Why Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson models his life on the silverback gorilla

I get through my toughest gym workouts by imagining I’m Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. In fact, I report my daily milestones to him, hoping in vain to get some validation from the man himself. It keeps me motivated.

But when you’re the Rock, who do you look up to? It’s only fitting that such an elite athlete and bodybuilder turn his gaze to the heavens, and to his ideal spirit animal—the silverback gorilla.

DNA. #BeCautious #SilverbackOnTheLeftIsDangerous #ApproachHimWithPheromonesAndTequila Amazing artwork by @matty_ggraffix (mahalo my friend).

A photo posted by therock (@therock) on

Like Rocky’s eye of the tiger, The Rock channels his inner silverback, asking questions like: “Could God make a weight so heavy even the Rock couldn’t lift it?” The answer is no. Not when he’s in silverback mode.

Outside the gym, the Rock still embodies the silverback spirit, whether he’s looking at a fine automobile—inside of which I sincerely doubt he fits—or out-muscling Mark Wahlberg.

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The Rock’s grueling Hercules shoot, meanwhile, found him identifying with the deep despair of the silverback in captivity.

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Several ongoing discussions on Bodybuilding.com forums have produced theories about who’d win in a fight between the Rock and a silverback gorilla. Despite most people coming to the correct conclusion that a gorilla would win, it’s still wild to imagine the scenarios. 

Could The Rock win with a knife? Banned user MightyConquerer asks: “What if the Rock was wearing a helmet, and had one of those knives that were used in the trenches with the knuckle duster grip [sic].” Others ask: “What if there were five Dwayne Johnsons?”

In any event, I would not want to piss this dude off in the gym.

He’s come a long ways since his Mr. Peepers days.

But we all know the Rock champions his spirit animal to inspire others.

That’s because, at the end of the day, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is more than just a silverback—he’s also a big, cuddly softie.

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Photo via Megan Elice Meadows/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)

Feliks Garcia

Feliks Garcia

Feliks Garcia was a reporter and essayist whose work for the Daily Dot focused on social justice issues, internet culture, and the Rock. He was a staff writer for the Independent when he passed away in February 2017 after suffering a heart attack. He was 33.