If the Ancient Greeks taught us anything, its that the Olympics are only as good as their mascots. Way back in 776 BC, organizers of the first Olympiad chose a lovable pair of nude Greco-Roman Wrestlers named Spiros and Adelphos to represent their games, but the limitations of the animated duo were quickly realized when no one wanted to buy a T-Shirt with two sweaty, olive-oil coated cartoons on it.
None of that is actually true, but it's not a stretch to say that not much has improved since the days of Spiros and Adelphos. Unofficially, the first Olympic Mascot was Schuss, a "stylized skier" used to promote the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France (officially, it was Waldi, a multi-hued dachschund who repped the '72 Munich Summer Games,) and Since then, things have gotten progressively weirder. Everything from garish, top-hat clad Bald Eagles and computer-generated blobs to "Cubist Catalan Sheepdogs" and humanized snowballs have been thrust onto the International stage, printed on T-shirts and tote bags, and, at the conclusion of each Olympic games, quickly forgotten about. After all, it's rather difficult to get very passionate about an anthropomorphized ball of snow.
And now, with the 2010 Winter Olympics upon us, a new cast of characters have taken their places on that stage: A trio of super-cuddly critters (and one tiny sidekick) named Miga, Quatchi and Sumi who are -- at the very least -- the most Pokemon-y mascots of all time. Seriously, they are adorable. We want to smash them up and put them in our pockets.
And because of that, we've developed a bit of a soft spot for the little guys (and gal). So, in an effort to make you love them just as much as we do, we've compiled a handy guide to the Vancouver mascots. After the jump, learn how you can tell the difference between a Miga and a MukMuk. Because to know them is to truly love them. Read More...