POP CUL­TURE REL­E­VANCE!

Science Illustrated - - MARSUPIAL MADNESS -

Ac­tu­ally, the bandicoot did have a brief mo­ment of global recog­ni­tion... sort of. When Sony launched the orig­i­nal PlayS­ta­tion in 1994, it needed a char­ac­ter to ri­val Nin­tendo’s Mario and Sega’s Sonic the Hedge­hog. De­vel­oper Naughty Dog de­cided to choose an “ob­scure” an­i­mal on which to base a char­ac­ter, and thanks to a field guide to Tas­ma­nian mam­mals, Crash Bandicoot was born. He was a huge suc­cess, sell­ing mil­lions. Re­cently, Crash achieved the dream of ev­ery fic­tional an­i­mal: in 2014 a fos­silised tooth was as­signed, lit­er­ally, the species name This re­mains one of the few species whose bi­no­mial name is nei­ther Greek nor Latin.

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