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Hulk Hogan: Real American
by: Pjalne
 

Hulk Hogan, killer of men and eater of hearts. Alongside Mr. T, Chuck Norris and David Hasselhoff, he's one of the people who have fuelled the fires of internet hilarity to the point where we need to worry about the digital equivalent of the greenhouse effect. And yet, after years of subpar Photoshops and weary blog jokes there's still a few drops left in the mustachioed lemon. Mr. Hogan is after all quite the renaissance man, and there is just so much to grab onto when attacking the subject. His body of work is after all not limited to the decade he spent pretending to dropkick people pretending to be supervillains in some sort of explosive redneck pretend sport that only appeals to children and communities who have just grasped the concepts of fire and the wheel (and are currently experimenting with setting their wheels on fire and racing each other to the river). He has also released albums, featured in an animated show and starred in movies and sitcoms, and currently he's got his own reality show, which is absolute televisual gold. Hell, he's probably got cookbooks out there so you can combine all his slamtastic food products in ways that will give you energy to run around and piledrive communism until the cows turn to burgers. And on top of all that, he's a rock video genius.

Oh yes.

When Hulk hooked up with the Wrestling Boot Band and released the album Hulk Rules, it became abundantly clear that he could neither freestyle about wearing shades and looking at tits nor croon sweetly about tag teaming with dead kids. The man has the musical range of a tunnel excavation. So I guess we can forgive Hulk for not actually singing on Rick Derring's rockercoaster Real American. Now, before we dive into this piece of music video history, I have a piece of information that might shock and upset Hulk's die-hard fans. If this applies to you, you might want to place your monocle on the table before reading on so you don't splash Chablis all over your copy of the New Yorker: Hulk is a bit of a right-wing conservative. The flag kind. In fact, the first thing you'll see in this video is a series of stars jumping out of the good old stars & stripes and straight into your face while you're treated to a series of childhood photos of the gentle giant himself.

Evolution of Hulk

Actually, that's not completely true. The very first image you see is a piece of black and white stock footage of people cheering. Stock enthusiasts will be glad to hear the director of this video uses every opportunity he gets to push the stock button and roll a hilarious clip of biplanes crashing into barns, buildings being demolished or people crashing their bikes into breakaway brick walls.

SUCCESS

Intercut with the stock footage is a collage of some of Hulk's most triumphant moments in the ring, most of which involve punching André the Giant in the gut. And to subtly keep the patriotic message of the video going, Hulk rocks out in front of a flag and plays his flag guitar while the lyrics describe exactly what a real American is:

Here's what we do with French giants where I come from

"I am a real American
Fight for the rights of every man
I am a real American
Fight for what's right
Fight for your life!"

So, let's see... flags, fighting, crashing bikes... that pretty much sums it up for America, right? Ah, but you're forgetting something.

Hulk's brothers in spirit

American history! A montage featuring historical figures like George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Sitting Bull and Martin Luther King flashes by, only to linger on a close-up of the Vietnam Veterans' Memorial Wall. Which is kinda poignant, summing up a nation's history like that by listing its greatest leaders and ideologists only to end up on the atrocities of the Vietnam war, one of the largest stains on the country's history. What sort of comment could Hulk and Derring be making here? Well, let's have a look.

In tribute to the brave boys that died so we could rock

In a bold move, the rock geniuses cut straight from the names of those fallen in Vietnam to Hulk rocking the fuck out in front of pink fireworks. I'm not really sure what the message here is, but it sure is potent whatever it is. Hulk's still not done with the historical iconography, though:

One of these things is not like the other, not like the other...

Ah, three central images from American history. The flag raisers of Iwo Jima, Hulk Hogan carrying a flag into the ring to fight a guy dressed like a Russian and Armstrong planting the flag on the moon. Hogan's never been one for cold wars, so he deals with Communism his own way: having one guy represent an ideology and then pretend to body slam him. I guess it's no surprise Hulk wins the epic fight, but what follows the bout is one of the most explosive political gestures ever performed: Hulk Hogan headbutts Communism.

Take that, Gorby

That's right. What do you need words for when you can simply pick up a flag and fucking headbutt the Soviet Union? Governor Schwarzenegger, this is the public relations guy you're looking for. Well, that's another couple of aspects from the American identity down. But what about the US geography? What about the endless grain fields and landmarks? Sea to shining sea and all that? It's time for Hulk Hogan's roxpress across the 50 states.

BEHIND YOU! Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt and Lincoln would be honored, I'm sure.

And you better believe the man rocks everywhere. He rocks the White House, he rocks the Grand Canyon, he rocks the Superbowl, he rocks Rushmore, he rocks Manhattan, he rocks the Hollywood sign, he rocks both the Libery Bell and the Statue of Liberty... if it's in America, he rocks it.

Sometimes, a cigar is just a cigar. This time, not so much.

Towards the end of this sequence, Hulk is standing next to Washington Monument while making quite the suggestive motion with his axe. This sets off the most phallic 20 seconds ever witnessed by man or beast. Missiles rise across the screen penetrating the American flag, Hulk rides his hog while dreaming about cowboys and pretending he's shooting a gun - all intercut with images of war and weaponry. You know that scene in Dr. Strangelove where the guy is riding the atom bomb? That's like an ocean of vaginas compared to Real American.

HULK CRUSH

By now, Hulk's pretty much defined everything that constitutes a real American, so it's time to comment on some current events (which I suppose would be the Gulf War) and wrap the video up. In his regular non-verbal way, he does this by forcefully crumpling a photo of a flag burning activist and then ripping his own shirt, which is Hulkese for "exclamation point". He is then shown triumphantly exiting the ring, handing over a flag to a young boy in the audience on his way to the wardrobe. But before leaving us entirely, Hulk shares his wisdom and life philosophy:

Oh Jesus fuck

"TRAIN, SAY YOUR PRAYERS, EAT YOUR VITAMINS! BE TRUE TO YOURSELF, TRUE TO YOUR COUNTRY,
BE A REAL AMERICAN!"

Hey, if Hulk Hogan says it, who are we to argue? In short, Real American might be the most awesome rock video ever created. It's a mockery of everything it tries to celebrate and a reflection of everything that's wrong with the West today, and is blissfully unaware of all this. It's as hollow and shallow as the "sport" that made Hulk famous and mistakes "political expression" for "punching a piece of cloth with your head". It's an absolute classic to be watched and cherished by every real American out there.

Click here to watch the Real American video

Click here to see the Hulk Rules album
 


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