Spike TV’s Deadliest Warrior is more than just ex-Green Berets talking trash with medieval historians while hacking away at gel torsos. It’s one of the few shows that nerds and their natural enemies can enjoy together in peace: The macho types can enjoy the fights, the smack talk, and the carnage, while the nerds can appreciate the science, the history… and the carnage. Essentially, one hour spent sharing a six-pack over an episode of this show is one hour not spent with one’s head forced into a commode.
TR has previously honored the baddest of the bad amongst Deadliest Warrior’s guest experts. Today, we take a look at the tools of their trade — the weapons that make these warriors The Deadliest.
Be aware though, that this is not necessarily a list of the best DW armaments. Efficiency, effectiveness, practicality, and simplicity are fine — but in this case they’re overshadowed by jaw-dropping pants-crapping awesomeness. We’re not soldiers or warriors here — just nerds who like to drool over kickass implements of death.
So let’s take a closer look at 10 of the most innovative, horrific, and downright badass means of terminating the existence of a fellow human being.
10) Grappling Hook, “Somali Pirates Vs. Medellin Cartel”
Our first entry should give you guys an idea of what we’re looking for in a weapon. The grappling hook may be the most inefficient and unwieldy implement in Deadliest Warrior history. Pitted against the Medellin Cartel’s machete, it lost hands down (and “hands off”, for that matter). So what’s it doing here? Put simply, it’s wielded by people who will KILL YOU IN THE FACE WITH A GODDAMN GRAPPLING HOOK. How hardcore is that? When we see someone with a grappling hook, we imagine perhaps a bit of Batman-style office building scaling, not disemboweling uncooperative freighter Captains. The grappling hook: a bad weapon for VERY bad men.
If it’s precision you’re interested in, consider Czech-made Semtex plastic explosive as employed by the supremely badass Israeli Commandos. They used this stuff to send the top bombmaker from Hamas off to his Greater Reward. A few ounces packed into a cell phone was enough to blast this guy’s face clear across the West Bank, but the explosion is small and concentrated enough to avoid practically any collateral damage. Observe the video above; looks like his call… (puts on sunglasses) got dropped. (YEEEAAAAAAAH)
Few things are as awesomely destructive as a flame thrower, and if it weren’t for a slight sense of discomfort at the notion of giving the Nazis ANY kind of props, this sucker probably would’ve gotten a higher rating. Honestly, this thing’s biggest draw is its name: Flammenwerfer! Say it — it’s more fun than a Nazi weapon should be!
7) Benelli M4 Shotgun, “SWAT Vs. GSG9”
In the sage words of Gunnery Sergeant Hartman: “That is NOT your Daddy’s shotgun, Cowboy!”
SWAT’s signature state-of-the-art slug-thrower is one of the slickest pieces of ordnance ever featured on Deadliest Warrior. Sure, it lacks the classic appeal of the pump shotgun, but while you’re practicing that “oh so cool” Linda Hamilton T2 one-handed pump, Mr. Benelli’s automatic action is ventilating your torso.
China’s Ming Warriors were one of, if not the very first, professional armies to employ black powder weapons. The “nest of bees” was essentially a wood and paper hand-held cannon loaded with what amounted to arrowhead tipped bottle rockets.
The weapon itself is impossible to aim, but when you consider that each nest of bees is unloading 32 rocket-propelled arrows, and a whole line of Ming warriors would be armed with one each along a wall or other elevated point — it’s gonna hit something. Plus, everybody you don’t hit will be busy running for cover and crying for their mommies.
The Katar is a well-known weapon throughout nerd-dom; videogamers will recognize it as the signature armament of Soul Calibur‘s leather fetishist/gimp Voldo. D&D players know it as the punching dagger, a 1d4 hand weapon with an absolutely sick critical modifier.
But in the hands of India’s elite Rajput Warriors, the Katar was a standard weapon and status symbol, used primarily to allow their enemies to become more intimately acquainted with their own intestines.
Bonus points are awarded for the evil little “snik!” these babies make when the side blades pop out (although Wolverine impressions are optional).
4) Dragunov Rifle, “Spetsnaz Vs. Green Berets”
Friends, what you see before you is the Dragunov SVD sniper rifle, the long-range weapon of choice for Spetsnaz, the USSR’s ruthless Special Ops soldiers, and quite possibly the sexiest firearm ever to rise from the hand of man. Designed in 1963 by Yevgeny Dragunov, and chosen out of three competing models as the Soviet military’s standard squad-support weapon, it’s semi-automatic (a rare feature for a sniper rifle) and can fire a wide range of ammunition.
In the episode, the Green Berets’ M24 outshot it by one kill in the overall numbers, but who cares? Just look at it: Even the most die-hard non-violent pacifist couldn’t help but admire this honey of a gun.
Add to this a name that sounds like a particularly evil COBRA lieutenant, and you’ve got a recipe for high-caliber awesomeness.
3) Mongol Steel Mace, “Comanche Vs. Mongol”
By this point, some of you may well be thinking: “This is all well and good–but what do we do when the zombies come?” Guns and flamethrowers run out of ammo, swords require a great deal of skill and precision to effectively decapitate. So what’s left?
Enter the Mongol steel mace. One of the simplest weapons featured here, it consists of a steel shaft and a flanged head- – and, as the clip will attest to, it’s just what the doctor ordered when popping heads like grapes. Watch as Team Mongol’s Munkthur Luvsanjambaa — the most intimidating historian we’ve ever seen — goes to town like Gallagher at a watermelon farm.
2) Kilij, “Vlad the Impaler Vs. Sun Tzu”
If ever a comprehensive list of History’s Stupidest Ideas is compiled, then the Ottoman Turks will surely crack the Top 50 for teaching Vlad Tepes to wield this positively vicious sword.
This ain’t no hoity-toity fencing foil, this sword was much like Vlad himself–brutal, effective, uncompromising, and deadly. The Turkish Kilij is curved like the traditional scimitar, but weighted at the tip, and has no other purpose save for causing a foe’s limbs to part company from his body. See for yourself as scary Romanian swordmaster Vaclav Havlik tests out the Son of the Dragon’s blade on a very unlucky pig carcass.
1) Ballistic Knife, “Spetsnaz Vs. Green Berets”
For entry #1, we find ourselves revisiting the wonderful world of Spetsnaz. This time, our focus is on a marvelously devious bit of cutlery: The ballistic knife. A knife… you can shoot at people. It’s a masterful example of Cold War era covert weapons technology wielded by a human death-machine — like the gentleman we’re about to meet. You’d find yourself using your last breath to thank whoever killed you in so kickass a manner.
Former Spetsnaz Operative Sonny Puzikas, whom you may remember from the last DW list, and may be one of the most terrifying human beings alive, demonstrates the capabilities of this superlatively cool weapon. The only way this thing could be topped is if somebody makes a ballistic sword.