Friday, March 20, 2009


Remember all that stuff I said about substance? I'll get to that later.

For now. . . Schwarznegger.

I need say no more. But, I'm going to anyway.

I've been watching The Nostalgia Critic for quite a while now. Every once in a while, he compiles lists of the Top 11 of some nostalgic category, eg. Top 11 Animated Nostalgic Hotties(Sailor Moon was #9! Otaku Power!) or Top 11 Drug PSA's, etc.

So one day, I got to thinking, "What would make the list of the Top 11 Nostalgic Schwazenegger Classics?" It was an interesting question, especially considering that I had likely spent the rest of that day thinking "How do I analytically derive the probability of a molecule, incident upon a potential barrier in a bound state, reflecting in that same bound state in the limit of an arbitrarily weak binding potential?" And besides, my generation pretty much grew up with Schwarzenegger, and it had hit me that there may be another generation of kids growing up without knowing him as anything other than a politician who used to be an actor, a la Ronald Reagan. So, I got to work.

My first problem was that I couldn't list eleven worthwhile Schwarzenegger movies. Oh, I could list eleven Schwarzenegger movies, if I padded it out with things like The 6th Day, The Villain, The Running Man, or Batman and Robin, ie movies that are either just bad or bad and non-nostalgic.

Another problem was that I really haven't seen all of the films from Schwazenegger's action heyday. I've yet to see Commando, though by all indications it is fucking sweet. I've also never seen Raw Deal or Red Heat. I don't know how I could have missed Red Heat-- the idea of Schwarzenegger trying to pass as a Russian cop with his oak-like Austrian accent is the stuff dreams are made of.

Yet another problem was what order the movies would come in-- specifically, whether The Terminator or Terminator 2 would hold the top spot. I consider The Terminator to be the superior film by small margin. . . but it's not as nostalgic as T2. . .

As I thought about it more, however, I realized that there are many facets of Schwarzenegger that most people-- ie people who don't spend their free hours surfing the YouTube-- are blissfully unaware of. For example, having taken three German classes at UVic, I always wondered, how does Schwarzenegger sound when he's speaking his native German?

So Schwarzenegger sounds. . . like Schwarzenegger. Which, I imagine, sounds to Austrians the way Sylvester Stallone sounds to North Americans.

Strangely enough, his Japanese is more convincing:

Well, I guess we should be happy that he can speak any language as well as he does. He's clearly come a long way, as clips from his first movie, Hercules in New York, show:

Here's another sample of Arnold's early career, this time a guest appearance on the TV show Streets of San Francisco:

He's not ugly! He's BEAUTIFOOL!

Here's more of Schwarzenegger's take on the beautiful philosophy of bodybuilding:

Arnie. . . I do not think that word means what you think it means. Here's more of Schwarzenegger working his magic on the ladies:

Was that. . . Stiffler's Mom at 0:36?

And now for something political. . . In 1990, PBS produced a series called Free To Choose, which laid out the pro-free market beliefs of famous economist Milton Friedman. It was very Republican stuff, so of course Schwarzenegger gave a personal introduction to one of the episodes:

I'm not Socialist! I'm Laissez-FEEAAIIRREE!

Yeah, you're not a pro-wrestler either, Arnie:

And with that, I bring to an abrupt close my tribute to the lesser known side of Arnold Schwarzenegger.

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