memes The 8 Most Brutal Planking Fails

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Planking became 2011's most popular, and most notorious, Internet craze, despite basically consisting of photos of people lying face-down on things. You'd think that in a post-Double Rainbow world, it'd take more than pictures of people prone on the ground to truly inspire the Internet Meme Machine to its fullest heights. But you'd be wrong.

Planking may look like all the fun of reclining combined with the fun of socializing with your friends before and after reclining. But it can go wrong, SCORCHINGLY WRONG, leading to a variety of increasingly brutal planking fails.

Typically, these planking fails result merely in minor injury or the destruction of a beloved household appliance. But believe it or not, planking has also led to genuine real-world tragedies, such that you would expect a list about them to be more respectful and less jokey. Yet here we are.

So before you go out in search of truly plankable spots and set up your own website to show off, check out some of these brutal planking fails, and maybe think better about the whole thing. Just remember, it's really easy to throw together a meme submission and still feel like a part of the world of Internet comedy without the whole "risking potential humiliation and/or death" thing.
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Kitchen Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
This planking incident, from July of 2011, reminds us why engaging in planking-style behavior within your own kitchen is kind of a no-no. A woman attempts to plank from her oven to her sink, not remembering that the laws of physics continue to apply, even when one is engaging in online-based hilarity.

After just a few seconds, she comes crashing down – and the oven, unfortunately, crashes down on top of her. Fortunately, it wasn't turned on at that time, or this could have been far more gruesomely tragic. (She smashed up her chin pretty good though). Undeterred, the plankstress felt good enough to give it another go, planking in the other direction, with head/arms on the sink and feet on the oven. Never give up, never surrender!
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Bridge Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
This list includes a number of helpful planking tips. "Don't plank atop moving vehicles," for example. That's a good one. "Don't plan atop police vehicles either." That also makes a good amount of sense. Now we learn yet another handy suggestion – don't plank around your friends if they are mean-spirited tools.

A young gentleman attempts to plank on the side railing of a bridge, and actually does rather well at first, until a friend gives him a shove right down into the cold, murky waters below. (It's not that high... seems like he's going to be fine, although if you asked me, this is a recipe for catching the sniffles.)

What's with the friend, by the by, who asks the victim to remove his phone before they shove him off a bridge. You can't plank with a phone in your pocket? Are they genuinely more concerned about the well-being of the guy's Sidekick than his own personal health and well-being? The clear answer is yes.
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Hollywood Riot Planking

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Video: YouTube
OK, in a nutshell...

On July 27th, 2011, a premiere was held in Hollywood for a film called Electric Daily Carnival Experience. It's a documentary about the annual electronic music festival The Electric Daisy Carnival. As part of the premiere event, a DJ named Kaskade had planned to do a little of what the kids call "spinning," and then there was going to be an invitation-only afterparty at a nearby club, Supperclub, on Hollywood Blvd.

Kaskade, though, decided to take to what the kids call "The Twitter" and inform the world that he was hosting a block party at Hollywood and Highland, one of the busiest intersections in Los Angeles. And then a lot of people showed up. A lot. Probably too many. And the police responded, in riot gear, and things sort of spiraled out of control, culminating in some vandalism and general civil disobedience.

And what better way to celebrate a riot breaking out during a set by a guy named "Kaskade" than a little old-school LAPD planking? Seriously, in one single generation, American riots went from the Civil Rights Movement to lying down on Hollywood Blvd. in front of cops shooting bean bags because you wanted to hang out and hear a DJ play a bit longer. Yeesh.
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Police Car Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
Add "Thou Shalt Not Plank on a Police Car" to the list of Planking Commandments. Also, just general life lessons.

The thing is, despite their well-earned reputation for having a great sense of humor about everything, cops don't actually find people planking on their rides all that amusing. Is planking worth getting thrown in the slammer? (Don't answer yet... Picture any scene from HBO's landmark prison series "Oz." OK, now answer.)

The suspect was actually the first person in Australia to be arrested on a "planking-related charge." So she can just wear that one as a badge of courage. Even Corey Worthington gets arrested for more serious stuff than this.
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Clothesline Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
This is less a planking fail than just a life fail that happens to involve planking. Two women have decided to try their hand at this new Internet planking fad, so one grabs her camera while the other attempts to lead atop a folding laundry hanger. You'll notice I just used the word "folding" right there in my description of the device. That's because it's the piece's most obvious, immediate design feature. It folds. So maybe it's not the best place to suddenly place 100 or so pounds of uncoordinated person.

Before we actually get to see the inevitable tumble, we're also treated to a few moments of severe asshattery as the woman struggles in her attempt to climb on top of this device, never really getting anywhere close to what could actually be considered "planking." So maybe I should have saved this item for the "Most Brutal Leaning Against Unsturdy Things" list. But who knows when I'll get around to that one.
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Golf Cart Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
It's amazing how gravity works.

This strapping young lad is planking atop a golf cart as drives through the golf course. However, the golf cart starts to drive down a hill, and lo and behold, the kid slides right off the golf cart like Jell-O slides off a plate. He faceplants and crumbles onto the turf in a tiny heap of hurt. 

What's incredible is that it doesn't seem to occur to ANYONE that this might happen when driving down a hill. This kid isn't Spiderman, you guys.
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Moving Car Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
Australians are CRAZY for planking. They love it down there. I guess they don't get DirecTV or what have you.

20-year-old Simon Hallam of The Land Down Under was out drinking with his buddies in New South Wales in May of 2011 when he somehow got the idea he wanted to plank on the roof of a friend's car. While it was in motion. (A similar activity – car surfing – was briefly popular in the 1980s, as depicted in the highly realistic documentary film Teen Wolf – until everyone realized they were being really, really, really stupid.)

Hallam was mercifully not killed when he fell off the moving car's roof, but he was seriously injured. Doctors had to put him in an induced coma so he could begin a long, still-ongoing recovery.

This video is not of Hallam; just another idiot doing the same thing, but more successfully, from what we can see.
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Deadly Balcony Planking Fail

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Video: YouTube
In May of 2011, 20-year-old Acton Beale was killed while planking from a seventh-floor balcony in Brisbane, Australia (where the planking craze has reached a level of popularity typically reserved for oxygen, romantic love, and Justin Bieber singles.) Beale will forever be remembered as the first planking fatality, and likely remain a potent warning to others about the dangers of planking in unsafe or hazardous areas. (Also, this article should be a cautionary tale for journalists not to use the phrase "lost his footing" when describing a planking-related injury or death. You're not using your feet when planking, silly reporter!