I Love You, Man:
Wow, it’s been awhile since I did one of these. Sometimes life get’s in the way though and now I’m back to talk about more Rush sightings in pop culture. This week, we’re moving away from the realm of animation and taking a look at one of Rush’s live action appearances. The movie is 2009’s “I Love You, Man” starring Paul Rudd, Jason Segel, Rashida Jones, Andy Samberg, JK Simmons and Lou Motherlovin’ Ferrigno. Also, Rush makes a cameo appearance in the movie as themselves.
The plot of the movie centers around Peter (Rudd), a real estate agent who proposes to his girlfriend Zooey (Jones) and then discovers that he has no real best friend to be his best man. The plot kicks into gear as Peter tries to find a best man and he eventually meets a guy named Sydney (Segel) at a showing of Lou Ferrigno’s mansion. The two hit it off and bond over their love for, you guessed it, Rush. The rest of the plot involves Peter sending time with Sydney over time with his fiance and the main conflict of the movie revolves around this.
I confess that I haven’t seen all of this movie. However, I’ve heard great things about it and the scenes I’ve seen are hysterical. There are several great Rush moments in this movie, including a laugh out loud scene at a Rush concert and two hysterical covers of “Limelight” and “Tome Sawyer.” The guys themselves seem to have really enjoyed working on this film. the band has formed a friendship with stars Paul Rudd and Jason Segel (both of whom are Rush fans) and they even filmed a scene with Rudd and Segel, both in character from the movie, backstage for the 2010-11 Time Machine Tour.
If you’re looking for a fun comedy or date movie that just happens to heavily feature the greatest band that ever played, this movie is for you. Bellow are some links to the Rush scenes and the backstage vignette from Time Machine.
The Body Electric AKA The 80’s Were Strange:
Okay, so many of you may remember that in 1981, a very strange but super awesome animated anthology film with an absolutely killer soundtrack was released. This movie was called Heavy Metal and it’s amazing. If you haven’t seen it, you really should. It’s classic. The reason I bring this up, is that one of the studios who worked on Heavy Metal, Canada’s Atkinson Film-Arts, decided in 1985 that they were gonna do basically the same thing that they did with Heavy Metal, but this time they would use the music of the pride of Canada, Rush!…Also with no boobs, half the budget and only a thirty minute time slot on Canadian TV. The result was a little slice of 80’s cheese entitled The Body Electric. I’ve seen it and…well, it’s certainly something.
The short focuses on two humans named Woody and Andrea who are trying to escape from
Red Sector A, the remains of a once-great human city that was seemingly taken over by machines. the animation is cheap and whatever audio quality many have been there when the short aired has been lost to time. The version that’s on YouTube has a horrible hissing noise that persists throughout the entire short and when you add that to the wacky futuristic sound effects and the Rush music, things get kinda muddled. That being said, the short would’ve been way more enjoyable with a bigger budget and a better script. The twist at the end is actually pretty interesting (Interesting enough that I won’t spoil it here) and would’ve been great if it had been handled better at the end of the movie. The selection of songs in this short is also pretty great. In it, you’ll hear sections of 2112, Cygnus X-1 Part 1: The Voyage, The Fountain of Lamneth, Jacob’s Ladder, Cygnus X-1 Part 2: Hemispheres, Different Strings, Marathon, Red Sector A and, of course, The Body Electric.
Aside from their music, Rush makes no appearances in the short. With a cast of only 3 characters and a robot with a small exposition dump, that doesn’t surprise me all that much. Do I recommend that you watch it? Absolutely. Despite being pretty rough around the edges, it does feel like it could’ve been a fun addition to Heavy Metal. It definitely would’ve benefited from that boost to its budget. As it is now, it’s kinda so bad that it’s funny and it’s always nice to hear Rush. It’s on YouTube so I’ll link it bellow.
Rush Enters The Danger Zone:
For those of you who don’t understand the reference I made in the title, this post is all about the Rush references made in the hit FX comedy Archer. To give a quick rundown of the show, Archer is an animated show about secret agent Sterling Archer and how he basically acts the way that James Bond would act if Bond were a real person. If you haven’t watched it, I highly recommend it to you. Not only is it hilarious (just not for your kids), but it’s chock full of Rush references!
The show’s Rush references mostly center around the character of Doctor Krieger. Krieger is the Q to Archer’s James Bond, providing the agency with all sorts of crazy gadgetry. He’s also a Rush fanatic.
Krieger mentions listening to the song “Red Barchetta” in his van (we’ll get to that in a second) and also asks a beautiful girl if she’s into Rush in the episode “Double Trouble” from the show’s second season. In the episode “Skin Game” from season 3, Krieger has a running joke about trying to play YYZ on his drum kit and correcting everybody on the pronunciation of the song’s name. Rounding out the memorable Krieger Rush moments is an episode from season 4 (Sea Tunt Part 2) where a naked Krieger plays Tom Sawyer by drumming on his workbench with a pair of screwdrivers.
Krieger’s van is also painted with a variety of murals referencing famous Rush covers. Bellow are some pictures of those murals:
Here are some links to a few clips mentioned in this post:
Rush on South Park:
The creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, are self-proclaimed fans of Rush. As such, Rush had been immortalized in a season 15 episode of South Park entitled “Royal Pudding,” wherein the band plays a heartfelt tribute to the kidnapped “Princess of Canada” in the form of a parody of Elton John’s “Candle in the Wind.”
Additionally, Parker and Stone created an intro for the Rush song “Tom Sawyer” which features the main cast of characters performing together as “Lil’ Rush.” This intro has been used since the 2007 “Snakes and Arrows Tour.”
Matt Stone is one of the many celebrities interviewed in the Rush documentary “Beyond the Lighted Stage.”