(Welcome to the third fight of round 2 of Sirens of the LAMBs! There’s only one fight left! Read through the narratives and vote on the winner! And remember to base it on the narratives and not just a bias!)
Seeing an opportunity to do something more unique, I decided to forgo the traditional narrative. Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez are frequent collaborators, as each has not only worked on one another’s films, but have worked in unison on films such as Four Rooms and Grindhouse. As such, I used several of my connections within the film industry to finagle an interview with not just one, but both of them, with the goal of finding out from the creators of the characters themselves (Cherry Darling of Grindhouse’s Planet Terror and O-Ren Ishii of Kill Bill) just who would win a battle between the two of them. Would it be my little Cherry, or Piper’s darling O-Ren? I flew out to Rodriguez’s
Dylan Fields: Gentleman, first off let me say that it’s a great honor to meet you both. I’ve loved your films over the years, and look forward to many more.
Quentin Tarantino: Thanks, man…I mean, like, it’s so great to hear that from fans. I mean, that’s what me and Robby are in this business to hear – to get that personal love from folks just like you.
Robert Rodriguez: I couldn’t agree more. I don’t like to call myself just a director or writer or producer, but a storyteller, spinning yarns for not only my kids, but to the kids from all over the world.
DF: Glad to say it. Anyway, the reason I wanted to bring you guys together was to help settle a debate. You see, there’s this little movie blog site I’m a part of (called the LAMB), and we’re having an event called The Sirens of the LAMBs, where we’re pitting foxy ladies from a number of films against each other to see which femme fatale would come out on top. One of my fine chicas, Cherry Darling, is up against O-Ren Ishii, and I wanted to see who you guys thought might win.
RR: Hmm…that’s a great idea but a tough question. On the one hand –
QT: Sorry to interrupt, Bob, but I have to say that that’s a tremendous idea. It reminds me of an episode I’d written of Fox Force Five, where Raven McCoy found out that Sommerset O’Neal was sleeping with her man and challenged her to a battle to the death. I mean, it woulda been fanf*ckingtastic, but obviously, I had to keep them from battling, because then it would have ended up being the Fox Force Four at best, and that just doesn’t sound as cool as Fox Force Five if you know what I mean (laughs).
RR: Anyway, back to his question. Let’s consider the strengths and weaknesses of each character. With Cherry, you obviously have her powers of seduction, being a former stripper and all, and then she shows tremendous intestinal fortitude after losing her leg, and to top it all off, ends up with an M4 attached to replace her pirate-like wooden stump.
QT: But with O-Ren, I mean, you’re talking about a trained assassin who excels in swordplay. Unlike some midget stripper – no offense to Rose McGowan, of course, but she’s tiny – O-Ren is a bad ass with a capital B and a capital A, if you know what I mean.
DF: Indeed I do. Now you guys see the conundrum that not only I, but the voters of the Sirens event, have to contend with. We’re talking about two tough ladies –
QT: But really, I mean, like, how could anyone consider Cherry a formidable opponent against a kickass ninja b*tch like O-Ren? I mean, when I first came up with the idea for her –
RR: What do you mean “when you first came up with the idea?” I gave you the idea for not only O-Ren, but all of the Fox Force Five after we watched Shadow Killers Tiger Force at my house in 1992!
QT: What are you talking about?!? I wrote the screenplay for Kill Bill when I was working at Video Archives long before I even met you!
RR: You’re crazy, man. I want proof of this supposed screenplay.
QT: I don’t have to give you proof of sh*t, maaan! I know what I wrote and when I wrote it. Just because you know Cherry would get her butt smacked all the way to
DF: Guys, let’s try to get focused on the battle. Quentin, if this were to go down, how do you think it would unfold? Let’s get all the background out of the way and say these two just meet up in an alley – what happens next?
RR: Now wait just a second. [To Tarantino] Don’t give me this b.s. about making up stories. That’s rich coming from the guy that’s been copping mine for the past 15 years.
QT: What?!? I don’t need to quote-unquote [makes finger quotes] copy your crappy stories about Shark-Head and Magma-Boy or anything like that. In case you hadn’t noticed, I’ve been doing pretty damn good for myself. Ever heard of a little film called Pulp Fiction, buddy? If I recall, it set all kinds of records for independent film box office – what’s your biggest earner?
RR: ¡Dios mio! What a pendejo. Your little tale wouldn’t have seen the light of day if it weren’t for El Mariachi, friend. Remember that one? And while we’re at it, you wouldn’t have had a clue how to do all those special effects for your Billy movies if I hadn’t let you use my hardware here.
QT: Sh*tcan it, Darren. You know, I’ve had about as much as I can take from my supposed amigo here. I mean, like, he’s been piggybacking off my success for how long now?
RR: Me piggybacking you?!? Please – what’s to piggyback? You make the same movie over and over again. Shit, if it weren’t for this nice guy here, I’d slap you upside the head.
QT: Go for it, brother. I’ll show you that not only would O-Ren dice Cherry up into 50 itty bitty pieces, but that I’d do the same to you.
DF: Thanks for your time, guys – I’m just gonna head out now.
[They proceed to start b*tch-slapping each other.]
Well, so much for that idea. Suffice it to say that I got what I needed, as the flight back home gave me plenty of time to think about the battle between the two ladies. And you know what? It was really simple after all. I didn’t need to go to Austin to talk to those two yahoos or anything to figure out that not only is the pen mightier than the sword, but the M4 carbine with an M203 grenade launcher is one helluva lot mightier than the sword.
A thick cloud of smoke made the bar a constant overcast as a large man with long, curly-black hair took the stage. “How’s everyone doing tonight” he asked. A few audience members randomly answered. “Welcome to open mic night at Lobos” said the man. “First up is Cherry Darling. Don’t forget to tip your help and try the chicken fingers, they were freshly frozen three days ago.” The chubby, dark-haired man walked off the stage as the lights dimmed. A single spotlight appeared and shined brightly on the microphone. There were a few claps as the one machine-gun-legged redhead took the stage. It didn’t seem like much, but tonight was everything for Cherry. All the toxic zombies had been killed, civilization had been restored, and Cherry was able to move on and pursue something she had always wanted: stand-up comedy. A machine-gun-legged woman was not so amazing to the people who had lived through the toxic zombies, but one thing was for sure: they all needed a really good laugh.
Cherry greeted her audience. Her voice shook a bit as she looked over the 30 or so people in the crowd. All looked up at her, waiting. So Cherry began.
Cherry: “I asked my gym instructor if he could teach me to do the splits. He asked how flexible I was. I said that any day of the week is good except Tuesdays.”
Nothing. No response. Cherry’s voice quivered a bit more as she started the next joke.
Cherry: “A guy walks up to me at the bar and says ‘you remind me of Hot Sauce’. And I said ‘I’ll take that as a condiment.’”
You could hear the clock ticking in the building across the street, it was so quiet. There was nothing.
Cherry: “Why didn’t the skeleton cross the road? Because he had no guts.”
Again, there was nothing. It was awful. Everyone had told her she was hilarious. That she should be a stand-up comedian. But they were wrong. They were all wrong. Cherry had never felt like this before. Not all the toxic zombies in the world could make her feel this terrible. What Cherry didn’t know was that O-Ren Ishii had paid everyone in the bar $1,000 each not to laugh at anything. O-Ren was watching Cherry die on stage and it required no effort at all. Hayley Stark was easy, but shit this was proving to be her easiest kill ever. Who could have foreseen this level of brutality. O-Ren, of course. And unfortunately for Cherry, it was only the beginning.
Cherry stood there fumbling for words. A single tear strolled down her face. No one was saying anything. So Cherry tried again with another joke.
Cherry: “A priest, a rabbi, and a vicar walk into a bar. The barman says, ‘Is this some kind of joke?’”
There was a cough in the audience but nothing else. Then the spotlight moved off of Cherry and across the room to reveal Jamie Farr, Arte Johnson, and Rip Taylor. They were all tackling each other to try to reach a large gong that hung from the ceiling. Rip was able to pull himself from the pile, grab the mallet, and, with all the force in the world, bang the gong. The ringing shook the walls. The audience applauded this.
The spotlight moved again across the room to reveal a panel of Olympic Judges from all over the world. They sat with stern faces as they presented their scores. The Chinese judge held up a card that read the number 1. The French judge held up a card that read the number 1. The
The spotlight moved once again all around the room, searching and searching until it landed on Richard Dawson. He walked up to the hottest woman in the bar, asked her to stand, planted a kiss on her that lasted three seconds too long and then asked her a question… “name one thing that sucks.” The woman thought about it for a few seconds and then yelled out “Cherry Darling.” Again, the audience applauded this. Richard Dawson repeated the question… “one thing that sucks.” He turned to a large Family Feud Board and then yelled “survey says?” The one answer flipped over and revealed the name Cherry Darling. The audience laughed and cheered and Richard Dawson leaned in for another uncomfortable kiss.
Cherry was unable to speak now. She only let out whimpers. She was ready to leave the stage when she heard a voice from the back of the room “you’re not too bad for a stripper.” The crowd quieted down. Cherry protected her eyes from the blazing spotlight that was now back on her. She couldn’t see anyone.
Cherry answered “I’m not a stripper.”
The voice said, “and you’re not a comedian either.” The audience broke out into laughter and Rip Torn couldn’t be contained with giddiness. Even the German judge laughed, and, you know, he’s a douche.
Finally, the spotlight left Cherry again and panned the crowd to the back of the room to reveal O-Ren Ishii. She stood there in a white Kimono, her Target blingy flip flops, and was holding a basket of half-eaten Chicken Fingers that were freshly frozen three days ago. This time she had her Hanzo sword at her side, but Lobos had a strict No Hanzo Swordplay Policy, so she was able to have the Hanzo, but she just wasn’t able to swing it around, and what the crap was that all about?
Once Cherry spotted O-Ren, all her sorrow turned to anger. Cherry yelled, “you bitch, you’re responsible for all this.”
O-Ren stood cool as a cucumber and responded, “of course.”