The Meteor Man (1993)
Plot: Jefferson Reed (Robert Townsend) is a timid substitute teacher whose neighborhood is overrun by gangs, most notably the Golden Lords who recruit kids. After a meteor hits Reed, he gets super powers and attempts to clean up his community becoming the super hero ‘Meteor Man.’
The credits begin much like the Superman credits. Gee, I wonder what they were going for here. There isn’t much to Meteor Man. It’s rehashing so many things we’ve seen before. When Reed is discovering what powers he has, it’s embarrassingly predictable. Although throwing in communing with dogs and memorizing a book for thirty seconds was at least somewhat fresh. There is some random cast and cameo appearances here that I guess weren’t that big a deal at the time, but check these out; James Earl Jones. Sinbad. Eddie Griffin. Bill Cosby. Don Cheadle. Wow. The characters are likable enough, although I think Reed’s parents are kind of assholes. They pretty much force their son to be a super hero on day two of learning his powers. Let the man take it all in first, geez. They also tell everyone in the community who he is. Oh yea, no pressure there. What a bunch of jerks. The absolute highlight of the film are the bad guys; the Golden Lords. This gang is awesome. Let me give you a run down; they have golden blonde hair, a tiger, jackets that say ‘Simon Says,’ and the gang leader carries around a golden slinky. Now that’s bad ass. Meteor Man is pretty bland, but there are some funny moments, solid acting, and it was nice to see a Frank Gorshin cameo.
Rating: 6 out of 10 (‘meh’)
Category Rankings (Spoilers Throughout)
Best Performance: Robert Townsend as Jefferson Reed/Meteor Man
-He’s just a really likable guy. He starts out pretty pathetic, but it’s enjoyable to watch him grow into the confident super hero he becomes. He’s a good main character to latch onto.
Worst Performance: Sinbad as Malik
-It’s not really so much Sinbad, as it is the character. He’s this African American guy talking about how nervous he is because he’s dating his “first black girlfriend” and he uses terms like “chilly” as he tries to act “ghetto.” I won’t even get into what he wears. I’m just gonna stop right there, it was uncomfortable.
Best Line: “Thirty seconds…Thank God.” –Michael
-When both Reed and Simon have the meteor powers, they touch a model runway book and break out into a model runway off right in the middle of their fight. When it finally ends, Michael comes out with this line. Eddie Griffin had perfect delivery here. I like Griffin a lot in this movie. He’s funny, but it’s subtle, and not in your face. This line was a perfect example of that.
Worst Line: “Drug dealer people…Meteor Man’s in town” –Meteor Man
-“Drug Dealer People?” Come on writers. Just say Drug Dealers.
-The fight at the end between Reed and Simon is pretty good. It’s a little long, but it’s the true climax of Reed’s character. When they both get the meteor powers, they have a lead pipe sword fight type of battle which was pretty cool.
-James Earl Jones wears an Afro/Mohawk type hairdo throughout most of the movie. It’s James Earl Jones! Enough said.
-I liked when Bill Cosby’s character communed with a bunch of dogs. I don’t think Cosby had one line of dialogue throughout the whole movie, which was weird.
-All the people in this neighborhood are assholes! After things start to get real bad, the entire community blames Meteor Man for interfering. They made him do all this!! They gave him a meteor phone! And they want to give the Golden Lords Meteor Man in exchange for safety! What a bunch of dick bags!! What the hell is wrong with these people? And Earnest Moses, one of Reed’s closest friends, suggests they vote on it! Wow. Now everyone eventually comes through in the end, but still…What jerk faces!
-When you first hear the dog speak, it sounds like a monotone robot.
Bad Ass Moment:
-One special effects moment that kind of worked is when Reed jumps in front of a shit load of bullets and you see like 35 Reeds. That was pretty solid.