Fight to The Death is an ongoing feature where staffers and readers get to vote and explain why one film is better than the other OR whether one fictional character would be able to kill another. This month’s featured rumble is The Action Movie Hero Tournament. UPDATE – Contest is over.
32 of cinema’s most famous Action Movie Heroes are going toe to toe this month to see which one reigns supreme.
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Notes: No superheroes and no villains. I avoided all of the Marvel/DC people and I only used CHARACTER names for the tournament. That’s why you won’t see “Bruce Lee” on this list – you’ll see “Chen Zhen” instead, which is a famous action movie hero character he (and other famous actors) portrayed in the films etc.
Disclaimer: It was REALLY difficult to focus on just ‘movie characters’ over actors and actresses in general and that’s why amazing action performers like Tony Jaa, Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Charlize Theron etc just barely missed the final cut.
There will be one battle every day until the winner is crowned – so check our TWITTER and FACEBOOK pages for LIVE UPDATES (however the tournament bracket will be updated with results every few days with commentary right here in this article on the battle progress with voter tallies and more! **Follow the action daily with the hashtag #FightToTheDeath
March 5, 2019
Ethan Hunt Vs. James Bond
After Mission Impossible: Fallout, I started going around saying how Ethan Hunt was better than James Bond and now I’m eating my words as the people have spoken and they were NOT in agreement. Bond won the opening battle handily with almost 70% of the votes in his favour. I still haven’t even watched the last Bond movie because Daniel Craig annoyed me so much by acting like a depressed douchebag promoting the damn thing. But — the legacy speaks for itself — and I have to respect that.
John McClane Vs. Indiana Jones
Indiana Jones kicked Die Hard’s ass. Sorry Mr. McClane but you couldn’t yippee ki yay your way out of Indy’s bullwhip as it strangles the life from you. Not to mention Indiana Jones is immortal now isn’t he? Did they ever address the fact that he drank FROM THE HOLY GRAIL AND WILL NOT DIE OF OLD AGE ANYMORE?!?! Indiana is life eternal and he won with 60% of the votes.
Snake Plissken Vs. Harry Callahan
This was surprisingly the closest battle so far, with Dirty Harry himself in a dead heat with Escape From Wherever specialist Snake Plissken hanging in there for the longest time, much to my delight even though I would have voted Harry all day long — it was a welcome surprise to see the fans’ love for Kurt Russell’s iconic Snake. In the end, Harry pulled out his big, shiny 44 and blew Snake’s face off with just over 50% of the votes because that’s how cops rolled back in the 80’s. And the 2010’s.
John Rambo Vs. Max Rockatansky
I’m kind of shocked and elated to see that Mad Max Rockatansky has pulled off one of the biggest upset victories in the history of #FightToTheDeath by narrowing out Rambo himself with 55% of the votes. I love both franchises but I’m a sucker for that post-apocalyptic and consider Fury Road to be one of the greatest works of art in the history of cinema, so Mad Max for me will always win over Rambo, but I honestly thought that Stallone was a frontrunner to win the whole damn tournament. I was wrong.
March 13, 2019
John Wick Vs. Jason Bourne
Sorry Matt Damon – with over 60% of the votes, John Wick just delivered his most infamous headshot yet as he moves onto the next round. This one was actually closer than I assumed it would be, as even though the Bourne franchise has been around for a long time now, John Wick has a lotta love from action fans with two incredible films and a highly anticipated third one coming out very soon. I approve of this outcome.
Selene Vs. Katniss Everdeen
This was a very unexpected blowout in favour of Kate Beckinsale’s vampiric Underworld hero Selene as she destroyed Katniss from the Hunger Games, with well over 75% of the votes. I didn’t see that one coming at all, but then again when I did the Horror Film Franchise tournament last Fall, Underworld exceeded my expectations in a big way. People love them some Underworld and I can’t disagree.
Han Solo Vs. Luke Skywalker
Oh we’re getting into some Star Wars territory? You bet that ass we are – action isn’t limited to the confines of Earth! Luke – the chosen one, the last Jedi, managed to defeat Han Solo with 60% of the votes, ensuring we won’t see Harrison Ford trying to kill Harrison Ford in the semi-final… This is a sad, sad day…
Alice Vs. Lara Croft
The battle of the videogame adaptation vixens – Resident Evil versus Tomb Raider. Alice mangled Lara Croft with almost 80% of the total votes. Again – this one shocked me, as I didn’t think Alice had the name recognition that would draw votes like Lara Croft. There’s still a lot of love for Milla Jovovich and those six – YES SIX – movies she starred in that were based on the most famous action-horror gaming franchise of all time.
Ellen Ripley Vs. Sarah Connor
The hero who took down the Alien Queen or the warrior fighting to prevent a cybernetic apocalypse? After an early and steady lead that lasted most of the day, Sarah Connor wound up eventually losing to Ellen Ripley who took the victory with just under 60% of the votes in a battle that I would die to see play out in any way possible on the bigscreen. Alien WON our Horror Film Franchise tournament last October and I wouldn’t be shocked to see Ripley win this entire damn tourney either. Sigourney Weaver is the GOAT.
Neo Vs. The Terminator
Keanu versus Arnold – the clash of the shades. I’m a little bit disappointed that after The Terminator’s win here with almost 60% of the total votes, we won’t be seeing a Keanu only finale and that’s something that we can only dare to dream be a possibility one day… Some day. In a perfect world. Maybe we will be more deserving of such things in another lifetime. That being said – I approve of T-1000 taking the win here. The Terminator franchise is stronger than The Matrix overall so this just makes sense.
James T. Kirk Vs. John Shaft
The closest battle of the entire tournament so far and the clash that had by far the most votes counted on our Facebook page – with the winner being determined by ONE VOTE. ONE FREAKING VOTE. John Shaft is the victor, and yes in this tournament we are counting BOTH Samuel L. Jackson AND Ernest Tidyman‘s cinematic performances over the years (Same way we were counting William Shatner and Chris Pine for Captain Kirk). I’m shocked by this one but I’m also pleasantly surprised. PS: I cannot wait for that new Shaft movie – it’s more shaft than we can handle internet! MORE THAN WE CAN HANDLE!!!
Hit Girl Vs. The Bride
Uma Thurman can’t stop, won’t stop KILLING US ALL. Kill Bill’s The Bride won this match handily with almost 80% of the total votes, putting a sad end to the little C-bomb dropping Kick-Ass vigilante. I’m happy with this decision although I love both franchises and I honestly don’t know who would win in an actual battle but I do know I’d love to see it somehow. In a perfect world someone would make a comic about this shit and complete me.
March 5, 2019
James Braddock Vs. Paul Kersey
Chuck Norris himself versus revenge-crazy Death Wish vigilante Paul Kersey! This one wasn’t even close – a near complete slaughter as Norris’ James Braddock (from the film series Missing in Action) took nearly 90% of the overall votes. I kinda figured this might happen, but I didn’t know who to pair against the mighty Chuck Norris – I feel like he could have potentially beaten ANYONE in round 1.
Rey Vs. Leia Organa
The new heroine of the Star Wars saga versus the old — this battle was actually much closer than I had anticipated with Rey coming very close at several points of the fight until a late push for Leia wound up with almost 60% of the overall votes. I personally think Leia would win in this situation every single time, so I’m happy the late great Carrie Fisher’s iconic warrior princess turned rebel general is moving onto the next horrifying round against Chuck Norris. That won’t be weird at all.
Chan Vs. Mariachi
Note: Jackie Chan’s most famous character, from his Police Story franchise – is also named Chan – if you were confused by this naming convention in any way. I was actually hopeful that Antonio Banderas’ Mariachi from the Desperado trilogy would stand a chance but Chan damn near shut the Mexican assassin right out with well over 90% of the votes in the most lopsided victory to date. I may have been one of the lone 2 or 3 people who actually voted for El Mariachi. So this made me sad a little.
Chen Zhen Vs. Rama
Chen Zhen is a famous martial arts movie character who has been portrayed on the bigscreen by not only the late legendary Bruce Lee, but also Jet Li and Donnie Yen. Chen Zhen is not one to F around with and not even Rama from the astounding Raid franchise was able to compete with Chen racking up 80% of the total votes. This one wasn’t even close and that’s too bad, because I actually prefer the Raid movies to any of the Fist of Legend/Fury flicks.
James Bond Vs. Indiana Jones
The first battle of round two was VICIOUS – a back and forth war between two of the most iconic movie characters of all time. We had the highest voter turn-out yet for this one, which saw Indiana Jones come out on top with about 56% of the total votes. Sorry Mr. Bond – Mr. Jones would prefer for you… TO DIE.
Harry Callahan Vs. Max Rockatansky
This strange battle of two very different film genres was also tough to predict, with the fight nearly being a dead-heat tie for the longest time on Facebook, but Twitter wound up seeing a much more lopsided support boost for Mad Max Rockatansky late in the game. Max wound up winning with nearly 60% of the votes seeing the Road Warrior advance to his toughest competition yet in the conference semi-finals – Indiana Jones…
John Wick Vs. Selene
Ok. For starters – Selene was actually WINNING this battle for most of the day until the normal human voters turned up late in the day and helped Mr. Wick come out on top with a 65% victory. Were people under the impression that because Kate Beckinsale’s character is a vampire – that she would win by default? You don’t think John Wick can kill a vampire? Get on up outta here internet. You scared me there for a bit…
Luke Skywalker Vs. Alice
LOL. Whoops – I probably should have switched brackets to avoid this kind of scenario. Sorry Resident Evil – but you just got smashed. I’m honestly stunned that Alice wound up with 15% of the votes – I estimated around 5% initially.
March 29, 2019
Ellen Ripley Vs. The Terminator
I’m a little bit disappointed with you internet. The Terminator cleaned house and won nearly 70% of the votes to take out my favorite fighter of the entire tournament. This one was a real surprise because I honestly thought that Ellen Ripley had a very legit shot at making it to the finals. Also — who the hell else would like to see a comic book mashing up Terminator and Alien? Dark Horse? Let’s do it soon please.
John Shaft Vs. The Bride
It was fitting that Tarantino’s Bride would match up against Shaft at some point considering that exploitation cinema is such a major influence in the Kill Bill films. However – The Bride crushed John Shaft with three quarters of the overall votes and it was to be expected. I’m not sure how this one would have played out if The Bride wound up facing Kirk from Star Trek though – it might have been a different story altogether….
James Braddock Vs. Leia Organa
And the award for strangest battle of the tournament so far goes to!!! Having Leia match up against Chuck Norris’ character from Missing in Action is about as bizarre as one can get in these things and I love it. I also love how back and forth the war was, with Braddock leading for a large chunk of the day, only to eventually lose by an intense forty percent margin at the cold deadly force powered psycho hands of the monstrous GENERAL LEIA.
Chan Vs. Chen Zhen
I’m starting to think what I feared most would happen in this tournament – that people are voting for CHAN assuming that I meant Jackie Chan and not CHAN the character from Police Story… There’s no way that Chan beats Chen Zhen – aka the James Bond of martial arts cinema – aka the legendary warrior portrayed by everyone from Bruce Lee to Jet Li… Right?!?!? OK guys – you voted for CHAN in another lopsided 75% victory and it’s starting to freak me out. Might be time to load up some classic Police Story flicks and see what the Hell is going on. It’s been a long time.
Indiana Jones Vs. Max Rockatansky
Mad Max has quickly become the most valuable dark horse contender of this tournament with yet another surprising underdog victory with almost 60% of the total votes AGAINST INDIANA FREAKING JONES? What? This was a very close and highly contested battle on Facebook but Twitter favoured Mad Max in overwhelming fashion. As much as I love Max Rockatansky, even I feel a little odd by this outcome. Maybe it’s because I used a Crystal Skull image and that’s what caused Indy’s downfall. My bad.
John Wick Vs. Luke Skywalker
The closest battle of the contest thus far and the fight that I predict will likely determine the overall winner of the entire tournament – John Wick versus Luke Skywalker… This one came down to only a few votes as Luke wound up winning with only 53% of the total votes, even though at one point he was winning by over 75% for most of the day. Look – I love Star Wars and I even named my son after the Jedi hero but I was kinda hoping Mr. Wick would be able to take him out for some reason. If anyone could do it – it would have been Keanu.
The Terminator Vs. The Bride
Arnold Schwarzenegger’s T-1000 remains as iconic of a character today as he did when he made his film debut in 1984. With yet another dominant victory with three quarters of the total votes, The Terminator moves on in what will likely be an inevitable showdown against Luke Skywalker in the finals. I adore Quentin Tarantino’s Kill Bill so much, but it’s hard to disagree with the fans’ choice here and the more I reflect upon The Terminator’s victories in this tournament, the more fondly I recall every movie in the franchise – even the shittier ones. They’re all great even when they’re not firing on all cylinders.
Leia Organa Vs. Chan
Guys what? Leia Organa loses against Chan from Police Story!?!? CHAN WOUND UP WITH 70% OF THE VOTES?!? I can’t stress this enough – this is NOT JACKIE CHAN THE ACTOR – IT IS CHAN FROM POLICE STORY – YES THEY SHARE THE SAME NAME! You lunatics just killed off Princess Leia and I’m very upset about the loss of a potential Luke versus Leia dream final. You all suck – a lot.
April 1, 2019
Luke Skywalker Vs. Max Rockatansky
Not surprising in the least, Luke Skywalker took out Mad Max with 80% of the votes. I’m beginning to wonder if including the Star Wars hero was a mistake because he’s been lightsabering his way to victory with ease — his only close fight so far against John Wick and if John Wick can’t beat Luke — who the Hell really can at this point?
The Terminator Vs. Chan
Honestly – it’s about time that Chan from Police Story and not Jackie Chan the human being — was eliminated from this tournament. The Terminator is too strong and too iconic to go down in this war, so I’m happy to say that T-100 scooped up the close victory with just over 60% of the overall votes. Also – how cool would a Terminator flick be if he were fighting someone like Jackie Chan? Holy shit.
THE FINAL BATTLE
Luke Skywalker Vs. The Terminator
The clash of metal hands is upon us! The Terminator, a cyborg sent from the future to kill and then subsequently stop the apocalypse going toe to toe with the Jedi master himself Luke Skywalker – two sci-fi icons going toe to toe —
It was a massacre. Luke Skywalker won with over 90 PERCENT OF THE VOTES, in what wound up being the most lopsided victory OF THE ENTIRE TOURNAMENT! What? OK, I totally agree with the fans here – Luke wins this one in the end, but I’ll admit that I thought it would be a little bit closer than this? Over 90%? Sorry Terminator you won’t be back, because Skywalker just killed your ass and he probably did it while he was taking a nap on another planet.