As a true JCVD fan, I am a believer in the legacy of Frank Dux. Many, if not most people, accept that the story of Frank Dux in the movie “Bloodsport” is in fact based on the real life events of a guy named Frank Dux who competed in an event called the Kumite. I mean hell, if they roll text at the end of the movie that represents something as a fact – then it must be a fact. However, I decided that I wanted to know more about the man who JCVD brought to life so I did some research.
What I found was not great, if you do a search on Frank Dux one of the things that you come across is a LA Times article. If you follow the link to the LA Times article you will learn the following potentially disturbing parallels between Frank Dux and Sensee John Kreese of the Cobra Kai Dojo. Here are some of those disturbing parallels:
- John Kreese ran a bunch of “martial arts for the elite” dojos in California, which apparently is what the real life Frank Dux does.
- The real life Frank Dux claims, but is unable to substantiate, tremendous success as a martial artist; Sensee John Kreese was exposed as a fraud when he was confronted by Miagee in the parking lot after the tournament in Karate Kid (to be clear this scene occurred at the beginning of KK2, as a continuation to the end of KK1 – and we are talking about the “real Karate Kid” not the Jaden Smith thing).
- The real life Frank Dux claimed to fight in SE Asia, but military records demonstrate that he was never near there in his career. Sensee John Kreese made similar claims about his military service; though we never get direct evidence to the contrary it’s pretty clear this guy never sniffed the battlefield in Nam. All we get is his douche-bag war buddy in KK3, that story line made zero sense.
I am starting to think that Frank Dux had more than one movie character inspired by the “macho fantasy” of Frank Dux. Karate Kid gave us Sensee John Krese who resembles the Frank Dux of the real world, and “Bloodsport” gave us the fully imagined Frank Dux. So as a JCVD fan, and as a Karate Kid fan I am confronted with a bit of a paradox when I sort through this LA times article on Dux.
Here is what I am choosing to do, and I welcome your input / questions / challenges of my choice. The bottom line is that I have too much invested in the “macho fantasy” that is “Bloodsport.” I have based some of my own warrior code on the principles set forth in “Bloodsport.” For example, you can’t just train for the “ideal situation.” What if you find yourself blinded by a nefarious Korean dude who fights dirty in a deadly full contact mixed martial arts fight? It is for this reason that I also train blindfolded, as JCVD’s Frank Dux did in “Bloodsport.”
I simply don’t want to believe the facts reported in this LA Times story. I would rather believe that Frank Dux still holds the records for fastest knockout, most knockouts, most victories, etc. I also want to believe that he was successfully able to honor his Shidoshi with a Kumite win, the first Kumite win ever by a non-asian fighter.
It’s a surprisingly simple choice. Do we really want to believe that Frank Dux was a bunch of “macho fantasy.” Sensee John Kreese has absolutely zero redeeming qualities, the guy can’t fight, he probably lied about going to war, the country club blue bloods that he trains in Karate Kid I are the only people “street ignorant” enough to buy into his “macho fantasy” (i.e. Mercy is for the weak). By choosing to beleive that Frank Dux is a fraud, I am basically choosing to identify with the spoiled ass-clowns who beat up Daniel Laruso in Karate Kid. It’s not an option.
I have seen “Bloodsport” over 25 times, if it were on TV right now I would watch it. There is literally NOTHING about the movie that I don’t know, and yet I can’t turn the channel. For some reason in the summer time the movie is on 5 times a week on Spike TV. Pretty soon they are going to launch a child network called “Bloodsport,” which I will tune into. I have tried to learn the “Dim Mac,” or “Deft touch.” I have tried to tie my ankles to palm trees to see if my groins can get strong enough to pull two trees down from a split position. I can’t accept that the article is true. So I am choosing the JCVD version of Frank Dux over the Martin Kove version. I recognize the facts presented in the LA Times story are overwhelming, but it is my life and selective ignorance can be just as blissful as actually not knowing something.
I welcome your thoughts on this, what would you do? Is this a moral / ethical issue? Do you want to believe that Frank Dux was a Kumite legend, or do you want to believe he was the product of a “macho fantasy?” Kumite, Kumite, Kumite, Kumite….
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