Iowa is behind us. That’s the good news. We don’t have to hear about Iowa anymore.
The bad news is that this whole charade has nearly another year left, and there is still a lot to keep track of.
Lucky for you, I’ve put together another guide to the presidential candidates, similar to the previous two installments about science fiction movies and horror movies. Once again, we are looking at the picked-off-one-at-a-time candidates through the lens of a medium where characters are removed one-by-one: 1990s action movies.
The ’90s were a time of bloated casts that were gradually pared down until a handsome hero was the last man standing. This election, like those beloved VHS classics, has a robust cast and an inevitable ending: there will be only one winner.
So grab a cup of coffee, hunker down, and check out this longform listicle about the brilliant spectacle that is the 2016 Presidential Election.
The Already Eliminated
The primaries have just begun – placing us somewhere in the first act of the film – but we’ve already had a major chunk of characters eliminated. Let’s take a look at who is already out of the running.
Scott Walker is Richard Lineback in Twister (1996)
I’ve said previously that Walker was Kane in Alien, and I stand by that argument. It proved to be painfully, chestburstingly accurate.
But now that his fate seems inevitable, his departure in the rearview mirror, we can recognize Walker for what he was: the equivalent of the guy who gets sucked up into the sky by a tornado in the opening scene of Twister. He has become nothing more than the guy who was eliminated during the prologue.
Did he make it? Lineback isn’t even in the same timeline as the rest of the movie. Walked dropped out on September 21st of 2015, over five months before the first primary.
Martin O’Malley is Emilio Estevez in Mission Impossible (1996)
Like the first mission in the first film in the Mission Impossible franchise, the Iowa caucuses gave us an action-packed evening that resulted in a purging of several characters.
O’Malley is one of several candidates to immediately fold his cards after the Iowa caucuses. This probably says more about this particular election than it does about O’Malley, just as Estevez’s quick death during the opening mission in Mission Impossible said more about the movie he was in than it did about him.
Sure, he’s a relatively well-known name with a good enough resume. But he is ultimately just another bland white guy in a narrative that doesn’t have room for another bland white guy.
Did he make it? He dropped out on February 1st, lasting about as long as Estevez’s uncredited performance. Continue reading “If the Candidates Were Characters in a ’90s Action Movie: A 2016 Election Cheat Sheet”