Can You Really Kill Someone With A Spoon? Debunking The Weapon Of Choice In 'American Ultra'
The Jesse Eisenberg and Kristen Stewart action-comedy American Ultra looks like the perfect late-summer comedy for 2015. Sarcastic and creatively violent, the trailers for the movie show that American Ultra could be a natural successor to hits like This Is The End, Pineapple Express, The World's End, and other films that have audiences laughing and cringing at the same time. In the movie, Eisenberg's character Mike is a stoner cashier who has no idea he's an un-activated super soldier. In his first act as a killing machine, he takes out a carjacker with nothing but the spoon for his late-night snack. Yes, seriously, a spoon. Whether the wielder is a super soldier or not, that's not the most dangerous-looking utensil. This act begs the question, is it really possible to kill someone with a spoon?
The idea itself is so ridiculous that it's become a commonly used slang term for get me out of here. Being murdered with a spoon sounds slow, painful, and almost boring. If you're nuts about spoon-murders, there's an amazing series of horror satire short films on YouTube by filmmaker Richard Gale. The first, The Horribly Slow Murderer with the Extremely Inefficient Weapon was uploaded in 2009. Four sequels followed, and Gale is seeking backing from Kickstarter for a full-length film. Who knew there was such a market for spoon-related media?
Now, to real life. There are a few strange cases where a spoon has served as a murder weapon. In 2004, a man in the UK was acquitted of murder after he struck another man in the back of his head with a "dessert spoon." Dessert spoons are even smaller than regular spoons, so the blow had to hit a specific spot and have had great force behind it in order to cause the catastrophic damage that it did. The coroner determined that the utensil "ruptured an artery and caused fatal bleeding in the area between [the victim's] skull and brain." Looking at your silverware drawer differently now, right?
In 2014, a Florida man was executed after sitting on Death Row for four decades. Among his crimes? Murdering a prison guard with a "sharpened" spoon in 1980. A sharpened spoon is otherwise known as a makeshift knife; clearly that's a different story than wielding something more suited to devouring a steaming bowl of tomato soup.
So, yes. In isolated incidents, spoons have brought about violent death. But then again, so have pens, guitars, and even a jar of pickles. There are enough things to be scared of in the world; there's no real reason to add spoons (which also deliver delicious, delicious macaroni and cheese to your mouth, don't forget) to the list. Unless American Ultra is right and there are long-haired, apathetic super soldiers in our midst. In that case, you may want to steer clear from anyone microwaving freeze-dried soup in an isolated convenience store in the middle of the night.
Check out the trailer below and see American Ultra in theaters on Friday, Aug. 21.
Images: Lionsgate; Giphy (3)