Swarthy Men Battling In Loincloths

12 03 2007

Being that this is the internet, a crossroads where frustrations from social anxiety and comic fandom meet, it is no wonder that the cinematic release of 300 has caused quite a stir. The predominant sentiment is that Frank Miller’s lovechild has delivered a rousing bloodbath the likes of which hasn’t been seen since the last epic battle scene of some other war movie in the last 6 months. I can’t comment on the movie as I haven’t illegally downloaded it yet, but I do have some thoughts I’d like to share.

Molon labe. It’s the new rallying call of fanboys and 2nd Amendment kooks everywhere. Loosley translated from the Greek it means “Come and take them”, a challenge issued by the Spartans in response to the Persian leader’s demand to surrender their weapons. While it is a stirring rallying call of historical significance, its recent overuse is reducing it to Schwarzeneggerian Punchline. Every time I see it in some blog review or associated comment the line loses more impact and authenticity, not unlike every person of 1/16th Irish descent trotting out their “Erin Go Bragh!” around St. Patty’s Day. I almost expect to see it pop up in the next Samuel L. Jackson vehicle, Snakes On A Plane 2: The Return Flight, where he shouts from the cockpit “You want my complimentary peanuts, you reptile muthafuckas? Well, molon labe, bitches!”.

Molon labe is the new Braveheart bellow of “FREEEEDDDOOMMM”, approaching an over-exposure that is begging for satire. Unfortunately, the truth is much funnier than the satirization could ever hope to be. Here is a brief explanation of how the phrase is actually translated:

The Greek has a nuance not present in the English: aspect. The aorist participle is used to signify completed action, called the perfective aspect. Moreover, the action must be completed before the time of the main verb. The difference in meaning is subtle but significant: the English speaker is inviting his enemy to begin a process with two distinct acts or parts—coming and taking; the Greek speaker is telling his enemy that only after the act of coming is completed will he be able to take.

In short, molon labe is nothing more than invitation to an orgy where a strict order of ejaculatory precedence is being observed. The Greeks invented a good many things, so it’s no surprise they were on the cutting edge of developing orgy etitquette. Now faced with their darkest hour, the Spartans knew their only hope was to service the invading armies to a round-robin cornholing. Apparently the Persians weren’t so fluid in their sexuality and opted to just attack instead.

Some might see this as offensive, but I think this is stunning reflection of modern issues. For all the efforts made to hinder the admission of homosexuals into U.S. armed forces, we are forgetting that a pack of just 300 of them brought an entire invading army to its knees. It just wasn’t the way they had hoped to get them there.

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6 responses

12 03 2007
vengeance_is_me

if i say Erin Go Bragh, I make sure to say “Bragh” like it’s written, and add a little extra “RRRGGGGGGH” to it, almost like a pirate.

12 03 2007
IKilled007

That’s the longest suicide note I’ve ever seen. You could have just told me you’re tired of living.

12 03 2007
Fearghaill

This would be funnier if the Spartans hadn’t been defeated by an army that really did consist of 300 homosexuals, even though the Spartans outnumbered the Thebans 3:1.

Of course, even the Sacred Band could not stand against Philip of Macedon, whose son Alexander went on to set the standard for gay warriors throughout history.

12 03 2007
Ianternet

Leave it to you to make this 4 paragraph gay joke somehow edifying. : )

12 03 2007
Ianternet

I make sure to say it only when upchucking for the same reason.

12 03 2007
Fearghaill

That’s okay, I balanced it out by needing to look up what “edifying” meant.

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