Behind the Bastards

There’s a reason the History Channel has produced hundreds of documentaries about Hitler but only a few about Dwight D. Eisenhower. Bad guys (and gals) are eternally fascinating. Behind the Bastards dives in past the Cliffs Notes of the worst humans in history and exposes the bizarre realities of their lives. Listeners will learn about the young adult novels that helped Hitler form his monstrous ideology, the founder of Blackwater’s insane quest to build his own Air Force, the bizarre lives of the sons and daughters of dictators and Saddam Hussein’s side career as a trashy romance novelist.

Part Three: John Wayne: A Dude Who Sucked

Part Three: John Wayne: A Dude Who Sucked

Tue, 03 May 2022 10:00

Robert is joined by Francesca Fiorentini for the final part our three part series on John Wayne.

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Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams, let's break or handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Wanna say I don't know less? Listen to stuff you should know more. Join host Josh and Chuck on the podcast packed with fascinating discussions about science, history, pop culture and more episodes. Dive into topics like was the lost, city of Atlantis Real? And how does pizza work? Say goodbye to I don't know. Because after listening to stuff you should know you will listen to stuff you should know on the iHeartRadio app, Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get your podcasts. Hey there, it's Ebony Monet, your co-host for the San Diego Zoo's Amazing Wildlife podcast. In this special episode, we're speaking with Doctor Jane Goodall about the fascinating journey that led to her impactful behavioral discoveries on chimpanzees. It wasn't until one of the chimpanzees began to lose his fear of me, but I began to really make discoveries that actually shook the scientific world. Listen to amazing wildlife on the iHeartRadio app or wherever you get your podcasts. What's joning my Wayne. OK, what's, how, what's destroyed? Yeah, shattering my pelvis, my 13 pound baby. Kissing my car? What's irradiating my? Racist movie about Genghis Khan starring a white man as Genghis Khan. That is the funniest thing in terms of like ways John Wayne could have died nuked while playing Genghis Khan in a movie is pretty funny that that's pretty good. Uh, how are you doing, friend, friend, friend? Francesca? Francesca Fiorentini, our guest, returning for part. 3. Of three. I have to find out how this ends, you know? Well, I mean, it's. I feel like he becomes even more bastardly towards the end of his life. But I'm excited. Yes, actually, he becomes Chris Kattan. So, real curveball for the story that you love. That makes as much sense as anything else. Yeah, Chris kattan. Great career. Not over, is it not? Are we still doing Chris Kattan? I don't have anything against Chris Kattan in particular, but are we? I mean, there could be a night at the Roxbury reboot. There could be, or we could even do like a like a like an Avengers end game where night at the Roxbury meets the Blues brothers. And it's another one of those. When Michael's movies. Uh, uh, the superstar. I don't know. Superstar. Sure, throw that in there, you know, throw in the David Cross. One where he plays, plays a hillbilly. Make it all happen, but everyone's jacked. It's it's basically everybody. Kumail nanjiani's themselves. Exactly. Get everybody like on it, pumped with HGH, destroy their hearts, get them just like David Cross has like 16 inch biceps. Hell yeah. And then nuke them on set. And then we nuke them. And then we nuke them on set. That's right. Finally, that's how we that's how we end Lorne Michaels's career with that film. I shouldn't have brought bad night at the Roxbury. Hmm. So yeah, he's like the center of this idea of like white, conservative masculinity and and has has been for decades at this point. By the time we hit like the mid night to late 1960s, all of these people who are like 181920 and old enough to start going over to Vietnam have never known a world in which John Wayne wasn't like the biggest action star. In there, like, he's like, you know, there's not really anyone to compare him to now. I guess your closest would be someone like the rock. But even then, like, we don't really have the media is so much bigger now. So, like, you have like a million different kinds of action stars for everyone in this period of time. John Wayne is like it, yeah. So though not publicly a man of particular religious vigor, he embodied what muscular Christianity enthusiasts respected while also speaking to the more secular. Rich capitalist right wingers who sought a more muscular US willing to throw down for the free market. All of this swirled together to make him an irresistible front man for Republican politicians, Christine Cobbs, Dumez writes. In 1968, he gave a rousing patriotic address at the Republican National Convention. When Nixon wanted to explain his own views on law and order, he pointed to Wayne's Chisholm, which is one of his movies as a model a bloody tale of frontier justice, in which Wayne achieved order and revenge through violence. So in 68, like at the RNC, Nixon is specifically pointing to John Wayne movies is like, this is this is how law and order supposed to be. This this cowboy movie by a draft Dodger. You know who could take care of these dirty hippies who want to stop seeing their friends slaughtered? The Duke? John Wayne. Uh-huh. Why can't it be more like that? Remember when the good guys were good guys and the bad guys were the brown people? Let's do that. Let's do that again. It is also. Very funny. He spent so much time ******** on anti war protesters, a lot of whom are veterans who didn't dodge the draft like he did, but right, whatever. So Wayne himself was flabbergasted at the resistance among many Americans towards continuing to escalate the war in Vietnam. Imans biography tells a particularly lurid story about Wayne seeing A1 armed veteran walking across a campus during a protest. And this group of protesters like approaches this veteran and they're heckling this brave man who lost his arm in combat and. John Wayne has to, like, walk up and say now, don't you? Like, you can speak your piece, but you're not gonna yell at this man. And you don't get to say this to a hero and yadda yadda yadda. It sounds like an e-mail. Them all together. Yeah, exactly. And then everyone clapped. Yeah. There's no evidence this ever happened. It's there's a lot of fake stories about stuff like soldiers getting spit on from this. And John Wayne being a liar. I don't have any trouble believing made this up. Oh yeah, I don't know. He needed one for himself. Yeah, the the spit spit soldier's story was getting way too much play. Yeah, let me invent one. He needed a John Wayne version one. Now, I don't think that particular story is true, Francesca, but no, we do have audio of John Wayne addressing a group of students. I think they're like. TCC kids, cadets at like a Military Academy or something? What matters most is that he's obviously ******* hammered. It's so funny. He is. He is housed. He is just completely ******* still joking after all these years. It's so funny. Here's how he says hello to these kids. My name is Ryan Wayne. What? What? Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. First of all, it's Marion. It is Marian. Suddenly you're worried. William John is short for William. What am I saying? It's so funny. This is unimportant. Wait, wait. Oh my God. It does not get wildly more coherent from there, but the audience is very much on board. And honestly, if I had been a college student and a drunk movie star had come to give my comments like, that would have been super funny. I would have been all. I think most kids would, right? Ohh yeah, the audience, I mean, this is also a more right. Being militant audience. So they're they're on board here now. I'm gonna play another clip. And for context here, he's talking about how different things were when he's talking about like protests in college and how different things were when we were in college. He was in college, remember, this is a period where students are taking over faculty buildings and whatnot. They're trashing the offices of certain professors. Like there's all these protests against the war by students. We talk about some of this in the Kissinger episodes. So John Wayne is talking about how different things were when he was in college. Let me explain something to you. When I went there, I went there one there was a fellow in control of the college. I mean. I mean. The brossman. Everybody had walked into his. Off all good one got the office, burned down the picture and did excrement in his power through buddy, you got it. You stick the landing. Per basket. Yeah, that's what it is. Or had written rude words on his ohh the pictures of his family, we as members of the college would have kicked the *** **** hell out of this organization. I can. It's very funny. He's so drunk. Does he nod off? Because that's where it feels like we're, you know, like you might have like you would sort of, you sort of graying out there for a little while. Yeah, God, when you go, what's the word for the. We're having a little brown out, drifting off into the land of vodka and fantasies. Classroom, right, the classroom. Classroom. I never stepped foot in the classroom, just a drunk old man heckling teens. So from this point he continues to his main argument, which is that he thinks these kids he's talking to should beat the hell out of left wing protesters who dissent from the view that war is good and the US can do no wrong. Well, a lot of the speech is very funny. It's mostly very funny. The last bit does kind of get a little terrifying because in it John Wayne calls for the establishment of the sort of violent right wing St organizations that we are currently swimming in as a nation. For you guys, you better start thinking it's it's getting to be regarded damn ridiculous. If you guys don't start. Thinking is men. We're gonna have a lousy country. Jesus, I'm. I have had the chance to be with guys who are with things and against things and you know, Christ, you try as a. Because I try as a human being to listen to both sides of everything. But there's no both sides anymore. They're just trying to wreck our *** **** country. It's time for you younger guys to take over. I don't know what the hell to do. Awesome. That was brilliant. And and you know what? It very much is a speech that fits into the year 2022. It does. It does. That's that's a Giuliani speech right there. That's a right down to the drunkenness, right down to the barely being able to stand. Yes, exactly. He was so ahead of his time. But it's, so he's he's also. It's funny because he is also, while, the hero of every single film, just kind of like interpersonally and incredibly. Like he's lazy and drunk half the time. Like, like and his only work ethic, like the hardest thing he did was I think. Well I don't know did he learn to lasso or it was the hardest thing just like bringing a 17 year old from Mexico. You know like he he's most people will note and I think this alters a little bit at the end of his career. But he's like he's generally most people will agree pretty good on set. He's good at like what he does he's got this kind of background in prop. So he's he's he knows how things should look. He's an active member of like the of the crew beyond just sort of like standing and hitting his lines. That's generally agreed upon. But you do hear, you hear really different stories. So you hear all these stories about, you know, John Wayne seeing something a director is doing and realizing that one look good on camera and like fixing the scene and being like very much a team player. And then you hear these stories about like, well, they couldn't shoot the film before noon because that's when he woke up and they had to wait for him to take a giant **** first so they couldn't start until he had a show like that. I respect that. I definitely respect. So I, I don't know, like you, you do hear like a lot of rumors on both sides. It's probably fair to say he would not have gotten as far as he did if he was not really good at certain aspects of being a movie star, so I'll give him credit for that. But it's also like John Wayne. You were never willing to, like, go do anything for your country overseas. Why are you now saying that groups of teenagers should beat the **** out of people protesting a war that you can't even like you have? No, he's there's no elucidation there in that speech. And the other ones he gives about, like, why they should be willing to do violence on behalf of this war, right, because that's not what's important. What's important is something vague about America. And that's the thing that seems most familiar, where it's like, well, you're not really elucidating anything that they should be fighting. Or other than the vague idea of America, and that's that's really enough to rile people up for violence. I mean, again, it's just super fitting. It's like America isn't a country that protests the bludgeoning and killing of civilians and the death of, like, young men coming home in body bags to their parents. America is the country that does those things. Not a sound without. Why would you why would you make a sound that's just gonna be loud? You know? You're gonna wake up John Wayne and he's gonna be hungover. Absolutely. Before noon, yeah. With the poo. Yeah. So kids these days, it's very much just a kids these days speech it is. And then at the end, it's fun because instead of him being like, and that's why I'm gonna start a blah, blah, blah or whatever, or I'm gonna start a militia, which glad he didn't. But instead of that, it's just like, anyway you figure you could swear it out. I don't know what to do. Drunk *** John Wayne. Very funny. Except for, you know, the fact that he holds this position in our cultural memory that makes the fact that he was a drunken warmonger much more influential. But let's continue. So we should talk again about these kind of rumors about the Duke that you'll hear. Because you get this, like I'm in, very much presents this picture of him as this incredibly diligent with quotes from people who worked with him, including guys like Ford, that he was this he had really. He was really sharp. Is always willing to put in the extra effort. He'd do multiple jobs, even though he was supposed to be the star, just to make sure the film got made. And then you'll hear these stories about, like, his scenes needed to be finished shooting before noon every day because he was gonna be too drunk after that, but he couldn't film in the morning until he'd taken his first hungover. ****. And like, he's got like half an hour. He's got like a good hour in there. That's why I those can't be true comprehensively. Like, they may have been true on certain films or in certain times, right? I'm sure there were times when people like, well, you can't shoot. You can't. You got if you shoot too late in the day. He's gotta be drunk because we know he got drunk at an impacted shooting at times, but he made way too many movies for them to have for things to have been that ridiculous. You can't shoot a movie with an hour a day from the star right now, but who knows how the radiation impacted his gastrointestinal? And I'm sure the older he got, too, the more it was like, uh, you know, his lifestyle took a toll on him, and that took altered the way he was on set. But like, drinking, I mean, obviously that's like the sign of an alcoholic, but, like, being like a young kid, like, on set and like, drinking and then waking up the next day and hell, yeah, like, obviously we all remember what it was like to be 19, bless that moment, but like hangovers in your 50s. Yeah, hangovers are in your 50s as a guy who has been just basically inhaling cigarettes and nothing else since he was like 12. Like. That's, I mean, I do want to note, like, I'm sure aspects of this were true, and I'm also sure aspects of what I'm in reports in terms of his, like, diligence on set were really true. It's worth noting that two of his very best performances in his career, uh, were filmed really late in it when he's an old guy, the Shootist and True Grit, True Grit being maybe the most the one that's most famous today, probably that he was in, you know, Rooster Cogburn. Great film, really good performance. He was not a bad actor. There were some moments, I forget which film it was, but like because most of his. Early roles, he had not had to act. He's in a movie that John Ford sees, and Ford is like, oh hell, if I hadn't known he could act, I would have liked it. Done some stuff differently. But he is in some better performances. The SHOOTIST, which is his very last film, is a really good movie in a lot of ways. That's that's interesting too, because it's we'll talk about the show just a little at the end. It's kind of, it's kind of a strange one for him, but I don't think either of those movies actually. It's very like it's a little bit of his character like True Grit, a drunken hard nosed US Marshall and Texas Ranger helps us stubborn teenager track down her father's murderer. There you go like. Drunk, good hard nosed US marshal. Drunken, hard nosed, yeah. Never served his country. So that's allowing you gotta, you know, take it a little bit. So it's interesting because it's one of those things I don't think he's as these anti John Wayne anecdotes about how drunk he was. I don't think he was as unfunctional as those anecdotes imply, but we might have been better off if he had been. Because another movie John Wayne cared a lot about making and put a lot of work into later in his career was the Green Berets. And this is a film that would go on to have pretty disastrous consequences for a number of members of a generation. So you're not necessarily a ******* as an action movie star if you're films like reinforce attitudes about violence and masculinity that lead young men to make some like dumb decisions such as joining the army. But John Wayne knew that his films could do that and actively sought to use them to convince people to go and fight in Vietnam, right? He understood that he had influenced a generations. Idea of manhood, and he decided to use that influence to try to get more young men to volunteer to go fight in Southeast Asia. Now, before we get into that a little more, I wanna read a quote from this write up I found in that gives a good overview on the broad strokes of kind of what it meant in 1968 to be what some people called a John Wayne man. John Wayne, yeah, John Wayne stands simply, is the most persuasive and overwhelming embodiment of our ambivalence about American manhood. His persona gathers in one place, the allure of violence, the Callaway from the frontier, the tortured ambivalence toward women and the home, the dark pleasure of Saward romanticism, all those things that reside. Spoken at the center of our sense of what it means to be a man in America. Dark ambivalence toward the home. Just just say domestic abusers to say it's women like, yeah, the man who strikes his wife, well, it's this thing that you have because, you know, early in his career they're like, we want him to look like a guy who doesn't have a lot of experience with women because he spends all of his time in the frontier. So he kind of is uncomfortable around women. And that's kind of part of, I think, why that expands to even more of a thing than a Hollywood is you have this mix of. The male lead number one has to be very clearly not gay, so you've got to show a woman as being interested in him white, right? Not necessarily a sign that they're not gay for sure. But you know, if we're talking 1960s Hollywood logic, you gotta, you gotta, you gotta show him with a woman but also like sex and stuff that's that's gonna get you in trouble. So you don't you don't ever want him to get too close to him necessarily. And so you you wind up with a lot of these heroes who are like magnetic to women but also kind of pushing them away. These these sort of like, yeah, it's all. And also just like these ideas about masculinity, you don't want to have a guy who's like vulnerable with a woman. It's the kind of James Bond thing, right, where he's gonna, you know, he'll sleep with a woman, but he he doesn't have relationships or whatever. I think that's gonna show up in the shower unannounced and they'll just start having sex and you're like, I guess that was consent. But like, John Wayne won't even do that. Right? Because because James Bond is a more advanced in his attitudes towards female liberation than John Wayne. Characters tend to be, you know? She can carry a gun. That yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. No, that that is really. It explains so much. And also to to recruit, use your film to recruit young American men into a war which is already going to give him PTSD, and then come home and like the the manly thing to do. Don't talk about it, don't address it, bottle it up. Stoicism. Like I think there's a stoicism that John Wayne really instilled in. Of about American masculinity, yes. And. And it's like, it's also kind of, I think, an impotent stoicism. It's not the kind of there's a good stoicism where you're not, you know, letting yourself getting beaten down by the world. You're not like showing, you know your, your weakness in situations where that's bad. But John Wayne, Stoicism is like, don't show vulnerability in situations where that might make you stronger. But anyway, that's, we're getting into a little bit of a deeper topic, but so, you know, Vietnam 1968 has become like a thing. You know, it's it's clear that it's a real problem and Americans really don't seem to be liking this, this thing that we're doing. And so John Wayne decides I got to do whatever I can to convince more young boys to throw themselves into this meat grinder. And he decides the best way to do this is by making a movie about the special forces. Now, at this point, that's a pretty new concept, the very first kind of modern special forces. Themes were in World War Two. Some people will say that like the German. Folks from Jaeger, some of which were like their, their, their paratroopers, they had some units that were kind of the first modern spec OPS units. And you have, you know, some, some British and some American units that are kind of experimenting with some of this ****. Vietnam is really where the modern special forces kind of comes together as a distinct thing for the first time in a modern way. It's where we get the first green Beret teams, right? That's kind of the the the first popular concept of special forces comes from these. These teams, which are initially called a teams, which is why the A-Team was called the A team that President Kennedy sends into Vietnam in 1961. And they gradually like, that's what becomes the the idea of green berets is these these a teams become the green berets. When's the Mr. T episode? Huh? Mr T's never done anything wrong, so we're not going to be doing that episode. Look, he gave up his chains after Hurricane Katrina, OK? What? Yeah, Mr. T gave up because he went to help in the relief efforts, and he was he was horrified by the privation and poverty. He saw and decided it would be obscene for him to continue wearing gold. Damn, this is a story where we. Yeah, I got nothing to say bad about Mr. T. Yeah, and the cereal was good. What? Umm, he's also super vocal about, like, vaccinations. He thinks it's good to be vaccinated. Yes. Yeah. Damn it. We need strong men like me. I pity the fool who cannot appreciate Mr. T. Legitimately pity the fool. So this idea of, like, specially trained super soldiers that you drop behind enemy lines and they fight under incredible odds, this is like Hollywood fodder. Like, as soon as we start having these special forces guys in Vietnam, Hollywood's like, oh **** this is all we're going to make movies about for forever, right? Like, this is this is the only thing we want to turn into a movie now. Inter Robin Moore Robin Moore is a World War 2 veteran and a journalist who, because of his connections to, I think it was Ted Kennedy's, got to go through Special Forces School as a civilian. He's, I don't know if he's the only, but he's the first civilian to ever do this, and he embeds with the green Berets in Vietnam, and he's technically a journalist, but he's also like fighting alongside them, which is ethically kind of blurring the lines of journalism. He's a real interesting character to study Robin Moore. Even being embedded is like a little sauce. You're always like, yeah, it compromises objectivity anytime you're embedded, sure, but shooting people is a real violation of any kind of burned a few huts he may have burned, some huts, little bit of Hut burning. It's fun because he'll get conned by a dude named Jack Adima during the war in Afghanistan. But that's a lot later when he's an old man. So he writes that he's in the he spends much time with these green berets. He writes this book, The Green Berets, which is like, it's like on the best seller list for more than a year. It's a huge hit. People will ******* and he has to, he has to be in the during the height of the war, like in 68 and 69. It's like 65 or 6. I think that it would be published. Yeah. It's like something I think must be like 65. So pretty early on. And he publishes this book as a fiction book. Because he has to do that in order to pretend he's not giving away operational secrets. The government considers prosecuting him because he's writing about a bunch of **** he shouldn't be writing about. It's a weird call to just let this guy hang out with your special forces. But then he writes a book that ****** them off a lot. And the reason, one of the reasons apparently, that they don't go through prosecuting him is that John Wayne buys the film rights from Robin Moore in order to make a movie. And so yeah, he well, now that Wayne is attached, well, what happens is he sends a letter to President Lyndon Baines Johnson to try to get his cooperation because he basically says, I want to make the first Pro War. Movie about the Vietnam War to try and build public support for this thing, he writes. Quote we want to show such scenes as the little village that has erected its own Statue of Liberty to the American people. We want to bring out that if we abandon these people, there will be a bloodbath of over 2,000,000 souls. We want to show the professional soldier carrying out his duty of death, but also his extracurricular activities, helping small communities, giving them medical supplies, toys for their children, and little things like soap. So that's the movie. Like John Wayne sends this letter. So, AKA napalm. Napalm cleans things. You know, eventually there's no bacteria in the wake of a napalm strike. Absolutely. Mm-hmm. Solbin you wanna get rid of Giardia? Napalm knocks it right out. A write up from history and that continues quote John Wayne took his first step towards production of the picture in 1965, buying the film rights from the author more. The path was cleared in early 1966 when President Johnson's advisor Jack Valenti convinced LBJ to give Wayne permission to make the film. Valenti observed Wayne's politics are wrong, but insofar as Vietnam is concerned, his views are right. If he made the picture, he would be saying the things we once said. So, I mean, he's doing, he's offering it for free. I mean, this is before the US military would bankroll things like Black Hawk Down or like ******* even Transformers. They put money behind Transformers and ****. It's funny you say that, because this is how that starts. Oh, cute, cute, cute, cute. Oh my God. Origin story. But you know what else is starting right now? Francesca? What? The products and services that support this podcast, their ads are starting right now. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. 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That's better My name is Erica Kelly and I am the host and creator of Southern Freight true crime. There are so many people that just have no idea about some injustices in the world and if you can give a voice to them, you can create change. To be able to do it within podcasting is just such a gift. I believe it was 18 months after I got on with speaker that I was making enough that I could quit my day job. It was incredible. I always felt like an ambassador for speaker, but that's because I'm passionate about podcasting. It's really easy to use. I always tell people I am so not tech. Took me 5 minutes to get comfortable with speaker, and when I find a new friend that has an incredible show, I want them to make money. I want them to be able to do what I did. Follow your podcasting dreams. Let's break your handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Get paid to talk about the things you love with spreaker from iheart. Ohh, we're back. Well, I don't know about you, Francesca, but those ads convinced me to become a green beret. Wow. I'm gonna go fight in Vietnam. Was it a ZIP recruiter at it was. It was. It was. And it has convinced me to take up the fight. I keep calling the recruiters and they keep saying there's no war in Vietnam. You can't just travel to Vietnam and start fighting people like you. You'll go to prison forever. But I'm going to do it. I'm gonna give it a shot. Like we need a social media manager. You're like, green beret. Green beret. That's what I'm going to do. Oh my God, so really foreshadowing of they the US military funding this well, not funding it. It's not quite there yet, but this this we'll get into it. So wait, John Wayne makes his son Michael the film's producer because nepotism. And in February of 1966 he hires James Lee Barrett, who's an A former Marine and a screenwriter to draft a screenplay. And the screenplay has very little to do with Robin Moore's book. That's again some people will allege part of the agreement he made with the government. Like, I'll adapt this into a movie, but I won't include anything from the book, really, because the book is full of a bunch of secrets you didn't want getting out. And that's part of why the the LBJ administration is like, well, this this can help us kind of launder away some of the **** we didn't want people to know that's in that book. So the two Waynes and Barrett visit the Defense Department in Fort Bragg, uh in order to like. So they get like approval from the government to see where special forces trained and to do research and whatnot and the production receives, and this is one of the first times this has happened, a substantial amount of help from the armed forces. They did pay fees to use DoD property and for some of the equipment leased to them, but a lot of stuff was made free for them as props, which did substantially defray costs. Some biographers like Jensen dispute this. Uh and John Wayne would go on to claim that they paid for everything. This does not seem to have been entirely accurate. Uh, it does seem like they got a good amount of stuff, at least subsidized, that would have cost more or just not been available if the DoD hadn't played ball. And evidence for this can be seen in the fact that the studio allowed the Pentagon to retain script control. Right. Wow. So you had in like 48, you had, you had some kind of like partnerships with Hollywood or not in 40 in the 40s for like World War Two, you had some partnerships with Hollywood and the DoD. This is the first time, though, you have like an independent movie that a studio is making on its own, that they kind of make a deal with the government in exchange for stuff to give the Pentagon script control, right. And the DoD does request extensive rewrites and detailed changes to the plot and dialogue and those changes are made. Uh, this is the first modern movie Co written by the Pentagon in exchange for access to gear and military infrastructure. It is not to the same extent that it will later be right. They're not getting nearly as much **** free. They are paying for more ****. But this is the start of that process. Yeah, I I just think it's incredible that at this time you could turn on the television and just watch. Yeah, kids coming home in body bags. Children run with napalm burns on them. Like the Melai massacre was. Yep, very much publicized about that. Don't worry, but just. And you're like, well, but then this one movie this is gonna do, it's silver bullet. Like, turn it around, baby. I mean, arguably, right. That was the lesson of Vietnam was like, oh, just do the propaganda movies don't show what's actually happening in the ground. Well, and it is this. You can never do it for everybody. But with the right movies at the right time, you can change. What happens in a war for a select population like the movie American Sniper, for a certain chunk of Americans, has changed the thing they like because of how big that movie was in certain chunks of the population. A lot of people, when they think of the Iraq war, don't think about that. We of the government lied a **** load to get us in there, that our primary many of our goals were not achieved, there were not weapons of mass destruction, that the Iraqi people suffered tremendously, that the rebuilding process was corrupt and efficient. They think big strong guy sniper. He shoot people good. Look at him. He's American sniper. I got him on a hat. I'm gonna wear it. That's Bradley Cooper, right? Yeah, it's Bradley Cooper. Yeah, exactly. That's why when the hurt Locker, I'm like, man, like, I support women directors. But why does it got to be Katherine Bigelow doing the hurt locker? Like, really? That's the story. Then she gets on stage and thanks the firefighters. I'm sorry. I'm showing my prejudice against you. Can't. You can't. You can't actually have a movie. About the Iraq war, because it would be, I mean, there's issues with the movie vice, but that's an actual movie about the Iraq war to an extent, where it's about like the the the people and kind of the venal and corrupt attitudes that lead us in there. You can't have a movie about what the Iraq war is actually about, but you can make a bunch of movies about likeable dudes in the Iraq war that will make people feel more fondly towards the military and the military industrial complex as opposed to just be like all of these wars are disasters. Clearly the people running our Defense Department are incompetent because look at how these get handled every time. Look at how badly these wars were prosecuted. Yep, that's not like you're not, God forbid, that perspective of an Iraqi either. I mean, every now and then I will say this. The movie Mosul, which was directed by it was Carnahan, but it was produced by the Russo Brothers. That is a really good movie that does it. There's not like an American in that movie, really. It's all like Iraqis. All of the characters, they think they're pretty much a good a buddy of mine. Angar was actually like the local consultant on the, the cultural consultant on the film. And it does. As someone who was there in Mosul, it is a really good job. I know some of the dudes it was based on here. So you do actually get some really good like, it it it it doesn't not happen, right? Like stuff like this. But most people probably haven't seen Mosul, and everybody knows about the movie American Sniper, you know, and this doesn't have Bradley. This doesn't have Bradley. And again, like, just this is happening in Vietnam too. The Green Berets becomes the only, I think definitely the 1st and I think the only Pro Vietnam movie about Vietnam that comes out during the war. What's his name makes Platoon, specifically because he hates the green Berets so much like the movie platoon is a reaction to how what a piece of propaganda that green berets is. Is that Oliver Stone or am I? I think it's stone. I think it's stone. Yeah, stone. And he just, he gets, like, ****** *** by what a piece of ******** this film becomes. And you never need to see green berets. Because I've never, like, I've never seen a positive spin on the Vietnam. It's it's pretty fun. I watched as a kid. My parents wanted me to see if they thought it was a great movie. One of my uncles was a green beret. So like, Oh yeah, and it's your uncle. Think of it. I mean, he. Abandon. Anyway, we don't need to get into my uncle's, OK? We leave your uncle. We don't. We don't need to talk about that uncle in particular. I never, I never knew him super well, but got like his service was a regular topic and of discussion. I think that's part of why my mom wanted me to see the green Berets is to know that what my Uncle Jim had done in the green Berets. But I this I don't think this is a particularly accurate movie about what the Green Berets did. And it's certainly like it's filmed in Fort Bragg. It's very obviously not Vietnam. It's like pine tree forests all over, like, it could not look less like Vietnam. So this film though, would start to prove to be kind of the start of what is, to date, a decades long collaboration between Hollywood and the DoD. You know, it's a it's a proof of concept. The film is utterly panned by reviewers and it actually sparked anti war protests in New York, Los Angeles and other cities that because they protest, it makes conservatives loves love the film even more, right? Like, sure, you, you hear, there's this, there's this movie about our brave soldiers and they're protesting in LA, like, that's not going to do anything but make you love it more. Absolutely. Suddenly it's it's it's become a martyr of the right. Yeah, they love that stuff. Roger Ebert called it Cowboy and Indian. Idiotic. Uh, Renata Adler of the New York Times called it vile and insane. None of this stopped it from being a huge commercial success. Earning $12 million which is all of the money in the world in 1968 dollars and giving John Wayne an excuse to call the bad reviews quote ridiculously 1 sided blind. Stupid criticism of our picture that made real people more conscious of just how honest we were. Anti American? I do say so myself. They tried to cancel us, but we can't cancel America. This is like what the daily wire is going to try to remake. They're gonna like remake the Green Berets and Shapiro's gonna fund it. Now here's the thing. John Wayne was talented, so we are. I am a little less worried about Ben Shapiro because John Wayne had things he was good at. There was there's the other Quigley sister. It's like Margaret Quigley. And then there's the you've got James Woods, James Woods. There's one other washed up right wing celebrity, and you've got like, Kirk Cameron. Get them all together and get your A-Team together. Do a new A-Team reboot with just like disgraced conservative actors. Ohh man, I need to see that you have have the have the have your like bosley be Kelsey grammar yeah. Introducing Kyle Rittenhouse. Turns out that cry was fake. Kyle Rittenhouse and James Woods in a ******* action shoot him up. Yeah, do it. Do it. We dare you. We want to see this. But yeah, so it's interesting. I do legitimately want to see that movie. It'll happen. It will happen. Something like that will happen in the House, will get cast in an action movie within the next couple of years for sure. It is just interesting that, like, even though he was a good actor. Like, this sucked. And it was like 6869, like 69. It came out well. It's. I think it's sucked. I think you would probably think it sucked. Most reviewers think it sucked. A lot of people don't. A lot of people like. And they're not like when I say it's successful, they're not, like just blindly buying it to own the libs. They enjoy it. It's a movie that's got some cool action sequences and **** like it's not a good movie about the Vietnam War, but as a movie, it succeeds in making the audience happy. Got it. So you know, like. So it it like, mission accomplished? Yeah, absolutely accomplished. And and Wayne makes a big deal in, like the the ads for this or in the PR campaign for this movie The fact that he visited Vietnam and like, spent time with soldiers on his own, without handlers. He was like adjacent to combat. He's on like chunks of the line where there is shooting and he gets really popular with a lot of soldiers he meets there because they're like, oh, hey, this guy who I saw in movies as a kid who like influenced my conception of manhood. Like here standing on the line. That's great. So you know some of them think this is cool. There's obviously a lot of Vietnam Veterans, perhaps even significantly more Vietnam Veterans who have been in combat and see this movie and are like, well this is just rank gross propaganda but it's not like 1 sided. There are a lot of Vietnam Veterans who like the fact that he does this, but it also must have been like the death of a hero for a lot of the kids when they realized. Well, yeah, who were actually there and saw their friends die and got injured and maimed? And for what? Like, it's kind of that moment where you're you're like your hero, you realize, is like a vicious right winger. It's this moment a lot of people have in a lot of a British kids have in World War One, when they realized that all of these poems they had been told, read about, like, the glory of war and all of these lurid paintings of colonial victories are like, now here's what it's really like to get shot at by a machine gun. There's nothing glorious. Manly about it. And that that there are a bunch of people who have it and a bunch of kids who, like, had joined and volunteered for Vietnam, in part because of the things that John Wayne had led him to believe about masculinity in Jesus and John Wayne, Dumez writes. As one working class Vietnam veteran later recalled, he went to Vietnam to kill a commie for Jesus Christ and John Wayne. It was sands of Iwo Jima that inspired Ron Kovic to volunteer for the Marines during the Vietnam War, a war that would cost him the use of his legs and lead to a disenchantment with war. The chronicled in his memoir born on the 4th of July. Off screen, too, Wayne worked to recruit young men to the war effort, ridiculing as soft those who didn't enlist 1 critic labeled Wayne the most important man in America, given the role his films played in driving American engagement in Vietnam. Kovics would later say on his previously John and Wayne inspired ideas about war and manhood. I gave my dead **** for John Wayne. Oh my God. And he made a necklace out of them. Just a bunch of dead American John. John Wayne. Just a bunch of kids ***** on his neck. Yeah, kids ***** adorning him like a head dress like this is. He does get a bracelet from the Montagnards, but yeah. This is still his unfulfilled World War Two. Yes, yes, like whatever, fantasy or or shame really, that he's like, well, I'm going to send other people to die now. That is what a lot of people who knew him suggest is that he never got over his shame for failing to serve in World War Two. So he decided, like, this is how I'm going to overcome it is by getting all these kids to serve in my place in this other war. You know, I I didn't come through then, but I'm going to come through now for America by getting all these kids to die in a jungle. For nothing. I mean, what's crazy is that like today you would see John Wayne and this career path and be like, oh, he's an op. Like, he was created by the CIA, like he's been a DoD like OP from the beginning. And he's not like he just did this stuff. They benefit from it, sure. But he's he's he's motivated by his own shame because he realizes that being the guy he is, he should have. ******* done something in World War Two. Yeah, and he did not. What I mean is he just seems like he was created in a lab of, like, all of America's lies, just like she has sewn together in some, you know, evil Scarecrow. He's he's all of our lies sewn together in a package that unfortunately is really good at a specific kind of acting. And it allows him to, yeah, just like stand in front of men and get them to sign up to go fight in Vietnam and and ridicule people as soft for refusing to do it. Being slap someone at the Oscars, well, we're we're building to that, Francesca. So the ballot, or the Green Berets launched six months after the Tet Offensive put a lie to the idea that the US was particularly close to a victory in Vietnam. Within months of its release, the first rumors of the Mylai massacre had begun to percolate out into the culture. So, right after this movie, we find out that American soldiers have killed hundreds of civilians brutally in the sacking of this village. So the Green Berets had shown U.S. soldiers spending most of their time helping. Adorable kids and like building up villages and infrastructure projects, the reality was that very often U.S. troops killed those same kids and blew those villages to bits. John Wayne portrayed war crimes as purely the purview of the Viet Kong, while reality proved him wrong. Over and over again, large numbers of conservatives tucked their heads into the comforting lie he had offered them. John Wayne referred to the Milai massacre as the so-called Milai massacre and redirected any questions about it to lurid claims about atrocities. Committed against our people by the Vietcong. It's again this. Like, what about ISM? Where it's like, yeah, it's a war. You could always find bad things that every site has done in a war. But he's pretending that like, oh, Americans are just there handing out clean water and these mean old Vietcong are killing them for some reason. For no reason at all. Yeah, uh, so much with so-called me lie, yes. There's not even a village he would be like. Look, there's so much going on in Vietnam that there's no good reason quote one little incident in the United States Army should make a fuss. The reality, the sad reality, I mean the sad reality is I feel like there are way more me lies that we just don't know about. There's a number we do know about. There were quite a few times like that happened. Yeah, yeah, exactly. We remember this one. But there were many, many, many others we don't have at the tip of our tongue the the images of which were not particularly even, you know, they weren't captured. The journalist wasn't there on the ground at the right moment, at the right time or I mean the thing the reason Milli becomes what it is because one of the officers who sees it like threatens to machine gun. Everybody, if they don't stop and then reports it like, landed his helicopter. Yeah, in between civilians and was like ******* stop. A cool dude. Yeah, way, way cooler dude than John Wayne indeed. Yeah. So other far right? Figures rushed in to assure John Wayne that he was right on the money. And he is to, you know, still to this day popular with a segment of Vietnam Veterans who want to believe that they were there for a reason or that their kids were there for a reason, fighting a fight that needed to be fought no less. Fascist luminary than Douglas MacArthur told John Wayne that he represented, quote, the American servicemen better than the American serviceman himself. There it is. Here's what's funny about that is General Douglas Smith MacArthur, fired from his job prosecuting the Korean War for #1 not being great at it and #2 wanting, asking for permission to nuke China and Russia repeatedly. Douglas Smith, please, please, please. Douglas MacArthur, famous for his, you know, command of U.S. forces in the Philippines. Also, the Duke, like he's saying that John Wayne represents the American servicemen better than the American servicemen during the Bonus Army marches, which is when a bunch of US World War One veterans were like, marching during the Great Depression to get the money that they were promised by the government. Douglas MacArthur led the forces that gunned them down with tanks and machine guns as they marched out DC so I really want to hear who Douglas? McCarthy thinks represents the American servicemen best. He seems like a good source on that Douglas MacArthur would never do the American servicemen wrong by saying killing many of them for protesting because they're not getting paid. I love you like ******* Douglas MacArthur. The amount of times I was told that ***** ** **** was a hero as a kid makes me want to light some things on ******* fire. And by the way, Patton was there with him, so **** em all damn well that is. I mean, sadly this is this is the American military and it always. Has been right. We like the myth better than the actual soldier. **** the soldier. **** the soldier. We want them. We want the John Wayne. I mean, it's the same thing. Soldiers are inconvenient as hell. A lot of them have experiences that are really hard to monetize. I know they're never posing. They don't know what to do with the props ever. Some of them are sad. They're always just attached to home life anyway, but it is you. This sounds like the crassness, and I hate to bring it to tonnelle because I'm just like, **** we've always been this way. But you hear that crassness, you know? I'm not going to defend John McCain. But saying that, like, he was like a loser because he was captured. You hear that? You have and then you've got like, ******* Trump leaning over, you know, World War One and two soldiers being like, what was this? Why did they die? Losers. Only losers die. That is, within the context of this episode at least McCain as like a rich kid who didn't have to went and got ****** ** right. I have a lot more respect for John Kerry because he wasn't bombing people and also got ****** **. But you know, at least they both of them, unlike John Wayne, put skin in the game. You know, John Wayne didn't even have like that. I guess it's one of those things. I guess it's morally better to advocate for an unjust war and serve in it than it is to advocate for an unjust war and refuse to serve in it. I think that's fair to say. I feel like that. That does sound weird, but at least it it at least it's evident. It's like with ******* what's his name? The star who, like, testified, who, like, win against his studio, to go like talk at the ******* to name names and ****. At least he was putting his skin in the game. I guess it's not. I know better and worse or useless terms for this, but at least like it. It points to the fact that, well, this person did believe in the ****** thing they were doing. Not a hypocrite. You're not just a total ******* empty hypocrite, right? Yes. Yeah. I don't know. It's weird. I I don't wanna be like trying to mark any of this down as moral lessons because it's it's bad to bomb people, John, but don't mark things down, kids. I just at least, like, I don't know, I'm more. There's something more unsettling about a person who like. Is so empty that all of these things are just posturing for them. And I don't know how much that is true for cause. Some of it may be that John Wayne really did believe he should have served in World War Two and kind of hated himself, and that's what's driving him to do this. I don't know, there's a lot of complicated **** going on in that has a lot to say about masculinity. This podcast isn't going to say all of it, but it's definitely stuff I think about a bunch. Yeah, I don't. I don't like emotionally unavailable men. That's like your first boyfriend, you know what I mean? Yeah. But then you move on and you're like, I mean, I've been that boyfriend for a lot of people, but yeah. Wasn't gonna say anything, Robert, but you know, you just learned. Gotta learn to open up. But so, you know, he's, he's pretty happy after the green Berets. This really cements him in the right wing as this kind of like, militant Archon of masculinity. It wipes away this sort of shame of his failure to serve in World War Two. It gets him, you know, he's he's he. It kind of helps him settle into his new role as an elder conservative icon. Ronald Reagan actually reaches out to him and is like, hey, bro, you know what you ought to do is become Governor of California like we could. Pictures in the White House one day, and thank God he says no, he's not in great health. You know, God, he thinks, because he would have won for sure, would have definitely would have won. Ohh, with our history, I can't imagine a few. I can't imagine a series of events in which John Wayne runs for Governor of California and loses. I can't conceive of it. No, we we are trash here in this state. We we've. I mean, look at how many times? One. And he's a way better person. And John Wayne? Yeah, no, it's very true. Not a good person, but better. Yeah, dude, what is Arnold do for American masculinity? I honestly, I think he was probably a better, I think as I think as the ******* Terminator. He was a healthier symbol of American masculinity than John Wayne. Because the big thing the Terminator stands for is like putting yourself before you or putting your child before a kid before yourself and like making the success and happiness. That child, the entire, like, motive force of your life, right? Like there's actually some nice things in that movie, nice Dad stuff in that movie about a killer Cyborg back. He actually will be back. He's not like John Wayne is gonna go start another ******* family. No, he's gonna be back in some increasingly hard to follow sequels that we don't need to talk about. Whatever I broadly speaking, the the Cyborg killer bot from the future is a better symbol of of emotionally available manhood than any John Wayne character. Yes, that is very funny. I like that. Umm, so yeah, John Wayne chose not to get into politics in an electoral capacity, but he did spend the rest of his life bloviating about politics readily is this passage from the book Jesus and John Wayne makes clear in a 1971 interview in Playboy. Wayne was particularly harsh in his assessment of the blacks, or colored, or whatever they might want to call themselves. They certainly aren't Caucasian with a lot of blacks. There's quite a lot of resentment, along with their dissent, and possibly rightly so. Possibly rightly so, but we can't all of a sudden get down on our knees and turn everything over to the leadership of the blacks. I believe in white supremacy until the blacks are educated to a point of responsibility. I don't believe in giving authority and positions of leadership and judgment to irresponsible people. As far as African American representation in his own films, Wayne asserted that he'd given the blacks their proper position. He had a black slave in the Alamo and he had a correct number of blacks in the Green Berets. His views on Native Americans? They're no more enlightened. I don't feel we did wrong in taking this great country away from the Native Americans. Our so-called stealing of this country from them was just a matter of survival. People needed land, and the Indians were selfishly trying to keep it for themselves. Outstanding ****. John Wayne, incredibly boomer buddy keep telling yourself that and finish the bottle that is. I just it's it's sometimes kind of I feel like I'm looking at racism in a terrarium like it's so crystallized and perfect like it's it's would hate them they're just you know second class citizens and they're not responsible and they're idiots and and it's it's a very specific kind of. Racist in that I don't think today John Wayne would have if he was around today he would never call himself a white supremacist. In an interview. He not to say he wouldn't have believed the same things it meant back then. If you admit said you were, you believed in white supremacy. You know, until they're educated or whatever, that's not controversial. That's not a fringe right wing thing that does not identify you as part of a dangerous political sect in 1971. And part of the evidence for that is that like the only people who get angry when he says this are like. Black publication there's there's there's like no impact on the mainstream because John Wayne says liberals are like no he's got a point yeah he leaders are crazy or they're more just like Oh well you know he's that's just that's just John Wayne. You know that's just how certain people think and like it's it's not it's not the same as calling yourself a white supremacist in 2022 would be like he's not he's not identifying himself with a fringe of of the. Political spectrum here it sort of reminds me of. Oh God, I hate. I hate doing the show and bringing up like, like, like a present day examples. But it reminds me of Joe Arpaio going in front of that, like fringe CPAC group. Yes, like, whatever it was. Yeah, and some people say I'm a racist and everyone's, like cheering and he's like, well wait, I was supposed to, but the point was that I'm not. Why are you cheering? A good thing. And they're like, no, we've changed, not love racists. Yeah, I can see John Wayne getting, like, tricked by something like that. And he probably would have liked backpedaled again, not because he's not racist, but because he would not be the kind of guy who would want to, like, look bad like he doesn't. John Wayne would not have wanted to completely alienate himself from, like, his liberal friends or from, like, the Academy and ****. Like, he was not. It was not, he was not that kind of political figure, you know? Hollywood #1, yeah. Yeah. So he would have, I think he would have, he would have choosed, he would have said the same thing in different words if he was interviewed today, you know, yeah, a slightly more careful words unless he was really drunk than he would have said the same thing. And it would have been a problem for him, but not that big a problem. He would have been OK. But still, even without white supremacy in there, which is, yeah, jarring. It is a perfect distillation of a lot of white American thinking. Yes, at the time and yeah, sometimes. Currently, again, he's not like fringe in any way. This is all very mainstream stuff. Yeah, yeah, you know what else is mainstream? What the products and services that support this podcast? Like racism, they're all deeply woven into the fabric of American Society. How's that, Sophie? Is that good? I think you you crashed it, my friend. Is that good? That going to make him happy? Alright. Loved it. Beautiful. Mint Mobile offers premium wireless starting at just 15 bucks a month. And now for the plot twist. Nope, there isn't one. Mint Mobile just has premium wireless from 15 bucks a month. There's no trapping you into a two year contract. You're opening the bill to find all these nuts fees. 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So has a Hollywood ending, right? It does have an ending, and that ending occurs probably in Hollywood. So John Wayne, while I I think he probably would have been more careful today than he was in 1971, I should note that he also blew his cover as a giant racist on several occasions, and one of those would have been the 1973 Oscars. This is the most recent reason John Wayne went viral in the wake of Will Smith lightly slapping a dude and the, let's say, moderately slapping a dude. I was waiting for the Evans take on this. I'm like. It's Roberts, like, who gives a good ****? No, I think it was a really good film slap, right? Like, it looked it read on camera really well. But yeah, so people brought up when. Yeah, I I'm frustrated. It's weeks later and they're still think pieces coming out about this. Yeah. One of the things people said. I've got a forthcoming one. Ohh. Good. Oh, good. Yeah, there was this, there was this ******* stuff about, like, you know, Will Smith getting cancelled and like, but nothing happened to John Wayne when and then they would talk about this story that we're about to talk about. So the gist of 73 and you're like, yeah, OK, this is a good one. So Marlon Brando, right. Famously not a problematic dude, star of the Isle of Doctor Moreau and probably a couple of other movies. Got nominated for Best Actor for his role in The Godfather, which is not nearly as good a movie as the Isle of Doctor Moreau, but whatever. So Brando had struck up what seems to be a really legitimate lonest friendship with an indigenous American activist named Sasheen Littlefeather. She was of Apache and Yaqui descent and was angry at Hollywood for a wide variety of understandable reasons, and Brando agreed with her about the things she was angry about. So he decides he's going to turn down the Oscar if he wins. Umm. So she's hanging out with him the night that he's supposed to like go to the Oscars and he's typing out this eight page speech in case he wins. And this speech he wanted to use his podium to protest the wrongs being that that had been done to Native Americans by Hollywood, right. So the unjust and racist portrayal of indigenous people and decades of cowboy movies including a bunch of John Wayne movies and he's also specifically he and and little feathers specifically angry about wounded knee. So this is a battle which is a bunch of just a horrible horrible. Battle. And at this moment in 73, it's the site of a standoff between native activists and the feds over the murder of a Lakota man. Right. So that's going on while the Oscars are about to happen. And so Brando decides he's going to turn, if he wins the best actor, he's going to turn that into a place to talk about them. So little feather helps him put together this speech. And then kind of at the last moment, he's like, well, what if you deliver it, right, I shouldn't deliver it. Like, why don't you go, don't touch, don't even touch the Oscar. Don't take it, just deliver this speech in my stead, right? Umm, if you want to. And she wants to. So he gives her the speech she's written. But when she arrives, the presenters #1 see that? Like, oh **** Brandon's sent this person here. She wants to give a speech. You can't have more than 60 seconds. You can't read that eight page thing that Marlon Brando gave you. So she has to come up with something kind of on the fly. And here's what she comes up with. Hello, my name is sasheen littlefeather. I'm Apache and I'm president of the national Native American affirmative image committee. I'm representing Marlon Brando this evening, and he has asked me to tell you in a very long speech, which I cannot share with you presently because of time, but I will be glad to share with the press afterwards that he very regretfully cannot accept this. Very generous. The award and the reasons for this being, are the treatment of American Indians today by the film industry. Excuse me? And on television and movie reruns. And also with recent happenings at Wounded Knee. I beg at this time that I have not intruded upon this evening and that we will in the future. Our hearts and our understandings will meet with love and generosity. Thank you on behalf of Marlon Brando. So that's lovely. Yeah. It's like so much more cordial than any account. Extremely polite, yes. That any account you will read of what happened and and how it happened. She is like insanely soft spoken, but but firm and, like, apologetic. I don't. I hope I didn't ruin your night. And like, we're so appreciative of the award, but we just can't take it because of like, yeah. It's it's very, very mild, and it's incredible that Hollywood stopped with any kind of racist portrayals of Native Americans from that point. Never again happened. Never again happened. I'm gonna Google Johnny Depp real quick. No reason, absolutely no reason why I'm doing this. Just typing it into Google. So, yeah, she gets a lot of support that night. You hear a lot of clapping, a lot of cheers. You do hear some boos, though not an insignificant amount. Now. I think we both are in agreement. You would have to be a crazy ******* to take any offense at that whatsoever. It's a pretty polite and very, very mild statement of conviction. That is not how John Wayne takes it, and I'm going to read another quote from The Guardian here. And this is this is starts with little feather talking. She's interviewed for this piece. During my presentation he was coming towards me to forcibly take me off the stage and he had to be restrained by 6 security men to prevent him from doing so. Presenting best pictures soon after, also for the Godfather, Clint Eastwood quipped. I don't know if I should present this award on behalf of all the Cowboys shot and all the John Ford Westerns over the years. When little feather got backstage, she says there were people making stereotypical Native American war cries at her and miming chopping with a tomahawk. After talking to the press, she went straight back to Brandon's house where they sat together and watched the reactions to the event on television. Was John Wayne just there? Like get my movies out you ******* mouth? He was he. He would have hit her probably if he could have. He was ready to six men get. He's a big guy, six men and she's like tiny doesn't look like a big person, no. Of course, sandwich by, oh God, just John Wayne and Clint Eastwood. There's still like Clint Eastwood. Still mad about that? I would have. It would have been amazing is if Brando had done it and the security guards hadn't been there, and we've gotten to see a fist fight between fat, aging Marlon Brando and fat, aging, drunken John Wayne at the Oscars. That would have been amazing. That would have been incredible. Oh my God, what a moment. That would have been, I do feel like. That, I mean, look, the ratings were good this last Oscars, and I do think that we should have all drunk, washed up actors like wrestling each other on stage. I want to see Brando bottle John Wayne with some ******* wine, just, like nail him in the skull. Yeah, I mean, you know, Orson Welles also has like one of the most memorable on-screen drunk moments where he's trying to do the ad for that wine, the French. Friend like throw or sit up there? Yeah, have them all fight. **** it. So, uh, sasheen is the primary source we have on this, but I don't have any particular trouble believing it. John Wayne had a history of hitting women sometimes in public, and to reinforce that, we should talk a bit here about how his marriage to his second wife Chata, ended that going. Yeah, well, this is actually happens back in 1946. I'm sorry for jumping around. This just seemed like the natural place to put this was so soon. Here's but yeah, it's right. They are not together long. Here's BuzzFeed summing up the details. The problem was that the current Latin American wife wasn't fulfilling her domestic duties, which is why they were divorcing and why Chatta, infuriated and bitter, was alleging a horrible things about the Duke in court, that he'd blackened her eye, pulled her from bed and beat her, given her multiple bruises, called her obscene names, and was manhandling her in front of guests. He went someplace where there were stripteasers call girls prostitutes, or whatever you want to call them, she testified. He came home the next morning very drunk and with a big black bite on his neck. This was a human being bite, Wayne's lawyer countered. That shadow was a drunk who stayed out all night. And returned with grass stains on her clothes and, during their estrangement, entertained a male guest at their residence while Wayne was on set. The divorce drama threatened to become a huge scandal, but Wayne forked over a substantial amount of alimony. The two settled in. His image remained unscathed, in part because allegations of domestic abuse weren't yet taken seriously, but also because Wayne's alleged actions were not out of line with his on-screen image, which had him regularly verbally abusing women and if not giving them black eyes, then manhandling, throwing them over shoulders and generally putting them in their place when necessary. So you know. Johnny Wayne, I really, I just was so invested in this one. I felt like, you know, it was gonna be the one. This is gonna be like, I like him. That quote was alleging horrible things about the Duke. All right, all right, Marian. The Duke married his third wife in 1954. The dude the two did originally did eventually divorce. They stayed in each other's lives to some extent. She's interviewed after his death and still speaks very highly of him. So again, these are not to the extent that he was abusive. Everyone he was with in the past doesn't speak negatively of him. His kids all seem to speak positively of him. They claim publicly he was a good father. He was, in general, a charming man and a good friend to a number of people. Uh, more than that, he seems to have just been kind of a magnetically charismatic person, and it's easy to forgive certain things of people like that. We do it as a society pretty much constantly. Also tall. Can we? Also tall. Privilege does not hurt. In 1977, when he turned 70, an article in the right wing journal Human events tried to explain Wayne's allure as the fact that he represented a basic American breed. The tall kelt of Pioneer Scots, Irish, and English descent, the book Jesus and John Wayne continues. All of Wayne's greatest hits involved valiant white men battling and usually subduing non white populations. The Japanese Native Americans or Mexicans like Teddy Roosevelt. Wayne's rugged masculinity was realized through violence and it was a distinctly white male ideal. Yeah, Yep, I feel like. Like groups today, like those sort of, yeah, just like NEO Nazi groups full of, you know, sort of virgins, like, they probably all get together and watch old John Wayne movies and or, like a, like, unironically love that stuff. It's more than just put his face on things, because modern action movies are a lot better at keeping your attention. And if you were to watch his latest movie, like, What's Funny, the last movie he does, the shootist, like the basic plot of the shootist is there's this old gunfighter. Who's dying of cancer? Like Wayne was kind of at the time. Uh, and he wants to engineer a last gunfight to kill himself. So he wants to like set up a situation whereby he can have a last gun fight and die because he otherwise cancer is going to get him. And instead he gets shot in the back and killed. Which is like a weirdly show like suggests a weird amount of self knowledge for John Wayne that like, that's how that's the movie he goes out in this movie about this like Manly Archon of like. Add Ashness in his aging years, who's trying to get in, like who's trying to set up one last fight so he can die with dignity and get shot in the back instead. It's interesting that he no, I the last thing he does. Yeah. Right, because cancer, you know. It doesn't like, care how mad you are. Yeah, it's not a great way to go out. No, it's it's a pretty ****** way to go out. So yeah, in his declining years, when he filmed again some of his best movies, Wayne upped the ante on his conservative rhetoric, screeching at cowards who spit in the faces of the police and judicial *** sisters. Human events wrote that as a man, he is loathed and demeaned by sanctimonious liberals and a whole mess of bug out on America. Hypocrites. But Wayne was top shelf with freedom fans who thrilled to the big guys charge. John Wayne judicial system. What's what? Is that a written reference to people who are angry that the criminal justice system in prisons and murders innocent people? Oh, it's just like one of those. Yeah, those pumpkin lilies. Pumpkin lilies. That's right. Exactly. Judicial pumpkin Lily. So John Wayne dies on June 11th, 1979 of ask cancer. He never lived to see the entirety of the world he built come to fruition, but by 1979 the electoral power of the left had been solidly broken. Not long after his death, Ronald Reagan, his old buddy, would be elected president. He would be followed by George HW Bush, and then the next Liberal president to follow would be considerably further right than most Democrats had been in John Wayne's day. There are numerous reasons for these shifts, which we've discussed in many podcasts. But the seductive, intoxicating vision of manhood, which stuck in the heads of millions of men who are still alive and voting today, played a strong role. As Kristen Cobbs Dumez writes, John Wayne become an icon, became an icon of rugged American manhood for generations of conservatives. Pat Buchanan parroted Wayne and his presidential bid. Newt Gingrich called Wayne's Sands of Iwo Jima the formative movie of my life, and Oliver North echoed slogans from that film in his 1994 Senate campaign. In time, Wayne would also emerge as an icon of Christian masculinity. Evangelicals admired and still admire him for his toughness and his swagger. He protected the weak, and he wouldn't let anything get in the way of his pursuit of justice. In order. Wayne was not an evangelical Christian. Despite rumors to this effect regularly circulated by evangelicals themselves, he did not live a moral life by the standards of traditional Christian virtue. Yet for many evangelicals, Wayne would come to symbolize a different set of virtues, a nostalgic yearning for a mythical Christian America, a return to traditional gender roles, and the reassertion of white patriarchal authority. Umm, yes. So, Umm, just back on the ranch? None of these? Just Sissy, pumpkin, little jobs, pumpkin Lily content creators. Tick tock dancers cast in pods in their basements. ******* weak ****. Where? When can we conquer some ****? Let's decode conquer so we can reconquer the West. That's what I say. Decolonized to recolonize who's with me? Decolonize America, recolonize England. It's like, This is why the show that I don't watch Westworld, but that's why. Like, that made sense because you're like, you need a simulation for men who feel inferior to get their rocks off in a safe place. Obviously, then, the robots are sentient. That's bad. They don't want them to. I only watched the first season of that, which I did like, but I'm not. I understand. It goes some places, apparently, you know, it's fine, but. Yeah, like you need Disneyland for adults, yeah? Yeah, and that John Wayne is, is, is a big, a big help. He he does a lot of work to create this cultural Disneyland, this like mental vacation space we have for white men to imagine that there was a time in which finally been born. Then I would have been a real big man on the range. You know, I would have been carving out a new America and I would have had a a woman who loved me and didn't have a career of her own and everything would have been perfect. Absolutely. And then but it was just a few more years before, like, you know, grunge came around. It was like, thank God. Yeah. That did wonders for angsty white men. Hell yeah. And then, you know, suddenly, well, that's not cool anymore. Hmm. Nope. Now, masculinities just sits all Willy nilly and we've got, you know, Disney groomers or whatever we're doing. Yeah, everything's gotten Dumber since. I yeah I it's I'm fascinated by that because I don't like, I don't respond. I'm trying to think of like action heroes that like, I respond to like where I get like Ting, where like Spidey, like, oh hell yeah, I wanna be that. I don't have that. Like, was that Jean Claude for you? Was it so is Stallone, is it Schwarzenegger? Like, who's the for me? It was it was Bruce Willis in die hard, right. That was the movie I saw as a kid that was like, well and and actually I'm honestly like much more than that. It was Indiana Jones, right? I think for a lot of men in my like, that was the Harrison Ford at his peak there. It's a leading man right there. Totally. And he's. But he's kind of funny, right? He's got a little he's humor. Yeah, he's he's he's incredibly charming, cheeky. That's why he keeps getting out of jail. Every time he crashes a plane into a golf course, nobody can get angry. Nobody could stay angry at Harrison Ford. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. That makes sense. Ford makes sense. Umm, also old also kind of older for a lot of his movies he's, he's got, I mean you know, he's pretty, he's pretty young and swollen them Indiana Jones movies, but not so later, not least recent one. He was for the. It's very funny because if you watch the behind the scenes for the second Indiana Jones movie, there's a ton about like how intense his workout schedule was to get him that jacked. And he's like, he's like a he's like. He's like the guy you would cast as like a skinny office worker in a modern movie. Yeah, we didn't know how to get people jacked back then. We weren't as good at it. Modern jacked technology just didn't exist. No, that HGH just wasn't for we. We didn't. We didn't have as much HGH as we were gonna have. I wonder what? What, Bruce? What were we talking about? John Wayne. John Wayne would think about that. Bruce Wayne. Oh Lord. But you also did have this. Because like, Indiana Jones is kind of like right before you start to have this, like all of these super jacked action stars. That's when like Arnold and Stallone. And damn. And then they all give way to Bruce Willis in die Hard, where it's like now we're gonna have, like, the everyman *** ***. And then 911 happens and right now we have the soldier ******. And now and now they're super jacked again. Yeah. Who got people through the 80s? That was like the Stallones and the Schwarzenegger. Yeah. But later. OK, OK. Yeah, yeah. Alright. Alright. Late 70s, late 70s, yeah, late 70s. You've got your Indiana Jones and you've got a dirty hairy, right? You got Clint Eastwood as dirty Harry where he is kind of like a skinny, wiry dude, right? Clint cleaning. Yeah. Count out. Yeah. Can't clean out. Clint Eastwood. Yeah. No. There's plenty of chairs that need a stern talking to. Look, masculinity. This complex. Is it? No, not, not really, not honestly, not not very much at all. That's why it's so easy for Hollywood to market too. Now, Robert, when you watch like John Wayne movies or is there a part of you that's like, I get it, you know, you're like, I could see how this would be appealing. I think some of his movies are really good like ******* true grits. A solid, solid film in a lot of ways. I do. I do really like actually the the remake with. The dude in it. But you know, yeah, like as a kid I watched a bunch of John Wayne movies, like, they're they're really well shot. I, I, I I've always preferred more about the old Westerns, the way they're shot, the way the music is directed. Kind of like the sense of rather than any of the specific dialogue or characters is like the kind of tone that they have. Yeah, there's there's vibes that are very appealing in those movies, in part because just a lot of really talented people were making some very beautifully shot Westerns. Flu shot propaganda, but hey, but still, sure, all art is propaganda is Orwell would would tell now, did he have £50 of meat in his intestine upon death? I don't know. Probably I I don't. I don't think there's any evidence of that. But *** **** maybe, you know, maybe. It that let the meat in John Zoom the body. Let let the meat stuck in John Wayne's corpse be the Santa Claus of your beliefs about, yes, karma. I don't really know what the message would be if there is a lot of be the gerbil in Richard Gere's, *******. Yeah, be the gerbil in Richard Gere's, *******. That's all. I think that's a good line to end on. Everyone go out there, be the gerbil you wanna see in Richard Gere's, ******* you know? Yeah, that's a, that's a that's an old Hollywood rumour like such an older people are gonna remember that. Such an old rumor. I think the lesson is what is the you don't need to subjugate. People of color or Japanese or Native Americans in order to feel masculine and strong and powerful. You might need to serve your country. That might help. I don't know if it's the one war where that's a good idea. If it's the one war where it's good, yeah. And and and yeah, and also, like, I feel like this all ended in Brokeback Mountain, like Brokeback Mountain, really just that was it. It was like, Oh yeah, we can't be stoic anymore because. Because Ennis, I don't know. I think that's very stoic. That's a stoic *** movie. It is a stoic *** movie. But I'm saying, like, like the the sort of the idea that you're like that bottled up emotionally. You're like, man, I think maybe, you know, maybe maybe there's more going on here, maybe you're not fishing, maybe by the river. It can be. This is why I'm so excited about Pedro Pascal as a as a male lead. A lot of exciting new visions of manhood that Pedro Pascal is. It is neat. I think actually there is something to be said about the fact that, and you can say this probably, maybe does start with some of James Cameron's early stuff, where you're kind of idolizing a slightly more nurturing attitude towards a male action star. I think that's one of the things that's interesting about the Mandalorian, which has been a big hit, is there is like, that is a big emphasis. You've got this like ****** gunslinger, but who's also defined in large part. Due to his like desire to nurture a child right, which is not a negative, not a negative change. Total Daddy no end. And yeah, there's an emotional journey, and that is a space Western, so right there, pretty fun space. I enjoy that series quite a lot. Yeah, I guess when I when I really think John Wayne's legacy died is probably a little Nas. Ex Old Town Rd. Hmm. Assless chaps. Openly gay, proud as hell. And crushing it. Hell yeah, well. Yeah, so until next time, dig up the corpse of John Wayne and Mail his bones to little Nas X. That's I love this, this is a good project. And and I again, Lil Nas X loves the trigger, the right. So I bet he will remake one of these films dressed in the bones of John Wayne, wearing his rib cage like a corset. Do you have any plugs for us at the end here after that? It's amazing. Oh my God. Everyone check out the Situation Room podcast. It's a weekly podcast with comedians and myself and activist experts. It's a good time. And yeah, listen. Yeah. Alright again, go defile the grave of of John Wayne. Where is that grave? Oh, that's a great question. Where is John Waynes? I want the address. Pacific View Memorial Park in Newport Beach. Ah, that's on brand. That is on brand. Yeah, it's a pretty about to say. Of course it's different. It's definitely Newport Beach. Well, yeah, a little slice of red over in this Southern California blue I guess. Hmm. Ohhh my goodness. I'm yeah, I'm sure we are not the only ones to have located where he is buried. In order to steal his bones and give them to little Nas X so he can turn them into a corset, yes. I like that he's dead, yeah. Good riddance. May we never have someone who plagues the American consciousness so horribly to the point where we're still, we're just waiting for the John Wayne generations to die off. Yeah, thank God. Well. Thank you. This is great. Hello, I'm Erica Kelly from the podcast Southern Fried True crime, and if you want to go from podcast fan to podcast host, do what I did and check out spreaker from iheart. I was working in accounting and hating it. Then after just 18 months of podcasting with Spreaker, I was able to quit my day job. Follow your podcasting dreams. Let's break our handle the hosting, creation, distribution, and monetization of your podcast. Go to That's Want to say I don't know less? Listen to stuff you should know more. 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