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Darcy is back on the force, but still fights on as the Black Scorpion because "it's in her nature." This time, she fights Gangster Prankster; and a new villian emerges when the Mayor tries to protect his federal earthquake relief money: Aftershock. When the two villians team up and kidnap Argyle's girlfriend, Black Scorpion is faced with the theft of the Scorpionmobile and the imminent destruction of Angel City. Written by
Steve Boland <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Some people would have thought that one "Black Scorpion" film was quite enough. Indeed, some people, myself included, thought that one Black Scorpion film was more than enough, but enough people obviously disagreed with that analysis to persuade the producers to come up with a sequel.
The title character is essentially a female Batman, a crime fighting superheroine who (like Batman but unlike Superman or Spiderman) does not have any super powers but relies upon a combination of martial arts and advanced technology to overcome the bad guys. Just as Batman had his Batmobile, so the Black Scorpion (who in real life is a police detective named Darcy Walker) has her own high-tech car, the Scorpionmobile. In the first instalment she saw off one gang of supervillains; here she has to deal with a new crowd, including the giggling Gangster Prankster (an obvious rip-off of Batman's nemesis The Joker) and a woman calling herself Aftershock who aims to cause an earthquake to destroy the City of Angels (for which read Los Angeles).
The original "Black Scorpion" film was bad enough, but this one is even worse. Both were comedies based upon one single joke, namely that the superhero concept is something essentially ridiculous which can serve as the basis for camp humour using exaggerated characters and unrealistic plotting and dialogue. (The same joke served as the basis of that old "Batman" TV series from the sixties, and indeed as the basis of some of the entries in the more recent "Batman" film franchise). I have never been the greatest fan of superhero movies, but at least the likes of "Spiderman" and "Batman Begins" have shown that it is possible to make decent films within the genre by treating the concept with a modicum of seriousness and without resorting to camp, self-mocking humour. One-joke comedies quickly outstay their welcome; the first "Black Scorpion" film ran out of steam about halfway through, after which the whole thing quickly became tiresome. "Black Scorpion II" never had any steam to start with and is tiresome from the very beginning.
The standard of acting is appalling; Joan Severance as the heroine shows even more clearly than she did in the first film that she was cast on the basis of looks rather than talent, but the rest of the cast are no more talented and in most cases do not even have looks to recommend them. (Whoever thought Sherrie Rose made a seductive villainess was sadly mistaken). I was surprised to see Rick Rossovich cast as a "construction foreman"; in the late eighties he was regarded as a rising star after roles in "Top Gun" and "Roxanne", so it must have been something of a comedown for him to be cast in a bit part in a movie as dire as this one.
The one good thing that can be said about "Black Scorpion II" is that, although it was followed in 2001 by a "Black Scorpion" TV series, it was the last of its line in the cinema and did not spawn a "Black Scorpion III". One must at least be thankful for small mercies. 2/10
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