Voila! The Mystery Of France's Beached Garfield Phones Has Finally Been Solved

SCREENSHOT - Garfield Phone - Ninja Termiator

For more than forty years, Garfield has been a ubiquitous, well-recognized and — in my opinion, at least — very welcome part of pop culture. The orange cat's smirking grin is known worldwide, and the lazy, lasagna-loving cartoon's well-marketed mug has basically been seen everywhere. On lunch boxes, movie screens, calendars, posters, books — you name it, there's Garfield, smiling or frowning the day away.

That includes telephones as well. For several people, primarily in the '80s, Garfield's furry feline face greeted them whenever they would chat away on the landline cat. And for a few French beachgoers, Garfield's smiling telephone was familiar to them for a whole other reason. As it turns out, for the past 30 years, there has been a curiously high number of Garfield phones washing up on their sandy shores. Nobody could make sense of it ... until now, as the mystery is solved.

See more

Ever since the 1980s, French beachgoers have noticed Garfield phones splashing their way onto their sunny beaches. These novelty Jim Davis-licensed telephones would suddenly show up, with no explanation at all, and everyone would remain baffled at this reoccurring oddity — particularly as it continued with each new decade. But as The AFP News Agency reported, there is a reason why Garfield keeps making unsuspecting appearances inside their blue waters. The explanation for this beach-based mystery involves lost cargo and an unrotated destination.

As it was reported, a shipping container was found in a hidden sea cave, and it was likely transporting these telephones from one destination to another when the waves got a little too intense and flew overboard into the depths of the sea. There's no telling how many Garfield phones were inside that shipping container. But since its unexpected departure into the French seas, the landline Garfield phones have been storming their way into the French waters and then onto French beach shores.

It should be noted that a lost shipping container was long suspected to be the reason for why these telephones kept emerging onto their beaches. In fact, it was when a local resident revealed that they found the container submerged in the ocean that the cleaning group Ar Viltansou — which has been taking care of the French beaches for 18 years and, therefore, picking up miscellaneous Garfield phones for nearly 20 years — tracked down the cargo and solved the mystery.

But while an explanation for these strange phone sightings has been given, the mystery isn't entirely solved. For one, where did this shipping container come from? What boat was carrying this cargo before the container flew overboard? And was this the only shipping container, or did several containers containing Garfield novelty phones make their way into the ocean? It's not exactly case closed for this particular mystery. But the French are closer-than-ever to discovering the truth.

Meanwhile, away from these French beach shores, Garfield is still seen in the comic pages and on merchandise everywhere — telephones and otherwise — around the world. And the Mondays-hating, dog-kicking, pasta-adoring tomcat might soon be appearing on the big screen again. It was reported a few years earlier that Alcon Entertainment signed a deal with Jim Davis' company to make new animated movies based on his beloved cartoon creation. If the films gets made, it would be the third time Garfield has been seen in the movies following 2004's Garfield: The Movie and 2006's Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties, respectively.

Details about this proposed new movie are left vague at the moment, but we will continue to keep you posted on these developments and more at CinemaBlend.

Will Ashton

Will is an entertainment writer based in Pittsburgh, PA. His writing can also be found in The Playlist, Cut Print Film, We Got This Covered, The Young Folks, Slate and other outlets. He also co-hosts the weekly film/TV podcast Cinemaholics with Jon Negroni and he likes to think he's a professional Garfield enthusiast.