The answer to the most emotional question ever asked

I’m watching Aliens vs Predator 2 and an emotional question has occurred to me. When is the appropriate time to let go when the person you’re holding onto is being ripped in half on the other side? Very emotional question.

There are a variety of antagonists, including horrible car accidents, getting caught in a machine, having the airlock seal close on you, animal attacks and of course alien attacks. Being that I’m watching Aliens vs Predator 2 right now, I want to focus on animal and alien attacks. Also I couldn’t find pictures for most of these so here are just pictures of all the movies in general.

Lake Placid – Diver being bitten in half while trying to climb aboard boat.

Jaws – None that I can think of, and that’s odd.

Tremors – Convenience store owner being ripped through the floor in convenience store.

Aliens – Hudson being ripped through the floor.

Alien 4 – Space pirate being bitten in half through the floor.

Alien vs Predator 2 – Bully being bitten in half on the other side of window.

I think this might be a question with one of those ‘no one wins’ answers. However, let us not be deterred. This is a question needs answerin’. When the person you’re holding onto is being bitten in half on the other side, there is a point at which you transition from ‘being a hero’ to being ‘dumb for holding on too long because they are clearly dead already’. Similarly you could be a ‘douchebag’ for not holding on long enough, or a ‘survivor’ for letting go on time. Now I imagine at some point in the future I’ll be holding onto at least one of you as you’re being bitten in half on the other side so objectively, I want to know how I can ‘even up’ the chances of me saving you cleanly versus you pulling me to a needless death. I’m a Libra, so it needs to be even.

Let’s take these one at a time.

  • In Lake Placid the diver was being bitten in half just as he was climbing back on board the boat. And if I remember correctly I think he was bitten clean in half in just one bite. I don’t think it was like a big thing. The important part here is that these heros never let go; they even pulled his good half up onto the boat after the struggle was over.
  • For Jaws I was going to say the opening scene of the first Jaws where the skinny-dipping  woman gets eaten, but then I remembered that this doesn’t count because there was nobody actually holding onto her as she was being bitten in half. She was eaten all alone. I reread this bullet point and felt just awful.
  • Tremors is awesome. Anyway this is around 3/4 of the way in when the convenience store owner (Mr. Chang)

    He was also in 3 Ninjas. I bet you remember him now.

    is grabbed and pulled into the mouth of a graboid through the floorboards of his convenience store. They hold on for a good while in this one, until all the graboid’s little mouth tentaclefaces are biting on him in addition to the graboid itself biting onto him. They hold on for so long that I’m not sure but I think Mr. Chang dies while they’re holding him. In that case technically they ‘let go’ at the same time. They might not be heros, but they’re pretty decent if you ask me.

  • Hudson goes through a tremendous amount of character growth throughout the movie Aliens. He starts off confident, then becomes an annoying joker, then completely flakes out when things go bad and finally shows his true badass colors as he’s being ripped in half. Alright yeah the floor gives out from underneath him and the aliens are eating him on the other side and he’s shooting back but that’s getting their acid blood all over him which isn’t helping things, and his squad all comes in and holds onto him as he’s being dragged down. They all hold onto him until the scary-as-shit alien hand comes reaching up and grabs Hudson’s actual face as he’s mid-scream. These space marines straddle the line between ‘survivor’ and ‘dumb for holding on too long because this guy is clearly dead already’.
  • We don’t need to talk about Alien 4 for any longer than is necessary for the purposes of this bullet point. So the space pirate gets pulled through the space floor, which is grated metal like all space floors, and is eaten in half on the other side. His buddies find him pretty much after the damage is done, but it’s not clear that they know that and they really do try. They get a good rating.
  • I’ll guess that maybe 3% of you have seen Aliens vs Predator 2. The problem here is that the first Alien vs Predator movie came out and sucked, and that kind of stunk up the joint for the small but dedicated faction of fans who were in favor of seeing Predators hunt even more Aliens. For the super devoted, Aliens vs Predator 2 came along after and completely revived both franchises and the concept of crossing them over. Anyway for the 97% of you, there’s a scene around the middle of the movie where one of the good guys is trying to pull a bully through the window as an alien is eating him from the other side. It’s heroic because even though he knows the guy is actually getting eaten he holds on for awhile, but then when the bully gets yanked away he pretty much lets go. He seems to have a good understanding of balance, and also of self preservation. But did he let go too soon?

I promised you an answer but this is muddy water isn’t it? I guess we’ll have to use other factors in here too, like how well I know you or if you remember my name. I think if you didn’t remember my name I might let go immediately, I mean you’re already being eaten anyway. And what if we know each other real well BUT you have a propensity to freak out when you get startled? You could drag me in! As The Holder, I don’t want to get eaten too, plus then while I’m being eaten in half the people who come to hold onto me will have to look inside themselves for the answer to this question too, and I don’t think it’s right of you to force this, the most emotional of choices onto any other people.

And what if you were The Rippee, the person being ripped in half on the other side? I know it won’t ever be me but if it was, I would hold on so tight!!! I don’t want to be ripped in half alone!

Whether you end up Holder or Rippee…I guess the answer to the most emotional question ever lies dormant within each of us…just waiting to be ripped out.


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8 thoughts on “The answer to the most emotional question ever asked

  1. I totally forgot to include the Velociraptor scene in the beginning of Jurassic Park. Sucks for that guy.

  2. The issue of getting torn in half is a tough one but it depends on where the person is caught. I’d hang on to a person caught by the feet or lower legs. But one caught by the pelvis is likely already bleeding out and one caught by the torso isn’t going to be able to get the colon back inside their body…those two I’d let nature take it’s course.

    • As always Deirdre, I find your input insightful and solidly grounded. Your priority seems to be based on the chance or likelihood of saving the life of The Rippee, based on the antagonist’s point of contact. You’d hold on tighter and longer, the higher the chance is that The Rippee could ultimately be saved. My priority on the other hand is based more on the chance or likelihood of The Rippee pulling me into within the antagonist’s range. I don’t care if the Velociraptor has got you by your pelvis or your pinkytoe; the higher the chance there is that you will pull me into the raptor cage with you, the higher the chance I have of letting go at a time that some might construe as ‘premature’. Of course, those who would construe me as having let go prematurely are welcome to switch places with me and be The Holder for the next Rippee.

  3. Jizzo on said:

    I would shove a grenade in the person’s pocket, say “Godspeed”, and run.

  4. Graceful, efficient and humane. Your solution to the most emotional question ever asked is like a poem.

  5. James on said:

    Let’s add multiple scenes from Starship Troopers to the case study..

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