Day 199: Mad Air Max

Finally, the pun I’ve been waiting months to do…

July 18 main

At last, a pair of Nike Air Maxes! A pun months in the making finally makes its debut. Shame the image wasn’t months in the making too – I gave up trying to make it look authentic after hours of fiddling with blur and desaturation and photo filters. Just go with the flow, okay? The concept behind the gag’s the key thing (I keep telling myself).

Believe it or not, I actually wrote my university thesis on the Mad Max trilogy. Admittedly, it was a bit more academic than that might make it sound. It was a study of how the trilogy developed from a low budget, parochial Australian film to a big budget international would-be blockbuster, and the effect this had on the style of storytelling. Which was significant.

Mad Max 2 was quite clearly the best of the trilogy (and still – no spoilers here – has one of the best twists in cinema history, because first time you watch it you don’t expect there to be a twist… which may actually be a bit of a spoiler in itself; sorry). The bit where the guy gets his fingers chopped off by a bladed boomerang is great too (shallow? Me?). Mad Max 2 also had the best action sequences; Beyond Thunderdome’s may have been bigger and more elaborate, but they weren’t as exciting or well choreographed.


Oddly, though, while few would argue that Mad Max 2 was best, it was Thunderdome that produced the most zeitgeist-enduring concept of the trilogy – the Thunderdome, and it’s associated, “Two men enter, one man leaves” catchphrase have had a life well beyond the trilogy. There are probably people out there know who know the phrase but can’t quite recall where it comes from.

I loved the trilogy back when I was at uni. Oddly, I’ve watched none of the films in over 15 years. That’s mostly because I real problem watching anything with Mel Gibson in it these days. Knowing he’s such an enormous cock in real life, I can’t suspend disbelief any more. It’s the same as some people having a problem listening to Wagner knowing he was a Swastika-waving Nazi. I have the similar issue with Tom Cruise; I just watch him thinking, “You’re a Scientologist! How can any intelligent person be a Scientologist? Have they got incriminating photos of you?”

oblivionThe most bizarre thing about Scientology’s famous followers is how much the “Church”’s powers-that-be don’t utilise them for publicity. Scientology purports to be a religion (it isn’t) and a key element of most religions is spreading their word. But celebrity Scientologists are discouraged from talking about their beliefs, and journalists are often told that the stars will walk out of interviews or refuse to answer questions if the subject of Scientology comes up. What’s all that about?

Maybe if Cruise could speak about why he’s a Scientlogist it might help cynics like me understand that there isn’t anything suspicious going on. It might even help them win new converts (dreadful sci-fi hack forbid). But with all this secrecy and silence is it any wonder most people just think the powers behind Scientology have a hold over followers that has nothing to do with spiritual enlightenment?

Hang on. Who are those strange men in sunglasses who’ve just pulled up in a car outside my house?

See you tomorrow.

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