Being 15 at the time, and without a license, entertainment options were few. On that November morning a friend and I walked a couple of miles to a local store that sold comics. I think it was mostly an antique shop, but they had a fairly decent collection of old and new comics, and it was next to a pizza place so it was win-win.
We collected our comic stash and realized it was only 11:30. What in the world could we do for the rest of the day? Reading our comics was an option, but that would have taken an hour at moist. It was too cold to do anything outside, so outdoor activities were out.
Then it hit me: The Cameo theatre is next to my apartment building, we can go to the movies! Of course by theatre I mean, a place with two screens where your feet stuck to the ground and I swear I saw a rat once. But hey, it was the movies!
As I said, the Cameo theatre only had two screens, so our options were limited to “Look Who’s Talking Now” and “Robocop 3.” Hard to belive now, but we actually debated which movie to see. Even in 1993 we knew the Look Who’s Talking movies had peaked with the first movie, and neither one of us had been much of a Robocop fan. That’s when we saw something that caught our attention. In the credits section of the “Robocop 3” poster, waaaaay at the bottom we saw the name Frank Miller.
Frank Miller? THE Frank Miller? Holy moley, this movie had to be good. It was written by Frank the goddamn Batman Miller!
*Sigh* if there was ever a time to ignore a movie credit, this was it. We paid to see “Robocop 3” and almost immediately regretted our decision. Learn from your elders kids, learn from your elders.
First off, star Peter Weller was missing, replaced by some guy named Robert John Burke. The guy tries his best, but it’s not like Frank Miller gave him much to work with. Nancy Allen is back as Robocop’s partner Anne Lewis, but the rest of the cast is terrible. Rip Torn is ins this, Rip freaking Torn. Oh, and did I mention Robocop fights a ninja?
The movie looked more like a television show than a big budget movie. But I guess it makes sense, considering the budget was around $22 million. I’m sure MGM and Orion thought “Robocop 3” would be a smash. There was a good amount of marketing, and there was even a video game based on the movie. The ad for the game appeared for months in comic books. In the end, “Robocop 3” was a huge flop, earning only around $10 million at the box office. “Robocop 3” basically killed the franchise, and from what I’ve seen of the reboot, the Robocop franchise is still dead.
Around the time Nancy Allen died in the movie, my friend turned to me and said “We should have bought more comics.” Twenty years later, I realize he was right.