Kyle Johnson
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‘John Bronco’ Now Streaming on Hulu

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John Bronco with a Ford Bronco - John Bronco streaming on Hulu
Famed pitchman John Bronco looks a lot like Walton Goggins, no?
Photo: Imagine Documentaries/R&C PMK

If you’ve got a 40-minute hole in your weekend (or your heart) and want to fill that hole with Walton Goggins (or someone who looks a lot like him, anyway), you’re in luck. John Bronco, the totally true and not-at-all fictitious account of the legendary pitchman who made the Ford Bronco a global icon, is now streaming on Hulu.

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Director Jake Szymanski assures you that the tale of Bronco is very much real and based on a person who actually existed on the planet Earth. Never heard of John Bronco? You could be suffering from a bit of the Mandela Effect. Quick: How do you spell Berenstein Bearenstein Bearenstain Berenstain?

“John Bronco is one of those mythic characters you almost can’t believe is real, but thanks to the treasure trove of archival footage we found, you can see he definitely is,” said Szymanski. “We finished this film right before the pandemic struck which meant, unfortunately, I was not able to direct it from home in my underwear. That is, however, how I’m giving quote.”

Jake Szymanski, why would you say something so controversial and yet so brave?

Watch: John Bronco official trailer

The short documentary features rare footage of the pitchman, who looks suspiciously like Walton Goggins of Justified and The Righteous Gemstones fame. With this footage and testimony from those who were there to witness it, John Bronco tells how Ford conscripted Bronco to race a prototype SUV at the 1966 Baja 500 and wound up giving rise to one of the most recognized faces in advertising history.

As the story goes, Bronco won the Baja 500 in impressive fashion, leading Ford to name its off-road SUV after him. He’s also said to have given a rost race speech that brought a wounded nation together. Maybe now’s the right time for this man to make his comeback after all.

Of course, because this is a great American hero’s journey like the kind Joseph Campbell envisioned, there’s a fall from grace and a dark period. Bronco disappeared seemingly thin air while racing in the Baja 1000 in 1996. While many claim to have seen him, Bronco’s whereabouts remain a mystery. Ironically, 1996 is also the same year that Ford discontinued the Bronco. Coincidence?

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Photos: John Bronco now streaming on Hulu

  • John Bronco poster
  • John Bronco after 1966 Baja 500 victory
  • John Bronco in Ford Bronco
  • John Bronco with Bronco and Bronco

Is there some spiritual connection between man and machine? Does that explain why Bronco’s story is reemerging now as we have our all-new 2021 Ford Bronco waiting in the wings and the Bronco’s imminent return to Baja? You’re gonna have to boot up Hulu and find out.

“At Imagine, we love telling unbelievably true stories that entertain and inspire audiences. This one happens to be truly unbelievable,” said Imagine Documentaries’ Marc Gilbar, who produced the film. “It’s been an honor to shine a light on John Bronco’s life and we hope to see his name mentioned among other advertising greats like Mr. Whipple, the Maytag Repairman, and Ernie the Keebler Elf.”

There’s nothing more relatable than wanting to be likened to the Keebler Elf. Nothing.

Check out John Bronco on Hulu this weekend. You can easily fit it in between Spooktober viewings of The Cabin in the Woods, Evil Dead 2, and Hellraiser.