Friday, July 31, 2015

RIP Rowdy Roddy

Today it was announced that Rowdy Roddy Piper of professional wrestling and acting fame (check out his personal website HERE) died last night in his sleep at age 61. The cause of death appears to have been a heart attack. It seems cliche and trite to say he was one of my favorites... but he was. He had higher intelligence and more charisma than most professional wrestlers. He also lived a more wholesome life than many/most of them being a family man his entire life. Below are my favorite examples of his work starting with an infamous episode of his groundbreaking "show" (the one featuring Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka) on the then WWF program. That is followed below it by one of his matches in the ring against the aforementioned Snuka. 

What many people don't realize is that Roddy Toombs (his real name) was under-regarded actor who showed his surprising acting talent in John Carpenter's 1988 sci-fi classic They Live. The movie features the greatest cinematic brawl ever (vs. Keith David) with the closest competition coming from the one at the end of John Wayne's The Quiet Man (vs. Victor McLaglen). Anywho, the They Live brawl is so awesome that South Park spoofed it in the famous "Cripple Fight" episode which part I have placed below the cinematic brawl.

South park cripple fight with "They Live" side by side from JuggleLife on Vimeo.
Video posters commentary: " commentary of the creators commenting on the fight scene.I had noticed that they had made a reference in one of there more recent episodes 18x05 (magic bush) so i thought i would create a side by side of the reference to the movie They live prior to the recent one. i will put together another side by side video for the more recent episode eventually."

As I discussed in a previous post on this blog entitled "OBEY and Read This", They Live inspired political artist Shepard Fairey to come up with his now iconic and ubiquitous Obey Campaign. Rowdy Roddy and Fairey met on a couple of occasions and in tribute to Piper, Fairey Tweeted the image below in accompaniment of his condolences today. This merely serves to reaffirm the connection between the They Live and the Obey Campaign.

Courtesy of Shepard Fairey (all rights reserved).

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