"Shut up, crime!"
So says superhero wannabe the Crimson Bolt, played to dorky perfection by Rainn Wilson in this week's release, 'Super.' The Crimson Bolt, the alter ego of average guy Frank, is born when Frank's wife (Liv Tyler) leaves him for a shady drug dealer (Kevin Bacon). Frank wigs out and releases his aggression on unsuspecting bad guys.
Along with his signature catchphrase ("Shut up, crime!"), the Crimson Bolt also doles out sharp one-liners like 'Don't molest kids!', 'Don't steal!', and 'Don't deal drugs!' Clearly, any criminal who falls into the Crimson Bolt's path is in for the tongue-lashing of a lifetime. During his crime-fighting research, Frank crosses paths with Libby, a precocious young woman (Ellen Page) who insists on becoming his costumed sidekick named Boltie. Together, the two crack down on crime. Sort of.
In honor of The Crimson Bolt's cinematic debut, here's a list of my own top five favorite superhero wannabes.
1. Woody Harrelson as Defendor in 'Defendor'
His superhero duds may be crafted out of duct tape, but this avenger makes up for his lack of suaveness with his enthusiasm, integrity and incredible thirst for justice. Bonus points for having a super cool lair and a feisty young sidekick, played by Kat Dennings.
2. Hank Azaria as the Blue Raja in 'Mystery Men'
Not only is he not really a superhero, the Blue Raja isn't even British! And he lives with his mom. He can throw silverware, though, and he does have a lot of forks. And a reasonably cool costume. There's no denying he has a distinctive look that could easily be replicated by adoring fans, should he cultivate any.
3. Jason Mewes and Kevin Smith as Jay and Silent Bob in 'Mallrats,' 'Chasing Amy' and 'Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back'
We first got a glimpse of the stoner duo's penchant for righting wrongs in 'Mallrats,' when Silent Bob heroically scaled a television dating show's set to play an incriminating video tape exposing the slimy Fashionable Male clerk (Ben Affleck) for being a sleazebag. Jay and Silent Bob serve as inspiration for the Bluntman and Chronic superhero comic books that show up in 'Chasing Amy,' and are featured again in 'Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back,' when the two heroes head to Hollywood.
4. Aaron Johnson as Dave Lizewski in 'Kick-Ass'
What ordinary kid doesn't daydream about being a superhero? Average teen Dave takes the daydream to the next level, and -– lo and behold –- during his recovery from his first attempt at fighting crime, he actually develops a superhero-like aversion to pain. Wow! Must be fate!
5. Seth Rogen as Britt Reid in 'The Green Hornet'
Britt has access to a lot of money, which is key for any superhero wannabe. His funds enable him to secure all of the superhero necessities, including A) a cunning sidekick (Jay Chou), B) a tricked-out car (the Black Beauty), C) a sexually attractive assistant/researcher (Cameron Diaz) and D) a badass costume.