Hitchhiking from Tijuana to the North Pole: Thumbs Up Season 2 (Part 1/4)

Uploaded by vice on Aug 3, 2012



DAVID CHOE: Thumbs up, bitches.
We're back.

Here we go, America.
Thumbs Up, season two.
I'm David Choe, and I'm here with the son of my uncle's
nephew's, Harry Kim.
And we're gonna do it all over again.
This time, we're going West Coast style.
We're going to start in the deepest, darkest hole of
Tijuana, all the way to the North Pole and Alaska.

This corn is so good.
How is that?
HARRY KIM: It's fucking awesome.
DAVID CHOE: All right.
See you in a little bit.

Thumbs up, Tijuana!
We're at the Mexican zebra.
The stripes start here and then they run
out of spray paint.
It's white.

Oh, OK.


We have sort of a problem.
Me and my uncle here, Guam Cruise, AKA Harry Kim, we came
to Mexico without our passports.
So we tried to cross over, and because of his anonymous
racial makeup, you can't tell if he's Mexican.
I don't even know what he is, really.
My mom never even told me.
So we just went to the pharmacia.
We bought testosterone.
The strongest testosterone they have.
The same kind of testosterone that trannies use to do the
sex change.

Fucking, don't ever stop running.
Don't ever stop running.
Just fucking go, like--
HARRY KIM: I just keep going.
DAVID CHOE: So we're going to fucking shoot ourselves up
with testosterone, get fucking juiced and ripped,
and then go for it.
HARRY KIM: Let's do it.
DAVID CHOE: Are you read for this shit?


DAVID CHOE: Thumbs up, San Diego.
As the sun sets across the Tijuana sky, we're going to
get back home.
There's this train yard right on the border.
We're going to get to LA.
DAVID CHOE: Hold on.
Hey mom, it's me.
I'm coming over with Harry.
Can you cook us dinner?
We got to get a ride, but we'll be there
in two, three hours?
I love you.
I'll see you soon.
I hear the train coming.
See you soon, America.

What's up, America.
We're in Koreatown, Los Angeles.
Just a few hours ago we were in Mexico, where me and my
buddy here injected enough testosterone into our veins to
fill up two football linebackers.
When that happened, my mind was, like, torn with images of
flesh and destruction.
And I feel really sick right now.
So where else to go but to see mom?
So we're going to go see mama Choe right now.
HARRY KIM: We made it.
DAVID CHOE: Come on in.
This is our house.
Hi, Dad.

We ran across the boarder.
And then we jumped on a train, got off in downtown, and we
just walked to Koreatown.
And then we're leaving.
We wanted to say hi first.

MR. CHOE: Viva Mexico!
Mexico or Me-hi-co?
DAVID CHOE: Me-he-co.

It's our last home meal before we leave.
MRS. CHOE: When are you going to leave?
DAVID CHOE: We're leaving tonight.
MRS. CHOE: My goodness.
Totally crazy idea.

DAVID CHOE: Listen, America.
What do vampires, daywalkers, suicides, drunk
eskimos, Santa Claus--
what do they all have in common?

That's where we're going next.

A lot of people think The Thing from the Fantastic Four
is stronger than the Incredible Hulk, because he's
made out of orange rocks and is harder.
Truth is, the Incredible Hulk can hold his breath for about
two hours longer than The Thing.
So if they were to ever fight, all the Hulk would have to do
is grab him and then jump--
The Hulk can jump, I think, one mile radius-- and jump
into outer space, and just hold his breath until The
Thing explodes from the inside out.
Or, do the same thing, jumping into the water.
That's why we're going to bring this Thing fist.
Give it to me.

All right.
Brass knuckles, passports, cash.
You got guitar picks, drumsticks, knife, spray
paint, more spray paint, camera, tube socks,
and I got my suit.
You got the coonskin cap?
HARRY KIM: Coonskin cap.
DAVID CHOE: Let's get dressed.
HARRY KIM: All right, let's go.

DAVID CHOE: All right, ready to go?

Thumbs up, America.
It's 2:30 in the morning.
So I guess it's officially day two.
We're in the old familiar place of downtown LA.
This is where we first got out.
This is where we jumped off.
And had dinner at my parents' house.
My mom just dropped us off.
She's really tired.
She wanted to say goodbye and goodnight to you guys, but she
was too tired, so she went to sleep.
There's the trains, right there.
We're just waiting to see which engines are connecting.
See that light, right up there?
That engine might be taking off soon.
If that's the case, we'll hop on.

Thumbs up two.

Harry, you like beer?
HARRY KIM: Yeah, I love beer.
DAVID CHOE: I love beer, too.
Dude, we're in downtown LA.

These trucks keep leaving every ten minutes.
Let's go, let's go!

Day two.
We're a little bit outside of Los Angeles, California.
I think we're in Valencia or Saugus.
We got the most bitching, uncomfortable ride last night
in a beer truck.
So, if I forgot to tell you yesterday, we're traveling
across America to the last state.
Harry's been everywhere.
But for me, personally, I've never been to Alaska before.
And Alaska--
it's the last.
It's just the last place.
There's Eskimos and vampires, and Eskimo vampires, and
Eskimo kisses and all sorts of goodness.
Santa Claus vampires, all kinds of great shit out there.
And it's the last state I've not been to, and I'm looking
forward to it.

We accept all rides.
Planes, trains, automobiles.
Any ride.
We got off in the middle of the night and have been
walking these train tracks.
Nothing's been coming by for a little bit.
The day's just begun.
We'll either catch a ride on a train or a car.
We'll see what happens.
Heading north, to the great North.
Thumbs up, America.

Patience is a virtue, especially in hitchhiking and
travelling on the road.
Been out here for a little bit over an hour.
Not having much luck.
Let's walk down to another exit, maybe
our luck will change.

All right.
We need a sign, dude.


Thank you.
Where you going?
To Bakersfield?
Thumbs up, America.
We just got our first ride.
Bumping the Mexican jams.
We're heading to Bakersfield, home of the
nu metal band, Korn.

ARTURO: Arturo.
Gracias, Arturo.

Gracias, Arturo!
All in all, not a very eventful ride.
Arturo played us his jams.
Christian Mexican music.
Arturo wasn't very talkative.
Our first ride that I've ever gotten from a guy who doesn't
speak English.
And we were in fucking Mexico.
We were in his country yesterday.
And he picked us up in our country, today.

We need another sign.
All right, I got it.

No means yes.

Let me do all the talking.
POLICE OFFICER: Hello, guys.
DAVID CHOE: How's it going?
POLICE OFFICER: What are you doing up here?
DAVID CHOE: We're trying to get a ride into Fresno.
POLICE OFFICER: You can't be up here.
There's signs right down here that say no pedestrians.
That's as far as you can go.

Let's find a train we can ride on.
This one's about to take off.

The problem with finding the right car is all these
grainers right now have this.
There's no place to place to sit.
I mean, I guess we could sit on this part, but then we got
to balance.
We sit here, shit's going to take your legs off.

Oh shit, let's walk on the tracks.
There's a security thing coming.

DAVID CHOE: Hi, how's it going?
MALE SPEAKER: What's going on here?
DAVID CHOE: We're just filming a--
MALE SPEAKER: Did you check in with the yard office before
you did that?
DAVID CHOE: Oh, I'm sorry.
MALE SPEAKER: It's a good idea to do that.
DAVID CHOE: Where is that?
MALE SPEAKER: Well, it's all the way down there.
See where those headlights are down there?
The train headlights?
MALE SPEAKER: That's where it is.
DAVID CHOE: Oh, boy.
MALE SPEAKER: So you should have done that.
Because we've got security running around here and they
might get the wrong idea.
DAVID CHOE: We're just going to walk up
the thing right here.
MALE SPEAKER: Well, as long as you stay away from the tracks,
stay on this road.
MALE SPEAKER: Don't try cutting between cars, because
these trains are going to move at any minute.
All right, thank you.
DAVID CHOE: We appreciate your help.
Thank you.

We'll hide under this freeway underpass.
And when the train starts moving, we'll jump on.

What's up, America.
I believe we're in downtown Fresno.
We just got off the train tracks, here.
And it's fucking desolate.
There's like nothing going on.
There's the 99 freeway, right there, I believe.
We're just trying to figure out what we should do tonight.
It's been a very, very long time since I've done a good
ol' B and E-- breaking and entering.

This fucking massive warehouse behind us might look like our
spot for tonight.
Whatever, I'm not going to steal anything.
I just want to sleep and not get ass
raped while I'm sleeping.

Let's do it fast.

[INAUDIBLE], dude.

Need a card.

Got it.
Oh shit.


Oh my god.
Rat shit.

This is fucking gross, man.

Fuck, yeah, dude.
This is my favorite part, trying to translate.
I'm not an expert, or anything,
but I'll try my best.
First, we have the classic reefer joint.
Now, I know that there's daywalkers and vampires in
Alaska, but I didn't know that they were in Fresno.
Or as Harry likes to call it, Fres-natch.
So this is a very good sign.
I don't if your light's going to be able to pick this up,
because it's red on red.
You can see the new red over the old red.
And what the old red was--
I'll just do the fast outline.
So that's the new outline.
There's actually something else going on over here, which
I'll try to duplicate, also.
What is that?
Oh my god.
I just drew pornography.
All right, I don't want to fuck with that.
Oh my god, the foreshortening here is fucking unbelievable.
This must be from the sexually frustrated, prepubescent, to
pubescent, to early 20s teen.
And there's actually a lot of little subtleties going on.
Because this person doesn't know how to draw hands, and
they don't know how to draw feet.
And they just drew a slit for where the vagina would be.
But as you can see, what happened here was, after they
drew this filth, this porn, on the wall--
either that artist, or someone else that came up here,
started stabbing or punching this woman's vagina.
As if someone was like, pining over some girl that said to
him, I just want to be friends with you.
And he came up here, and he went, [GRUNTING]
fuck your pussy!
Fuck your pussy!
It's like something that happened.
So let me try to bring this out a little bit.

This is the drawing that was once here.
So we have a naked woman, spreadeagle, reaching--
DAVID CHOE: Shut up!
Reaching up to the heavens as if--
DAVID CHOE: We got this dude, and vampires, sex, drugs.
I mean it is one of the best hall of fame
graffiti murals I've seen.
And the only thing missing from it is, of
course, Harry Kim.

That looks exactly like you.
Make the face, dude.
Chink it up.

Oh shit.
There's lights coming on.

Oh fuck, dude.

Oh my god, dude!
Check this shit out!

DAVID CHOE: It's like an old school Mexican restaurant.
Dude, awesome.
DAVID CHOE: You think there's someone living in here?
It's fucking huge.
Definitely, definitely going to sleep here tonight.