Tom Hanks Compares COVID-19 to One of the Worst Volcano Disasters In History

Cameron LeBlanc

Tom Hanks isn’t just America’s dad, he’s also a father four times over. That means that making a dad joke about COVID-19 — the disease that made him and his wife very sick and plunged the entire world into chaos – comes naturally.

“Remember those carefree days of the Academy Awards [in February]? It was like, what’s that place in Italy underneath the mountain that exploded?… Here we are in Pompeii! Great day! Bit of smoke on the horizon but other than that …” he joked to The Guardian while promoting his new film Greyhound.

Because of the pandemic, Greyhound will be released on Apple TV+ next Sunday, skipping its planned theatrical run. Hanks calls the change “an absolute heartbreak. I don’t mean to make angry my Apple overlords, but there is a difference in picture and sound quality.” The move likely hurts even more because Greyhound is a big World War II epic, a (very dad-friendly) genre movie that probably looks great on a big screen.

But despite his disappointment, Hanks quickly swerves back to preternatural cheerfulness until the end of the interview when, after some light nagging, he shares some more serious Hanksian wisdom for this difficult moment addressing the question: “How do you go on?”

“In Greyhound, Krause has a little card that says: ‘Yesterday, today and forever.’ That’s all we have as human beings and that’s all we have in the midst of the 19 different crises that we’re facing right now, between COVID-19, worldwide economic disaster, what happened to George Floyd – the great reckoning that we’re all going through. What do we have that we can have faith in? Well, we can have an understanding of yesterday, we can have a plan for today and we can have hope for forever, and that’s it. That’s my wisdom.”

In shifting effortlessly from a cheesy joke to words of hopeful wisdom, Hanks is really living up to his nickname. Would you expect anything else?

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