The Most Famous Forklifts In Fiction
Forklifts are often the unsung stars that help keep warehouses, construction sites and large retail establishments going, and have become so ubiquitous that we often do not notice just how critical they are to a business's continued success.
It is important to note and recognise that forklifts are exceptional pieces of complex machinery that need to be treated with respect. Forklift training is required before you operate the machine, as is regular inspections before and after each use at a minimum.
In fiction, forklifts are rather unsung heroes; the satirical likes of Forklift Driver Klaus aside, there are only a few famous forklifts out there, and almost none of them are used with safety regulations in mind.
With that in mind, here are some of the most famous forklifts in fiction.
The hugely popular 1986 sci-fi film Aliens has a vision of the future of forklifts in the form of the Power Loader. Essentially a forklift exoskeleton, it has two sets of forklift arms that can perform complex lifts and loads designed with aircraft in mind.
It can also lift and carry Xenomorphs as well, but that is not a feature stated in the operations manual.
Fugitive Alien, a straight-to-video adaptation of the Japanese TV series Star Wolf, is a relatively unknown 1980s sci-fi film about an alien soldier to refuses to kill humans and so is targeted by members of his own civilisation.
However, from the 1990s onwards it became infamous when covered by the cheesy movie television show Mystery Science Theater 3000, due to a scene where two of the main characters fight with a forklift.
It led to the coining of the song “He Tried To Kill Me With A Forklift” which has since become a viral video.
A special professional wrestling presentation aired during Super Bowl XXXIII in 1999, Halftime Heat was a special wrestling match that took place in an empty arena between WWF Champion Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Mankind.
However, Mankind had the help of a tag team partner in the form of an industrial forklift that he uses to pin down the most successful actor in Hollywood below a pallet and a half-dozen kegs.
The action-adventure video game series Shenmue has had a longstanding relationship with forklifts, which for once in a video game are mostly used for their intended purpose.
Shenmue is primarily about the player investigating the murder of the father of the main character, Ryo Hazuki, but the pace of the game is such that most of the time Ryo will be spending time talking to a range of people and performing odd jobs to earn money to learn martial arts.
When you reach the Harbour area of the game, Ryo gets a job as a forklift operator, which you then perform by transporting crates to different parts of the dock, receiving a small raise every time you exceed your quota.
Forklifts have since become closely associated with the Shenmue series, to the point that when Shenmue III was finally released after 18 years, one of the promotional images showed Ryo in a forklift and the mini-game returned.