The Machine Edge
Celebrity Slam – #31YearsChallenge
By Allen Adams
June 18, 2019
You might remember last week’s Celebrity Slam, when we got after Justin Bieber for challenging Tom Cruise to a fight on Twitter. We had a lot of fun at the expense of the Biebs – as we are wont to do – and had some laughs.
Unsurprisingly, Bieber didn’t take long before walking it back and apologizing for what we all pretty much already knew was a joke while also acknowledging something else that we all already knew – that Tom Cruise would straight-up whoop his a–.
One of the delightful side effects of the whole kerfuffle was the social media trend springing from the 31-year age difference between Bieber and Cruise. It led to what is being called the Bieber Challenge, where users took to Twitter to call out celebrities 31 years their senior and challenge them to fights.
Now, while we acknowledge that the currency of the moment has passed – not much lasts long in the cultural consciousness these days – we thought it might be fun for you readers out there to get a sense of some of the celebs that we would fight in the 31 Year Challenge and what our plan of attack might look like.
It turns out that 1945 was a pretty solid birth year as far as celebrities go, so there are going to be some prominent names here.
Henry Winkler (October 30)
Yeah, that’s right. We’re going to fight the Fonz. Sure, Henry Winkler has become one of our most beloved character actors and a seemingly delightful person, but that doesn’t mean we won’t take him down. We’ll rip that leather jacket right off him and then ride off on his previous motorcycle. We’ll punch him so hard the jukebox will come on. Arthur Fonzerelli is going to be Arthur Gone-zerelli!
Vince McMahon (August 24)
Damn right we’re going to throw down with Vince McMahon. Heck, we’ll even fight on his turf. We will happily challenge McMahon to a steel cage match at the next installment of Wrestlemania. But here’s the thing – while his background is in fake fighting, we will be throwing the real deal at him. He’s not even close to ready to what we’re bringing to the table. Prepare for a real-life Celebrity Slam!
Neil Young (November 12)
See, this one is a little deceptive. Sure, Neil Young might come off as a tough guy or whatever, but come on – dude’s a glorified folk singer desperate to be taken seriously as a rock and roll guy. We’re betting he’s soft. Besides, the guy’s Canadian – he can try to go against the polite gentility of his people, but our best guess is that we’ll take him down and then he’ll apologize.
Phil Jackson (September 17)
Jackson is one of those guys who has had it coming for a while. He happened to luck into some generational talents at the right time – dudes like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant – that helped him win a bunch of rings despite the fact that he’s not that great a coach. We figure he’ll try to get us to read some garbage self-help book, but make no mistake – he’s the one who’s going to need help!
Bette Midler (December 1)
Actually, you know what? This one might be a mistake. Probably not a good idea to take a swing at the Divine Miss M – she almost certainly fights dirty. We’re not here to pick fights we’re going to lose.
(Note: This is obviously far from a complete list – we just grabbed some of the highlights. Honorable mentions include Steve Martin, Pete Townsend, John Lithgow, and Helen Mirren.)
And there you have it – a listing of some of the celebrities some three decades senior to us that we’re willing to fight. We feel fairly confident in our choices, both in terms of who we can take and who we can’t (seriously, we’re very sorry for even bringing up your name, Ms. Midler).
Many thanks to friend of the Slam Justin Bieber, who managed to find his way back into this space two weeks in a row despite not crashing a Lambo or abandoning a monkey or peeing somewhere he’s not supposed to pee. You’re growing up, Biebs. We’re proud of you.
And now, let’s wait to see which 11-year-old YouTube star wants to challenge us to a fight.