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200 words about Scanner Cop
In a world where cops can scan...
As much as Cronenberg tries to dress it up, Scanners is about one thing: psychics making gross faces until someone’s head explodes. In the four Scanners sequels (thank you, Canada!!), the end-of-days vibe of the original fades away, but the heads just keep getting bigger. You can only stage that special effect so many ways before it devolves from body horror into plain action. (When a guy’s head pops underwater in Scanners III, the gore geyser looks like the end of Jaws.) The best sequel is Scanner Cop. It trades the psychic angst of the other movies for shocks, one-liners, and pure comic book storytelling. At one point, the villain pulls a lever to open an actual trap door in his lair. Later, his head explodes. SC punches above its weight for the first time in the post-Cronenberg series, but nothing in it is as amazing as the title. Adding “Cop” to the name of any sci-fi film is magic; a pre-baked sequel starts playing in your head as soon as you hear the name. Sadly, we never got a Predator Cop or Tron Cop. T2 actually was Terminator Cop, but they didn’t have the courage to call it that.