Friday One Sheet: We Need To Talk About EXPENDABLES 4 Tagline

Contributing Writer; Toronto, Canada (@triflic)
Friday One Sheet: We Need To Talk About EXPENDABLES 4 Tagline

At first glance, the new key art for Expendables 4 (or Expenda4bles if the never-good-to-begin-with trend of swapping letter for numbers in the title card has to be brought into the aging action franchise) is a similar design on the posters right from the first one. That is to say, a skull with a large swath of knives and guns fanning out from it and a lot of above-the-title names, or faces, or both.

The current design has a bit more colour in the form of a heat map (remember the beefy original Predator is the progenitor of The Expendables template), but otherwise, the producers of these films knows what their audience wants, and deviations from the formula are not really par for the course.

But in the height of winking self-awareness, or an utter lack of it, that tagline simply cannot be ignored. At the risk of merely dunking on it, it is the worst tagline I have come across in some time.  Behold:  "THEY'LL DIE WHEN THEY'RE DEAD."  Which seems to suggest some sort of grandfather timeloop paradox, as well as an odd use of an awkward pair of contractions -- particularly "They'll," when "They Will" has a better, dare I say, more heavy-weight cadence. I am aware how pedantic this is for a franchise which is not exactly about, well, swinging diction.

Since delighting in bad taglines is a kind of hobby for me, I have included a few other howlers from across the years, and they are underneath the flamin' hot poster image below

Here are some other questionable, but still memorable, taglines that seem to exist in the space of Expendables 4:

Day Of The Dolphin: "Unwittingly, he trained a dolphin to kill the president of the United States." (Enough said!)

The Nightflier:  "Evil has a flight plan."  (Simply try to conjure a mental image of the creature, at an airport concourse, trying to find its connecting flight. Gets me every time.)

The Man With The Iron Fists:  "You can't spell Kung Fu without F and U."  (Does this marketing department simply hate its audience?)

Silent Rage:  "Science created him. Now Chuck Norris must destroy him."

Jaws: The Revenge:  "This time it's personal."  (There must be something about 4th entries in a franchise, and contractions...)

Even the famously controlling Stanley Kubrick somehow missed the awkward, tacky, and self-referential tagline for Lolita:  "How did they ever make a movie of Lolita?"

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