Land of 1,000 Dances

By Sunday Scaries

Kevin Thomas of The Los Angeles Times described the credits sequence of The Great Outdoors where Dan Aykroyd dances to Wilson Pickett's "Land of a 1,000 Dances" as "the only genuine fun and energy in the entire film."

Ummmmmmm, understatement of the century? Not only is Kevin undermining the comical genius spewing from the rest of the film, but he's completely underselling the heat of the trademark scene.

You know how they say great athletes get tunnel vision and picture themselves as the only person on the field when they're in the zone? That's what Aykroyd does in the ending credits of The Great Outdoors.

0:01 The other night at party, we made the mistake of telling a girl that her face looked like John Candy's. Not her body, just her face. For future reference, do not EVER, under any circumstances, tell a girl that her face looks like John Candy's.

0:12 There is no greater moment in life than when you hear Wilson Pickett bust in with "1-2-3! 1-2-3!" to begin "Land of 1,000 Dances." Not only is this one of the greatest songs ever composed, but it has also lead to the creation of the greatest Spotify playlist ever assembled, with the title track being "Land of 1,000 Dances," obviously.

And, as the most stereotypically white person ever, I have no shame in saying that the Jeep Wagoneer is the pinnacle of all WASP vehicles. Of COURSE Chet Ripley (John Candy) drives one.

0:16 Those tassel loafers. Those pants. Those red socks. That foot tap.

0:19 When Ian Giatti, Hilary Gordon, and Rebecca Gordon were sitting with their families watching The Great Outdoors for the first time, do you think there was an overwhelming, room-filling letdown sigh when they realized that their moment of credits glory was completely overshadowed by the first glimpse of Roman Craig (Aykroyd) dancing?

0:20 #JohnCandysFace

0:23 Roman is clearly the coolest dude in the bar (the hair, the red turtleneck, the matching brown buttondown and blazer), so whoever he points to mid-dance just became the second coolest dude in the bar. And the white-bearded bro in the background? Don't sleep on him being in third.


0:25 Sneaky best dance move ever? The Hot Lava, which is executed to perfection by Roman. Some truly electric side-to-side motion here.

After a long day of golfing and drinking, myself and three friends went to a bar where they didn't allow drinks on the dancefloor. We took this as our signal to treat the dancefloor like hot lava whenever we had a drink in our hand, simulataneously taking turns cutting a rug while someone else held the drink one step away from the dancefloor. We were promptly kicked out of the bar for "taunting the bouncer," which is still mind-boggling to me. Sorry for lava'ing?


0:35 If there's one thing we know about Roman, it's that he likes to get AGGRESSIVE early and often. So to go Lava-to-Twist-to-One-Handed-Push-Ups 35 seconds in on the dancefloor is just another day at the office for him. You go hard, Roman goes harder. It's the protocol.

0:36 Speaking of aggressive, SOMEONE HOSE ROMAN DOWN. DAGGER, DAGGER, DAGGER. Zero clue what was going through his mind when he went push-ups to just straight-up DAGGERING, but my god.

And our white-bearded dude on the sidelines? Lovin' it.


0:45 It takes a man with supreme confidence to clear the dancefloor with an ass-out back-up directly to the fireplace. With that being said, it also takes a man with supreme confidence to wear a red turtleneck on top of red plaid pants. so this should come as no surprise. It should also come as no surprise that the bartender is FEELIN' it.


0:54 There are three things you can do with a beer bottle on the dancefloor that are completely acceptable under any circumstances:

  1. Drink out of it.
  2. Make it into a fake dick.
  3. Use it as a microphone.

The buffalo on the wall got a front row seat to option 3.


1:06 Yo Chet, the fuck you doing, bro? You're married. You can't be fat-man dancing with biker floozies like this. You're not Roman.



1:07 Meanwhile, Roman? Crushing.


1:10 Not to be a dick, Chet, but you're not the most svelte guy in the world. You're outkicking your coverage with your wife as it is, so when she sees you dancing with hussies wearing leopard print tank tops, this happens —


1:15 When Aykroyd was on set, did he do all of this in one fucking take? Like honestly. There's no way that he could have possibly sustained the amount of energy brought throughout this entire scene for more than like two minutes. It's not like he stopped shooting and said, "Hey, can we roll it back to where I'm fake cupping the biker girl's tits? I want it to be more natural this take."

And the woman in the background wearing the red blazer? That's Roman's fucking wife, Kate.  The AUDACITY. LOVE how long of a leash she gives Roman. Can't stop the greats from being great.


1:25 The absurdity of Roman getting on the bar and pretending to eat a black woman's leg like a piece of chicken is just beyond me.


1:25 Moments like this are where you realize why Aykroyd is an all-timer. This look is on-par with the look Val gave Brink before the final race.


1:37 Focusing your fake binoculars on someone else's wife mid-dancefloor is the perv move of the century and I can't get enough of it.

When you see him adjusting those fuckers, you know you're about to get absolutely brutalized.


1:51 Aaaaaaaaaand it's officially mayhem. These are the moments where people tell their grandchildren, "Yeah, I was there for that." and no one believes them.

Not that Roman ever gave a fuck, but it's clear at this point that he doesn't give a FUCK.


2:25 Meanwhile, Chet is just fake titty-grabbing on the sidelines while Roman is straight up daggering his wife in front of everyone. Gotta respect that he's not even trying to play Pippen to Roman's Jordan at this point. He knows his efforts would be rendered completely useless.


2:26 Aaaaaaaaaaaaaand scene.

It's Roman's world. We're all just livin' in it.

Bonus Scene