Well, ‘ever’ is a damn long time so we’ll clarify that by saying The Five Toughest Modern Era Beings. Which persons from the last century or so have the biggest aura of coolness and ass-kicking? Which men (or women) would you want watching your back or simply meet? Let’s count down the top five…
#5 – Vik Mackey
It doesn’t matter if he’s beating the snot out of some criminal goon or sleeping with yet another chick – or even robbing organised crime money trains – Vik Mackey is a badass.If you’re a cop or a criminal then you don’t mess with him or he will, unless he has a better use for you, mess you up royally in return. Vik is tough, Vik is rough, Vik takes no crap from anyone – but he loses points since he always seems to be lurching from one crisis to another, he never seems to be entirely in control.
#4 – Dirty Harry/The Man with No Name
Both played by Clint Eastwood, who also is a like unto a coolness god, and are essentially the same character. Your fate was assured if you happened to be a serial killer on Harry’s turf – it was near certain you would end up with a .44 Magnum bullet in your soft, vital bits soon enough. As for the Man with no Name … the weapon may have been different but the results were exactly the same. You simply didn’t mess with either else you were going to end up deader than M.C. Hammer’s music career.
#3 – Bruce Lee
In the world of movie martial artists, Bruce Lee undoubtedly reigns supreme. Van Damme? Seigal? Norris? Amateurs compared to the little asian god of ass kicking that is Bruce Lee. With movements faster than the eye could see and force that could knock rather large men backwards quite some distance, Bruce Lee was a martial arts force of nature. What makes him so tough and badass? Well, the ability to kick you three times across the face before you can register his first movement helps but he also made chicken noises when he fought and made it seem tough. Oh yeah, Bruce Lee is a true champion of ass kicking.
#2 – John Wayne
True grit. That’s what makes John Wayne so damn cool. He takes no crap from anyone. He does whatever is necessary to get the job done. He never backs down. He isn’t afraid to get his hands dirty, even if that means shooting a whole lot of folk down. Yet he always acted as a force for justice, making sure America was the land of the free. How tough was he? His films are still used as part of marine training as examples of how soldiers should behave. While he never served in the military himself, John Wayne probably did more for the armed services and his country by staying at home and showing folk how to kick ass. One of the tragedies of history is that Clint Eastwood and John Wayne never paired up to make a western together – but then, if they did, I doubt the world could have coped with that much Badass/Tough Guy.
#1 – Optimus Prime
John Wayne has True Grit. That makes him cool. However, Optimus Prime has True Grit and he’s also a giant robot that kicks ass on a regular basis. How much ass does Prime manage to kick? In Transformers: The Movie, the Autobots fight throughout the whole night to simply hold the attacking Decepticons off … Prime arrives on the scene and by the time one cheesey 80’s song is over, the Decepticons are all out of the battle. After single-handedly saving everyone’s collective asses, Prime then takes on Megatron and once again kicks ass; only falling after an inept fool of an Autobot interferres, giving Megatron the chance to shoot Optimus several times. Even though mortally wounded, Megatron still received a two fisted ticket to Smackdown City from Prime. Later, when the Transformers looked screwed thanks to plot device driven Alien Spores (eh?), who did they all go runnning to? That’s right, Optimus Prime – even though he was dead! Hm, who’s more likely to save our asses? An alive Rodimus Prime or a dead Optimus Prime? They were smart to go with the dead guy.