It came from Outer Space. It came from 1988. It came, yes, from Rowdy Roddy Piper.
And it was glorious!
It was They Live!!!
The plot is a fantastic, John Carpenterian twist on the “hidden overlords” theme which is universal to the human psyche. Or is that just me? Mullet-headed drifter Nada (see what he did there?) searches for a job. A job somewhere that has no ish with mullets and the Canadian Tuxedo he sports, presumably. Nada scores a construction gig and, elated, rummages around in trash and stumbles across a pair of bitchin’ Wayfarers.
Deus Ex Machina alert!
He puts them on, the better to complete his ensemble as The Ultimate 80’s Dude, and finds that, to his shock/horror, through their lenses the world we think of as normal is revealed to be nothing more than a sham. Attractive posters and signs suddenly reveal their true meanings. Attractive persons occasionally turn out to be…
Ah, but that would be telling! Let’s just say we know the founding stud of the bloodline that gave birth to the Matrix when we see it. And They Live is it!
The most famous line of the movie, one of the most famous lines in cinematic history, and very possibly the most famous completely improvised line in dystopian 80’s speculative fiction (are we SURE it’s fiction?) is “I came here to kick ass and chew bubblegum. And I’m all out of bubblegum.” For this line alone, washed up pro wrestler Piper should have been nominated for an Oscar. Or a Pulitzer. Or a Rusty Pulitzer. Or something.
And so, with that immortal line in mind, we have selected the alcoholic partner in crime for this evening’s entertainment: homebrewed bubblegum vodka.
Yep. Bubblegum. Vodka.
We’re not big fans of the whole flavoured vodka thing, especially when it comes to the gruesomely sweet and gimmicky, so we’ve dug out a recipe we picked up many years ago over the bar at Connor Butler’s eponymous and sadly now-closed restaurant in Vangroover. Mine eyes looked up, waaay up to the top of the shelves behind the bar and I spotted something weird. It was a stubby yet still stylish crystal decanter full of a clear liquid, yet with a large, amorphous and very pink blob sitting at the bottom, like a lava lamp that had not yet begun to party. It was, the bartender explained, bubblegum vodka in progress. How do you make bubblegum vodka, you ask?
Why are you asking instead of running to the boozeteria for a bottle of decent but not fine quality vodka and the corner store for a pack of bubble gum? I think in fact he said four packs, but your mileage may vary. Plonk the gum in the bottle or decanter one unchewed stick/wad/chunk at a time, stick an air-tight top on it, and let it sit for
four weeks oopsie, got corrected: no more than a week!
Then, don your best Canadian Tuxedo, gel your hair into something mulletish, pop on a pair of Raybans, pour the vodka over ice into a souvenir Coke glass and toss in a curly straw for added 80’s atmosphere, and press play:
A drifter discovers a pair of sunglasses that allow him to wake up to the fact that not all humans are what they seem to be. In fact, some humans have become so possessed by evil that their outer appearance is simply a mask that hides that they are, in fact, devils in disguise.