Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

Eventually, Hulk finds that the other two cop cars have somehow gotten ahead of him and created a roadblock. Hulk stops, and Clint Howard drives up directly behind him, stupidly putting himself directly in his own officers’ line of fire. Raise your hand if you can see where this is going. Very good. You have learned well, Daniel-san.

Oh, but wait! This movie is about to bottom out and sink to a whole new level of stupidity! A cop goes to the trunk of his car and pulls out what is apparently a shoulder-mounted rocket launcher [!!!!!]. Well, of course! Just like all small-town police departments have!

Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

Oops! Looks like we accidentally wandered onto the set of First Blood!

In the Hummer, Butler Chas reminds Hulk of Blake’s Rule #20, AKA the Galaxy Quest rule, so Hulk floors it. The cop fires the rocket, but Hulk swerves [!!] and the rocket misses him [!!]. Yes, you read that right, he swerved to avoid a missile. So, apparently, if all those Iraqis had been better drivers, we might have never won the war.

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As expected, the rocket blows up Clint Howard’s car instead. Whooo… Explosions… Pretty colors… Unfortunately for Mr. Howard, he survives, but he does endure the disgrace of having fuzzy dice wrapped around his neck. And, for further insult, he’s required to yell the word “turkey” again.

Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

After thirty years in the business, Clint Howard finally comes up craps.

Meanwhile, the other two cops toss the rocket launcher back and forth like a hot potato, trying to pretend like it was the other guy who fired it. High-larious!

Soon, Hulk and the crew pull up behind the orphanage. Hulk sees a T-square Goon inside, so he tells his servants, “Jump start!” So they use jumper cables to attach the Hummer’s battery to the back doorknob. Okay kids, try this at home!

Hulk knocks on the door and the T-square goon looks out the peephole, only to see Chef Pierre standing there with a huge tray of hors d’oeuvres [!]. “Hmm,” the Goon thinks, “Nothing suspicious here. Might as well open up!” Sure enough, he grabs the doorknob and the shock sends him flying backwards about twenty feet [!]. Hulk and the servants break in and all help themselves to hors d’oeuvres as they sneak inside.

Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

“Here’s your salary, Mr. Hogan!”

Meanwhile, the kids are being held captive by a redheaded guy with a handlebar moustache, obviously the result of genetic crossbreeding between Jeffrey Jones and a 70’s porn star. The kids and the Goon stare each other down until Hulk appears in the door behind the Goon, signaling to the kids.

Naturally, Stupid Elizabeth happily waves right back at him and cries out, “Hi Santa!” Lucky for her, the Goon is a total dumbshit who doesn’t pick up on this at all. He goes to investigate and gets knocked senseless by… Hulk opening the door. Wow! Did you see the badass way Hulk Hogan opened that door? Whatcha gonna do when the New World Order opens a door on you??

Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

“Dammit, who says there can’t be a Lab Assistant in the Village People?”

Hulk enters and takes a moment to confess to the kids that he’s not really Santa Claus. He reveals his true identity is Blake Thorne and offers his hand, but Elizabeth just folds her arms. “You’re not Santa,” she pouts. Then, a moment later: “You’re better!” She then leaps into his arms. Awwww.

Someone kill me. Please. Please kill me.

Anyway, they head out of the kitchen, but not before Hulk hands Taylor a fire extinguisher that will not be important later. Uh-uh, no way, never. Hulk peers out of the kitchen just in time to see Mr. Vial working on a wall with a hammer and chisel. Don’t ask what he’s doing, because we’ll never find out.

Hulk taps Vial on the shoulder and Taylor blasts him with the fire extinguisher. Taylor yells, “See ya! Wouldn’t wanna be ya!” Oh, brother. I bet even the kid playing Taylor was rolling his eyes at this line of dialogue and thinking, “Do I have enough clout to request a rewrite?”

The kids yank tubes out of Vial’s conveniently labeled tanks of “Stink Gas” and shove them up under the hood of his chemical suit. Hulk puts Vial in a wrestling hold, and then suddenly has a roll of duct tape which he uses to seal Vial’s hood closed. Although, considering it was a chemical suit, the hood should have already been sealed off in the first place. But hey, why nitpick?

Eventually, Vial’s suit starts inflating like a balloon [??]. He flings himself out the front window and there’s a loud, off-screen pop. The kids peer out and see Vial lying in a nativity scene in his shredded suit, and amazingly, he’s got no serious injuries to speak of. But, he is a dead ringer for baby Jesus.

Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

And now, a special guest appearance by Delta Burke!

Hulk and his band of little marauders continue on, but Hulk suddenly disappears. It turns out Ms. Watt has pulled Hulk into the church. She calls herself “terribly, terribly naughty”, and Hulk responds by mentioning how “I haven’t had a good workout in a week!” If this is their idea of foreplay, I don’t want any part of it.

Soon, Ed Leslie, AKA Fu Whitemanchu shows up on the scene. He rips his shirt open and exposes his strangely well-oiled physique. He starts sumo stomping and screaming, and Hulk matches this foolishness by utilizing the “crane technique” pose from The Karate Kid [!!]. What have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve this?

Hulk then slams his foot down on one end of a pew, sending the other end flying directly up into Fu Whitemanchu’s chin. Because, as we all know, the Lord always approves of people using church furniture to beat the crap out of each other. As expected, this instantly knocks Whitemanchu out cold, and out of the movie. Hey, who wants to see Hulk in actual physical combat with another wrestler when we can watch him pound on teenagers and scrawny British guys?

Santa with Muscles (1996) (part 10 of 11)

Mr. Miyagi says, “No defense! No defense for how stupid script is!”

Hulk then goes after Ms. Watt, but it’s Lenny who saves the day by appearing up on a catwalk and dumping a bucket of water on her. This causes the expected blue cartoon electric bolts to dance all over her body, and it even sends her flipping over a pew in footage that, of course, is under-cranked. So, Mr. Frost? My compliments on hiring a henchwoman who can be defeated by a bucket of water. Very menacing. While you’re at it, maybe you oughta call up the Wicked Witch of the West, I hear she’s looking for work.

Lenny puts on his elf hat and slides down a rope to the church floor. He and Hulk have a warm reunion, and Lenny finally hands Hulk back his wallet, saying there’s nothing missing but a “few bucks”. So, remember kids, stealing is wrong, unless you only do it a little bit. Either way, the two take off to find Saavik and Garrett Morris.

It turns out the two of them are in one of the bedrooms. Are they being held hostage? Doesn’t look like it to me. Nevertheless, Hulk kicks down the door. Garrett rightfully points out that this really wasn’t necessary, but Hulk and Saavik have a tender reunion anyway. Hulk, Lenny and Saavik run out to find the kids, but Garrett calls Hulk back to tell him something important. And, as it turns out, something quite stupid.

According to Garrett, Hulk’s real name isn’t “Blake Thorne”, but rather “Blake Torichevsky”. Garrett knows this because Hulk grew up in this orphanage [!!!!!]. He even points to a picture of little Hulk on the mantle nearby [!!]. What? What??

Okay, now correct me if I’m wrong. Hulk’s memories already came back to him. Right? Didn’t they? So, how is it that Hulk doesn’t remember that he grew up in this orphanage? Am I missing something? Or is this all a very huge plot hole? Or, as I’m now calling it, a Plot Hulk?

Anyway, this “explains” why Hulk was drawn to the orphanage at the beginning of the movie, and how he knew the vault combination. Well, no one ever actually comes out and says all this, I’ve just decided to cut the movie some slack for Christmas.

But we haven’t even gotten to the stupidest part yet. There’s another kid in the picture with Little Hulk, whom Garrett identifies as Hulk’s “best friend”. This friend now goes by the name of… can you guess?… Ebner Frost. Wow! It all comes together in the end, doesn’t it? Yes, it’s all perfectly nonsensical and incoherent, and this idiotic little plot twist adds absolutely nothing to the story. Way to go, gang!

Multi-Part Article: Santa with Muscles (1996)

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