Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt
26th President of the United States
Ages during term: 42-50
Arena experience: T.R. pitched this tournament's first no-hitter when his first round opponent, Baxter Harris, failed to garner a single vote.
PROS: We'd remind you that Roosevelt once got shot before he was going to give a speech, and he stuck around to finish said speech. He pretty much traveled the world and the seven seas, only instead of looking for someone, he was looking for ass to kick. And oh yes, he kicked it.
CONS: For such an avid rouser of rabble, T.R. was shockingly unhealthy as a child, and his later vigor may have been something of a façade plastered over an unstable core. He was also a man who could put on a hell of a pout as in: "my first wife died, and it screwed me up so badly I never mentioned her again, ever." Damn, T.R. Damn.
Portrayed in the movie Head of State by Chris Rock
Age: Rock was 42 when the movie was released
Arena Experience: Gilliam squeaked by against James Madison in the 1st Round, earning 53.3% of the vote.
PROS: Gilliam is a man of his word, fighting for the people and working hard doing so. Even when the chips are down -- and we'll get to that in a moment -- he still keeps his head down and gets things done, not resting until he's finished.
CONS: It's almost breath-taking how awful his luck is. You would think so much crap wouldn't hit one person in such a small amount of space, but life really rips the rug out from Gilliam. If even a fraction of this happens in the Arena, he's a goner.
Is he expected to get past Theodore Roosevelt? Meh, probably not. Gilliam doesn't really let things like that stop him, though.
Tony: Here's how this is going to go. Roosevelt is going to enter the ring, and he is going to lament the fact that he does not have possession of his celebrated "Big Stick." Upon seeing Mays Gilliam, Roosevelt is going to think, "my, that fellow's leg would make for the perfect stick! Bully!"
Roosevelt is going to separate Gilliam's leg from his body, and he's going to temper his prize by beating it against Gilliam's twitching corpse. Then, he's going to speak softly until the third round, when the cycle of violence begins anew.
Doug: Yes, Roosevelt was the avid hunter and he likely had enough kills to keep a few taxidermists in business for quite some time, but that wasn't with his bare hands. While the picture you paint would make an amusing story, he doesn't really have a history of dismemberment -- animals or humans. I mean, do you really think he's capable of tearing a leg off of a living human without any tools? Doesn't that sound like a tad much?
I mean, Roosevelt can certainly waste his time trying. But while he's doing that, Gilliam's getting some pretty solid shots in.
Tony: Yes, Roosevelt has little experience taking a human being apart, but I'm guessing his time as a hunter has given him valuable experience in how one can field-dress something. Meanwhile, Gilliam is something of a spindly character, so I don't think the far more robust Roosevelt will have much trouble dismantling his opponent. And as for this "oh, Gilliam will get in a few shots business, well, I'm not buying it. Will any of his "shots" have the affect of an honest-to-goodness gunshot? Because we already know getting shot in the chest barely slows Roosevelt down. Gilliam's going to have all the impact of a mosquito, and probably won't even be half as annoying from an "itch" perspective.
Doug: While I can't counter the sheer badassery of Roosevelt getting shot and going on to make his speech, it should be noted that luck played a major part in that whole incident. It was complete luck that the bullet hit his steel eyeglass case AND a copy of the 50-page speech he was about to give before entering his body. Had the bullet not been slowed down, it would have been a different situation.
Tony: Hey, listen, the bullet clearly knew its place. And its place was to not kill Teddy Roosevelt.
Doug: Anyway, if we're going to base the outcome of this fight based on the astronomically improbable events of one day, then this is anybody's game.
So I guess we can say that Gilliam is going to give everything he's got for this fight; come what Mays
Tony: Oh, please. Even if he ROSE to the occasion, he'd still need a might powerful RUSE to get past Roosevelt.
The Chief: Yeesh. Yeah, I'm going to stop you two before this gets any worse. Ladies and gentlemen of the commentariat, voting is now open! Leave your Roosevelt vs. Gilliam comments below, and vote to send one of these two to the third round. Voting closes at 9am, Mountain time, on Friday. We'll be back here on Wednesday with more weirdness.