Beyond all of the silly stunts, and barfing, and shitting, at the core of jackass, there is true aesthetic genius. Those boys become living sculptures- their beauty as wild, and uninhibited as the sea- whether they’re simultaneously being stung by hundreds of bees, or literally wearing fire, this kind of brilliance can only come from reckless abandon. Let jackass be a lesson to us all:
People think that wearing fox fur is special, but if you have to kill something to put it on your body, it’s probably not the best you can do. It’s just not necessary anymore- we don’t need pelts to keep warm and shit. Instead, I think it is a greater sign of dominance to flaunt living animals from your body. Unoriginal people still use Chihuahuas and small mutated dogs to earn attention, but there’s obviously a cooler way. It’s birds. In Papua New Guinea, males accessorize with the most vibrant, rare, bird feathers in order to attract females. Why would this be sexy? Because birds are crazy-colored miniature dinosaurs. They’re insane. The whole “Put a bird on it,” thing was a joke from Portlandia, but it’s actually funny because it’s true, right? Literally, put a living bird on your body. The crazier it is, the better. Ever see someone walk into a coffee shop with a parrot on their shoulder? Bam, instantly popular. Here Chris Pontius is fashioning a woodpecker on his penis. I don’t know what he wants from me, as a viewer, but he can have it all.
2. LETTUCE SWIMSUIT
Throwback to the time Steve-O wore some lettuce and floated in a pool of manatees. When you’re wearing nothing but heads of romaine lettuce, you probably only have the capacity to feel earthy, natural, peaceful, serene, etc. The goal here was, in fact, to attract manatees onto Steveo’s body, but I think it achieves stellar magnitude on its own. Green was a nice choice, as it is verdant and lively. Throwback to the 70s when mental institutions were painted green, to promote soothing sensations in patients. Now just imagine what it would feel like to be immersed in nothing but water, the flaps of lettuce cradled your skin. It would be almost as good as heroin, I think.
When something is so starkly and inherently pointless, it draws your attention to it because your brain wants to rationalize something that isn’t there. It’s like recoiling into a constant feedback loop of never-ending fun. That’s the kind of affect Johnny Knoxville has with this one-piece. First of all, he “marinates” in an inflatable children’s swimming pool filled with bloody, raw meat (a decade before Lady Gaga did.) This presentation, alone, is already brimming with sexual appeal. Secondly, he wears the meat over a flame-retardant suit and then lies across a pit of flames. This kind of exhibitionism is unparalleled in the fashion industry. Why has no one acknowledged this yet? Is it because these boys are not elegant? Don’t tell me that a grown man balancing himself across the majesty of combustion is not elegant. /Is everything is a lie?
4. UNDERWEAR OF BEES
You have to be brave to pull this off. It makes the words “fierce” shrivel up into extinction, presumably among other things. There is definitely some blistering going on along the epidermis- there’s also probably some blood, venom, and honey thrown in the mix. Basically, it’s just a fucking nightmare. But this is the price you pay for fine art. The design was perfectly executed so nothing is wrong here. Somebody should make a compilation of footage from this event and show it at the MOMA. Lady Gaga and Nicki Minaj and blahblahblah are glorified for wearing kooky outfits on the red carpet, but here is this man who brought to life unimaginable creations still remaining unaccredited for his contributions to contemporary visual culture.
Finally, who can negate the predominance of leopard print and etc. speedos in the history of jackass? And yet seldom is there a beach. It is masculine, it is rugged, and it is powerfully delicate. All humans, straight American males especially, should take the indirect fashion advice of these unaccredited icons.
The garments of jackass are forever burned into my memory, and not necessarily out of volition. That is exactly the goal of sophisticated grooming- attraction, attention, dominance- via whatever means. Only someone without eyes would disagree that this fashion at it’s finest, objectively.