December 15 is shaping up to be one hell of a day. Star Wars: The Last Jedi opens, Beyond Skyline opens, and now Amazon is going to drop Jean-Claude Van Johnson, the meta action-comedy series that imagines Jean-ClaudeVan Damme’s entire acting career as a cover for his true calling, international assassin. To celebrate, there’s a new trailer. Yeah, the pilot’s great, this trailer’s great, I have high hopes.
A lot of this Jean-Claude Van Johnson trailer, like the first half or so, comes from the pilot episode—this is one of those Amazon shows where they produce a pilot, people watch it, and vote for the series they want to get a full run. That provides all the set up, but the new stuff is also great, especially the blind driving bit.
This series is essentially a more comedic take on the conceit from JCVD, where the Muscles from Brussels plays a version of himself. That was probably his best dramatic turn ever, and this looks better—funnier, cleverer, less over the top—than most of his straight comedy output.
Here’s the actual synopsis for Jean-Claude Van Johnson:
‘Jean-Claude Van Johnson’ stars global martial arts & film sensation Jean-Claude Van Damme playing "Jean-Claude Van Damme," a global martial arts & film sensation, also operating under the simple alias of "Johnson" as the world's most dangerous undercover operative. Unhappily retired, a chance encounter lures him back into the game, forcing him to confront the greatest enemy he’s ever faced.
First, I really hope that this lives up to the pilot, which is gold. Second, I hope people stream this, because I can watch this shit all day and twice on Sunday. I love the tired, world-weary JCVD who looks exhausted and bummed all the time and isn’t above poking fun at himself. And as much as I adore DTV trash, Jean-Claude Van Johnson is leaps and bounds above his recent output in that realm, which is a plus.
So, on December 15, once you get home from your screening of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, followed by a screening of Beyond Skyline, followed by another screening of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, you’ll have five episodes of Jean-Claude Van Johnson to occupy your time. Prepare accordingly.
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