Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Thanks to cable TV, Steven Seagal's shelf life has been extended a bit longer. A&E is planning on airing something called Steven Seagal: Lawman, a reality show detailing Seagal's Dwight Schrute-like efforts as a volunteer deputy for the New Orleans PD. It'll also focus on Seagal's private life, including his his second (or third, depending) career as a musician.

The news that the puffy, anti-charismatic action star is in an introspective mood follows closely upon the release of JCVD, the semi-autobiographical portrait of Belgian musclehead Jean-Claude Van Damme in the autumn of his career, a kind of Look Back In Incomprehensibly-Accented Anger for kick-boxing fans everywhere.

Well, if these two astonishingly uninteresting martial artists, with their run of semi-hits in the late eighties and early nineties which culminated in a decade and a half of straight-to-DVD filler, get to relive their constantly-playing-on-cable glory days, I say what about Jeff Speakman?

Yes, Jeff Speakman, star of The Perfect Weapon, which I actually paid money to see. I think we can all agree Speakman, whose screen presence was so overpowering I have absolutely no memory of what he even looked like, deserves a comeback. Even though I can't remember anything about The Perfect Weapon (or TPW, as fans call it, or would call it if it had any fans)--I'm reasonably sure Speakman ran a karate school, or something, and their were mobsters, possibly drugs, and somebody got killed and Our Hero swore vengeance--it certainly killed time as competently as any Seagal or Van Damme offering, and since Speakman lacked Seagal's receding hairline and tight-assed whisper as well as Van Damme's mulletted, Eurotrashy determination to show off his butt, he comes out ahead of either of them. Sure, his screen presence was instantly forgettable, but it wasn't actively annoying.

So let's give Jeff Speakman his own reality series. We can watch him kick ass and deliver clever action movie one-liners as he goes about his daily activities, whether he's delivering mail ("Postage due...permanently!"), working in customer service ("How may I help die?") or performing janitorial duties ("I'll autoscrub your hell!"). Such a show would have no entertainment value whatsoever and be watched by absolutely no one, and after its unsuccessful run on a lesser cable network, it could go straight to DVD, where nobody would buy it...just like all of Speakman's movies!

Say, come to think of it, what's Dolph Lundgren doing these days?