Join the World of Steven Seagal

, in Rant

I was cleaning up the other day and found a small stack of old comics I bought years ago for 50 cents each. The best part of old comics isn't the stories (in this particular case, Batman takes 4 pages to heroically beat up a blind man), but the ads. Take the specimen on the left for example - a full page ad inviting all comers to Join the World of Steven Seagal.

Full page advertisement for Steven Seagal
Full page advertisement for Steven Seagal

Back in 1991, this might have seemed an attractive proposition. But like comics, action stars do not age well, and Seagal's stock has sunk somewhat in the intervening years. From his breakthrough movie, Under Siege, it has been a long slide from dizzying heights of mediocrity into the pits of straight-to-DVD hell.

I do not know what The World of Steven Seagal looks like these days, or whether entry to it is still worth $24:95; but judging from it's founder I would bet it contains a few too many fast food outlets and not nearly enough hairdressers. The following table displays the breadth and extreme depths of Seagal's movie career to date:

Title Year Antagonists IMDB Rating Weighted Average
Under Siege 1992 Ruthless Terrorists 6.1 5.2
On Deadly Ground 1994 Ruthless Oil Corporation 3.5 4.5
Under Siege 2:Dark Territory 1995 Ruthless Terrorists 4.8 4.8
Executive Decision1 1996 Ruthless Terrorists 6.2 5.5
The Glimmer Man 1996 Ruthless Serial Killer 4.7 4.9
Fire Down Bellow 1997 Corporation Dumping Toxic Waste, Ruthlessly 4.2 4.2
The Patriot 1998 Ruthless Militia with Ruthless Virus 3.9 4.3
Exit Wounds 2001 Drug Dealers/Corrupt Cops/Terrible Rap Music (all Ruthless) 5.1 4.3
Ticker 2001 Ruthless Terrorists 3.0 3.8
Half Past Dead 2002 Ruthless Terrorists 4.1 3.4
The Foreigner 2003 Ruthless Assassins hired by Industrialist Who Is Also Ruthless 2.6 3.0
Out for a Kill 2003 Chinese Mafia, Inscrutable yet Ruthless 2.7 3.1
Belly of the Beast 2003 Ruthless Terrorists 4.3 3.7
Clementine2 2004 Ruthless Gang Kingpin 3.4 3.7
Out of Reach 2004 Ruthless Human Traffickers 3.6 3.7
Into the Sun 2005 Japanese Mafia, Ruthless yet Incsrutable 4.1 3.9
Submerged 2005 Ruthless Terrorists 3.7 3.8
Today You Die 2005 Criminals who Ruthlessly framed him 3.9 3.8
Black Dawn 2005 Ruthless Terrorists 3.7 3.9
Mercenary for Justice 2006 Ruthless Mercenaries, the old-fashioned kind who a Not For Justice 4.2 4.1
Shadow Man 2006 Ruthless Russian Gangsters 4.3 3.9
Attack Force 2006 Drug Dealers/Corrupt Military Types, both very Ruthless 2.5 3.1
Flight of Fury 2007 Its not clear from the plot summary, but the smart money says it's Terrorists, possibly even Ruthless ones 3.4 3.1

1: This would be a typical Seagal movie except that he gets unexpectedly killed about 25 minutes into it. This only improves the movie marginally..
2: Here Seagal is more of a special guest star, playing the comparatively minor role as the bad guy's unbeatable fighter.