Thursday, September 29, 2011

How TUCKER & DALE and Rikidōzan can Save America... from STRAW DOGS

America has become so ugly, violent, and bitter over its president, its policies, and its blue/red state divide we need an intervention. You can hear it in the catcalls at the Republican debates and read it in the reviews of the STRAW DOGS remake, and like everyone else in this country, I know I am right and all those other people are idiots --but has anyone turned hate to love through their love of hate? Changed minds through the same sneering intolerance that resists it? No. It's only ever worked en verso when you've learned to forgive, (as Wilde wrote "love your enemies, it drives them crazy) and then to kill and destroy one another with love, via a performance of destruction instead of the real thing. It's a neat trick, but no one uses it anymore. We could use a man like FDR again...

Blue states and red should work together so we don't fall out of 1st place in the world's most awesome list. It's imperative we stop fighting in the backseat before our fed-up parents turn the car around and we never get to go to Disneyland. Once there, we can fight all day, in a fantasy performance of our old fights. Never thought I'd say it, but if we can't stop fighting we deserve not to go to Disneyland. We're supposed to be this super power but we can't stop bickering even as our distracted dad is about to go off a cliff. If both sides of our political divide would rather run the country into the ground than give an inch to the other, Civil War 2 is inevitable, and it's all in an awesome new movie coming out called TUCKER & DAVE VS. EVIL.

 In this film a pair of redneck hillbilly cannibals turn out to be just two lovable decent dudes whose well-meaning interaction with a camping group of college brats turns deadly. But they're not really creepy redneck cannibals, this is all a huge misunderstanding! It's pretty funny. Actually, it's hilarious... and actually, it might be the one film that can heal the rift of misunderstanding between our great semi-nations. Because in the end, redneck and bourgeois douchebags need each other. We're like stars and stripes, stupid-looking apart, but together --flaggish.

Why the anger? We're not kids any more, after all. Well, some of the conservative tea party reds think sex before marriage is a sin, and masturbation is as well... so good lord, no wonder these fundamentalist Christians are so violent and confused! Deadly sperm backup or DSB is not a joke! It may in fact have been the cause of both world wars as well as our current ones. (Hitler was all into that sexual denial stuff --for Germany! - He had one testicle --maybe!)

Thus - those red state voters should all make an effort to masturbate every day, to find a safe comfortable private sanctum and 'git'ir done'. This is their patriotic duty! Semen retentum venom est! 

Aint seen this yet... looks mighty innirrestin'.

The blue states don't think they have issues--they masturbate often--but there's a more insidious impetus that keeps them just as fidgety and self-righteous as DSB... and that's denial of their violent natures. They want equality and justice for all, but they want 'someone else' to go bring this justice over across the tracks to the 'all' because the 'all' reek of the lamb. These blues recoil in horror over slaughterhouses, poverty, ignorance, and bad dentistry. These blue staters would never invite a man who kills his own pigs and cows to their Sunday barbecue, because that's cruel, and gross! Pass the pulled pork. End! End of discussion. No irony permitted. They ride their bikes across the Brooklyn Bridge in the rain rather than ever take the subway--even the subway's too un-eco for them; they get their food at the Park Slope co-op (I do support their Wall Street occupation, that's a whole different thing). There's something these kids need to do, too, and it's not masturbation. They need to learn to admit they love violence... and the smell of the lamb...assssisssiassss.

As it is, the blue state person is like the beautiful Yvette Mimeux (above, left) as the eloi in THE TIME MACHINE (1960),  totally dependent on the blue collar morlock for her plumbing, defense, and cable installing needs. This is why Obama doesn't get anything done --he needs a red state Joe the Plumber to fix the White House bathroom. He's constipated from waiting for change. Clinton had enough red in his blood to just go ahead and pee in the oval office vase. Obama thinks 'rationality' will work and that common best interest will prevail over irrational venom --since when has it ever?

But can you blame the red states for being resentful? Ain't you ever seen DELIVERANCE, son? How would you like it if squealin' Ned Beatty came a-paddlin' through your land hoping to get one last freakshow gawk before your house and still were washed away so he could get hydro-electric power for his central AC and 'lectric terlet? You would love it? Yer a sick freak.

This brings us to Dustin Hoffman in the original STRAW DOGS (1972), wherein he was not the hero defending his home from redneck invaders, as has been commonly summarized by critics (who didn't see it or don't 'get' ambiguity, and dismiss it as a standard anti-hillbilly home defense yarn). Dustin's character never even learns about his wife's rape. He defends his home against invasion because he won't turn over a child murderer to them (for lynching). When the rabble try to storm in, Peckinpah reverses the normal blue state rape-revenge thriller model - graying every area he can and forcing a complex emotional response from any alert viewer. The real violent monster in the film turns out to be Dustin. He's not Dirty Harry, but the snide liberal police chief who'd rather set murders free than let Callahan rough up a perp. Simply put, Dustin's character is a dumb busybody, enforcing his smug liberal intervention on the locals who've done things their own way for centuries, and there's no getting around that unless signifiers (glasses = good, shoddy dentistry = bad)  blind you to what's really going on. It's these signifiers that DALE AND TUCKER play off of to such hilarious and genuinely touching effect. Katrina Bowden (30 ROCK) is even in it. So relax! Men of all genders shall swoon at her celestial midriff.

Most entries in the hillbilly rapist genre today are patterned not after STRAW DOGS, but after THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE, which brings in cannibalism and the usual meat hook and bone sculpture decor and the unspoken moral that if the blue states could access some of that red state killer instinct they'd kick the red stater mutants from here to Macon. That ain't true, Bubba will whup your ass no matter how broke your glasses get. Thus, both sides need to own up to their faults if we're to ever move forward as a nation and share the wine and cuir de visage. Or as Grace Slick said at Altamont, "People get weird, and you need people like the Angels to keep people in line. But the Angels also — you know, you don't go around busting people in the head."


Until then, thanks to our bickering backseat, America will continue to be one of those couples that fight in public. Why are they even together? They had a trial separation back in the 1850s; they had a real bloody row over the kids, until finally there was a joint settlement. But now our red states want to go out for a pack of smokes and never come back; they want to put up a big wall to keep Mexicans out; they want to start making liquor again in the hills--smoking at the bowling alley-- and who can blame them? Every day some new blue state health nut decides the red staters should have more tax placed on whiskey and tobacco, that this and that should be done to their land and that Christianity is stupid and lacks logic. Huh. Like science really knows what it's doing. Half the time the hillbilly cannibals the blue state prigs encounter got that way 'cuz a radiation poisoning!

The Hills have Eyes 
As a blue stater with a red state little brother out in Arizona who collects cars and guns and has two dawgs, I say we either let the south secede, or embrace them for the crazed thugs they are. One or the other. The shadowy elite who run things wont let us get a divorce, so succession is out. Why not try what worked for my brother Fred and me -- Hell, we made it to Disneyland and we fought the whole way down. But we had a secret. We knew the fighting would never end, so we pulled our punches, we 'fake-fought' - that's where you have to honor every fake punch and throw. So even if a little kid just tags you in the solar plexus, you have to double over like you got a shot from Mike Tyson. If you pick the kid up to throw him, you have to kind of hold lightly onto him as you throw him for a soft landing. You'd be surprised how much aggression you can expunge through this avenue.

In the red states, though, they're hip to that irony. That is their strength over the blue states, who seem to think of cops and politicians as 'in charge' and that things are fundamentally all right. Red staters know better. You can decry lynch mobs as evil, but then don't get mad when murders walk free on technicalities. Adherence to the letter of the law is just fear of making executive decisions. Red staters know that law and order can collapse any time. When the zombies come, it's to my redneck brother's door I shall run, knowing his windows are barred and his gun locker is always oiled and accessible. My fellow blue staters will all still be waiting for the official word on what's going on, assuming someone's going to come by and rescue them.

Someone ain't!

I lost some of my faith in my blue state people during the last time the Republican convention was held in NYC, when massive demonstrations and so forth went on, the protestors never getting the irony that they were validating every paranoid fear of the right wing, assuring the spooked white folks they were right to want to put the hippies in jail, to close up their borders and turn their backs on their fellow men. The protesters should have met the Republicans with love and welcome, brought so much love that they overturned the whole thing, made it so the Republicans couldn't even get onstage because so many hippies were hugging them, and they couldn't even think of war let alone talk about it with all that love around them. Gandhi knew this. As much as he makes your skin crawl, you have to show your enemy love if you want true victory. 

That's how America won the hearts and minds of the devastated Japanese population after WW2. Around 1950 and the dawn of TV, they brought in all these huge American wrestlers to fight the Japanese wrestling star, Rikidozan, and after long violent matches--sometimes going on for hours--Rikidozan won and the entire nation rose up in ecstatic cheering. The Americans were cool enough to not say, 'hey man, this time American should win.' It wasn't like that. Americans had heart and soul back then because we were united - we had to be united to win that war. The wrestling matches helped ease the pain of the beaten Japanese - and I love this example because it perfectly encapsulates my message of the fighting brotherhood, of wrestling (or fight clubs) wherein the winner or loser is irrelevant, only the pain and spectacle matter. And that there are no hard feelings but rather a bond of brotherhood afterwards.
This is the guy who was the star in Japan:

Japan - Rikidōzan
Known as the "Father of Puroresu", Rikidōzan was a sumo wrestler before turning his hand to professional wrestling in the early 1950's. He rapidly became a star in Japan by defeating American wrestlers, boosting the morale of a nation devastated after World War 2. NWA title reigns and an international fame boosting win over Lou Thesz cemented his popularity before he began training two more legends of Japanese wrestling, Antonio Inoki and Shohei "Giant" Baba. He then went on to develop his business empire, acquiring hotels, nightclubs and boxing promotions before he ran afoul of the Yakuza in a Tokyo nightclub in 1963. (from Onwards to the Horror Show)
Imagine if every night there was a big wrestling match televised between Israel and Palestine--Hymen "The Golem" Roth Vs. the Palestine Monster or between Red state and Blue: the Iron Yuppie vs.  Johnny Reb (that last one's from The Simpsons). We wouldn't be solving any of our problems, but we would be at least showing that we 'get it' - we'll never agree, and we can still fight, but like brothers who get out their animosity and rage in a pulled punches kind of way that lets them both walk away winners.  It's a world away from watching old men talk our country into the grave, which is also a kind of theater, for are not these issues are long since decided by our shadowy Masonic elite?

We can't keep denying both our reptilian killer natures and our dueling head-butting mammal ones; if we're not going to actually kill, then, well, we need a fight. If we don't see a fight in a long enough span of time we end up going to war for no reason. Also, we need to give each other a private space to take care of our sexual onanistic needs, so the DSB doesn't make us too venomous, and to keep the anger managed, so we may as well set up some ground rules... for the good of all America! Let Tucker and Dale show us the way... to Canada!

1 comment:

  1. Terrific way to tie so many disparate elements into a moving whole! Great piece!


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