Mystery Science Theater 3000: THE UNDEAD
July 6, 2017 1:13 AM - Season 8, Episode 6 - Subscribe

"Terror... That Screams from the Grave!" A confusing movie, actually introduced by Satan himself, about a hooker regressed into a past life where she was executed for witchcraft. Contains 5000% more Digger Smolken than the doctor recommended dose. Ah, finally the movie selection moves out from beneath Universal's oppressive thumb, meaning this episode is on YouTube (1h32m)! It's also directed--not Executive Produced--by Roger Corman, so prepare yourself for direct exposure to the Cor-Man. That bit in the beginning where Pearl stuffs her test paper in an Observer's brain dish? That's our Observer right there, and it's essentially the beginning of their storied (in fanfic at least) and yet strangely non-specific relationship. Premiered March 8, 1997.

Episode 806 THE UNDEAD
Satellite News - Mighty Jack's episode Review - War of the Colossal Fan Guide - Annotated MST3K - TVTropes

Bill Corbett remembers the episode in his entry for the Amazing Colossal Episode Guide. He said the movie "sat on all of our heads." His summary:
This cinematic slop, directed by Roger "Gets Far More Respect than He Deserves" Corman, has a former student returning to his teacher at the "Institute Of Psychical Research" (yeah, right) to prove that he has surpassed this ex-mentor, who bears an unfortunate resemblance to Mel Cooley of The Dick Van Dyke Show. Apparently tutored by mystics in Nepal, this weird and disturbing younger psychicicical researcher endeavors to regress a streetwalker -- whose time he has quite appropriately paid for -- through her past lives. The point? Who knows. Ask Roger Corman.
Anyways, this woman-of-dubious-virtue from the 20th century soon regresses to medieval France, where she is now a young maiden falsely accused of witchcraft and scheduled to be beheaded the following dawn. From there ensues one of the most baffling narratives ever created by man, an unnecessarily complicated tale involving witches; imps (an imp, more specifically, played way over the top by small-person actor Billy Barty); an annoying gravedigger named Smolken who constantly sings lame songs about death, corpses, rats, etc.; an extraordinarily fey Satan in a Peter Pan hat; and all sorts of time travel nonsense and reincarnation bunko. In the end, the over-ambitious young 20th century pyschicicicicicical researcher gets trapped in this medieval kingdom, which is the size of an 10' by 15' movie studio. Oh yeah, and the 20th century prostitute attains virtue and wisdom because -- oh, frankly, I don't know. Again, I refer you to Mr. Corman. I wish I could provide his home number.
Daddy-O's Drive-In Dirt
Rotten Tomatoes (Critics N/A, Viewers 21%) - Wikipedia - TVTropes
IMDB (1957, 3.9 stars)
"A beautiful woman is sent back in time via hypnosis to the Middle Ages where she finds she is suspected of being a witch, and subject to being executed."
Directed by Roger Corman (oh, mama!) Written by Charles B. Griffith and Mark Hanna. Starring Pamela Duncan, Richard Garland and Allison Hayes.

Get ready for Digger Smolkin songs!

According to the MST3K Wikia this movie was "Filmed in a converted supermarket, and completed in six days." That's Roger Corman for you. None of his movies ever lost money, because you can't lose if you don't risk nothin'.
posted by JHarris (7 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
One detail I'm really surprised didn't pop up in the "Wizards of the Lost Kingdom II" thread was that the same actor who plays Caedmon also played Digger Smolkin. Mel Welles: Annoying at any age!
posted by AlonzoMosleyFBI at 7:04 AM on July 6, 2017 [1 favorite]

This movie. Feh.
posted by Chrysostom at 11:54 AM on July 6, 2017 [1 favorite]

Here's the showing info--

Every Thursday, MST Club shows an episode a week on our long tour through the series. Lately we've been showing two a week, to get through Season 11. This week is one of those. Actually, it's the next-to-the-last of those, the week after next we'll be going back to normal pre-roll shows and

This week, the show is still on, at Here is tonight's schedule (all times are Eastern/Pacific):

7/4 PM: 1113 THE CHRISTMAS THAT ALMOST WASN'T (next-to-last Season 11 episode)
8:30/5:30: YouTube Potluck Intermission (people contribute videos for the group to watch)
9/6 PM: 806 THE UNDEAD (Roger Corman directed!)

We hope you can make it!
posted by JHarris at 12:22 PM on July 6, 2017

Don't want to give too much away, but Bridget has a very funny cameo in this one.
posted by wittgenstein at 6:15 PM on July 6, 2017 [1 favorite]

"I've never been a football before...."
posted by JHarris at 6:49 PM on July 6, 2017

We could use some bleach.
posted by wittgenstein at 11:50 AM on July 7, 2017 [1 favorite]

This week in YouTube Potluck heavily favored my own contributions, I'm sorry to say. I did have an unusually large amount built up from the proceeding week though:
  • An extremely creepy Andy's Gang bit where animals listlessly play "Jesus Loves Me" while Andy Devine tunelessly sings along.
  • A clown hawks Post Sugar Rice Krinkles. He says, "It's sooo good, I krinkle every time I eat it!" Let that sink in for a second.
  • Top 10 Failed McDonalds Products seems factually dubious, to me anyway. I'm still not sure if it meant the top 10 biggest failures, or the most popular products that failed. #1 was McPizza, sorry for spoilers.
  • On The Ghoul and Froggy, I believe it was Foop who contributed this, a more recent appearance by Froggy the Gremlin, or rather a squeaky toy licensed product, getting destroyed by a gleeful maniac wielding a power drill. Noooo Froggy!
  • Flintstones for Winston Cigarettes, one of the animated segments from the original broadcast of The Flintstones where they earn their keep by moving tobacco product, some time before the animated Joe Camel.
  • Mysteries From Beyond the Other Dominion holds a special place in my part. Hosted by Dr. Franklin Ruehl, first on public access, then for a brief but memorable run on the Sci-Fi Channel in the pre-MST age, this early bastion of pseudoscience was held together by the personality of its host, who, though his mannerisms are perhaps a bit unusual (arm swing!), had a certain likeability about him, even as he pokes straws into a potato while shouting 'GUY-EEE!'
  • Fred & Barney for Busch Beer Part 1 - Part 2: An internal promotional short bit made for Busch, this basically takes the form of a Flintstones episode where Fred and Barney get fired and end up selling Busch beer for the day, which makes a ghostly woman's hand emerge from the wall (or alternatively a cloud), caress male heads, and coo at them that life's going to be fine. The whole thing's like 20 minutes in all, but there's so much inexplicable stuff along the way. The narrator of the bit, by the way, seems to be the same one from The Selling Wizard!
  • Nesbitt's Orange is a short whimsically animated bit foop dug up.
  • Foop also found Time for Timer: Hanker For a Hunk of Cheese, from ABC Saturday Mornings! Look, a wagon wheel!
  • And Snek contributed 2nu's funky Spaz Attack, a word of which ("spaz") I have since learned is considered offensive in Britain. Ah well. Snek also brought up Frank's Chair, but we didn't have time for it this week.

posted by JHarris at 1:59 PM on July 7, 2017

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