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10 Reasons Why Schwarzenegger Is The Best Action Star Ever

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Austrian muscleman Arnold Schwarzenegger burst into the movie industry with his lead role in documentary Pumping Iron, and only a few years later became one of the top action stars in the business. What has made the Austrian Oak such a powerhouse in Hollywood? Here are 10 of the reasons he may well be the greatest action star to ever live.

10. He Got Thrown In Jail For Bodybuilding

During his mandatory one year service in the Austrian military, Schwarzenegger competed in and won the title of Junior Mr. Europe. Unfortunately for him, he pumped himself up by going AWOL from basic training, and his superior officers didn’t really think much of his explanation.


9. He Was The Youngest Mr. Universe Ever

Before Arnold Schwarzenegger could legally drink, he’d already been crowned the most impressive physical specimen in existence. After leaving Austria to study under bodybuilder Reg Park, he threw himself into fitness full-bore, building the muscles that would become his trademark. He won his first Mr. Universe title at 20 and would go on to take the crown three more time.


8. He Was On The Dating Game

Like many aspiring actors, Arnold hit the game show circuit to get footage for his reel. In 1973, he appeared on The Dating Game in an unforgettable segment where host Jim Lange gets the bodybuilder to give his measurements to the ladies on the other side of the curtain.


7. He Won A Golden Globe In His Third Movie

Stay Hungry, directed by Bob Rafelson, didn’t stretch Arnold’s acting chops very far – he plays an Austrian bodybuilder training for Mr. Universe. But he was one of the flick’s high points, and he got a Golden Globe for Best Acting Debut in a Motion Picture even though it wasn’t his actual debut.


6. His Body Is On The Cover Of A Grand Funk Railroad Record

The cover of boogie-blues stalwarts Grand Funk Railroad’s 1973 platter All The Girls In The World Beware depicts the group as a quartet of super-swole musclemen, but the bodies actually belong to Arnold Schwarzenegger and his fellow bodybuilders Frank Zane and Franco Columbu.


5. He (Allegedly) Has Sex Five Times A Day

Okay, this one isn’t absolutely confirmed, but it’s so badass we had to put it in. According to Tom Arnold, who starred alongside Schwarzenegger in True Lies, one of the secrets to the star’s physique is lots and lots of fornication. In an interview with the Daily Star, Tom revealed that Schwarzenegger needed to get his rocks off five times a day… for fitness purposes. I wish I could use that excuse.


4. He Owned The First Civilian Humvee

When you’re a towering pile of meat and muscle like the Austrian Oak, you can’t cram yourself into just any car. That’s why General Motors decided that the first private citizen to drive a Hummer H1, the street legal version of the Humvee transport, would be Schwarzenegger. He was given the keys to the first two off of the assembly line in 1992.


3. He Saved A Man’s Life For Real

In 2004, while swimming off the coast of Maui, Schwarzenegger spotted a fellow tourist on a boogie board having some trouble. The man was cramping up and unable to keep his body afloat, so like a true badass Arnold grabbed his tow rope and dragged the dude 100 yards to shore and safety. Let’s remember that he was 57 years old at the time.


2. He’s In The WWE Hall Of Fame

Bodybuilding and wrestling are kissing cousins, and the Governator has had a long association with the WWE. He first showed up on Smackdown in 1999, aiding Stone Cold Steve Austin by throwing him a steel chair, and he’s shown up on multiple occasions since then. In 2015, he was granted a prestigious spot in the federation’s Hall of Fame.


1. He’s Aging Gracefully

Instead of trying to hold on to his chiseled physique through plastic surgery, Arnold is letting time take its toll, and it’s just making him more awesome. Now in his sixties, Schwarzenegger is a craggy, wrinkled brick of humanity, perfect for playing the grizzled elder statesman or a Terminator on his way to the scrapheap.

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SO EXCITED!!!

Reminders that the ’90s were a thing

"The Place We Live" is available for a Jessie Spano-level binge on Comedy Crib.

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Unless you stopped paying attention to the world at large in 1989, you are of course aware that the ’90s are having their pop cultural second coming. Nobody is more acutely aware of this than Dara Katz and Betsy Kenney, two comedians who met doing improv comedy and have just made their Comedy Crib debut with the hilarious ’90s TV throwback series, The Place We Live.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

Dara: It’s everything you loved–or loved to hate—from Melrose Place and 90210 but condensed to five minutes, funny (on purpose) and totally absurd.

IFC: How would you describe “The Place We Live” to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Betsy: “Hey Todd, why don’t you have a sip of water. Also, I think you’ll love The Place We Live because everyone has issues…just like you, Todd.”

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IFC: When you were living through the ’90s, did you think it was television’s golden age or the pop culture apocalypse?


Betsy: I wasn’t sure I knew what it was, I just knew I loved it!


Dara: Same. Was just happy that my parents let me watch. But looking back, the ’90s honored The Teen. And for that, it’s the golden age of pop culture. 

IFC: Which ’90s shows did you mine for the series, and why?

Betsy: Melrose and 90210 for the most part. If you watch an episode of either of those shows you’ll see they’re a comedic gold mine. In one single episode, they cover serious crimes, drug problems, sex and working in a law firm and/or gallery, all while being young, hot and skinny.


Dara: And almost any series we were watching in the ’90s, Full House, Saved By the Bell, My So Called Life has very similar themes, archetypes and really stupid-intense drama. We took from a lot of places. 

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IFC: How would you describe each of the show’s characters in terms of their ’90s TV stereotype?

Dara: Autumn (Sunita Mani) is the femme fatale. Robin (Dara Katz) is the book worm (because she wears glasses). Candace (Betsy Kenney) is Corey’s twin and gives great advice and has really great hair. Corey (Casey Jost) is the boy next door/popular guy. Candace and Corey’s parents decided to live in a car so the gang can live in their house. 
Lee (Jonathan Braylock) is the jock.

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

Dara: Because everyone’s feeling major ’90s nostalgia right now, and this is that, on steroids while also being a totally new, silly thing.

Delight in the whole season of The Place We Live right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib. It’ll take you back in all the right ways.

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New Nasty

Whips, Chains and Hand Sanitizer

Turn On The Full Season Of Neurotica At IFC's Comedy Crib

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Jenny Jaffe has a lot going on: She’s writing for Disney’s upcoming Big Hero 6: The Series, developing comedy projects with pals at Devastator Press, and she’s straddling the line between S&M and OCD as the creator and star of the sexyish new series Neurotica, which has just made its debut on IFC’s Comedy Crib. Jenny gave us some extremely intimate insight into what makes Neurotica (safely) sizzle…

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IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a fancy network executive you met in an elevator?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon.

IFC: How would you describe Neurotica to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

Jenny: Neurotica is about a plucky Dominatrix with OCD trying to save her small-town dungeon. You’re great. We should get coffee sometime. I’m not just saying that. I know other people just say that sometimes but I really feel like we’re going to be friends, you know? Here, what’s your number, I’ll call you so you can have my number!

IFC: What’s your comedy origin story?

Jenny: Since I was a kid I’ve dealt with severe OCD and anxiety. Comedy has always been one of the ways I’ve dealt with that. I honestly just want to help make people feel happy for a few minutes at a time.

IFC: What was the genesis of Neurotica?

Jenny: I’m pretty sure it was a title-first situation. I was coming up with ideas to pitch to a production company a million years ago (this isn’t hyperbole; I am VERY old) and just wrote down “Neurotica”; then it just sort of appeared fully formed. “Neurotica? Oh it’s an over-the-top romantic comedy about a Dominatrix with OCD, of course.” And that just happened to hit the buttons of everything I’m fascinated by.

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IFC: How would you describe Ivy?

Jenny: Ivy is everything I love in a comedy character – she’s tenacious, she’s confident, she’s sweet, she’s a big wonderful weirdo.

IFC: How would Ivy’s clientele describe her?

Jenny:  Open-minded, caring, excellent aim.

IFC: Why don’t more small towns have local dungeons?

Jenny: How do you know they don’t?

IFC: What are the pros and cons of joining a chain mega dungeon?

Jenny: You can use any of their locations but you’ll always forget you have a membership and in a year you’ll be like “jeez why won’t they let me just cancel?”

IFC: Mouths are gross! Why is that?

Jenny: If you had never seen a mouth before and I was like “it’s a wet flesh cave with sharp parts that lives in your face”, it would sound like Cronenberg-ian body horror. All body parts are horrifying. I’m kind of rooting for the singularity, I’d feel way better if I was just a consciousness in a cloud.

See the whole season of Neurotica right now on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

The-Craft

The ’90s Are Back

The '90s live again during IFC's weekend marathon.

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Photo Credit: Everett Digital, Columbia Pictures

We know what you’re thinking: “Why on Earth would anyone want to reanimate the decade that gave us Haddaway, Los Del Rio, and Smash Mouth, not to mention Crystal Pepsi?”

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Thoughts like those are normal. After all, we tend to remember lasting psychological trauma more vividly than fleeting joy. But if you dig deep, you’ll rediscover that the ’90s gave us so much to fondly revisit. Consider the four pillars of true ’90s culture.

Boy Bands

We all pretended to hate them, but watch us come alive at a karaoke bar when “I Want It That Way” comes on. Arguably more influential than Brit Pop and Grunge put together, because hello – Justin Timberlake. He’s a legitimate cultural gem.

Man-Child Movies

Adam Sandler is just behind The Simpsons in terms of his influence on humor. Somehow his man-child schtick didn’t get old until the aughts, and his success in that arena ushered in a wave of other man-child movies from fellow ’90s comedians. RIP Chris Farley (and WTF Rob Schneider).

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Teen Angst

In horror, dramas, comedies, and everything in between: Troubled teens! Getting into trouble! Who couldn’t relate to their First World problems, plaid flannels, and lose grasp of the internet?

Mainstream Nihilism

From the Coen Bros to Fincher to Tarantino, filmmakers on the verge of explosive popularity seemed interested in one thing: mind f*cking their audiences by putting characters in situations (and plot lines) beyond anyone’s control.

Feeling better about that walk down memory lane? Good. Enjoy the revival.

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And revisit some important ’90s classics all this weekend during IFC’s ’90s Marathon. Check out the full schedule here.