What may have been designed as a North Korean show of force will no doubt be a show of North Korean Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy in the years to come.
Broadcast on the nation’s state-run media, the intense demonstration during the North Korea Defence Development Exhibition provided confirmation that under the rule of Kim Jong Un, every day is core day.
The entire video is impressive, no doubt — no number of “Boom!” “Whap!” and “Doink!” quips from John Madden’s elite vernacular could channel the Wreck-It Ralph blunt force trauma celebrated by the supreme leader, who is rumored to humbly conceal his own shredded physique beneath his collection of bulbous regalia.
Madden or no, here are some of the short clip’s more awe-inspiring/skeletal-crunching moments.
At :07, one soldier, who is allegedly made of Adamantium, runs face-first into blocks — and wins. Hall-of-fame jaw line.
At :33, after welcoming body blows from his pole-carrying comrades, a shirtless soldier splinters a pole using his head. The move elicits a smirk from supreme leader, making the traumatic brain injury more than worth it.
Over the next 30-plus seconds, North Korean soldiers turn brick after brick into dust using every extremity possible. The entire event begins to look like an over-the-top gender reveal party destined for the nightly news.
At least it does until 1:05, when soldiers place hands and arms on top of blocks. Other soldiers then swing sledgehammers, as is tradition, at the awaiting appendages, breaking blocks and, likely, bones, as is tradition.
At 1:38, two gentlemen commence bending a single rod attached to their necks at each end, which begins to feel a little dominatrix-y, but it delights the crowd, and these indestructible performers are here to please.
Finally, we arrive at 1:55. A soldier unrolls what appears to be a cozy mat, only to reveal its contents are, in fact, glass. Still unsatisfied, the shirtless soldier breaks two more glasses before going down for a glass nap replete with even more blocks and sledgehammers.
If other nations wish to keep abreast in near-peer 17th century warfare, there’s much work to be done.
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J.D. Simkins is a writer and editor for Military Times, and a USMC veteran.