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‘Psychopathic’ Manitoba AI Easter Bunny ‘maybe just dealing with a lot,’ says creator

Click to play video: '‘Psychopathic’ Manitoba AI Easter Bunny ‘maybe just dealing with a lot,’ says creator'
‘Psychopathic’ Manitoba AI Easter Bunny ‘maybe just dealing with a lot,’ says creator
Many enjoying an AI-generated campaign featuring Easter Bunnies from every province, stopped mid-scroll at Manitoba's 'scary, psychotic' rabbit. Melissa Ridgen reports. – Mar 27, 2024

A Canadian history podcaster used AI to generate an Easter Bunny for every province and territory — an idea seemingly as sweet as a basket of chocolate Easter treats.

British Columbia’s plaid-clad bunny in hipster glasses against a picturesque mountain backdrop, Quebec’s impeccably-dressed bunny sipping coffee on a trendy patio and Nunavut’s Easter Bunny — so dapper in a parka on the tundra under the northern lights — garnered 38,000 shares and nearly 2,000 comments on Canadian History Ehx’s Facebook page.

An AI-generated Easter Bunny by province aims to show how vast and diverse Canada is. Canadian History Ehx

Even Nova Scotia’s moody fishing bunny, navigating a rough sea, had charm, as did Newfoundland’s older, distinguished beer-loving bunny.

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“Can I buy prints?” asked one Facebook commenter. “You did well in presenting each of our provinces… luv them all,” wrote another.

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But stopping many mid-scroll was Manitoba’s Easter Bunny, looking possibly rabid in the driver’s seat of a rusted-out blue pickup truck — only slightly bluer than the rabbit’s dishevelled fur.

“Oooooh Manitoba bunny looks angry,” wrote one commenter. “Manitoba deserves a better bunny,” wrote another. Hundreds more expressed shock, confusion and a lot of LOLs.

Creator Craig Baird of Canadian History Ehx, grins when asked, “What’s up with Manitoba’s Easter Bunny?”

“I always like to have one that gets people talking,” Baird tells Global News from his home in Stony Plain, Alta., 40 km west of Edmonton.

“I just saw him as somebody who has been working all day out on the farm. His eyes might be a little bit off, but he could just be very tired.

“Obviously, some people interpreted it as, you know, the scary, psychopathic bunny.”

The big question — what was AI told about Manitoba to make it render such a disturbing rabbit?

“All I actually said was I wanted an anthropomorphic Easter Bunny in a pickup truck in a field, and that’s the one that came out,” Baird explains. “And I was like, you know what? I don’t mind this one.”

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Baird did a similar campaign with a Santa for each province , garnering more than 600,000 views on X, formerly known as Twitter, and his Canadian politicians re-imagined as rock stars made national news.

While some might have nightmares, most just had a good laugh. Baird, a former journalist, says it’s a tool to get people buzzing about historical people, places and things.

“That’s actually how I make my living now is, teaching people about Canadian history through my podcast…  and sharing on social media,” he says.

“All of that to teach people about Canadian history and get them interested.

Click to play video: 'Navigating relationships in the AI era'
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