Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Illustration for article titled Meet Ranger, the time-traveling dog teaching kids about 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina
Screenshot: YouTube

Didn’t you all just love your elementary school’s Scholastic Book Fair season each year? What a great time to stock up on a diverse array of children’s books and knick-knacks that promote literacy and stoke kids’ imaginations. Certainly a lovely time for all involved. Gee, we wonder what those book fairs are offering these days. Hopefully more compelling Nancy Drew and Boxcar Children adventures...

Oh, look! Ranger in Time—that sounds promising! The first book here appears to feature this very cute emergency response Golden Retriever as they protect pioneers along the Oregon Trail. Cute! With apparently eleven other books in the series so far, it looks like the pup has his work cut out for him. Let’s just take a look at some of the places Ranger has travelled to in his adorable quests to save the day—oh good lord...

Advertisement

Jesus Christ. Well, as the Amazon book series page for Ranger in Time notes, our beloved Ranger has visited quite a few horrific periods in history—from the Underground Railroad, to the Great Earthquake of 1906, to, um, Hurricane Katrina.

And that’s not the end of it.

Advertisement

Written by prolific children’s author, Kate Messner, Ranger in Time first debuted back in 2015, and boasts 12 entries so far. God only knows what catastrophic moments in recent memory this hound will haunt next. The Fukushima nuclear meltdown? The 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami? Ranger in the High Castle?

Well, we’ll find out soon. Earlier this morning, Messner took to Twitter to defend her pooch and the choice of events in which he should intercede. And, in a lengthy thread you can read below, she makes some excellent points about the generational divide and our routine inability to inform curious kids about the world’s most traumatic atrocities.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

The bottom line? The ravages of time descend upon us all. Given that there is now an entire generation of young, voting-age adults born after 9/11, it’s pretty safe to say Ranger’s audience isn’t exactly familiar with seeing the Twin Towers or a Category 5 hurricane on live television. So, while the idea of a kid’s book about a cute dog navigating the traumas of our childhoods may seem macabre to us, it’s important to keep in mind that the world does not revolve around our predominantly Millennial and Gen X heads.

Advertisement

Still, here’s a thought, Ranger—how about you just stay right the hell where you are and help us sort out this plague horrorshow? You can team up with Dean Koontz, maybe?

Advertisement

Send Great Job, Internet tips to gji@theonion.com

Andrew Paul's work is recently featured by Rolling Stone, GQ, The Forward, and The Believer, as well as McSweeney's Internet Tendency and TNY's Daily Shouts.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter