Haters' Corner: Steven Seagal

Hi fellow Maniacs

I've been lurking/occassionally commenting here for a while now but never done a fanpost as . . . well . . . I'm lazy. However a friend of mine recently spurred me to write this for his website and as it's got a vaugely MMA flavour I thought I'd share it here too. It's not the most mature piece you'll ever read but hopefully it makes it's point and will perhaps give a couple of you a giggle.

First off, a disclaimer. I love martial arts. The positive impact they’ve had upon my health, happiness and self confidence is impossible to overstate. I’m truly evangelical about them. It’s this love of martial arts that lies festering at the core of my dislike for Steven Seagal. Why? Because he’s a fraud. A fake. A phoney. That’s why. And I’m gonna convince you that I’m right.
Steven first rose to prominence teaching aikido. Aikido. Of course. Half martial art, half fat camp, aikido is the perfect breeding ground for bacteria like Seagal. An arena where con-men like him can peddle their snake oil unchecked. Take a look at these videos of Seagal teaching this deadly art (in between getting his arsehole tongue-punched by the simpering bootlicks that make up his class)

Continues after the jump . . .

The series is called The Path Beyond Thought. I suspect that if one is studying under Sensei Seagal, then moving beyond thought is of vital importance, because otherwise you might start having some. The first of which would likely be ‘well this is a load of old shit isn’t it’. Check out the footage at around the 2 min mark of the first vid. In judo or wrestling, a throw is something that takes a little bit of work. You need to break your opponent’s balance, get your feet in the right place and have good control over the appropriate levers. Even if all of this is in place, every wrestler or judoka knows that the technique is unlikely to be picture perfect against a resisting opponent and things will likely become rather scrappy. Seagal however eschews such effort. Turns out that all one has to do is take a limp grip of anywhere on the opponent’s body, do a little shimmy to the side and they will dive headfirst on to the floor for you! Genius!
The second vid is even more disturbing, mainly due to the conveyor belt of unblinking drones queuing up to perform verbal analingis upon their beloved teacher.
“Sensei Seagal’s so great, he once made eye contact with me!”
“Sensei Seagal’s so great, he sometimes allows children to be near him (as long as they don’t touch him or speak)!”
“Sensei Seagal’s so great, he once allowed me to sit in the corner and masturbate while he skullfucked my wife. I used my tears as lube!”
Horrid isn’t it. The big problem here (aside from the bone chilling creepiness of the whole setup) is that the stuff these goons are getting taught is complete bollocks. If this was some tai chi camp where the students just wanted to enjoy what their bodies can do and open up their chakras a little then this would be fine. But it isn’t. These poor fools actually believe they’re learning effective self defense and this could literally get them killed. It’s only a matter of time before one of them is sauntering casually down the street (probably thinking about how sleek and luxurious Sensei’s ponytail looked at class this morning) when a mugger brandishing a knife jumps out at them demanding their wallet. Instinctively our protagonist will take a hold of their assailant’s sleeve and pull it softly. However, instead of somersaulting 720° through the air before landing in an unconscious heap as the aikidoka expects, the mugger will instead look slightly puzzled for a millisecond before stabbing them. This is my issue with charlatans like Seagal teaching their nonsense: they’re putting the people who’s money, time and trust they’ve taken in great danger by giving them false confidence in bullshit that won’t help them.
I’m not even gonna get into Seagal’s film career as I would accept that it’s a subjective thing and if you enjoy them fair enough. All I’ll say though is that if you were unable to perform a simple shoulder throw on a totally compliant uke without needing to have it sped up on camera (as Steven requires in Under Siege) then you would not be passed for your green belt in judo. I’ll leave it at that. Instead I will move on to a particularly unpleasant development in the (de)evolution of Seagal, namely his unwelcome appearance in the world of Mixed Martial Arts. Something that has been so great about the emergence of MMA is that it completely cut through the nonsense. Martial arts and their practitioners who had been able to hide behind smoke and mirrors for so many years were dragged squinting into the sunlight where their shortcomings were exposed for all to see. Inflated reputations and baseless boasts no longer cut the mustard; it was put up or shut up time. So why is it that Steven Seagal, a man who personifies all that was wrong with martial arts pre MMA, a man who fellates the throbbing phallus of cod-Eastern bullshit with a fervour rarely seen outside of the adult film industry before merrily glugging down whatever it spits on to his forked tongue, has been allowed to worm his way into the corner of some of this era’s greatest fighters? Is it because his ‘unique’ take on unarmed combat is actually of some use to them? Let’s find out. This fantastic vid of Seagal training with respected MMA fighter Rafael Cavalcante was recently brought to my attention
You know that game patticakes that little girls play at primary school? It’s like that but with notably worse cardio. Genuinely unintelligible that anyone would believe this guy is of use to man or beast.
I’ll wrap things up now with a little anecdote that I’m sure all of you are familiar with but which I never get bored of reciting. Grappling icon ‘Judo’ Gene LaBelle was working on one of Seagal’s films some years ago. The two got into a rather heated debate about the relative merits of aikido v judo and their own skills as martial artists, before deciding that a spot of sparring was the only way settle things. Curiously immune to Seagal’s advanced collar tugging and forehead slapping techniques, LaBelle easily put the squeeze on Steven’s wobbling turkey neck, choking him unconscious and causing him to unceremoniously crap himself. I think Seagal’s y-fronts at this point make an excellent metaphor for the man himself – grubby, unfit for public display and completely full of shit.

Thanks for taking the time to read, all constructive feedback will be much appreciated.

PS The original piece can be found at

PPS One of the commentators when I put this on Wordpress got a bit miffed at what he (probably fairly) thought was unfair treatment towards Aikido, so I apologise in advance for any practitioners of that art reading this.

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