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The Moment in "Superman III" That Scarred Us For Life


It's pretty much agreed that Superman III was not a good movie, but we were recently reminded that this movie scarred us emotionally as children. No, not because of Richard Pryor pretending to be Superman with a tablecloth around his neck. It's because of THAT scene. The one where a woman is turned into a cyborg by an evil supercomputer.

We were reminded of the scene when Eric Alper on Twitter asked, "What movie traumatized you as a kid?" The answer immediately came to us: Superman III.

If you've never seen Superman III, it's about Richard Pryor as a genius computer nerd who is manipulated into designing a supercomputer in a massive cave. The supercomputer became sentient and started fighting Superman and the other people who tried to disable it. One of them, the villain's sister Vera, is grabbed by the supercomputer's energy beams and pulled into the computer, where the machine transforms her into a robot.



Okay, the special effects aren't that great, and the idea doesn't really hold up. I mean, how was the computer able to turn her (including her eyeballs) into metal that quickly? Just by smacking wires and metal onto her? And in the end, it's just her stomping around with a bad wig and bad makeup and shooting energy beams at people. Yet for our eleven year old brains, it was scarier than anything we'd ever seen. I mean, this was years before the Borg brought our fears of being turned into robots to life, and Doctor's Who's Dalek's didn't air where we grew up.

Besides, look at her face!


And the way her screams of terror and agony turn into a helpless gurgle! It was something we'd never seen before, and it put visions of being dragged screaming into a computer in our daydreams. In our nightmares, wires held us down while machinery clamped onto our tender bodies. We didn't really understand computers, so it seemed like this was something that could totally happen.

And the worst part is that it was so unexpected. Up until that point, it was a light and goofy comedy where the scariest thing that happened was Superman getting five o'clock shadow and blowing out an Olympic torch. It's not like we signed up for a horror movie. Then suddenly, a woman is turned into a robot.

To be honest, it's still hard to watch.

What did you think of Superman III? What other movies scarred you as a kid? Let us know in the comments!

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