Eddie Murphy: Career of Teflon

aaarghSimply put, Eddie Murphy is the man. Nothing will ever stop this guy. Most people can't comprehend my undying admiration for Eddie Murphy, so I'll do my best to explain how Eddie is a master of screwing up royally. This guy has made some of the worst career moves in the history of Hollywood, yet he won't go away. Why? How? This is the enigma that is Eddie Murphy.

eat it upEddie, in essence, is the opposite of my arch-nemesis, Whoopi Goldberg. While Whoopi has fallen into the barren wasteland of comedy (Hollywood squares, followed by an NBC sitcom), Eddie Murphy has defied everyone and become, of all things, a star of comedy movies geared towards children. Truly the master of overcoming self-destruction, Eddie is one of those people who have reserved a special place in my heart.

Let's go back to what most people see as the height of Eddie's career. Tell someone in 1984 that Axel Foley from Beverly Hills Cop would be dancing around in a successful G-rated children's movie dressed as a celery stick.

Come on. Eddie Murphy? We're talking one of the dirtiest guys in the history of comedy. Prior to the Matrix sequels, Beverly Hills Cop was the highest-grossing R-rated movie of ALL TIME.

So let's track how we got from Beverly Hills Cop to Daddy Day Care.

Eddie faltered a bit after his big success in the mid-80s. Another 48 Hours and Boomerang were terrible.

Then he went on to have a "singing career." I use that term lightly, because his serious songs included the track "Party All the Time" with the late Rick James and "Whatzupwitu" with Michael Jackson. Both instant classics in my book, but nothing can compete with his opus to anal sex, "Boogie in Your Butt."

But did I mention that he was arrested for picking up a transvestite prostitute?

That's right folks, in case you forgot or never knew, this is the man who solicited sex from a man dressed as a woman.

Eddie Murphy. An SNL legend. You know, the guy from Eddie Murphy Raw. The guy who would talk about having sex with girls in his stand-up while he wore a ridiculous red leather suit. Delirious. Coming to America. The Golden Child. Trading Places. Eddie fucking Murphy.

I couldn't find a mugshot of Eddie from when he got arrested, so here's my horribly photoshopped depiction of how that fateful night for Mr. Murphy might have gone down:

eddie is the man

For any common man, that would be the end. But not Eddie. Not this man. He continued to fail his way into success.

After the disastrous Vampire in Brooklyn, Eddie does a remake of the Nutty Professor, and makes an ungodly amount of money. This is followed by some success with a sequel to that and a few other movies, most notably Shrek and Bowfinger.

But the year that will forever live in infamy in the career of Eddie is the one to top them all - 2002. That's the year when Eddie had not one, not two, but THREE colossal box office disasters. The first two movies, Showtime and I Spy, aren't really worth noting, except for the fact that Eddie contributed to the downfall of the careers of Robert DeNiro and Owen Wilson.

No, my friends, the real winner of this bunch is a little film called The Adventures of Pluto Nash. Apparently this movie was Eddie's brainchild, his own personal labor of love. If that doesn't spell disaster, I don't know what else can.

The film cost $100 million to make. The studio spent an extra $20 million promoting it. Seriously, how many comedies, let alone movies, get $120 million spent on them?

Only Eddie. The film went on to make roughly $4.4 million in the United States, making it unquestionably the largest box office failure in American cinema history. If you get a chance, watch this movie. Imagine, as you watch, all the good that could be done with $120 million. Then, imagine $120 million being flushed down the toilet. I've heard many things described as "like watching a train wreck," but this flick takes the cake. Brilliant.

So how does Eddie follow it up? Daddy Day Care managed to earn over $100 million, and then Shrek 2 was the highest grossing film of this year.

That's right, the guy who is responsible for the biggest financial failure in American cinema, the dirty comedian from the 80s, the guy who picks up transvestite prostitutes... is a successful actor in children's movies.

Here in America, we love to destroy celebrities and throw them into a pit of despair, but not Eddie. That's right Eddie, we love you, and we'll always welcome you back with open arms, even if you fuck a goat.

Next year you can catch our hero in theaters in the sequel to 2003's fantastic Daddy Day Care, aptly titled Daddy Day Camp.

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2003 - 2005
Reverend Hughes