates there was once a time where Mutant Kacheeks had tongues the same color blue as their fur, but after the Great Conversion of Y9, a mysterious color change occurred.
Tails: How is it I never noticed such modifications of my own anatomy until you're pointing it out?
Chalk it up to Kacheek puberty or something? ...Hmm, how DOES puberty work with Neopets? That might be a good topic for another article...
Tails: Focus, my sapient owner! Focus!
Oh, right! Ahem. Now that we have looked over the major focal points of a Mutant Kacheek's anatomy, let's compare and contrast with other Kacheek types.
3: Mutant is in the Eye of the Beholder
For the majority of this article we have compared the Mutant Kacheek to their basic colored counterparts: red, blue, yellow and green, the most common types of Kacheek on Neopia.
Tails: I once possessed the archetype of the yellow variation of my species.
However, as any Neopian knows, there are many different sub-categories to each Neopet species. Some bear near identical body types to the basic colors like rainbow, starry or skunk. Others, however, vary even more widely from the norm than even our mutant friends!
Take for example, the Maraquan Kacheek. As elegant and beautiful as it may be, there is no denying that a Kacheek with the body structure of a goldfish is very different from your run-of-the-mill red Kacheek. In fact, all the things that adapts it to aquatic life: scales, fins, body structure, etc. make it an ever greater variant than the Mutant Kacheek, which at least retains an almost identical body structure due to its living on land.
Tails: Terrestrial mobility is far more intuitive than aquatic travel, though that seems a conspicuous observation...
Alright then, let's compare Mutant Kacheeks to other land-based types. Take for example the Tyrannian Kacheek. It has copious amount of body fur, protruding teeth much like you have, and the thick brow and chin that's indigenous to many of the Tyrannian people. And what of the Darigan Kacheek? They have claws, fangs and devious eyebrows, not to mention piercing eyes similar to those of the Mutant Kacheek. Or what of Zombie Kacheeks, with rotting pale flesh and sunken-in eyes?
The point I'm trying to make is that though yes, mutant pets have very different and unusual body shapes from the average pet, even other pets considered "normal" by the general population can have variations similar to, or even more dramatic than those of the mutant demographic. So just because your neighbor might have a pulsating mass of flesh on their head, or have eyes that glow when they get upset, it doesn't mean we have to exclude or ostracize them from society. If a Maraquan pet is praised for its unique elegance, or a Darigan pet revered and loved for its ferocity, then why not appreciate the Mutant in all its quirky and lovable glory? If there is any justice in this world, let Fyora be my witness as I take my stand for the equal treatment of all Mutants, just as any other pet, no matter how plain or different looking, would want to be treated!
...Tails, are you crying?
Tails: A-absolutely not! I merely had... had some microscopic filth in my eye.
Whatever you say, buddy. Whatever you say... That concludes this article on Mutant Kacheeks and the similarities and differences between them and others of their species. It is my hope you have learned more about mutants, and will be more tolerant and informed on your next encounter with the mutant kind. From Tails and I, we wish you a happy Mutant Day!
I want to thank everyone who responded so positively to my first article, you made this possible! Happy Mutant Day!