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Robin Lopez’s thoughts on ‘Garfield’ are a nihilistic masterpiece

Jon Arbuckle sucks.

There’s a new Garfield movie on the horizon. Why? I don’t know. I didn’t make it. Chris Pratt is the voice of Garfield now, because apparently when you don’t know who to cast in anything you just call Chris Pratt.

How did we get to a point in society where Chris Pratt can be Star Lord, Mario and Garfield in the same calendar year and nobody has stopped to say “this is too much Pratt.” Sorry, I digress... didn’t mean to go on a PrattRant like that.

So there’s The Garfield Movie (2024), not to be confused with Garfield: The Movie (2004) — and we got our first look at the trailer on Tuesday. This prompted Robin Lopez to give a close reading of a screenshot that painted the most depressing picture imaginable.

Nobody has issued a more scathing takedown of Jon Arbuckle than Robin Lopez just managed in a single tweet. Hell, Jon was voted as the most depressing cartoon character of all time and still he didn’t get torn apart like Lopez managed.

I’m absolutely buying the idea that not only Jon frequents his local Olive Garden, but he signs up for the Neverending Pasta Pass every year so he can sadly eat in the dimly lit corner of the restaurant five nights a week. The other two nights he eats leftovers.

Servers play rock, paper, scissors in the corner upon Jon’s arrival — the loser has to wait on his table. He always uses his pasta pass, and only ever tips a few dollars at best. There have been several complaints from the female wait staff to management that Jon gets too personal with them, but they ignore their pleas.

There’s no explicit malice, but rather a yearning to comprehend a world outside the confines of his walls. With only a cat and dog to keep him company Jon hangs on the servers’ every word, trying to make a human connection — not out of true interest in their lives, but rather a desperate plea not to be alone.

Jon used to sit facing out to the dining room. Taking in the human tableau of the restaurant. First dates, birthdays, anniversaries being celebrated. It made him too sad. Now he sits facing the wall, huddled over his “Tour of Italy,” as he sadly munches his sodium-laden chicken parm, saving the hunk of mediocre lasagna for Garfield. The cat won’t appreciate Jon did this, because nobody appreciates Jon.

The talk is less now. Jon doesn’t engage the staff like he used to. The rock, paper, scissors games have ended. Nobody cares enough about Jon to even make his presence a game. A box always comes next to his check, because that’s the level of predictability he’s created. He throws three singles on the table as his tip, walking out without saying goodbye.

The pasta pass is his new prison. It’s shackled Jon Olive Garden in a way he hadn’t intended. He can’t justify eating anywhere else while in possession of the card, and his talking cat has come to expect the sustenance.

Jon stares at the matted maroon carpet as his drags his feet to the door. He glances up for a moment and locks eyes on a sign reading “When you’re here, you’re family.” A single tear wells in the corner of his eye before pushing open the door to the cold, crisp parking lot. “Another lie,” Jon thinks to himself as he tosses the leftovers on the passenger seat.

Driving alone, in silence, Jon realizes the hollowness of his life. Tomorrow is another day. A subsequent step to the sweet release of the unknown. Until then he’ll keep talking to his cat and eating at Olive Garden, because there’s nothing left in this world for him.