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‘RAMBO’ IS AFFECTING OUR POP CULTURE ON THE SLY

For Hicksflicks.com, Friday, Sept. 25, 2015

EDITOR’S NOTE: I must have been in a silly mood for this one, a jokey ‘Hicks on Flicks’ column from the Dec. 8, 1985, Deseret News referring to the influence of Sylvester Stallone’s ‘Rambo’ franchise on pop culture. When the Sybil Danning movie that is referred to actually hit theaters, its title was changed to ‘Panther Squad’ (though the ‘Commando’ part of the title was retained for its release in France, ‘Commando Panther’). The Linda Blair film may have evolved into the straight-to-video ‘Night Force,’ which comes closest in her filmography to what she described.

Rocky is reeling from his personal success this past week – with “Rocky IV” opened to astonishing success — but ol’ Sly Stallone himself is still sending ripples through pop culture with his other sequel hero.

Remember Rambo?

An item over the newswire Friday indicates a new Houston nightclub has been opened that features waitresses wearing fatigues, while the décor includes bunkers made of 50-pound sandbags, camouflage netting and a .50-caliber machine gun.

The club’s buffet is laid out on a green military stretcher, while Bruce Springsteen’s “Born In the USA” blasts through loudspeakers each night as the club’s theme song.

Some 1,200 people jam themselves into the club nightly, which has three bars and a games area labeled R&R, along with a sophisticated light-and-sound system that periodically produces the sounds of a supersonic fly-by, with smoke belching onto the dance floor.

So what is the club called, you ask?

Rambose.

What else?

But that’s not all. …

Have you heard about Rambo and the Rambettes?

No, not a new singing group.

Sybil Danning and Linda Blair have both announced their intentions to make movies that will give Sylvester Stallone a run for his money (and that’s quite a run), with female versions of his heroic “Rambo” character.

Danning stars in “Commando Squad” (has Schwarzenegger heard that title?) and will be armed with “everything short of the neutron bomb.” She described Stallone as “America’s No. 1 hero” and herself as “America’s No. 1 hero.”

Blair is going to play what she describes as a combination of “Rambo” and James Bond in a movie that is as yet untitled.

Rambo and James Bond?

Can you picture Rambo at a baccarat table in Monaco? Or wearing a tux (where would he keep his rocket launcher?) and complaining that his martini was stirred, not shaken? Or telling a villain he can’t kill him because he hasn’t received his double-o license yet?

“Yo, Moneypenny!”

And finally, someone asked me last week if “Rambo” isn’t the name of one of Santa’s eight reindeer.

No, and neither is “Commando.”

Although when Donner and Blitzen sneeze in “Santa Clause – The Movie,” the noise they make sounds like: Schwarzenegger!

Gesundheit.