Without context, the video of a man punching a kangaroo in defense of a dog is already arguably the best viral video of the year. People are going crazy over this bizarre footage of a man squaring up and socking a marsupial right in the jaw, and while it’ll probably inspire some outrage and maybe even a ridiculous lawsuit from the PETA crowd, there’s no denying that “Man Punches Kangaroo” will be the leading contender at the Springfield Film Festival this year.
But now we know the actual story behind what happened before that kangaroo dined on a knuckle sandwich after messing with the wrong man’s dog. According to news.com.au, the puncher is a zookeeper named Greig Tonkins, and he was on a hunting trip that was set up for his terminally ill friend, Kailem, who has since passed away. Kailem wanted to catch a boar, so his friends took him on a hunt in June, and that’s when they recorded this unforgettable moment.
As for Greig “The Zookeeper” Tonkins, he’s understandably a little reluctant to accept his newfound Internet fame.
“My mate has a good government job, so he’s gone pretty quiet on this,” Mr [Mathew] Amor laughed.
“We were driving along, the dogs are loose. They are trained to smell pig’s blood, and picked up a scent.
“The dogs went past 20 kangaroos, which they are trained not to touch.
“Anyway, this big buck got a hold of my friend’s dog. It just grabbed him.” (Via news.com.au)
And as we’ve all watched several hundred times on a loop, BAM! POW! Right in the kanga-kisser! Of course, we’re left with some questions: Is the dog okay? Is Tonkins going to lose his job, since, you know, he works at a freaking zoo? And is the roo okay?
Amor says the dog, Max, was “starled” but ultimately fine. Tonkins’ job is a toss-up, as a spokesperson for the zoo told the media outlet that it is “working with Mr Tonkins to understand the exact circumstances of the event and will consider any appropriate action.” It’s safe to assume that there’s more footage to review than just what was initially shared on Facebook, so barring any kanga-slurs or marsupial hate speech, we have to think that Tonkins will be fine.
Except when it comes to banter with his friends. Amor says the roo was just “stunned,” because Tonkins “didn’t hit it very hard at all.”
“It was funny because the guy who did it is the most placid bloke. We laughed at him for chucking such a sh*t punch.”
Ouch, man. Not enough aloe in Australia for that kind of burn.