Mystery Science Theater 3000: THE LOVES OF HERCULES
June 1, 2017 12:45 AM - Season 11, Episode 8 - Subscribe

aka Hercules Vs. The Hydra, Gli Amori de Ercole. Hercules' wife is murdered, but it's okay, he finds a new love days later. Then an Amazon queen decides to pursue him as well. It's a collision course with wackiness! Or maybe more murder! Given the number of girlfriends and wives Herc has had throughout these interminable movies, why would any woman stick around with him? It's a death sentence! We're now halfway into Season 11, the Kickstarter-funded revival of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Pepla (singular peplum) provide for some of the most beloved classic episodes of MST (such as 408 HERCULES UNCHAINED and 410 HERCULES AGAINST THE MOON MEN), but there are also some relatively boring ones. Fan reaction to this episode, at least, seems divided. Episode 1108 can be viewed on Netflix.

MST3K Wikia - MST Discussion Board - Poffy's Movie Mania - TV Tropes

Rotten Tomatoes (Critics N/A, Viewers 38%) - Wikipedia - TV Tropes
IMDB (1960, 3.1 stars)
Directed by Carlo Ludovico Bragaglia. Written by Sandro Continenza, Luciano Doria and Alberto Manca. Starring Jayne Mansfield, Mickey Hargitay and Massimo Serato.

According to Wikipedia, this is either the fourth or fifth Hercules movie. The others that MST has done:
There's also 605 COLOSSUS AND THE HEADHUNTERS, which doesn't have Hercules in the title and is actually a Maciste ("my cheese steak") movie... but then, Hercules Against The Moon Men was originally a Maciste movie, too.

Wikipedia tells us that, in the wake of the original Hercules starring Steve Reeves, for this production they tried adding star power, not from the actor playing Herc himself, but his love, hence the casting of Jayne Mansfield, who refused to do it unless her husband played Hercules.

But wow, I hate Hercules in this one. Not only is he fairly weak by demigod standards, but he seems so dense! And his voice and accent remind me of Sportacus. Word is however that Hargitay is actually one of the physically strongest guys to play the Hercster.

Check it out, in the cold open, Jonah is actually snacking from a bag of Ram Chips, with Crow and Servo's pictures on it!
posted by JHarris (14 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
It's not MST3K without a terrible Hercules movie.
posted by tobascodagama at 11:54 AM on June 1, 2017 [1 favorite]

This week's showings begin tonight at 7 PM Eastern, 4 PM Pacific:

The room this week is I hope you can make it!
posted by JHarris at 12:02 PM on June 1, 2017

I found this one to be exactly the quality of the original Hercules episodes, which is to say: fine.
posted by Chrysostom at 1:08 PM on June 1, 2017

I never thought I would ever be nostalgic for Steve Reeves. It's a strange year.
posted by happyroach at 2:47 PM on June 1, 2017

I enjoyed this one, but then again, I enjoy all the Hercules episodes. I hadn't ever seen Jayne Mansfield in anything before, so that was...interesting.
posted by altopower at 3:10 PM on June 1, 2017

Alan Steel is the One True Hercules and I will accept no pretenders.

(Except maybe Troy McClure)
posted by Phobos the Space Potato at 3:57 PM on June 1, 2017

Sing, O Muse! Sing of Herakles, son of Zeus!
Sing of his rage, and the terrible fate
Which befell his wife, beloved of the Gods
Through treachery slain, cast down
To the houses of the dead

Sing of Herakles' vengeful journey
Fiery-eyed, shirtless, driven by Lyssa
To the gates of Ecalia
That famed walled city
Where he hooked up with some other woman
Almost immediately
And also there was an axe-throwing contest
Of some sort...



Sing! Sing of his terrible battle
With the rubbish Hydra
And that other guy
Who we didn't really see
But was probably killed
Sent down to the houses of the dead
And then some Amazons show up

And Herakles, bronze-chested
Hooks up with a totally different woman
Who kind of looks like his wife
But she gets eaten by a tree
For some reason...

Look, you think this
Bardic narrative tradition is easy?
Fine, you lay down some verses on the spot
In Ionic-Aeolic Greek
I'm fucking waiting
And your dactylic hexameter better be fucking tight

posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:39 PM on June 1, 2017 [13 favorites]

This is another of the new episodes that is a favorite. I have watched it several times.
posted by wittgenstein at 7:03 PM on June 1, 2017 [1 favorite]

For this movie, we've replaced Herc being so sleepy with Herc just randomly picking up things and carrying them awkwardly.
posted by fifteen schnitzengruben is my limit at 10:46 PM on June 1, 2017 [5 favorites]

That Frederick Law Olmsted goof was a precision strike on my chuckle glands.
posted by theodolite at 7:57 AM on June 2, 2017 [1 favorite]

Alan Steel was definitely the best *actor* we've seen as Herc. Too bad he was saddled with SAAAAANDSTORRRRRMMMM
posted by CheesesOfBrazil at 11:27 AM on June 2, 2017 [3 favorites]

So here was the question running through my head after first watching this: You know the story about how Joe Don Baker threatened physical harm to the MST3k crew after they eviscerated him in "Mitchell"? I have to wonder if the memory of that made them reluctant to make any Mariska Hargitay jokes because, no offence to Jonah and they new kids, but she could probably kick all of their asses.
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 2:46 PM on June 2, 2017 [1 favorite]

So, it turns out that last host segment with all the screaming does not make this an episode one should watch while falling asleep.
posted by Servo5678 at 2:03 PM on June 3, 2017 [5 favorites]

I have to wonder if the memory of that made them reluctant to make any Mariska Hargitay jokes because, no offence to Jonah and they new kids, but she could probably kick all of their asses.

One of them does a pretty decent Mickey Hargitay imitation though...

I kind of thought of the same thing in the Doug McClure episodes, but I think he's dead.
posted by drezdn at 3:27 PM on June 3, 2017 [1 favorite]

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