Staged publicity photos are nothing new and prominent individuals the world over use them to try and endear themselves to the public. Now in most of these cases the person in question at least tries to make the image look realistic, Vladimir Putin on the other hand doesn’t give a shit and has taken part in photo ops so obviously staged you could photoshop a boom mic three inches away from his head and they wouldn’t look any less ridiculous.
Before we continue we should note that the official stance of the Kremlin is that everything we’re about to discuss 100% happened the exact way Vladimir Putin claimed, because why would such a handsome, big-dicked individual need to lie about his physical prowess and dominion over the lesser creatures to call this world home?
During his tenure as the Emperor of Russia (we suck at world politics), Putin has been pictured posing with more sedated wild animals than a rich white person in a third world zoo. Supposedly tracking and tagging everything from a rare Amur tiger in the Siberian wilderness to a fucking polar bear.
While there’s nothing overtly wrong with these photos seeing as the Kremlin often use them to raise awareness of conservation efforts, Vladimir Putin maintains that they are totally real when anyone could see that something is probably amiss with like 20 seconds of googling. For example in 2013 Putin took a vacation in Siberia to do a little fishing and cameras just so happened to be around when he hooked a 46 pound pike. Internet users quickly pointed out that the the photos released by the Kremlin looked suspiciously similar to ones released several years earlier while fishing enthusiasts noted that based on the images released, the fish couldn’t have weighed nearly as much as claimed by Putin. The Kremlin refuted these claims and insisted that the images were legitimate.
On another occasion Putin partook in a spot of scuba diving just off the Russian coast and miraculously managed to find two perfectly preserved pieces of ancient Greek pottery. Putin reportedly rose from the water like a triumphant mother ready to spike their newborn into their mid-wife’s face, announcing his find by simply shouting the word “TREASURE!” at the top of his lungs. A spokesman for Putin was later forced to admit that the pieces were found by actual experts some weeks earlier and were placed for Putin to find because nobody is going to believe a 60 year old man could really stumble ass-backwards onto a piece of history underwater.
What makes Putin’s transparent attempts to impress the Russian public so odd is that he doesn’t exactly need to stage things to do that. He’s a former KGB agent with a black belt in judo and the training to snap a man’s neck with a wet sock, yet Putin still feels the need to do things like personally guide rare cranes to their nests via motorized hang glider to sell people on the fact he’s a strong leader.
While we’re not going to argue that it’d be awesome if more world-leaders started acting like rich, entitled Instagram brats and using the resources at their disposal to take part in ego-massaging publicity stunts, we don’t think they’d ever be able to compete with Putin seeing as he’s mastered that shit.