Served from 1933-1945
Age during term: 51-63
Arena Experience: FDR faced off against presidential terrorist dispatcher James Marshall in the first round... and won, making it easily the biggest upset this tournament is going to have.
PROS: FDR served the longest term of any President ever-- and unless that 22nd Amendment gets repealed, he'll never lose that record. The point is, he's incredibly durable, especially given that his presidency wasn't exactly low-stress. FDR also showed a lot of creativity coming up with economic plans to get the country out of the Depression; that outside-the-box thinking clearly worked out for him in the first round.
CONS: Really, we can't emphasize this enough, but the dude could not effing walk. He could fake it, kind of, for brief periods, but let's not try and make that more than it was. Also, his health in general was fairly poor for a good chunk of his presidency... which led to him dying while said presidency was still a going concern.
Fictional president in the TV series 24 (2001-2006)
Portrayed by Dennis Haysbert
Age: Haysbert was 48-49 when his presidential episodes aired
Arena Experience: Palmer edged by William McKinley in the first round with 54.2% of the vote. Not bad, considering McKinley was a Civil War veteran.
PROS: Palmer survived two out of three assassination attempts (which ain't bad). The third one was by sniper rifle bullet, which isn't an issue here in the Arena. When Jack Bauer went off the radar to mourn his wife, Palmer was the only one who could get him back. Anyone who could get Bauer out of his Thoreau phase is obviously a force to be reckoned with.
CONS: We should make it clear that Bauer will not be helping Palmer. It's against the rules. Let's just hope Palmer hasn't grown dependent on him. There's also the question of when in Palmer's term this fight is taking place. If it's after assassination attempt #2, Palmer may still be feeling the effects of whatever virus that Mandy chick got him sick with.
Doug: I haven't seen Bad Teacher, but there's a part that was shown in the trailers that I think is pretty relevant.
I'm to understand that Jason Segal plays a gym teacher.
|How does the How I Met Your Mother universe deal with the fact that there's a|
movie star that looks exactly like Marshall Eriksen?
The only argument I need? FDR is in a wheelchair. On top of barely being able to walk on his own for very long, his health is in the crapper.
I have yet to hear an argument even close to semi-sane as to how FDR would able to beat James "Get off my plane!" Marshall. Maybe Palmer never personally kicked terrorists out of a plane (LITERALLY!), but he did spend a great deal more of his time as president NOT in a wheelchair than FDR did. That's saying something, because Palmer actually was in a wheelchair for a bit.
Tony: Interesting how you open with something that essentially destroys your case. FDR killed James Marshall! THAT'S THE ONLY ARGUMENT I NEED!
Look, some things in life will never be explained. Like, say, what happened to D.B. Cooper, or who put the "bomp" in the "bomp shoo bomp shoo bomp." FDR's victory over Marshall falls in this category. Perhaps our readers mistook FDR for some manner of cyborg, part man, part machine... all murder! Maybe Marshall's intimidating visage disoriented readers into voting the wrong way.
But, maybe... just maybe... our readers have realized that Franklin Delano Roosevelt was more than enough of a badass to hold his own against Marshall. Maybe they saw the man who pulled America back from the brink, and led the charge against tyranny. Maybe they were just screwing with us. Wait! Strike that last one.
The point is, FDR is here, and Marshall's not. You want to claim Roosevelt's not dangerous? Do so at your own peril.
Doug: My point is that there's a wild card here that, regardless of what turn our debate takes, we cannot control or foresee one aspect: the voters. In FDR's last fight, the voters decided that a paralyzed man without his wheelchair could defeat a Harrison Ford character in a fight. It's a problem that comes up in democracy every so often and that problem is that -- and I'm saying this with all due respect to the voters -- sometimes the voters are wrong.
Maybe they were mistaken about the question. Like, for that week, they thought we were asking who is most likely to sing Tomorrow with a former orphan and the plutocrat who adopted her?
|Pictured: FDR, in a wheelchair. I feel I should remind |
everyone of the fact that FDR was in a wheelchair.
Whatever the story is, the voters were wrong. It wasn't not the only time, and it will probably happen again (this week or not). This is why I'm trying to make this as easy as possible: FDR's health was in terrible condition towards the end. In addition to that, he couldn't walk on his own. THIS IS THE ONLY ARGUMENT I NEED.
Tony: Actually, I'm going to say you need more arguments. Because you know what I'm not hearing a lot of? Evidence that Palmer can fight worth a damn. I mean, all he did as President was sit back and let CTU handle things (and by "CTU," I of course mean "Jack Bauer"). What the hell kind of a fighting style is that? A losing one, is what. And did it stop Palmer from getting himself killed? Nope! Granted, I never watched 24, so my perceptions might be a bit off, but still.
FDR is a world-class thinker, just the sort of guy who will be able to figure out a way to defeat a more able-bodied man in the Arena. He's got this.
Doug: No, Palmer hasn't seemed to have actually fought anyone, but he has a history of athleticism. He scored the game-winning basket in a Final Four game.
|Though, some credit for the Sycamores' success could be Larry Bird.|
Though Palmer was killed after his term was up, I can't really buy the presupposition that Palmer isn't a fighter because he can't take a bullet to the throat. Seriously, it's a bullet to the throat. Those are difficult to survive. Are you suggesting FDR could survive that? Are you suggesting "bullet to the throat" is a legal attack in the Arena? I'm going to say "no" to both, so that pretty much means that Palmer's weakness towards bullets to the throat is not really a liability in this case.
Hey, I'm sure FDR could think of a good plan of defeating someone in the Arena. Being able to actually carry said plan out is a completely different story. Since FDR is barely able to stand up on his own, I'm kind of curious how he'd be able to defeat a former athlete in hand-to-hand combat.
I really hate to harp on this wheelchair thing, but it kind of is a big deal that's impossible to get around. It's almost as if IT'S THE ONLY ARGUMENT I NEED.
Tony: I mean, athleticism is cool and all, but that doesn't mean it can win someone a fight. Gymnasts are pretty freaking athletic, but I'm pretty sure I could take one in a fight. Well, unless we're talking about the guy from Gymkata. But I'm fairly sure he's the exception to the rule.
|Anyone who disagrees will get a pommel horse-assisted kick to the face.|
The Chief: Voting closes Friday at 9am MDT. We hope everyone's Halloween is SPOOKTACULAR. We also hope the rest of your week is less so.
Roosevelt vs. Palmer