Molang at Night

by Diana Moskovitz

The cartoon characters Molang and Piu Piu tilted back in laughter, both dressed in lace-edged ruff collars and Baroque style outfits.
Screenshot: YouTube

You do not need me to tell you that the news right now is very bad. It’s horrifying. It’s appalling. It’s terrifying. Or, in the words of my colleague Maria Bustillos in this very newsletter just last week, “Everything is incredibly fucked.” Every day, you can pick up your phone and choose which genocide or war or tragedy to watch unfurl, live, from the perverse comfort of your own home, using the same internet you will later use to order a new stainless steel water bottle, delivered tomorrow. I’m in the U.S., where turning your attention to domestic affairs will offer no respite whatsoever

This helps explain what has recently become my favorite thing to do near the end of every night: watch multiple episodes of the French children’s animated series Molang

Molang is a rabbit whose best friend, Piu Piu, is a bird, and they mostly speak a made-up language, aka Molanguese, with dashes of English. Several seasons of the show are available on Netflix, in which Molang and Piu Piu solve all sorts of quandaries—chicken pox, how to handle Hollywood stardom, Piu Piu getting stuck in a French monarch’s wig—in under three minutes. (There’s also a YouTube series in which Molang and Piu Piu navigate the complex world of becoming YouTubers. These typically run about 10 to 13 minutes.) 

I’d heard about Molang before, and even stumbled upon cute Molang merchandise while shopping in Los Angeles’s Koreatown (Korean illustrator Yoon Hye-Ji designed Molang). But I never even thought about watching it because it was a children’s show. What could I possibly take away from it? Cuteness? 

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