Jean-Claude Van Johnson: What Year Do You Think This Is?
January 21, 2018 3:45 AM - Season 1, Episode 2 - Subscribe

Reeling from the fallout of his semi botched mission, JCVD revisits childhood memories of the emu farm and Vanessa is left challenging his field readiness at every decision. Meanwhile the movie is plagued with technical challenges and JCVD makes a play for racial equality. Lewis and JCVD make a forray into the world of underground street racing, and HK. JCVD meets one of his biggest fans. Vanessa makes a discovery.

Will Huck drop the paint brush?
Is that a Guy Fieri costume?
Will JCVD learn to drive a stick? Wait... what is a drift race?
Will JCVD turn his back on his calling?
How light does JCVD pack for a movie?
What is Vanessa building?
At the end of this, was I the only one who now expected to see Sean Connery in a kilt?

Movies Mentioned: Universal Soldier, Nowhere to Run, Hard Target
No additions to the split count.
posted by Nanukthedog (3 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I completely lost it when JCVD pops up in with the tuners with the best clunker they could get with his per diem, Luis gets past security by scaring the shit out of him with his mind/eyes, then after failing to secure a deal for the drugs, challenges the leader to a drift race, and then drives the guy to try to race blindfolded, just to have him go straight in the first corner into full gas bidons, killing him and rendering his perfect race worthless because everyone panicked and fled,
And then, failing to maneuver the car out of the garage without hitting on everything. This whole sequence was perfect on how mindblowingly absurd it is.
posted by lmfsilva at 5:54 AM on January 21, 2018 [3 favorites]

Yeah, JCVD just taunted every auto-obsessed action thriller... Clearly the Fast and the Franchise, but I think he had solid licks at way more than that in the process. Any time somebody turns the camera onto the hand and the gearshift in a Baby Driver, Transporter, Mechanic motif, now we can see what happens when someone who can't drive stick gets behind the wheel.
posted by Nanukthedog at 6:52 AM on January 21, 2018 [1 favorite]

I thought that this episode was a little bit of a letdown coming off the pilot (but the rest of the 6 ep season really takes off); playing off JC's cluelessness and the toxic ultra machismo of the Bulgarian racer was wonderfully fun, but the 'JC drifting through the course' scene went on a little too long.

Loved the emus.

I'm usually annoyed by "invent a gizmo" montages, but this was cute and pays off. Glad it was Vanessa who cobbles it together.

Not entirely sure what to make of the N***er Jim subplot, but the theme really is treated with some depth. How does one properly re-interpret historical literature with strong components of racism both overt and casual?

This miniseries is an absolute treasure.
posted by porpoise at 1:06 PM on January 21, 2018

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