okay, so if i were to write the academy award-winning and world peace-establishing screenplay where Dwayne “the Rock” Johnson and Vin Diesel slowly fall in love, this is what it would look like:
vin and dwayne would be bitter Rival Agents for an intelligence agency. both would be up for a Big Promotion. they would both be working together (but against each other) on something something black market mafia. the mafia would be involved. they would be VERY CLOSE to cracking this case.
whoever cracks the case gets the promotion! because things like this are always very clear-cut in movies. and whoever gets the promotion is the Better Agent, and it’s settled forever.
what they don’t expect is when they finally go in to make the Big Bust on The Family is that the Big Players will still be at large–and there will be a BABY.
the baby will fall into agency custody, and will require surveillance in a remote safehouse.
“i need YOU TWO to pretend and be this baby’s GAY DADS to protect the baby and keep The Family off our tail while we close in on them,” says Head Intelligence Captain Lupita Nyong’o.
dwayne and vin and baby are begrudgingly moved to a suburb of provincetown, massachusetts. cut to shot of a FOR SALE sign being pulled down, a ford fusion hybrid pulling up behind a moving van. dwayne and vin step out. they are both wearing muscle shirts and mirror-lensed aviators. dwayne grabs a baby bag, throws it over his shoulder. vin grabs the car seat out of the back, and both of them walk-slow motion up the side walk to their new 800k beach house.
here’s what they expect: passive aggressive co-existence for a couple of weeks, where they try to be the Better Dad in a bid for the promotion they both want. dwayne will go jogging with the baby every morning!! vin will wear her in a sling when he goes to the farmer’s market and smiles at the vendors while feeling up avocados and selecting fresh caught filets of fish!!
here’s what they don’t expect: their next door neighbors are going to be Channing Tatum and Idris Elba and their five beautiful, interracial babies. they are the perfect Gay Family, but “also,” dwayne says, pushing vin inside from where he’s been grilling steaks and drinking MILLER out of a CAN in broad daylight for the Real Gay Family to see and call over from their patio!!! “these guys are the REAL DEAL. they’re gonna know something’s up! i know we’ve had our beef, but we gotta step our game up and work together if we’re gonna make this operation work.”
“you’re right,” vin says. he’s nodding, looking at a ground, but then up and meeting dwayne’s gaze. “you’re RIGHT.” they’re gonna make this partnership work!!! they are going to be the BEST GAY DADS.
CUT TO: vin and dwayne staring at the king sized mattress in the master bedroom. “i can just–” vin says, but dwayne grabs him by the shoulder and shakes it playfully. “no man,” he says. “it’s all in or nothing.”
CUT TO: them jogging together with baby playfully squealing from her stroller early in the morning.
CUT TO: vin playfully feeding dwayne grapes at the farmer’s market. “it’s all or nothing,” he repeats, raising his eyebrows (???? eyebrow folds? idk man). dwayne rolls his eyes and TAKES THE BITE.
CUT TO: channing tatum in monogrammed shorts and pink polo and boat shoes on their front door step with one of his many perfect, precious toddlers on his shoulders, asking them to dinner. “uh yeah,” dwayne says, cool as a cucumber. he’s not freaking out (he’s totally freaking out!!). “we’ll bring the wine.”
“we’ll bring the wine?” vin repeats, in a hushed voice so the neighbors and baby don’t hear them fighting. “do you know anything about wine? they probably have a second house in france! i haven’t had anything that didn’t come from a box since–since ever! what were you thinking?” “i panicked! it seemed like the right thing to say!”
TIRES SCREECH as the ford focus hybrid drifts into the whole foods parking lot.
they show up out of breath, foreheads glistening, with baby in her favorite babybjorn, feet kicking from the day’s excitement of wine shopping. vin, wheezing, passes a bottle of red and a bottle of white.
“oh, a chateau coutet barsac,” idris says with a chuckle, showing the label to channing. “remember that time–?” and oh my GOD, they have inside jokes!!
(”we don’t have any inside jokes!!” dwayne whispers when they immediately excuse themselves halfway through a tour of the house. “that’s because you are the least funny person i know!” vin replies. “god, i hate you!!!” they both probably hiss at each other.)
the worst and best part of the night is when they’re serving the roast veg salad, and channing says with the best intentions, “so, how did you two meet?”
“uh,” vin says.
“the gym,” dwayne says. which, actually turns out to be true. they look at each other, smile soft and genuine for once at each other, REMEMBERING. before they were BITTER RIVALS, they met at the academy gym and were GYM BUDDIES. they used to have FUN trying to beat each other’s PR on the treadmill, they used to LOVE shit talking each other when they spotted each other bench pressing, they used to snap towels at each other’s asses in the locker room and totally not check each other out or anything!!! and then they were both accepted to the same position at work and they stopped being friendly for whatever reason. they stop smiling, they look away from each other. “anyway.”
“we met building houses for habitat for humanity,” idris offers, because of COURSE THEY DID.
the second worst part of the night is when channing mentions during the dessert course that two weeks from now is the annual May Day Homeowner’s Neighborhood Block Party Crab Cookoff, and maybe dwayne and vin would like to host to get to know everyone else in the neighborhood!
vin has had like, three more glasses of wine than everyone else, and with aid of liquid confidence, shrugs his shoulders and leans back in his chair and says, “yeah, man, we’d love to.”
“’yeah, man, we’d love to?’” dwayne repeats when they’re walking home, baby asleep in her bjorn.
“sorry, did you want me to give ourselves away? what happened to being the best? we’re trying to be believable!”
“yeah,” dwayne says, watching vin strip off his shirt and pants and toss them over his shoulder into their spare hamper before crawling into their bed. it’s routine. they both have their sides of the bed. “believable.”
the bedroom is quiet as they face away from each other at the edges of the mattress. eventually dwayne asks, “do you remember why we stopped being friends?”
for a second he thinks maybe vin’s gone to sleep. but he turns over. “no,” he says. “or yeah, maybe. as soon as i realized we would both be seeing action, it became too much of a risk. friendship. it was easier to lose you as a friend on my terms than lose you as a friend because you got your dumbass killed.”
they decide to be friends again. you know, for the baby. for work. whatever.
they get so caught up in planning the May Day Homeowner’s Neighborhood Block Party Crab Cookoff, making inside jokes and ignoring the increasing casual physical intimacy between them that they don’t realize they are BEING WATCHED.
the mafia is HERE and they want their BABY and they want dwayne and vin DEAD.
the M.D.H.N.B.P.C.C happens and everything is going according to plan, and they are about to have dwayne judge the bisque portion of the competition, but no one has seen dwayne anywhere!!!!
are there warehouses in provincetown??? is there a bad part of provincetown??? anyways, that’s probably where the mafia took dwayne. vin is FREAKING OUT, how does he save dwayne??? how does he protect the baby, who they are using dwayne as ransom for??? who will judge the bisque portion of the crab cookoff???
idris puts a hand on his shoulder. he’s been watching the entire time. “i’ll take the baby into our panic room–” OF COURSE THEY HAVE A PANIC ROOM, “and channing will judge the bisque portion of the crab cookofff. you go save your man.”
CUT TO: vin getting geared up to go out and kick some mafia ass, entering their walk-in closet and grabbing GUNS and a BULLET PROOF VEST and lacing up his L.L BEAN MEN’S GORETEX LEATHER BOOTS.
vin takes out the entire warehouse-or-whatever of mafia lackeys and comes across dwayne tied up and blindfolded.
“who’s there!” dwayne demands, like he’s ready to fight despite himself. vin takes three strong steps forward and grabs him by the back of the head and pulls him in for a kiss. “guess who,” he replies. dwayne smiles.
just then the Final Boss shows up as dwayne is being untied and like, something dramatic happens or whatever, but it’s okay. they die or go to jail or something, it doesn’t really matter, because dwayne and vin are in LOVE and they’re gonna adopt the hell out of that baby.
CUT TO: a month later. Head Intelligence Captain Lupita Nyong’o is disappointed when vin won’t accept his promotion.
“i would,” he says, heavily decorated for saving dwayne in the field and taking down the mafia family. “but the code of conduct says that it would be a conflict of interest if i was my husband’s supervisor.” BAM! THE END. THEY’RE MARRIED. WORLD PEACE UNLOCKED. DONALD TRUMP IMPEACHED. EVERYONE LIVES HAPPILY EVER AFTER.
Note that Diesel doesn’t really have any tattoos; these were made for the movie. Meaning that while they were drawing up the art for xXx, Diesel leaned in and said to the makeup director, “Dude, I know a totally badass word we can put on my abs, for no particular reason.”
And then he went and topped that by getting an entire movie written about Melkor. The Last Witch Hunter, released in 2015, was written after Diesel met up with writer Cory Goodman at a party and started nerding out about D&D. Goodman was apparently so moved by the lore of the witch hunter Melkor that he went back home and wrote an entire movie based on it, renaming the character with the equally ‘90s comic-book-esque name “Kaulder.”