Thursday, December 15, 2011

Tales From The Quarter Bin--The Time Jean Claude Van Damme Almost Kicked My Ass (For Reals)

The quarter bin, while a glorious place, can also be dangerous. Because sometimes you'll find a comic that reminds you of the time Jean Claude Van Damme almost kicked your ass in Las Vegas:

More on my personal brush with the Muscles From Brussels in a bit. First, what the hell is this comic book?

For starters, it's pretty damn obscure. Even GCD doesn't have a listing for it.

Secondly, it seems a fairly odd choice for a comic book adaptation, because at this point, JCVD was hardly at the "height" of his career.

But a closer look at the cover and indicia are revealing:


Yup, Canon Video, the video arm of Canon Films, the outfit that put out lots of...ahem...low-budget movies, and boomed when the home video industry needed massive amounts of product to satisfy their customers. Delta Force, Missing In Action, American Ninja (1-5), the 1990 Captain America movie, the Death Wish sequels, Kickboxer, Masters Of The Universe...if you found a VHS on the shelf at Blockbuster with mindless action and a martial artist/steroid buffoon hero, you can bet your ass it was a Canon Film. Chuck Norris, later period Charles Bronson, Van Damme--they pretty much owed their careers to Canon. (Canon also gave us Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo, so all is forgiven).

So apparently, Canon decided to do a promo comic for their latest "hit," Cyborg. Which explains why every single ad in the book is pimping schlocky VHS movies:


And why the book is filled with dreamy pin-ups of oiled up "action stars":


Yes, his character was named Fender Tremolo. And Van Damme's character was named Gibson Rickenbacker. Yes, all of the characters in this movie, set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland, were named after guitars. That was what passed for wit in these films...

Sadly, this comic was put together even more cheaply than a Canon film. Seriously, it is one of the worst "professional" comics I've ever seen, on almost every level:



Or...

Dude, you've got plague zombies, and this is the best you can do?!?

Or...



Really.

And to add insult to injury, when it comes time for the final confrontation between Gibson Rickenbacker and Fender Tremolo, we get this:

Congratulations. You've just been kicked in the balls by a shitty comic.

Still, as bad as this comic is, it's still better than the actual Cyborg movie, which is such a fetid piece of crap...

Wait, I better cool it. This is exactly the sort of thing that almost got my ass kicked by Jean Claude Van Damme in Las Vegas.

Oh, I did promise to tell you that story. Well, you see...

Oh, dear, we're out of time. We'll have to finish the next time I find a comic book starring Jean Claude Van Damme...

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nooooooo! Moooaaarr!

SallyP said...

Good god, but that is some fugly artwork. And to ad insult to injury, they leave you hanging? It's a bit like the old joke about the restaurant having such awful food...and such small portions.

Siskoid said...

This post is the perfect companion piece to our Van Dammathon, now scheduled for next Thursday. 12 hours of Van Damme, Cyborg NOT included. I shan't forget you when I start live tweeting (blogging?) about it.

William S. Wilson said...

*nerd voice* KICKBOXER wasn't actually on Cannon Video *end nerd voice*

snell said...

There have been several editions of Kickboxer on video, and Canon had deals of varying lengths with lots of video distributors, so you are probably right. But Cyborg was most definitely a Can Films production.

Erich said...

Wow, that's quite possibly the least dramatic death scene I've ever seen. It's almost as if the caption is trying to convince us: "I know it doesn't look like much is happening, but he's TOTALLY killing her here. Trust me!"

I don't really mind the artwork that much...it would probably be okay for a humor title, but it just isn't well-suited at all for an action story.