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after it was canceled, re-runs aired on the sci-fi channel for a while. the only way to see it now is on video.
worth looking into if you're looking for a new black superhero.
I loved that dreamy concept. Can you see the brilliant metaphor here? That paralyzed man is just you and me in front of many ugly crimes in our worlds. And now, this show just gives him, and us, the opportunity to get up, leave the chair, and be the hero who saves the city from its evils.
It managed to be peculiar. From the main character as paralyzed, to being an African-American, all wasn't familiar. For a disabled superhero, I can't remember but Dare Devil. And for a black superhero, in the American TV, I can't remember any !
Further, unlike other shows, and naturally after the generation's hit; The X-Files, this show was stylish and dark. It differs than many of the action shows where usual is all the style you can get. And it had such a dark sense that lead actor Carl Lumbly's sullen performance got matched with perfectly.
Lumbly, as Dr. Miles Hawkins, owned the screen. He was charismatic and unforgettable. I thought he saw the character as someone who has great pain and bitterness, yet conceals that whenever he's the staid Dr. Hawkins, but when he gets to be the hero, that inner suppressed rage comes out. So sorry that he couldn't be a lead of an action show again, just a supporting role in (Alias) years later.
I won't forget the moment in which the title character answers the question of "Who are you?" for the first time. He said in the most macho, cool and serious ways ever "You can call me.. The Mantis." WAW. It's real inspiring, because when I wrote my own superhero comic series; I put in the very first episode a similar line, but it went like this "You can call me.. Bakir 1.".
At one of the 1990s years, I don't remember which, I used to watch it everyday at 8: PM, on the second channel of our national TV. Then one day, it vanished from the screen, and I didn't get to watch it again. Well, sure it got canceled pretty early. I don't know the reason yet (they didn't like its title ?!). But I do feel rage when, at the same year, another show begin to never stop.. named (Friends). You can guess whose the persons that I wished for the mantis to destroy for years and years later !
Anyhow, you have to love (M.A.N.T.I.S.), and be sad for it too. It is one of 1994 most ambitious, entertaining, and unfortunate TV shows.
I read some comments and I thought it was unfair by the writers. They complained about the acting, the plots, the director, the actors etc.I think they should give the show some credit, because it was not one of the overrated TV shows where you have to hide and change channel when your parents passed by. Or felt ashamed when your parents sat in the lounge looking at you upset, because they thought you were viewing adult material.
I'm sure if Miles (Carl Lumbly) and Leora (Galyn Gorg) were very intimate and she took off her clothing for him in the show it wasn't going to be a problem for many.Actually the show was going to be a hit series. Anyway, I thank the producer and the actors, especially Galyn Gorg and Carl Lumbly for doing a wonderful job. As for the others who did not like the show SORRY, but I loved it.
I can't remember much about the plots of the shows since its been almost ten years, however there was this one where this buff guy turned out to be a robot. The writing was so lame. In comic books a decent writer can make a super hero come to life and comic fans (like me) buy into it, here I just gasped at how uninteresting it was. I only watched because I wanted to watch a show about superheros.
On a positive note I was flipping around the channels when I saw the unaired final episode of Mantis on the Sci-Fi channel. And god bless Raimi's heart, the main character mercifuly dies at the hand at of an invisible Tyrannasaurus Rex, his main squeeze by his side. Quite lame, Quite appropriate.