Top Five Giant Doughnut Sign Sightings

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Fri, Jun 3, 2011 at 10:03 AM

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In honor of today, National Doughnut Day, we look to a local landmark. A giant doughnut sunken into the roof of an otherwise unremarkable drive-through operation, the sign at long-running Randy's Donuts is not just a fine example of the programmatic architecture ethos or an Inglewood institution, it's iconic. We know because we first saw it on The Simpsons, our personal barometer of pop culture saturation. That sign didn't include the Randy's moniker, or that of the other store signs that have somehow incorporated a giant doughnut on the roof, but the reference was clear. We could wonder why the doughnut itself is so iconic--the do-nothing cop's classic accessory, a glazed-over stoner's go-to nosh--but we need to keep our word length to three figures, so we're sticking with the sign. Read on for our Top Five Giant Doughnut Sign Sightings in film, television, and video games.

5. The Simpsons: In the Conan O'Brien-penned "Marge vs. the Monorail" episode (1993), the sign actually delivers the passengers of a speeding monorail from a hideous smash-up.

4. Grand Theft Auto: There's a mission in Chinatown Wars in which one must crash a car through a giant doughnut sign. If you wanted to be really meta, you'd play it while ripping into a Boston cream.

3. Californication: The absurd male fantasy (for some) that constitutes this David Duchovney vehicle on Showtime opens with a montage of Los Angeles-area images. Randy's Donuts make a clear cameo.

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2. Iron Man 2: Okay, so the movie was worse than a sack of three-day-old doughnut holes, but the sign really comes through. Tony Stark, sans helmet, kicks back inside the sign and munches the shop's wares.

1. Arrested Development: Carl Weathers is our favorite hungry guy of all time and, as far as comedies go, they don't get much better than this show. This show's doughnut moment occured in the tenth episode, "Pier Pressure." Buster takes medical marijuana for a test drive and ends up trying to gnaw his way through the sign.

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