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Fuck you, asshole

The Terminator ponders his choices

Did you know the original “Terminator” movie cost about $6.4 million to make? What a friggin’ piece of genius that was.

One scene in particular has piqued my interest today…

Cleaning Man at Flophouse: [Damaged skin on the Terminator is rotting from gangrene] Hey, buddy. You got a dead cat in there, or what?

[the Terminator visualizes: ‘POSSIBLE RESPONSE: YES/NO; OR WHAT?; GO AWAY; PLEASE COME BACK LATER; FUCK YOU, ASSHOLE’]

The Terminator: Fuck you, asshole.

Now that is a high quality screenplay!!!

Part of what makes this scene genius is that it illustrates that the Terminator Model T-800 learns. At the beginning of the movie the Terminator is sent back in time. Like all time travel in this movie franchise, the trip is made completely naked. Therefore one of the Terminator’s first tasks is to obtain clothing. He encounters some punks and says, “Your clothes. Give them to me. Now!”

The punk leader (played by a young Bill Paxton) and not knowing who he is up against responds, “Fuck you, asshole!” The T-800 then displays his surgical skills and knowledge of human anatomy by removing the punk’s still beating heart. Classic movie magic!

Later, when the cleaning man asks the Terminator about the smell emanating from his room, the Terminator runs through his decision tree, including his newly acquired knowledge, and decides how to respond. As we all know, he wisely selects, “fuck you, asshole,” and maximizes the odds that he’ll blend in. The cleaning man shrugs and moves along.

The reason I bring all this up is that I believe I have encountered the gerbil version of this phenomenon.

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