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MLA Full: "It's About a YouTuber with Cancer." YouTube, uploaded by vlogbrothers, 11 August 2023,
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APA Full: vlogbrothers. (2023, August 11). It's About a YouTuber with Cancer [Video]. YouTube.
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Maybe I'm just bringing my own particular experience to the table here but STILL!!!

Off to get my final radiation of my current treatment plan! Woop!!!

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Good morning, John.

So last week I watched a movie called Puss in Boots: The Last Wish, which is a weird movie because it is about a YouTuber who gets cancer. And I know what you’re thinking, you’re thinking, “Hank, no. That’s a movie about a cat. Who has boots.” But hear me out. 

So there’s this cat. And he’s a performer, an entertainer, he is loved by his whole entire town. He uses his charisma to redistribute money to communities that need it the most, and ultimately, maybe he over invests in managing how he is perceived by a large group of people who don’t actually know him that well. And maybe he under invests in deeper relationships. On the outside, he seems motivated by having a good time. But maybe deeper down, he’s actually more motivated by fear- fear of being hurt, fear of being perceived negatively, fear of losing his status. 

And now, I gotta take a little bit of a side quest here and tell you that while cancer is currently named after crabs, which is weird, in the medieval period normal folks would call cancer simply “the wolf.” And who is the absolutely unnecessarily scary villain in Puss in Boots: The Last Wish? No, I’m not talking about Big Jack Horner, who yes is an antagonist and yes is unnecessarily scary. No. The true villain is obviously the wolf. 

So one day, Puss in Boots is having just an amazing time. But then he loses the eighth of his nine lives. 

[movie audio] "I don't know. I never count it. I am not really a math guy."

And then, this bounty hunter simply appears. And this isn't The Great Gatsby, they're not trying to cover it up. They do eventually just come out and say it.

[movie audio] "I don't mean it metaphorically or rhetorically or poetically or theoretically or in any other fancy way. I'm Death." 

But they didn't have to, like he fights with two sickles and they each have eight little kitties on them with an "X" scratched through them. The wolf is death, the cat is the screenwriter, and Puss in Boots finds that he has always been able to fight anyone and has no fear- now runs away, terrified of- we think and he thinks- Death.

[movie audio] "I just love the smell of fear."

But is it Death that he is afraid of or is it something else? You gotta wait to find out. 

So Puss in Boots runs away and he begins to form, accidentally, a little family. There's a romantic interest who's named Kitty Soft Paws. I have a romantic interest, her name is Katherine, and her hands are soft. And they kind of adopt a son, who's a terrible-looking Chihuahua with a heart of gold. And I have a son who isn't terrible-looking, he's actually very cute, and he has a heart of- you know, he's six, he's working on it.  

So as Puss in Boots develops these relationships, it starts to become clear that what he's afraid of isn't so much Death, it's his own fear of death. Puss really freaks out not when confronted by Death, but when he starts to feel afraid. That's why he left Kitty Soft Paws at the altar. 

[movie audio] "I run away then too." "Oh, oh, oh!"

And it's why him running away is always preceded by his fur beginning to stand on end. He's not running away from Death, he's running away from his fear of death.

Not to get too deep into spoilers here, I promise there's lots of amazing stuff I'm leaving out, and it is on Netflix right now. He develops ways of dealing with his fear, which includes, get this, deeper relationships with his new family. And then he is confronted by all of his former lives and all of the things that he's done and loved doing in the past, but that didn't have the depth of the ways that he feels appreciated and loved by his family. And his former selves, well, they are appalled to see him turn away from them. But he wants to.

[movie audio] "You know what? You guys are jerks. Which is very conflicting for me." 

In the end, Puss in Boots ends up afraid of Death, but not afraid of his fear. This anxiety stops piling and piling and piling on top of him and in that moment, the cat (the YouTuber) is able to fight the wolf, Death, while knowing that there is no way to ultimately defeat it. If you beat Death this time, you will be fighting death again. But he's gonna keep fighting as much as he can for as long as he can, because it's not about looking good for the crowd, it's about preserving what he loves, which is time with his family and his friends. And when he wins the particular fight with Death that he has at the end of the movie, he recognizes that there is another day coming when he will not.

[movie audio] "You know we will meet again, right?" "Si, hasta la muerte." 

And none of that means that Puss in Boots doesn't want to continue doing big, interesting, amazing, adventurous things. He still loves that stuff. He loves to make things for people. But knowing that the next fight with Death could happen at any time and may indeed be the last one gives him a new perspective, and he realizes that he both needs and wants more than he had in all of his former lives. 

Look, I don't know why you make a kids movie that's definitely about coming to terms with your mortality as a middle-aged professional entertainer, but I'm glad they did. John, I finally found my Penguins of Madagascar. I'll see you on Tuesday.