The rise and fall of the earth’s great empires and civilisations has fascinated historians and political theorists for time immemorial.
It can be argued that all forms of government have been brought low by the fundamental idea of change or rather the cyclical patterns dictated to us by Lady Time that highlight human inadequacy and a tendency to revisit stupidity and evil with unsurprising frequency. In the tumultuous period of change the world faces today, the very meaning of the word has come to symbolise ignorance, bigotry and a reversion to rabid nationalism. In the realm of technology however the wheels of progress have steadily chugged forward, opening our eyes unto the glory of a Brave New World. This pioneer spirit has left many causalities in search of the greater good however. In attempting to create a technological utopia, nostalgia and childhood have been sacrificed on the altar of progress. On this cold tablet of wires and steel lies technology’s most recent victim, the bloodied carcass of Club Penguin.
Club Penguin imbued a sense of purpose and community in this young writer. The uniformity of character and the room for ascension enabled youngsters to experience political intrigue and microeconomics at a base level, creating a whole generation of rational political and social commentators who used the values and ideals instilled in them as tools for the next step in their journey. Employment at the Penguin Secret Agency (PSA) provided a ground-breaking framework and conditioned environment for future MI6, Mossad and KGB operatives to learn how to interact with potential threats and targets whilst Igloo interior design gave the perfect entry level experience to tomorrow’s Michael Smith’s and Elsie de Wolfe’s.
In their desire to create the perfect totalitarian state Club Penguin enforced a strict code of discipline creating a domain free of the vulgarity of the modern world. Children could escape the mundanity of their varying environments and bloom in a fantastical realm of ice and snow where the strong are rewarded and weak are safeguarded. It was a modern utopia, perfect in every way.
Sadly all great realms of men must one day fall and so the gradual decline of this once mighty empire has finally reached its devastating conclusion. The machinations of Herr Disney has entombed many a childhood into the hand held land of ‘phone’. The optimists amongst us declare the forming of Club Penguin Island as the natural successor to Club Penguin, a place of refuge and safety and in line with the developments of the modern age. but I ask them: was not the destruction of the Holy Roman Empire and the establishment of Napoleon as God King bathed in bloodshed? Was not the Spanish conquest of the Aztec’s an appalling example of human idiocy? Was not the ascension of Stalin and Lenin and the implementation of a fraught communist ideology a terrible waste of human life? Ultimately, the demise of Club Penguin is not a financial question but a moral one. Do we let childhood and nostalgia wither for the sake of progress? I fear we have our answer.
Volume #16 here.
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Words by Aaron Powell