Gritty, the mysterious orange fuzzy thing, appeared in an episode of the show.
On the recent premiere episode of the second season of ABC mockumentary series Abbott Elementary, the producers of the show managed to secure a special guest: Gritty, amusingly disturbing fuzzy orange thing and mascot to the Philadelphia Flyers hockey team. Quinta Brunson’s character, Janine, invites Gritty to appear at Abbott Elementary’s first day of school as a surprise for the kids, and then things expectedly go weird.
“Gritty, to me, is such a beautiful representation of Philadelphia,” Brunson said in a behind-the-scenes video released by the official NHL YouTube channel and picked up by Variety. “The way he is joyful, the way he looks, the way he feels, the way he is.”
“There are a lot of people who might be iconic in Philadelphia,” adds co-star Sheryl Lee Ralph. “There are a lot of people that might be loved in Philadelphia. None of them come close to the love and admiration that is given to Gritty.”
Variety held an interview with the Gritty character through email correspondence, where he discussed his surprisingly professional process for appearing on the show.
— Gritty (@GrittyNHL) September 22, 2022
When asked if Brunson herself approached Gritty for the cameo, he responded “When you’ve reached the level of fame and success that Quinta and I have, you have people for that. Her people reached out to my people. Of course I’m a fan … It’s comedy, it’s Philly and it’s school. I love two of those things!”
When asked how one should go about explaining his appeal to people outside of Philly, Gritty gave a concise answer. “I’m not in the business of explaining myself or my actions. You either get me or you’re wrong.”