#3. Internet Hero-ing
While most politicians have a worse understanding of modern technology than a whale wondering why that nuclear sub is playing so hard to get, Putin knows exactly what succeeds online: instead of promising tax cuts or health care, Putin asked "Can you help me name my new puppy?" He personally promised to read every suggestion, which seems like a big commitment for a man running a country to post on the internet, but known KGB agents probably get fewer "UR A FAG" messages than the rest of us.
The surgery to install the laser eyes and adamantium teeth won't happen until later.
As you might expect from an internet naming competition the winning entry was "Buffy", but it wasn't because of basement-dwelling hackers hoping to turn Joss Whedon into an international incident. Five-year old Moscow boy Dima Sokolov suggested the name and was invited to meet Putin and the Puppy (Memo to Disney: get on that).
"Don't worry, Dima. It isn't uncommon for grown men to wet themselves in my presence."
Just to give you the proper context for that Russian boy's experience, this would have been the equivalent of you meeting Jesus and RoboCop at the same time. It could only have been better if Putin revealed he was the boy's father, in which case the mother would have wholeheartedly believed him, and the ex-father would have been honored.
Putin also proved he has a finger on the pulse of the Internet last year when he trolled diplomatic cables describing him as Batman. He called the parallel "slanderous." So not only is he so tough that professional politicos describe him in terms of DC's most unbeatable hero, but he considers the comparison an insult.
#2. Knowing When Bigger is Better
We're not saying that Putin had the biggest nation-leading dick in the Northern hemisphere, because we don't have to. Ex-President Bush said it for us in his autobiography Decision Points.
Everyone thought Bush was a lock for Biggest Dick of a President
It all started with an intercontinental dog show, which is a much more agreeable way to assert dominance than waving nukes at one another. When Bush visited Putin in Russia it quickly became clear who the big dog was: Koni, the black Labrador retriever Putin received from a Russian army General. It's entirely possible that the dog was chose for the express purpose of embarrassing Bush's tiny Scottish Terrier Barney.
As Koni charged across the field towards the two, Putin commented that she was "Bigger, stronger, and faster" -- thereby making him the first man on Earth to be both tough and a fan of Six Million Dollar Man. According to Decision Points, when Bush relayed the story of Putin's massive dog to Canadian PM Stephen Harper, he responded, "You're lucky he only showed you his dog."
Harper then made a thrusting gesture for several minutes on end.
We aren't law experts but we think that means Bush just used his book to offer a trilateral declaration that Putin has a massive unit.
#1. Inspiring a Nation (That Wasn't His)
Earlier this year the independent country of Kyrgyzstan named a mountain after Putin. Which kicks the shit out of libraries and high schools. For anyone who lacks rudimentary geographic knowledge, or the willingness to search the Internet, Kyrgyzstan isn't part of Russia, it don't even border Russia. Yet the country clearly felt that if you're going to share a continent with Vladimir Putin then you'd better be on his good side. Communications Minister for Kyrgyzstan, Nurlan Sulaimanov even worried that they weren't giving him a big enough mountain.
"Only 13,000 feet? Is mountain for child Putin. Not man Putin."
When informed about his new namesake, Putin didn't respond with a simple thank you letter or a public assertion that it was too great an honor to accept, no. He said he wanted to climb it. A man of such indisputable manliness has no choice but to conquer everything he encounters, including his namesake.
Check out more from Luke in The 5 Craziest Exploits of the World's Shadiest Politician and 8 Famous Fictional Archaeologists Who Suck At Their Job.