Why the IRS Will Never Defeat Wesley Snipes
By Shane Rivers
Wesley Snipes is one bad cat. He’s got a black belt in karate, a list of former girlfriends that includes Halle Berry and Jennifer Lopez, and he’s portrayed some of the toughest big-screen heroes (and villains) in the last two decades. So why is the IRS so obsessed with putting him behind bars?
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There’s some nonsense about Snipes failing to file income tax returns, buy who are you going to believe, the IRS or a guy who keeps the streets clean of vampires? In fact, I’ve heard that his defense attorneys may have used the exact same argument.
While Snipes beat a number of the charges like he beats on-screen baddies (thanks in large part to the aforementioned vampire defense), he was found guilty on misdemeanor charges and sentenced to three years in prison. Fortunately, he was allowed to remain free while his appeal is being considered, allowing him to give the world such cinematic gifts as The Art of War II: Betrayal.
I honestly don’t know why the boys at the Internal Revenue Service even waste their time or the taxpayer’s money; it should be obvious that Wesley Snipes is unbeatable. I’ve provided some reasons below (roll over each picture for a special message).
The Perfect Defense
When it was time to appeal his prison sentence, a confident-looking Snipes approached the judge and delivered an impassioned–if somewhat confusing–plea. Blaming society for distracting him from paying taxes, Snipes also tied the IRS to Columbian drug lords and poppy fields. It’s since become known as “The Perfect Defense,” and it’s said to rival Johnny Cochran’s “Chewbacca Defense” in terms of effectiveness.
Here’s a clip of our hero kicking the ballistics:
He reportedly ended his plea by pointing out a banker in the courtroom and blaming the whole thing on him. We’ll see if it works.
Wesley Snipes 1 – Al-Qaeda 0
During the events of September 11th, 2001, Wesley Snipes’ rad bachelor pad was destroyed by the collapsing Twin Towers. But much to the frustration of Osama bin Laden, his cohorts in Al-Qaeda, and thousands of virgins waiting in Heaven, Snipes was not among the casualties. How did Wesley Snipes outwit the terrorists?
He wasn’t home.
While New York was going to hell in a handbasket, Snipes was on the West Coast (no doubt practicing his martial arts and chasing aspiring actresses). If Wesley Snipes can trick a guy who can outwit the U.S. military, what chance does the I.R.S. stand?
Meet Woody Harrelson: Crazy Honky
Woody Harrelson isn’t quite right. Sure, he seems like a nice guy, but there’s something off-kilter about the Texas native. I submit the following pieces of evidence as Exhibit “A”:
- His father, Charles Harrelson, was a contract killer with ties to the mob. He died in prison while serving two life terms for killing a U.S. District Judge. During this time, he once indicated that he was involved in the Kennedy assassination.
- Once allowed Steven Colbert to shave his head while the cameras rolled.
- Married a woman in Tijuana with the intention of getting a divorce the next day. He ended up staying married to her for 10 months.
- Scaled the Golden Gate Bridge with environmental activists.
- Used to own an oxygen bar is West Hollywood.
- Harrelson’s real first name is Woodrow. I rest my case.
That’s a pretty impressive list of eccentricities, right there. Even more impressive…
Wesley Snipes has worked with him on three films and survived.
From Wildcats and White Men Can’t Jump to Money Train (where they played adopted brothers), Snipes has been able to avoid being rolled up into a joint and smoked by the cannabis-obsessed Harrelson. In Money Train, he even prevailed in an on-screen fistfight with the hillbilly actor, leaving cast and crew stunned. If Wesley Snipes can do that to Mickey Knox, what chance does a pencil-pusher from the IRS stand?
Track Record vs. Bloodsuckers
Most people would agree that agents of the IRS are nothing more than evil bloodsuckers. That description also applies to vampires, and Snipes has been snuffing those pasty-faced bastards since Blade debuted in 1998.
To top it all off, Snipes has a secret weapon. The ally in questions is a songwriter, activist, actor, and all-around crusty old guy. I’m talking, of course, about Kris Kristofferson.
Anything that the IRS can dig up, Whistler…er…Kristofferson can burn down.
Wesley Snipes – Master of Disguise
You can’t catch what you can’t see, and nobody would expect a muscular transvestite to actually be Wesley Snipes in disguise. And any IRS agent who did get wise would be caught in Mrs. Snipes’ grasp, the life slowly choked out of him by powerful hands wearing press-on nails.
He’s done it before, folks, and he’s not afraid to do it again. Who can forget the image of a bald-headed Snipes putting on red heels and then kicking his legs in girlish excitement during a scene from To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything! Julie Newmar? The image still haunts me.
Always Bet on Black
Don’t blame me, as Wesley coined the popular phrase in Passenger 57. Taking on a douchebag villain who looked half albino, Snipes used his blackness like a loaded gun and delivered the following lines (much to the delight of overweight suburbanites):
Whether you’re playing roulette or battling prissy killers at 20,000 feet, those are words to freakin’ live by.
A Man of the People
When you’re fighting for your freedom against the legal system, it’s important to have the people on your side. Public outcry can cause lawmakers to cave, and who better to buck the system than a man who hands out free turkeys each Thanksgiving?
As Nino Brown in New Jack City, Snipes understood the value of gaining the people’s trust. Sure, he’d later have them all strung out on crack, but you can’t dispute the value of a free holiday bird. Just ask Pookie…
Whoops. Looks like Pookie’s busy at the moment, so that’s as good a place as any to wrap up our list of reasons why the IRS will never defeat Wesley Snipes. Now sit your five-dollar ass down before I make change, and read these other feature articles from Only Good Movies: