Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Monopoly News!

I was going to write this post about the new Monopoly pieces a few days ago but held off due an overwhelming disturbance in the Force.  I was like, “hmm, I should hold off just in case another piece of Monopoly-related news somehow breaks in the next few days.  I’ve got a hunch!”  Since my hunches are always correct*, I now get to just combine both pieces of news into one post, rather than “monopolize” your time by making you read two separate posts.  Puns!

* = case in point, I’m doing really well in one of my March Madness brackets.  The moral of the story is that if you run six brackets, at least one will be a winner!

Firstly, the biggest shakeup in the Monopoly world is that three of the longtime game pieces are going the way of the dodo.*  (Which apparently is one of the few birds that isn’t under consideration for being a game piece.)  The thimble, wheelbarrow and boot are all OUT, to be replaced by a penguin, a rubber duck and a Tyrannosaurus Rex.

* = if you'll notice the address of that link, you'll also note that someone at the CBC doesn't know how to spell "Monopoly."  Come on, CBC!  Somewhere, Rick Mercer just shakes his head in disgust.

This isn’t the first time the game has switched up its pieces, as they introduced a cat (replacing the old iron) a few years ago.  A more learned cultural critic than I could note how Monopoly is slowly phasing out all of the “working-class” items in favour of “random crap,” which someone goes against the game’s gimmick of one rising up to make oneself a business tycoon.

On the plus side, the top hat is staying, as that’s my go-to piece whenever I sit down for a game of Monopoly.  My usual order is preference is Top Hat, then the Wheelbarrow (RIP), and then in a pinch, the Iron Dog.  I always refer to that piece as “the iron dog” rather than just “the dog” due to some children’s detective book I read literally 30 years ago that involved some major clue being hidden inside a metallic statue of a dog.  If they ever make a movie about Margaret Thatcher’s pet hound, the title is already spoken for.

I probably don’t have to worry about my beloved Top Hat leaving the board anytime soon, since I have to imagine that one will be around for as long as Rich Uncle Pennybags (a.k.a. Mr. Monopoly) is still the mascot.  God help us all if they decide to modernize him into some kind of Richard Branson-style “cool billionaire” in a sportcoat and jeans.  If they replace the Top Hat with a Bluetooth Headset, I’ll be picketing Hasbro’s offices.

The second item is that a Monopoly-based musical is in the works, since literally everything can be a musical these days.  To answer your obvious question, no, I’m not going to auditioning for the role of Rich Uncle Pennybags, though the resemblance is uncanny.  (My history of auditioning for musicals is not great.)   

I’m disappointed that my dad isn’t writing the songs for this show, given his long-standing tradition of singing place name-related songs during any game of Monopoly.  Landing on Indiana Ave leads to a rendition of “Indiana Wants Me” by R. Dean Taylor.  Landing on Boardwalk leads to him singing, naturally, the Drifters’ classic “Under The Boardwalk.”  Landing on Pacific Avenue and it’s him singing that old South Pacific standard “I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair”….okay, that last one is made up.  The point is that Monopoly already has a long and proud musical history based around my father’s lack of knowledge about any song written after the year 1971.

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