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cultural vandal | by maryann johanson

if hot box office translated into electoral votes…

Iowa! New Hampshire! Already I’m tired of hearing about the presidential election, and it’s still 10 months away. It’s like how some people start talking about the Oscars in April — borrrr-ing! And meaningless. But at least the Oscars are glamorous and exciting and creative, which cannot be said about our politicians who dress like your boss from the last job you quit and talk in hollow soundbites of regurgitated feel-goodery.

But just imagine what fun presidential campaigns we could have were characters from the movies running for the Oval Office…
SWEENEY TODD (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street)
Party: Revenge Party
Platform: revenge; murder; revenge; cannibalism; revenge; full withdrawal from Iraq by 2010
Running mate: [deceased]
Typical campaign stop: McDonald’s (try the new Fleet Street Quarter Pounder Surprise Sandwich)
Soundbite: “I’ll kill you all, and I’ll enjoy it.”

ALVIN (Alvin and the Chipmunks)
Party: Small Furry Mammals for a Change
Platform: “Manhattan Project” to research voice-deepening technology; war crimes tribunals for record company executives; campaign finance reform
Running mate: Ross Perot
Typical campaign stop: HMV
Soundbite: “Vote for me, I’m O-KAY!”

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN GATES (National Treasure: Book of Secrets)
Party: Cool Dudes for a Better Tomorrow
Platform: more old books for everyone; no taxes on treasure; a national campaign to increase Americans’ awareness of the obvious clues to cool stuff all around them; unrestricted stem-cell research
Running mate: Henry Jones Jr.
Typical campaign stop: dark forgotten storage basement at the Smithsonian
Soundbite: “Hey, let’s see what this mysterious lever does! Oh, hey, it registers a vote for me!”

DANIEL PLAINVIEW (There Will Be Blood)
Party: Billionaires for America
Platform: upping America’s energy usage by 200 percent; higher taxes on solar panels; ending wasteful hydrogen research; peace in the Middle East
Running mate: Dick Cheney
Typical campaign stop: the corner Exxon station
Soundbite: “A gallon of gas in every car, provided you pay the current market price!”

Party: Neville for Neville
Platform: fresh cans of Spam and Progresso Split Pea with Ham soup for everyone; expanding research into the society-wide psychological affects of apocalypse; finding a new girlfriend who isn’t a mannequin; education vouchers
Running mate: Sam the dog
Typical campaign stop: that empty condo on East 27th Street
Soundbite: “Hello? Is anyone there? Please? Hell-ooo?!”

ANTON CHIGURH (No Country for Old Men)
Party: Green Psychopaths
Platform: all presidential decisions to be made on the flip of a coin; loosening gun control laws; fighting global warming
Running mate: Ron Paul
Typical campaign stop: your house
Soundbite: “Vote for me, or else.”

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