1:19:55 - Toaster to the head (Marv)
Marv attempts to crowbar his way into the cellar, only to find to his mild surprise that the door is unlocked. he steps inside and heads towards a cord attached to a lightbulb. pulling it dislodges an iron precariously balanced on a laundry chute several floors above, which smashes him on the head with a satisfying clunk.
the implications of this trap are only fully revealed by looking at the facts and figures involved (please note that the scientific analysis wont be particularly in-depth, as i’m a Politics student and my scientific literacy doesn’t extend to anything other than basic equations*).
anyway, the iron takes 6 seconds to plummet down the shaft and this figure, along with some formulae, can aid our analysis. as the rate of acceleration for a falling object is 9.8m/s per second, we can calculate that the iron was dropped from a height of about 176.5 metres (about 40 stories, so Chez McCallister must be significantly larger than it appears), hitting Marv at a speed of 58.8m/s (131.5mph).
this having been ascertained, once again i’m not sure there’s much point in providing a best and worst case scenario. i think it’s safe to say that what is basically a 3 kilogram lump of metal hitting a human head at 131.5mph is going to do dreadful things. if it doesn’t crack your skull open (which i’m sure it would, but i’m not a doctor), there’s all the horrible brain swelling and internal bleeding that’s associated with head injuries. so yeah, i’m counting this one as a death.
What Actually Happens - The iron leaves a comical red mark over Marv’s face and forehead which, to the credit of the film-makers, remains there for the rest of the film. Marv himself recovers quickly and goes to ascend the steps up into the main house…
okay so the rating!
all in all, i’m giving this a three and a half gasping Kevins. the trap is clearly going to kill any assailant if the iron strikes true, there’s no leeway there. despite this however, i still feel that this falls short of the horrific detachment of the icy-stairs trap.
whilst i wouldn’t condone the use of brutal force against anyone, it’s obvious that there’s a difference between putting the trap inside the house where only one of the Wet Bandits could fall foul of it and say, putting it outside the house where an inquisitive neighbour could set it off. this in mind, it’s maybe a gasping Kevin short of the icy-stairs.
'so why', you might ask, 'the extra half?'. well whilst the trap can only affect those who're in the house and thus can't harm any truly innocent bystander, Kevin does construct the situation rather coldly to increase the likelihood of the trap being triggered. namely by leaving the door to the cellar unlocked.
rather than lock the door to see if that alone will deter any entrant and having the trap as a last resort, Kevin sets a lethal trap as the house’s first proper line of defence. not only does this invalidate any insurance claim for theft-related damage his parents may wish to make on their return, it’s also psychotic and earns an extra half of a gasping Kevin.
DEATH COUNT: 3
*i’m hoping to put a better scientific analysis of this trap (and future traps) up later on with the help of a distinguished physicist. i would have waited and just included it in the article but i haven’t posted for AGES and i didn’t want people to think i’d abandoned the project.