The Running Man (1987)

running man

NOTE: Technical difficulties meant that this episode ended up being recorded on laptop sound as opposed to our fancy equipment. It’s still listenable, but not up to our usual high standards. Thanks for your patience, and everything will be kosher next episode!

This week, Dusty Wilson of Mercy Street Theatre Company joins us in our much-needed respite from critically-acclaimed dramas and spooky foreign films to kick back with the schlocky Arnold Schwarzenegger flick The Running Man! The Running Man beats Battle Royale and The Hunger Games to the “game shows are like bloodsports, and we’re obsessed with the media!” dystopic yarn, as Arnie’s Ben Richards must navigate a hellish game show where harsh traps and over-the-top ‘stalkers’ seek to kill him with all manner of kitschy weapons. A silly, campy mish-mash that feels like Total Recall slammed in a blender with some Zubas, a copy of Buns of Steel, and some old episodes of Family Feud, this movie is as straight-out dumb as it is charming. Check it out along with our custom cocktail and drinking rules!

(Thanks to our sponsor Makespace as part of the Chicago Podcast Coop!)

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THIS EPISODE’S DRINK: The Butcher of Bakersfield

running man cocktailA twist on the Rum Runner (named after Arnie’s infamous nickname among the brainwashed people of 2019), we threw in plenty of spiced rum, along with some watermelon-y sweetness to offer a syrupy sweet beverage befitting the shiny, ignorant dystopia of The Running Man.

3 parts spiced rum
1 part crème de cassis
3 parts watermelon juice
1 part lime juice
1 tbsp sugar

Combine ingredients in a shaker with ice; mix until vigorously combined. Pour straight into a cocktail glass, serve, and vote for your favorite stalker!

DRINKING RULES FOR THE RUNNING MAN:

  1. Every time Arnie gives one of his signature grunt-wails
  2. Any time the film keeps cutting back to shots of the audience reacting to The Running Man
  3. Whenever Arnie works in a signature one-liner

FINISH YOUR DRINK WHEN:

Arnie quips, “That hit the spot” after sending Richard Dawson to his death.

Next week, everything’s gonna be o-tay as we check out 1993’s The Little Rascals!

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About Clint Worthington

Clint Worthington is a Chicago-based film/TV critic and podcaster. A member of the Chicago Film Critics Association, you can find his other film work at Consequence of Sound (where he is a Senior Staff Writer), Crooked Marquee, IndieWire and UPROXX. He is also the co-host of Nathan Rabin's Happy Cast.

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