Meet Green Ninja, the extremely earnest climate change superhero you didn’t know you needed
2012 was a big year for climate change. It was the hottest year on record. There were superstorms and derechos and thundersnow. You could be forgiven for getting a little depressed. But please do not think we are alone in this battle against the warming of the planet. We have Green Ninja, a little animated green guy (in some videos he appears somewhat more awkwardly and kinda problematically as a real person, and we think there may be a branding issue here but we don’t want to be naysayers), who is going to show America’s youth how to fight climate change on the superhero level.
The invention of some concerned scientists, artists, and writers, Green Ninja appears in a series of skits wherein he swashbucklingly attempts to alert people to their non-planet-friendly behavior. In one, a cartoon, a man finds his feet growing to gargantuan size, and Green Ninja shows up and sorts his recycling and turns off his entertainment system and cleans his fridge. In another (mildly racist live action), Green Ninja replaces a college student’s steak burrito with a chicken one, and his roommate’s beef jerky with a carrot. Wait, are you the Green Ninja or Captain Vegetable?
It is perhaps beginning to dawn on you that Green Ninja does not have a terribly good sense of humor, what with his silent judgment of your lifestyle. See for yourself:
OK, well, serious superheros for serious times! At least he doesn’t make anyone sit in a drum circle.
As with any “good for you” project like this, there are games and videos on the website accompanying the little videos so kids can interact with him and stuff, because as life on this planet marches slowly toward a day of reckoning God forbid we forget to have digital interactions with everything. Seriously though, kids have to learn about climate change, and Green Ninja seems like he’s up to the job. Just cut out the “generic exotic Asian music” thing, though, it is making us uncomfortable. Oh and maybe cut out the “ninja” thing too. And we’re not totally sold on the silent judgment, honestly. Actually, can he be Captain Vegetable instead, after all?
Green Ninja: A Smokey the Bear for Climate Change, Good.
Get Grist in your inbox