Until laser pistols are invented — or trebuchets come back in fashion — bullets will remain the uncreative weapon of choice for individuals in regrettable situations everywhere.
But that doesn't mean we can't imagine a better world where bullets can be stopped with teeth and hairdos. Here are ten ways to stop a bullet — nine are from speculative fiction and one is from weird, weird reality.
1.) Palm The Bullet
If you're in peak physical form (and plan all of your wicked machinations 30 minutes before the good guys show up), you may just be able to catch bullets like Ozymandias from Watchmen.
Here's the original Dave Gibbons depiction of the scene. See also: the Observers on Fringe.
2.) Your Teeth
Is Berry Gordy's The Last Dragon the most important movie of our time? Obviously. I mean, what other kung fu movie had DeBarge's "Rhythm of the Night" in it? I fucking dare you to answer that. Also, every morning, I must listen to Willie Hutch's "The Glow" at least seven-and-a-half times before I can leave the house. Where was I? Oh yes. At the end of the movie, heroic martial artist Bruce Leeroy catches a bullet with his teeth. The action starts at 4:45.
3.) Bend Reality
Suffice to say, The Matrix popularized the notion of "bullet time." It's really hard to practice this technique, but if you find yourself bending spoons and hanging out with Cornel West, you may have the chops.
4.) A Trusty Blade
At the ending of the comic book Wanted — which had nothing to do with magic looms or bullet-bending or Angelina Jolie — assassin Wesley Gibson finds himself in the crosshairs of Mister Rictus, a supervillain who's an analogue of The Joker. Wesley gets out of this barney by bringing a knife to gunfight.
As immortalized by Pootie Tang. Digression — did you know that Louis C.K. directed Pootie Tang? And that he was more or less sacked from directing? For real!
6.) Fast Fingers
As epitomized by the slovenly martial arts master "The Beast" in Stephen Chow's Kung Fu Hustle, who plucks bullets from the air with two digits.
7.) Pop On A Handsome Alien Exosuit
By the end of District 9, Wikus Van De Merwe goes from nebbish bureaucrat to half-alien bad-ass catching missiles while wearing exoskeletons. This is how I like my character development: with a lot of explosions.
8.) Wear A Shitty Homemade Battlesuit
This was the method preferred by 19th century Australian outlaw Ned Kelly, who donned anti-bullet armor during his last confrontation with the police. Side note: his headless body was finally found a wee while ago. Image: Chensiyuan/Wikimedia.
9.) Develop A Genetic Mutation That Allows You To Control Magnetic Fields.
Be forewarned that you're proper boned if your opponents carry wooden bullets.
10.) Be Weird Al Yankovic
From UHF. This technique is very similar to The Last Dragon, but it's a lot harder to train to be Weird Al. For one thing, you need to establish a beef with Coolio first. That man has gone through a lot.