If you have mycophobia (mushroom phobia), or scholasiphobia (fear of worms that these little creatures certainly resemble), avoid the red button. It can be said that you can push in almost indefinitely until the screen becomes crowded with layers and layers of purple-yellow tubular fruiting bodies surrounding mushrooms on the ledge. Some users have extensive body extensions, while others are confined to one area. But regardless of how the fungus spreads, the whole design is hypnotic, unsettling, and a lot of fun to click.
Google’s results are a creative response to the sci-fi mythology of this series. The Cordyceps fungus spreads far and wide, mutating uncontrollably, turning millions of humans into zombie-like wild hosts, turning them into sinister fungi. The show’s theme song is Gustavo Santaolalla’s astounding score, along with cityscapes, maps, and eventually his two human-like figures (one tall, his other small). It combines mushroom growth patterns that take the form of Personally, I needed something to do to pass the excruciating wait between episodes, so I spent my time clicking on these Google-grown mushrooms and watching them grow. I am happy to be able to do this.
“The Last of Us” airs new episodes on HBO and HBO Max on Sundays at 9:00 PM ET / 8:00 PM CT.