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JulyDiaz

EPISODE 116 — Top Dog: LIVE!

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I thought the premise of the meet cute between Chuck Norris and Reno in Callahan's office was insane. Reno is smarter than every person in this movie and is a hero so many times over that pulling a baby out of a burning building is not even a big deal. Not only would Reno be famous at the police department Reno would be more famous in San Diego than Tony Gwynn. But Chuck Norris has never heard of him.

 

 

Excellent point, ChunkStyle! That bugged the crap out of me as well. When the chief calls Jake in from his suspension, it is specifically to solve this case. When he mentions Officer Grandpa by name, Jake says, "Yeah, he was a good cop," but evidently he wasn't a good enough cop that Jake can be bothered to remember that he had a goddamn, city famous, wonderdog as a partner!

 

Which brings me to another thought, and forgive me as this may have been touched upon in the episode, but am I wrong in assuming that if a police chief assigns a dog to be your partner, that doesn’t mean you now have to live with that dog and it will henceforth be your dog? What if Jake was deathly allergic to dogs? That would be like if Mantzoukas was in a movie and he was partnered up with an egg and from that point forward he had to protect it like some kind of horrifying and never ending home economics assignment.*

 

And everyone acts as if there’s nothing they can do about it. At one point he’s says something like, “Hey, I'll pick him up in the morning and I’ll drop him off at night,” and they’re all like, “Sorry Bro, he’s your responsibility now.” I think the kid even says at one point that he wishes he could take him home, and Jake just sort of shrugs like, “What are you going to do?”

 

*Have no fear, I'm already working on the script.

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That would be like if Mantzoukas was in a movie and he was partnered up with an egg and from that point forward he had to protect it like some kind of horrifying and never ending home economics assignment.*

 

*Have no fear, I'm already working on the script.

We gotta start a kickstarter for this! I'll kick in 10,000 yen at least.

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Which brings me to another thought, and forgive me as this may have been touched upon in the episode, but am I wrong in assuming that if a police chief assigns a dog to be your partner, that doesn’t mean you now have to live with that dog and it will henceforth be your dog?

I thought about this a lot, too. Like, it made sense in Turner and Hooch (at least, more so than here) because there was literally no one else to watch over this dog that was the only witness to the murder. Why the hell couldn't the dog go live with BMX kid (also, where the fuck are BMX kid's parents for the whole movie)? Or the other lady cop that seemed to really love this dog? Why would you stick him with someone that clearly hated the dog? What kind of city official would be like, "Yeah, you clearly hate this dog, so I'm going to put you two together in what is clearly an unsafe environment for this animal."

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I thought about this a lot, too. Like, it made sense in Turner and Hooch (at least, more so than here) because there was literally no one else to watch over this dog that was the only witness to the murder. Why the hell couldn't the dog go live with BMX kid (also, where the fuck are BMX kid's parents for the whole movie)? Or the other lady cop that seemed to really love this dog? Why would you stick him with someone that clearly hated the dog? What kind of city official would be like, "Yeah, you clearly hate this dog, so I'm going to put you two together in what is clearly an unsafe environment for this animal."

Guys it's called comedy gold.....wait no I meant fucking stupid.

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Also, the HDTGM twitter account already shared this, but I thought I'd put it here, too, because I know some of you might not be on Twitter and want to read it. Here's the oral history thing from /Film that Paul mentioned in the ep (I thought it was a really interesting read):

 

http://www.slashfilm.com/top-dog/

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Frankly I'm a little shocked that nobody mentioned what I thought was the best subplot of this movie and the one that has the most sequel potential. I am of course talking about Captain Callahan's campaign to run for mayor! He only brings it up in nearly every scene he's in. Now here me out as I outline the sequel "Top Dog: Dog Town"

 

The first part of the movie takes place during the events of "Top Dog." We see some scenes of Captain Callahan at home eating dinner with his family. His son Harry, is failing math and this does not look good for his mayoral campaign. Then his daughter started dating this weirdo at her college that nobody likes. Again he laments how this is does look good for his mayoral campaign. Then we cut to a scene with him and his wife, as he confides in her about the white supremest plot going on in the city and how it's not going to be good for his campaign. Then he questions whether or not teaming up Wilder with Reno was the best idea, because this could be really be bad for his campaign. Then we show the climax of "Top Dog" and how under Captain Callahan's guidance this act of terror was stopped. This of course is great for his campaign! He wins the election and becomes mayor on his platform of law and order. Next we jump four years in time, to San Diego under mayor Callahan. Since the act of terror, hate crime has gone down in his city but now drugs are flooding the streets. Guess what? He's also up for re-election and seeing as he was running on a platform of law and order all these drugs on the street means one thing. That's right, this is not looking good for his re-election campaign. Then he gets a great idea. He once worked with the greatest drug dog who somehow worked with a homicide detective ever, Reno! Reno is now retired and lives with Matt Swanson and the two of them make 'hero dog' calendars in which Reno wears a different hat every month. Mayor Callahan begs with Reno to come out of retirement once more. Reno agrees but only under one condition, every cop gets partnered with a dog! This would be a great idea but drug dealers keep shooting and throwing the dogs off boats! To make matters worse Reno gets kidnapped by the drug kingpin. A hero dog being kidnapped? Mayor Callahan knows that this can not be good for his campaign. The only way to get Reno back and end the drug war is to get Wilder on the case. But what dog will work with Wilder? That's right, Reno's puppy son Nevada. The third act of the film is the mayor a la Hagar in Final Fight taking to the streets with Wilder and Nevada to get Reno back and end the drug war. Eventually together they manage to beat up the drug kingpin, who turns out to be the daughter's college boyfriend, for like ten minutes for no reason before Callahan begs Reno and Wilder to spare his life. Thus all drug use in San Diego ends, and this looks really good for Mayor Callahan's re-election campaign. Credits!

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We can all agree sequels with colon titles are better than numbered ones. Unless we're talking about the delightful word play of "Looking Who's Talking Too"

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Also can somebody who lives near or has experience with the Mexican board explain that scene to me in the movie. Is that normal just to have just a couple cops and a barricade on a small road in and out of Mexico? I would have assumed there would be a bit more too it than that.

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. Then we show the climax of "Top Dog" and how under Captain Callahan's guidance this act of terror was stopped. This of course is great for his campaign! He wins the election and becomes mayor on his platform of law and order.

 

Cam Bert, while I love your treatment for the potential sequel, I do have a question. Do we really think Callahan is going to win the mayoral election? I thought the movie made it clear that when Reno grabbed the "pope's" sash that was going to reflect badly on him. Even more damning is his decision to run under the campaign of "Law and Order." I mean, yeah he was the Chief when the plot was thwarted, but fuck if it didn't come right down to the wire. It would be one thing if he could run and say, "You know why I'm great, because you've never even heard of the shit that threatened your safety. We had that locked down." Instead he has to say, "Hey, remember that Racial Unity thing where a bunch of people were shot and killed and Balboa Park was three seconds away from being a crater, yeah we stopped it, but just barely. In fact, we wouldn't have stopped it all if I didn't, reluctantly, take this guy off suspension. You see, none of my officers, nor myself, were capable enough investigators to go to the scene of a cop killing and do basic police work..."

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Cam Bert, while I love your treatment for the potential sequel, I do have a question. Do we really think Callahan is going to win the mayoral election? I thought the movie made it clear that when Reno grabbed the "pope's" sash that was going to reflect badly on him. Even more damning is his decision to run under the campaign of "Law and Order." I mean, yeah he was the Chief when the plot was thwarted, but fuck if it didn't come right down to the wire. It would be one thing if he could run and say, "You know why I'm great, because you've never even heard of the shit that threatened your safety. We had that locked down." Instead he has to say, "Hey, remember that Racial Unity thing where a bunch of people were shot and killed and Balboa Park was three seconds away from being a crater, yeah we stopped it, but just barely. In fact, we wouldn't have stopped it all if I didn't, reluctantly, take this guy off suspension. You see, none of my officers, nor myself, were capable enough investigators to go to the scene of a cop killing and do basic police work..."

Still got my vote.

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The cops in the movie kept mentioning skinheads and shaving their heads to go undercover, but all the white supremacists in the movie had long, flowing hair like they were models in a Vidal Sassoon commercial.

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Still got my vote.

 

Fair enough. I'm just saying maybe Reno should run for mayor, Jake should be his bodyguard, and the Chief should be a local government themed super villain out for revenge.

 

The cops in the movie kept mentioning skinheads and shaving their heads to go undercover, but all the white supremacists in the movie had long, flowing hair like they were models in a Vidal Sassoon commercial.

 

The vibe I got from that random police lady who says she'd be willing to go undercover was that she just wanted to do so as an excuse to really unload some of the racial epithets she'd been saving up.

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I don't know why my brain convinced me to be worried to expect something else, but I got overwhelming comfort knowing that even in bootleg form, Zouks and June are as Zouksy and Juney as can be.

As soon as Zouks says "We hate you." and June muses "OR THE DOG IS HIS DAD!" I breathed a sigh of relief.

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Fair enough. I'm just saying maybe Reno should run for mayor, Jake should be his bodyguard, and the Chief should be a local government themed super villain out for revenge.

 

 

Reno ran on anti - red sash platform.

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Also can somebody who lives near or has experience with the Mexican board explain that scene to me in the movie. Is that normal just to have just a couple cops and a barricade on a small road in and out of Mexico? I would have assumed there would be a bit more too it than that.

 

I've been across the border once at San Diego, about five years ago. From what I remember, the way into Mexico is nothing - we just drove right through and I didn't notice anyone, but I was toward the back of a big passenger van and the memory is pretty hazy (I promise I wasn't being kidnapped). The way back, on the other hand, took FOREVER and involved a lot of waiting and passport checking and stuff...

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I've been across the border once at San Diego, about five years ago. From what I remember, the way into Mexico is nothing - we just drove right through and I didn't notice anyone, but I was toward the back of a big passenger van and the memory is pretty hazy (I promise I wasn't being kidnapped). The way back, on the other hand, took FOREVER and involved a lot of waiting and passport checking and stuff...

That's pretty much the case at most Texas crossings, too. I mean, it's still more than a shitty barricade and a couple of police cars, but going into Mexico is nothing. Coming out of Mexico is fucking ridiculous sometimes.

 

Goodness, the crowd seemed more obnoxious than usual this episode

I didn't notice a big difference. I did notice there seemed to be more noise and chatter, but I chalked that up to having been recorded on an iPhone instead of on real equipment. Also, the first question came right out and asked if the dog was driving a car, which was one of my #1 questions.

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Why do people in the audience feel it's okay to just yell out all the time? It would never, ever occur to me to interrupt people onstage by randomly screaming out thoughts. It's really rude & very distracting.

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In the first scene featuring Chuck Norris he hilariously drags the ringing telephone through his entire messy house to answer it. Why does he have the phone plugged in right next to his bed, and why is the cord long enough that it stretches from his bedroom to seemingly several rooms away?

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So glad that this episode didn't vanish into the ether. The sound quality was actually perfect, because it matched the terrible sound throughout this movie. The ADR was so bad, I kept thinking I had one of those talking pop-ups open in another window while watching. And I knew the dog noises were being made by a person, because my dog usually goes nuts when a movie makes dog sounds. These didn't even turn his head.

 

He did love the funny hats montage, though.

 

Ugh, so much to say about this movie. Chuck Norris woodenly telling Reno he'll "blow his damn head off"...the judge inexplicably putting a ribbon on Reno without noticing which dog he's put the ribbon on...

 

I think my biggest criticism, though is how Norris is portrayed as a messy guy. Wouldn't the better move in a comedy be to make his house really neat, so that Reno is coming in and messing it all up? Or, if you wanted Norris to be messy, it would be even funnier/cuter if Reno was the neat one and tried to clean up the house. But no, no effort to make a joke at any point. Just: here's a messy guy, and here's a dog.

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In the first scene featuring Chuck Norris he hilariously drags the ringing telephone through his entire messy house to answer it. Why does he have the phone plugged in right next to his bed, and why is the cord long enough that it stretches from his bedroom to seemingly several rooms away?

In the movie's defense, before cordless phones became common, it wasn't too unusual to plug in a phone in one place and have an extra long cord so that you could use the phone in various rooms in the house. That's particularly the case if you lived in older homes that only had a phone jack in the kitchen or the main living room.

 

I honestly don't remember it being that common still in 1995, but it was definitely a thing in the 80s.

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