Oh, Buddy Love
All great stories serve up friendship on the side.
Bill and Ted.
Maverick and Goose.
Woody and Buzz.
Michael and Dwight.
Elvis and Tupac… (word from the Bermuda Triangle is they’ve been hanging out lately.)
While buddy love takes different forms, we know it when we see it. For every tiff and hangup, best friends sharpen each other. A good sidekick helps the hero loosen up. Over adrenaline-pounding circumstances—Saturday detention, flight school, or a Hong Kong - LAPD joint operation—unlikely duos become amigos. With enough mileage, even deadly rivals (think Superman and Lex Luthor) turn into a kind of double act, anticipating and even feeding off each other’s antics like Laurel and Hardy.
Or apparently, Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg.
To bring this around to all things rad, we hit the archives for yet another Radical Rick countdown—times when two characters became buds, paired off with a love / hate / rivalry relationship, or went through something that deepened them as friends.
For the record, this one’s all bromance, not romance.
Apologies to Bonnie Brainstorm… and every female with a Radical Rick shrine.
With that, here they are: the most iconic, watchable, and in some cases unlikeliest buddy couples in Radical Rick.
One: Radical Rick and Skuzzer Switchblade
For double-acts, it doesn’t get any better than these two stars.
When the porcine king first hears about Radical Rick from his jungle-dwelling tribal worshippers, the instant envy blossoms into a classic, obsessive, hero-villain rivalry… granted the obsession is all on the tusk and loincloth end. If the ‘King of Wheeled Evil’ suddenly dropped out of existence, Radical Rick probably wouldn’t bat an eye.
That being said, there’s a kind of narrative ballet in how frequently (and vigorously) Skuzzer exerts himself… and in how Radical Rick wiggles to freedom at the last possible moment. Watching the Radster carve down a snowy mountain on an impromptu snowboard after Skuzzer blasted him out of the Attackilac’s cannon is a perfect example.
Perhaps the royal wart hog and his silent, superior nemesis are destined to tango for all time. The words of Heath Ledger’s Joker to the Caped Crusader might even sum it up: “I don’t want to kill you. No—you complete me.”
Kind of touching.
Two: MX Mug and Spike Speedwrench
Radical Rick’s two sidekicks are a wild team.
Where MX Mug’s go-to moves are taking credit, and throwing his weight around as Radical Rick’s official spokesperson (that is, when he’s not plotting to take the Radster’s place), Danny DeVito-sized Spike Speedwrench is a different breed. Next to Mug’s clumsy shenanigans and shameless, loveable, self-promotion, Spike’s gearhead knowledge, attitude, and Flash Gordon-like ability to whip up speedy solutions actually stands out as true supporting role.
But as things go in Crushed Crank Canyon, they’re usually stuck together. The result is a little bit like Pauly Shore… arguing with the entire pit crew of the Indy 500.
Talk about a clash of temperaments.
But in the end, two reliable sidekicks are better than one. Even if they bicker like an old married couple, both bring loyalty, courage, and much-needed problem solving skills to the table. Suffice it say, there’s room in our hearts (and in Radical Rick’s illustrious shadow) for both a goofy glory hog and a cooler, handier, wheelbound version of the Energizer bunny.
Three: MX Mug and Radical Rick
Need we say more?
That one element of this equation never talks while the other talks nonstop doesn’t dilute the chemistry. From his first appearance in Episode One of Radical Rick, MX Mug’s jealousy for everything Radical Rick has and represents was a kind of catalyst.
In a pleasant surprise, Radical Rick’s prowess brings the best (and at times, the worse) out of Mug, turning that insatiable glory lust into a dogged loyalty. Likewise, through every shenanigan, and even in the face of certain death, Radical Rick comes through for his favorite carrot nose.
Over volcanoes, races in Alaska, skiing lessons, a meteor glow rick, American Gladiator, and even a World Piece Bomb, the friendship of the two biggest BMX names in Crushed Crank Canyon (and even beyond) speaks louder than words.
In Mug’s case, there's a lotta words, so that’s saying something.
Four: Radical Rick and Miss Wristwack
C’mon, how can we resist?
After his royal highness Skuzzer and green-eyed MX Mug, Radical Rick’s home room teacher is his biggest thorn in the side. On some level, behind those spectacles and those pursed lips, Wristwack’s hatred for Radical Rick must be a kind of admiration… or jealousy.
In a kind of singular obsession to make sure Radical Rick never rides again, Wristwack concocts scheme after scheme to eliminate his riding hours by keeping him after class. The second Radical Rick arrives tardy, late for a test, or slides into any kind of bored daydream, she’s there with a ruler, ready to WHACK.
What’s a kid with an overactive rad gland and no interest in school going to do? It’s so sinister that tenured Truchbull actually made our list of the top Radical Rick villains.
Better study for that quiz like your life depends on it.
Five: Bonnie Brainstorm and Radical Rick
We know, we know.
We said no romance… and rest assured, you’ll find none here. Where there’s chromoly, rad obstacles, or the remote chance of chromoly and obstacles, the fair, longsuffering Bonnie Brainstorm stands no chance.
What’s truly touching about this textbook unrequited love is the very fact that it’s forever stalled in the friend zone. If anyone, the caring, intelligent, genuinely attractive Bonnie Brainstorm is probably the best candidate for Radical Rick. Where those screeching gals at the finish line come and go, Bonnie’s loyalty and affection are made of heartier stuff. Always at his side, and with a brainy solution that saves the day, Bonnie deserves the shot at being Radical Rick’s girlfriend,.
Too bad no such shot exists… not for Radical Rick.
Not when there’s rad adventures to be had.
And yet, to quote one of Bonnie’s favorite poets, hope springs eternal.
Treasure your best buds, rad fans.
For all the zany fan, Radical Rick reminds us that friends who stick around for each other get better with age. There’s a real radness in showing up again and again for someone, even if that person smokes you in every race.
Until next time, stay rad, and don’t be a wimp!