May 31st, 2006

Watching the brilliant Mormon soap opera, “Big Love”, the other night. In the compound, the bad guys’ Hummer rolls into frame, looking like Darth Vader. It hit me — the genius of the design. There are many other wasteful assemblages of steel and glass prowling suburbia, but this one’s really got menace.

No wonder the Hummer sells so well to the big-cigar crowd. It’s cool to be scary. How CEO-like. I’ll bet the Wizard of Oz owns one.

Whatever the demographic is, they’re probably not going to warm to the documentary in the works: “Hummerbums.” The Hummerbums is a gay Hummer-owners association. And it’s a big group. In fact, it represents 28% of Hummer H-1 owners.

One scene in particular stands out. It’s just the back end of a Hummer in a canyoned wilderness at dusk. The bumper sticker reads, “If this Hummer’s rockin’, don’t bother knockin’.”

Actually, many scenes deserve attention. (1) A helicopter shot of a convoy of fifty-two Hummers snaking through Burlington, Vermont. The admiring townsfolk gaping and waving to the Hummerbums like it was a wartime victory parade. (2) A Jimmy Hoffa search-and-rescue mission of a dozen Hummers. They fill the parking lot at Machus’ Red Fox, the suburban Detroit restaurant from which Hoffa was kidnapped. The film crew follows them to a water hazard near the 16th hole of the Bloomfield Hills Country Club where the Hummerbums drag the pond for remains. (3) A Gold’s Gym parking lot where pumped-up teams of six Hummerbums each take turns tipping each others H-1s on their sides.

This movie is going to be a splash of icy water pitched right in the face of the typical macho Hummer owner — whether he be pimp, jock, or fat cat. Watch for it this October. See how many straight guys are buying Hummers come December.

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