All 4 entries tagged Awesome Icons

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March 31, 2005

Awesome Icons: John McClane

As I was flicking through the television channels last night I came across a classic movie straight out of '88 that ramps up the action to hi-octane levels. I realised, as the pyrotechnic, blood soaked glory unfolded before me, that striding through the smoke and shattered lungs of his enemies was another of our hallowed, awesome icons: John McClane.

The film is called Die Hard for a reason; this guy just doesn't drop. He gets blown across the room by C4, kicked hard in the face more times than I could count, shot full force in the back, jumps off a building with only a fire hose wrapped round his waist (a move that, by all physical laws, should have broken him in two) and has to run across broken glass barefoot. Despite all this he still continues to prod buttock and spout one liners in a distinctly heroic fashion; even overcoming the nearly equally awesome Hans Gruber, the devilish mastermind behind his torment.

The thing I really like about Die Hard is how it pretends to be a christmas film despite the copious guts and swearing. Even fading out in the end to jaunty holiday music. Ingenious ingenuity.

The awesomeness of McClane was confirmed in the two following sequels in which he also failed to die, while blowing the hell out of all kinds of bad guys. He even blew up a whole plane.

Yippy-ki-yay, motherfucker

Awesomeness points: 69/100

January 01, 2005

Awesome Icons: Blackbeard

Here's how one commentator described Blackbeard, the dread 18th century devil pirate extraordinaire:

"the embodiment of impregnable wickedness, of reckless daring, a nightmarish villain so lacking in any human kindness that no crime was above him. . . the living picture of an ogre who roamed the seas and withered all before him with his very presence"

This is a fellow so awesome that he carried, at all times, six cocked and loaded pistols in a bandolier across his chest and lit slow burning matches that he tied into his huge coal black beard. He dressed all in black, and was so terrifying to look upon that most of his enemies surrendered immediately. Here is another example of his oustanding contribution to awesome:

"In 1717 he appeared before Governor Charles Eden of North Carolina with 20 of his men and received the king's pardon. Blackbeard appears to have been no stranger to the governor. A contemporary described portions of stolen pirate loot being carried to Eden House and observed that "Governors are but Men." Blackbeard proceeded to acquire a fine home near Bath, North Carolina—an area where frontier morality still prevailed—and was married by Governor Eden to a 16-year-old bride who, unbeknownst to her, was his 14th wife. Ten among her predecessors were still living."

At the peak of his powers he was eventually undone by treachery and the superior numbers of a plucky crew of english seaman, but not before he managed to fight on after sustaining twenty five seperate wounds (five of which were from pistols) and shattered the enemy captain's sword like a twig. By all accounts when his beheaded corpse was thrown overboard it swam three times around the enemy ship in defiance.

His silver plated skull is now used as a drinking cup.

Awesomeness points: 94/100

December 20, 2004

Awesome Icons: Zatoichi

Forget Blunkett, this guy is the quintessential blind ass kicker. A film legend in Japan, Zatoichi has featured in almost as many films as Godzilla. To understand just why he is so fantastic you just have to look at his day job: Masseur and Gambler. Thats right, he not only gets to oil up and rub down hot Japanese ladies all day, he mixes it up down at the casino by night. You can bet he always wins too; he's just that awesome.

The reason they made so many films about him though, is because of his incredible skill in armed combat. His cunning tactic is to look like a harmless, blind, old man; right up until the point the bandits, or whatever marauders are intent on beating him, are about to do their nasty work. Then WHAM... See, that little stick he carries is not only one of those canes that blind people use to feel out obstacles ahead; it also has a sword inside it.

His speciality is to stand almost perfectly motionless stick in hand while the other guy prances around like a prat for five minutes, and then just as the other guy is about to strike a fatal blow, he draws the sword and whips of the unfortunate fellow's head in one fluid motion.
While doing all these awesome limb chopping things he manages to appear totally cool, which makes it all seem arty and very profound.

Blindingly brilliant.

Awesomeness points: 82/100

December 12, 2004

Spin a web, any size.

A new chapter in my blog tonight. I decided I didn't have enough 'Features' that I can shamelessly exploit when I run out of good ideas. Therefore Awesome Icons was born, a weekly slot where we examine an interesting and inspiring figure from real and true history.

First up we have that great hero of the people: Spider-man

Spider-man as we all know is Amazing (It says so at the top of his comics), but what you also may not realise is the way he stands as an awesome example of human progression.

Spider-man starts out as a clever young kid called Peter Parker, mostly kids laugh at him. Then one day he is geeking out to the max at a science exhibition taking photos, when he reaches some kind of geek apex (probably by quoting Star Trek while simultaneously being rejected by the love of his life) and he is recognised with the gift of super powers.

From now on Peter Parker is Spider-man, he can probably do all kinds of super exciting things in bed and all the hottest women in the city suddenly can't get enough of him. He also gets to beat up criminals at night and get away with it because he's super strong and can dodge bullets. Nothing could be more awesome. This a guy who is super clever, super strong, irresistable to women, can swing through New york city in under 3 minutes and spends his spare time helping people/smacking down bad guys and teaching disadvantaged kids.

Sometimes he even delivers pizza.

There is a lesson here for us all. If you can just be geeky enough you too will get super powers and can be as awesome as Spiderman.

Awesomeness points: 75/100

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