Dead End Drive-In
I am going to be completely honest with you. Wet and Wild Summer! or as its end credits calls it, Exchange Lifeguards, is a truly awful film. So why would you waste 5 minutes of your life reading a post about this shoddy Australian sex comedy? Most importantly, why would you waste 95 minutes of your life watching the film, like I did? There is one special reason: Christopher Atkins. Or to be exact: Christopher Atkins’ magical face.

Australia, 1992, Maurice Murphy


The poster perfectly illustrates the size of Christopher Atkins. He is not in the background, he is just that tiny. By the way who the hell is Christopher Atkins? You are probably asking as you scream it out your nearest window. Only Australia’s favourite ex-son-in-law that’s who. His face teamed with Mark “Jacko” Jackson’s fist in their tour de force Bullet Down Under (Signal One). He was also seen showcasing his spasmodic eyes in the baboon-beauty, Shakma. That’s right, now Mondo Exploito has three posts featuring Christopher Atkins. Best. Website. Ever.



As you can see in Part III of Mondo Exploito’s Christopher Atkins’ Face Watch, Atkins has the ability to lose full control of his facial expressions at any given moment. See the Shakma and Bullet Down Under posts for further examples. And we are not the only guys who have been touched by his face and acting abilities:

Personally, I would have used way more love hearts. But hey, I am not here to critique that beautiful tribute – sadly. I am here to celebrate Wet and Wild Summer! (What am I doing with my life?)

Atkins plays Bobby McCain, the greedy son of developer boss Mike McCain, played by Elliott Gould (who seems to be acting in an entirely different movie). Bobby and his papa’s business are intent on building a high-rise resort on Mullet Beach, Australia. So for some nonsensical reason Bobby flies to Australia, becomes Bobby Carter and goes undercover as an “Exchange Lifeguard”.

It makes no bloody sense why Bobby fakes being a lifeguard. His papa’s company owns the land and the development has been approved. But I suppose it would be a way shorter film if Bobby came to Australia, signed the appropriate documents and went back home to the States. Let’s face it, it would be a way better film too.

However, if the story played out that way Bobby would miss out on seeing all the Australian lifeguards yanking their jocks up their own cracks.

WetAndWildSummerWedgie1 WetAndWildSummerWedgie5 WetAndWildSummerWedgie4 WetAndWildSummerWedgie3 WetAndWildSummerWedgie2

I am not a lifeguard so I can only assume this is what every lifeguard in Australia does. Incidentally there are about 1000 more wedgie screen grabs I could have posted. Email me at for the full set.

On arrival in Australia, Bobby tries to fit in by wearing a Driza-Bone and an Akurba. Pretty funny so far. Bobby then meets local lifeguard hunk, Julian McMahon. Or as this film calls him, Mick Dooley. Here McMahon and Atkins display some bizarre shark-chat interplay:

While researching Wet and Wild Summer! I discovered an amazing fact: Julian McMahon’s superfans are called McMahoniacs. (Maybe I am not wasting my life after all.)

The McMahon family have had a storied life – Sir William McMahon was once Prime Minister of Australia. But of all the accomplishments the McMahon family have achieved, none is greater than the moment in Wet and Wild Summer! where Julian deposits dog food down another man’s underwear:

After Bobby becomes best pals with Mick (Julian McMahon) and falls in love with a local lass (Rebecca Cross), he quickly learns that building a high-rise resort will ruin Mullet Beach’s paradisal life. Where else will the fishermen fish naked?


Unfortunately, Mike McCain’s idiot assistant and Mike McCain’s idiot wife (respectively played by Christopher Pate and Lios Larimore) will stop at nothing to get the high-rise resort built. Even if it means constantly overacting. In their employ are local twits played by Richard Carter (also seen as the world’s worst drug dealer in Bullet Down Under) and Anthony Lawrence as his nephew. Lawrence is fortunate enough to have an interspecies love scene with a dog.


If saving Mullet Beach (little do they know Mullet Beach doesn’t exist, so this story is a wasting of time for them) from evil developers wasn’t enough of a bloody hassle for Bobby, he and his new beach buddies must win the lifeguard championship. Why that is I don’t flipping know. Also, apparently one of the events at lifeguard championships is homoerotic pillow-fights.

Winning that ridiculous pillow fight is Mark Hembrow – another celebrated Mondo Exploito regular (Running from the Guns, Out of Body). Meanwhile, Mike McMain (Elliott Gould) flies to Australia to help Bobby and to convince Mullet Beach to build an environmentally-friendly resort. Also Bobby’s real mum (Ann Brisk) is Australian, so she shows up one day. That’s nice of her.

As the story unfolded I increasingly felt concerned for the lifeguard that exchanged places with Bobby. He would have shown up at Malibu and quickly realised he didn’t have a job as a lifeguard. There was no exchange lifeguard program. Bobby duped him. I can only hope Maurice Murphy releases his director’s cut of Wet and Wild Summer! where we see the lengthy scenes of said lifeguard on Malibu crying inconsolably.


As you may have noticed Wet and Wild Summer! has one or two flaws. But there is enough here to keep you entertained. And in a way, I am starting to enjoy Christopher Atkins’ odd performances. If Wet and Wild Summer! does not sound like your kind of movie, why not watch this clip of Christopher Atkins briefly talking about how he and Scott Baio get together every night and reminisce about their teen hunk days:








Availability: As far as I can tell Wet and Wild Summer! is not available on DVD. There are VHS copies available on Amazon if you are desperate. Or you can come around to my place and watch my copy together with me… Make my life mean something. Please?