Mystery Science Theater 3000: SAN FRANCISCO INTERNATIONAL
January 26, 2017 12:19 AM - Season 6, Episode 14 - Subscribe

"Jet Packed Drama at a Giant Air Terminal!" Pilot for a TV show featuring the wacky shenanigans dramatic occurrences at... (spins the Wheel of Television) ...a major airport. A staple of MST3K is the failed TV pilot that never went to series. Well ha ha, this one did make it to series, minus its whole cast except for Clu Galuger, whose name sounds like it should be sung by Huckleberry Hound. YouTube (1h33m) Premiered November 19, 1994.

Satellite News - Mighty Jack's Episode Review - War of the Colossal Fan Guide

Daddy-O's Drive-In Dirt - Wikipedia (TV series)
"Pilot for the TV series, stars Pernell Roberts as Jim Conred, who runs an airport, much to the chagrin of his boss, "his way." In this, two plots run - a kid whose parents are splitting up decides to take off in a little red prop plane (and Conrad talks him down), and thieves played by the handsome Tab Hunter and his truly ugly sidekicks try to steal a money shipment. Roberts was replaced by Lloyd Bridges when the show went to series." (Jonah Falcon)
IMDB (1970, 2.6 stars)
Directed by John Llewellyn Moxey. Written by William Read Woodfield and Allan Balter. Starring Pernell Roberts, Clu Gulager and Beth Brickell.

Clu Galuger is still alive and working, although in movies like "Pirhana 3DD." You can do better Clu!

Something tickles me about these "special place" kinds of TV shows, where the only real connecting thread is that it's somewhere, where it's implied each episode is just another crazy day. Sorta like The Love Boat, except less whimsical. That had to have limited the number of possible stories. The show did make it to series, but as one of four spots in one of those revolving-door shows, like the NBC Mystery Movie (shines flashlight), so it only got six episodes. IMDB says Clu Galuger (the Gary Burghoff of San Francisco International) only even appeared in three of them.

I like to think, if the show had somehow lasted, that it would have gotten weirder and wackier as the writers had to avoid copying themselves. Around season three the wacky ethnic break-out character would have shown up (catchphrase: "I wouldn't bet on it, pops!") and everyone would have immediately believed he'd been there from the beginning. Season five would have had the famous cartoon voice actors episode, with Frank Welker, Daws Butler and Paul Frees competing doing funny voices over the terminal telephone. Then in season eight a controversial supernatural element would have been added to compete with Fantasy Island, when a practicing witch started (would have started) tending the airport bar and adding subtle magical hi-jinks with her hexes and charms, and most viewers agreed--would have agreed--the series jumped the shark, although it'd still have meandered on for two more seasons, one of them (would have) contained the famous "mirror universe" episode where the cast would have had to interact with visiting staff from rival LAX in a Springfield/Shelbyville situation.
posted by JHarris (10 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I hate to burst your bubble, and the "famous cartoon voices episode" IS an awesome idea, but both Paul Frees and Daws Butler (who WAS the voice of Huckleberry Hound) had passed away in the late '80s, before "San Francisco International" went to pilot. But Maurice LaMarche and Corey Burton had already started doing many of Frees' voices, and you could have thrown in Billy West, Rob Paulsen or Tom 'Spongebob' Kenny for some of Butler's. Frank Welker is one of the few voice actors who bridges the two eras of voice acting, and he was the star of a FPP I did a few years ago. (And let us not forget June Foray, who's approaching her 100th birthday, started playing Granny to Tweety & Sylvester before she was 30 and last did Rocky the Squirrel three years ago.) But I digress.
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:19 AM on January 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

GOOD LORD June Foray's still alive. That's too cool.

I love this episode. It may be the only MST that my father-in-law watched and enjoyed (he got into the story). And quoting the Davey riffs never, ever gets old.
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 3:26 AM on January 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

Aaah, but San Francisco International was 1970-1, so they could still have been on! In fact, that was around Hanna-Barbera's heyday.
posted by JHarris at 5:11 AM on January 26, 2017

Don't you people ever sleep?
posted by valkane at 5:48 AM on January 26, 2017

Yes, I can verify that I do at least.

Oh wait, just a sec, gotta do the announcements:

(piercing PA feedback sound)

Every week, we in MST3K Club watch that week's episode over the internet. You should watch with! This week's show is tonight at 9 PM ET, 6 PM PT, at Feel free to come along! But please, leave that Clu Galuger body pillow you call "hubby" at home, we're all open minded but it creeps out the neighbors.
posted by JHarris at 7:16 AM on January 26, 2017

we're all open minded but it creeps out the neighbors.

I wouldn't bet on it, pops!

*generic laugh track*
posted by valkane at 7:39 AM on January 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

I love this episode. The "movie" is 200 proof 70s.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:49 AM on January 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

AARGH... I misread "1970" as "1990". Yes, I should have gone to sleep earlier. But yes, June Foray Lives, and is almost literally the Last of a Generation of Voice Actors. (And should have been included in any "famous cartoon voices episode".)
posted by oneswellfoop at 1:03 PM on January 26, 2017

We miss you hob.
posted by valkane at 4:33 PM on January 26, 2017 [1 favorite]

Hey! They totally stole that the-landing-gear-is-broken-but-not-really bit from Starfighters!
posted by ckape at 10:03 PM on April 26, 2017

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