This F-16 Fighting Falcon kicks up a giant plume of steam and snow as the pilot lifts the nose and the afterburners do their job. Awesome. (Photo Credit: U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Samuel Morse.)
If F-16s are wrong, I don't want to be right.
Greatest American Aircraft EVER (By era):
1) F-14 Tomcat- If you need an explanation as to why, you are fail.
2) F-16 Fighting Falcon- It may be slightly overshadowed in terms of all-out agility, but it remains the sexiest thing the Air Force has ever flown.
3) A-10 Thunderbolt II- It's big. It's ugly. It's badass. It's got a cannon the size of a Volkswagen Beetle. It's a flying tank. And it strikes fear into the heart of every enemy ground-pounder.
1) SR-71 Blackbird- I don't have to explain this, do I?
2) F-4 Phantom- It looked wrong, but it flew right. It was the epitome of function over form, and 50 years later, it's still flying.
3) A-1 Skyraider- Like a Hellcat on steroids, it was slow, but sonuvabitch, it was invincible, it was heavily armed, and nothing said "I'm a badass cowboy" quite like rolling in with a Skyraider.
1) P-40 Warhawk- It wasn't the most modern. It wasn't the fastest. It wasn't the most agile. It wasn't the most heavily armed. But dammit, it was the most badass thing flying. Look at a P-40, and then try and tell me you aren't awed by it.
2) F6F Hellcat- It wasn't the fastest thing around, but it sure as hell was the biggest, baddest, and toughest propellor-driven fighter ever to fly off a carrier deck. It also accounted for 77% of all Navy kills in the Pacific Theater.
3) P-51 Mustang- Hermann Goering is recorded as having said something along the lines of "As soon as I saw Mustangs over Berlin, I knew the war was over." In case you didn't catch that, it intimidated the hell out of Hermann f'ing Goering.
1) P-26 Peashooter- That's right, you heard me. It's called the Peashooter, and you and its biplane contemporaries are the peas. Run, little peas, run.
2) FF-3- The penultimate Iron Works flying barrel. It's just cool.
3) Stearman Kaydet- Every man's goal in life: Obtain pilot's license. Obtain access to Kaydet, hot date, and picnic supplies. Fly hot date out to remote, scenic location. Have picnic. Get laid like there's no tomorrow.
This is your captain speaking: On behalf of #planelopnik, I'd like to thank you for reading. Remember to tip your steward/stewardess.