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Film / Here Comes the Boom

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One teacher still believes in fighting for his students.

Here Comes the Boom is a 2012 sports comedy starring Kevin James, directed by Frank Coraci. The story follows Scott Voss, a high school biology teacher (James) who takes up Mixed Martial Arts in order to raise enough money to save his school's under-funded music program and prevent music teacher Marty from being laid off.


  • Absurdly Elderly Mother: The plot is set in motion because music teacher Marty's wife gets pregnant despite being in her mid 40s, causing Scott to take up MMA to raise money and save his school's music program and guarantee his friend's job and financial future. It's even lampshaded when Marty gets a text from his wife and asks Scott if that's possible.
  • Acrofatic: Averted early in Scott's fight career, when he gets one-shotted by a fighter who is clearly in worse shape then he is. Scott visibly slims down over the course of the film, though with his stout build he eventually becomes this trope.
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  • All for Nothing: Late in the film, it's revealed everything Scott has earned for the school has been embezzled away by a corrupt administrator, meaning the only way to save the music department is to beat UFC powerhouse Ken Deitrich.
  • As Himself: Bruce Buffer, Joe Rogan and Mike Goldberg as UFC commentators and announcers.
  • Author Appeal: Kevin James is an MMA fan himself.
  • Battle in the Rain: Just because it starts raining, it doesn't mean the fight stops.
    This isn't Baseball!
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Not that he was all that pretty to begin with, but he looks pretty good at the end of the fight, black eye notwithstanding, and then it heals up perfectly a short time later.
  • Breakout Character: A lot of critics reviews heaped praise on Bas Rutten as Niko.
  • Bookends: The school's music class is in disarray in the beginning. By the end, Voss' efforts have paid off, and the music department is in much better shape.
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  • Chekhov's Gun: Scott's brother is shown to hate his job as a painter, and to be a skilled, dedicated cook. This gives Scott a way to help Malia's father later, when his chef quits, thus making it possible for Malia to remain in the school's music club.
  • Consolation Prize: This is the impetus for Scott to take up UFC fighting as his means of saving the school's programs, when he hears that the loser of a fight gets 10 grand.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Every one of Voss' fights are predicted to be lost as this.
  • Determinator: Scott's other attribute, aside from his strength, is his ability to tank damage (to a reasonable degree) and refuses to give up during his fight with Ken Dietrich.
  • Exact Words: Niko "used to teach MMA at a gym," now he does cardio and spin classes.
  • Fighting Irish: One of Voss's opponents, played by Jason "Mayhem" Miller, uses this as his theme, complete with green hair.
  • Floorboard Failure: During one of Scott's matches, he gets tossed and smashes right through the floor of the fighting ring. His opponent and the ref have a moment to go "Oh, Crap!" before the ring collapses out from under them too.
  • Genius Ditz: Music teacher Marty Streb.
  • How Much More Can He Take?: Voss' UFC fight.
  • Oh, Crap!: Dietrich has a pretty huge Oh Crap look on his face after Voss defends his armbar and has him lifted off the mat.
  • On the Money: $48,000 to save the school's extracurricular programs. Scott decides to raise the money with UFC fighting, where the loser gets paid $10,000 per fight. Then after he finds out that a corrupt administrator had embezzled away all the money he earned, the only solution left is to win the fight and get $50,000.
  • Opposing Sports Team: Ken Deitrich.
  • Plot Time: 5 minute MMA rounds take all of 30 seconds of screen time.
  • Power Walk: With the acoustic version of "Here Comes the Boom."
  • Reality Is Unrealistic: Upon release, the film was criticized for the ending of Scott's UFC fight, where he fights his way out of an armbar by hoisting his opponent and slamming him into the ground, winning by knockout. As this video clearly demonstrates, not only is slamming/power-bombing an opponent a valid defense against a variety of submission holds, but it is perfectly capable of knocking you out cold. As Joe Rogan points out in his commentary, getting slammed on your head and shoulders hurts. He likens it to a linebacker tackling a quarterback... but without a helmet for protection.
  • Rousing Speech: During the final match where Scott has to win the $50,000 purse, he is taking a beating from his opponent in the first two rounds and is starting to lose hope, but Marty fires him back up by pointing to the students who have come to watch him and saying that he's succeeded in their ultimate role as teachers: to inspire their students. This gives Scott his Heroic Second Wind and he starts retaliating in the third round.
  • Stout Strength: Scott starts the film a bit chubby, but through his training (re)develops his strength. This is what allows him to hoist Dietrich in the air and slam him down for the win.
  • They Stole Our Act: Voss faces this dilemma when one of his opponents comes in to his entrance music ("Boom" by P.O.D.). The replacement song Marty comes up with is "Holly Holy" by Neil Diamond.
  • ¡Three Amigos!: Scott Voss as The Hero, Niko as The Muscle, and Marty as the Chick, may also work as the Freudian Trio, Scott as the Ego, Niko as the Id and Marty as the Superego.
  • Training from Hell: Scott actually does little training for his first couple of fights, outside of drafting Marty to act as a training dummy to brush up on his Wrestling. Once Niko comes into the picture, though, Scott gets a crash course in what it's really like for a 41-year old to train like an athlete.
  • Training Montage: Of course.
  • Triumphant Reprise: "Holly Holy." Used as an intro to a cage match? Lame. Played and sung by the very students he's fighting for? Inspired.
  • True Companions: Scott stands up for Marty's job in the face of budget cuts and embezzlement, which kicks this off. Niko gets included by the film's end.
  • Vengeful Vending Machine: Scott tries to buy a snack from a vending machine, but it gets stuck. He rams the vending machine causing several snacks to fall out. A student sees him do this and he tosses him one of the extra snacks telling him to keep quiet.