The Machine Girl: Better Revenge through Technology
by Jeff Martin
Noboru Igichi’s 2008 movie, The Machine Girl, may be the film that introduced most Americans to Japanese splatter and exploitation. I say this because I remember seeing it for sale at my local WalMart for the remarkable price of seven dollars. How many unsuspecting families brought this movie into their homes? How many parents never even looked at the back cover of the DVD? How many children innocently placed this disk into their gaming systems, expecting some kind of Dragon Ball Z action, only to be confronted with dismemberment and arterial spray?
Lots, I hope.
How can that be? Why would I say such a thing? I say it firstly because I’m kind of a dick. Secondly, I say it because The Machine Girl is all about a topic that has been a hot button in America lately: bullying. We are told not to stand for bullying of any kind, be it cyber-bullying or old fashioned face-to-face analog-bullying. What this campaign fails to bring to light is that sometimes, when you stand up to a bully, you get the shit beaten out of you. And there are times when that action must be reciprocated.
Granted, the main bully in The Machine Girl, Sho, is a member of a yakuza-ninja family that worships Hattori Hanzo as their god. He and some of his schoolmates have lent some money to Yu and his fat little buddy, Takeshi. The kids can’t pay the money back, of course, and the beatings commence. One day, the kids fight back, blindly punching and throwing roundhouse kicks that don’t connect. This irritates Sho and his cohorts. They blithely toss Yu and Takeshi off the top of a parking structure.
Yu’s sister, Ami, is all alone in the world now and she is after revenge for her brother’s death. She finds a list in Yu’s diary called, “People I Want to Kill.” That’s as good a place to start as any, she figures. When she visits the first gang member at his house, she learns the kid’s father is an overly macho cop who tries to kill her with a golf club. Even his sweet-looking mother gets in on the murderous mood, when she dips Ami’s hand in tempura batter and deep-fries it.
She looks delicious.
This is an important sequence and a recurring theme, as we learn that adult bullies often have children who are bullies. When will we learn to break this vicious cycle of hatred and violence?
When Ami runs into Sho’s family, they capture and torture her, cutting off her arm with a Katana in the process. Even with the tremendous high-pressure blood loss, Ami manages to escape, dragging herself up the road and collapsing in front of a garage. The man who owns the garage takes Ami in and stitches up what he can. His wife, however, is not pleased with Ami’s presence. She is Takeshi’s mother, Miki!
O fate, how twisty you are when you twist like that!
Regardless, being mechanically oriented, Miki and her husband create a machine gun that fits snugly over Ami’s arm-nub. I’m not sure how she activates the firing mechanism with said nub, but she does. She’s a walking death machine now, ready to go after Sho and his murderous family.
And there you have it, Americans. The key to stopping bullying is extreme body modification and weaponization.
Face it. No one’s gonna call you a faggot on the playground if you’ve got an arm that is a fucking machine gun. And yet here we stand, one nation under hypocrisy, a place where even professional wrestlers tell us to ‘be a star” and not put up with bullying, when they bully each other for a living.
You know what we did with bullies when I was a kid? We got beat up by them. Then we grew a pair and we beat back. We didn’t have your new-fangled machine gun arms or chainsaw nub attachments. We had to use our fists. And you know what happened after that? We had friends who were bullies. But at least they weren’t bullying us anymore. Damn straight, things got better.
But there is a serious lesson to be learned from The Machine Girl, amidst the shock and bloodshed and disembowelments. You know, kids, people who engage in bullying behavior are often only acting out to hide their own fears. They operate from a base of intense sadness, which gives birth to impotent rage. Instead of looking within themselves to work out their issues, they violently take their frustrations out on others. They need compassion. They need professional help.
Then again, some bitches come at you for a hug while wearing a drill bra. That shit needs to be dealt with.
When a horrible mass murderer is caught, especially a killer of children or women, and that person is sentenced to death, someone always pipes up with the idea that executions should be televised. “Put that shit on pay-per-view,” they say. “That will send a message. That will lower the crime rate.” If the criminal is bad enough, you’ll even hear anti-death penalty advocates mutter approving epithets under their breath. So deal with the bullying situation however you choose. You get to pick.
The Machine Girl takes vigilantism to new highs and provides a daring new option for American victims.
Jeff Martin is a free-lance writer based in East Tennessee. He currently writes for the websites Better Geek than Never and The G.A.S.P. Factor when he’s not spewing hideous bile all over the pages of Brutal as Hell. An ordained minister, he is available to perform civil unions and baptisms of all kinds. He’s a big fan of tempura. Follow him on Twitter: @X_the_Unknown.