Mystery Science Theater Club
A place to talk about our quest to group-watch, over the Internet, the entire 198-episode cable run of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Bad movies with good friends! MST3K episodes on FanFare.
Posts for this club should be tagged: mysterysciencetheater_club.
Rewatch! Another giant lizard terrorizes an Asian city, although this time it's Seoul, not Tokyo. Along the way we meet a perfectly obnoxious little boy. Previously.
Rewatch! We embark on the second half of Season 11 with everyone's favorite ancient Greek lump of flesh as he romances some ladies. Previously.
Rewatch! "'The Land That Slipped Time's Mind,' or 'The McClure That the Simpsons Forgot,' or 'T-Rex Meets U-Boat but Y?'" What first seems to be a wartime drama about Allied prisoners on a U-Boat trying to take it over changes when they discover a dinosaur-filled lost world. Previously. [more inside]
Rewatch! "'The Giving Away the Ending Hall of Fame' or 'Former Evangelist Marjoe Prays for a Better Movie!'" One of the few movies in MST history where the film's badness may, itself, be more entertaining than the riffs. Starcrash is a ludicrous mess, but still lots of fun, with its skimpy space bikini, texas-talking robot, giant mecha-amazon, Marjoe Gortner as a Jedi with the serial numbers filed off, David Hasselhoff as David Hasselhoff, and a seriously slumming Christopher Plummer. I could go on! [more inside]
Rewatch! "Tyrannosaurus Tex-Mex," or "Mexican Dinosaurs Aren't Just for Tacos!"
So much of this movie is just a standard Western, UNTIL.... [more inside]
Rewatch! "'Ski Faster!' or 'Half a Lanche Is Better Than None,' or 'Rock Hudson Slide!' or 'Not the Last Resort But Close.'" Rock Hudson ignores safety warnings when building his resort, and tragedy ensues. [more inside]
Rewatch! Some scientists find themselves stuck in a future time where the last civilized humans are trying to escape a barren Earth. Previously. [more inside]
Rewatch! In the year since it was first shown, Cry Wilderness has shaped up to be one of the best episodes of MST3K's eleventh season. It's an exceedingly ludicrous movie with a magic Bigfoot, one of those noble Native American spirit people, and a jerkass US Marshall who thinks nothing about breaking into someone's home and eating their food. Previously.
Rewatch! Starting in on Season 11, Reptilicus, and the show's new premise and cast. It's been a year since Season 11 debuted, how does it hold up? Previously.
AKA Danger: Diabolik. "Out for all he can take, seduce, or get away with." A master criminal steals all kinds of stuff in a series of capers, killing lots of people along the way. Oh, and he's our protagonist, yay! He's based on an Italian comic character, which might explain things a bit. Pearl plays around with a joystick she got at Radio Shack, but it breaks and sends the Satellite of Love into reentry, and she can't do anything about it. Mike and the 'bots are coming home! And with this, we have reached the end of our tour of Mystery Science Theater 3000; see inside for closing words and odds and ends. But MST Club isn't done yet! Episode 1013 is available on YouTube. Premiered August 8, 1999. [more inside]
"This was the night of the CRAWLING TERROR!" I have one more useful science factoid to teach you: if you run an electrical current through an earthworm, it'll become an aggressive monster and crave human flesh! But only while the current is running. This movie helpfully shows us the lethal consequences of downed power lines, which result in the depopulation of a small town. But it's a Georgia town, so, no worries. With the short A Case of Spring Fever: A film that warns us, for the sake of all mankind, to guard our tongues! Say no careless words in wishing for the absence of any petty thing that annoys you, for there may be an omnipotent spirit listening, and waiting, willing, even eager, to remove all those things from the universe just to spite you personally. To think of all the things our world has lost, all because some schmuck decided to say aloud he was annoyed with, say, immortality this week. One more film about unpleasant people in the South. Notable for containing the phrase, "You gonna be da worm face now!" The episode contains MST3K's last short, and it's one of the best. Episode 1012 is available on YouTube. Premiered August 1, 1999. One episode left. [more inside]
AKA Ein Toter hing im Netz or "Body in the Web." "HAIR-RAISING! SPINE-CHILLING! One bite from a giant spider turned him into THE WORLD'S MOST HIDEOUS MONSTER with a diabolical lust to KILL!" Our movie starts out with guys hiring exotic dancers to send to Singapore, their natural habitat. The contents of the plane are so sexy that it crashes into the ocean. All passengers survive somehow and wash ashore on an uncharted desert isle. The girls celebrate by taking off all their clothes, except of course for their skin-colored bodysuits because we can't have anything risque. Then: SPIDERS! Maybe the writers were having an off week, or maybe news of the show's impending cancellation had affected them, but fans don't consider this episode a favorite. We shall enjoy it all the same. In host segments, Pearl moves her castle to the suburbs for a couple of hours. Episode 1011 is available on YouTube. Premiered July 25, 1999. Two episodes left. [more inside]
a.k.a. The Bat People. "No matter how hard you pray or how loud you scream there is no escape... no escape... no escape... no escape..." A guy on a research honeymoon gets bitten by a bat and starts transforming into some kind of... bat... person as a result, sure that happens. Look out for the special surprise ending where we find out bat-person-osis is also an STD. Pearl has fun mutating the SOL crew, and Tom Servo has way too big of a mustache. An okay episode. Episode 1010 is available on YouTube. Premiered July 18, 1999. Three episodes left. [more inside]
Something's rotten in Denmark. Prince Hamlet finds out his dad the king is suddenly dead, and his uncle Claudius has just as suddenly married his mum and taken the throne. Sound suspecious? So thinks Hamlet's dad's ghost, who tells him it was murder and demands revenge. But Hamlet's indecisive, so he pretends to be cray-cray so he can gather clues without alerting Claudius. While so detecting, Hamlet kills a series of people with varying degrees of intent, and holds a skull a bit. He gets revenge, but dies too. I'm going to level with you. This episode is commonly regarded as one of the less accessible ones. It's another case where the movie drags everything down. This is a low budget, black-and-white, 1961 made-for-TV German production of Hamlet, with over half the content cut for time, dubbed into English. It's a bit entertaining that a couple of the dubbers are, it turns out, Ricardo "Khaaaan!" Montalban and John "Sgt. Schultz" Banner themselves, but it's still a dry episode. It's all downhill from here! Episode 1009 is available on YouTube. Premiered June 27, 1999. Four episodes left. [more inside]
"His name is Thomas Jefferson Geronimo. His brand of justice doesn't stop at the Texas border." A Texas sheriff played by Joe Don Baker (Mitchell himself) is assigned to escort a mob boss to Italy, but the plane gets sidetracked to Malta, resulting in a series of cartoon episodes where he tries to catch him but keeps getting arrested, darn it! This is the episode where Crow and Servo destroy Goosio, beloved children's character of Malta. Episode 1008 is available on YouTube. Premiered June 20, 1999. Five episodes left. [more inside]
"The Riding Moon Creates a Monster" From the depths of space comes a meteor, which konks a guy in the head, causing the most logical thing to happen: sometimes he turns into a lizard and kills people. A fun episode, generally enjoyed by the three main fansites we track. The movie, which contains a character named Johnny Longbow, was actually co-written by Batman co-creator Bill Finger. Episode 1007 is available on YouTube. Premiered June 13, 1999. Six episodes left. [more inside]
"The Legend Too Monstrous To Die...Surfaces Again" "Do they really exist..?" A know-it-all professor on the lookout for bigfeet out in Arkansaw tells stories of said creatures to his grad assistants, then finds way, way, WAY too much. One of the most uniquely horrible movies MST ever did. Not only is it pretty badly made, but the characters are unlikeable, there's an entire section devoted to outhouse shenanigans (thankfully shortened in the riffed version) and then, at the end--Old Man Crenshaw! In host segments, Pearl tries to spread the legend of a creature lurking around Castle Forrester--it's Bobo, of course, but that doesn't stop Hank Brain Guy Jr. from writing a country song about it. Episode 1006 is available for viewing on YouTube. Premiered May 9, 1999. Seven episodes left. [more inside]
a.k.a. Zaat. "Is The Monster Man...Fish...Or Devil?" "It Would Take An Atom Bomb To Wipe Out The Walking Catfish!" "WARNING! Positively no one admitted during last 15 minutes!" Sargassum! After a short, nonsensical narration of an aquarium, a scientist charts on his gigantic circular day-planner his revenge on the scientific establishment, and the world that shunned his ideas, by turning himself into a monster that he calls (but isn't) a fish, then sets about making himself a fishy mate, while very southern authorities try to stop him. We've been through some adventures, haven't we? Well here's one more, the last of what I'd call the extreme pain category of episodes. Great host segments in this one! This episode is available to watch on YouTube. Premiered June 27, 1998. Eight episodes left. [more inside]
"It came from the future to hunt humans." A human taken from the past to be a slave in the future escapes to the present. He's chased by a familiar-looking guy with a really big chin and his dinosaur trackers. Nicely inconspicuous, future guy! He's helped by a street-wise nun and her street gang friends. Thank you for not killing me. In the words of Crow, "You know, I could point out it's not the future and there isn't a war, but you know me. I don't like to complain." This is a particularly laughable movie, although not one of the show's more famous episodes. Episode 1004 is available on YouTube. Premiered April 25, 1999. Nine episodes left. [more inside]
"In a world where magic truly exists, anything can happen." What if... someone made a movie like The Princess Bride, except instead of Peter Falk he could only get Ernest Borgnine, and instead of a charming and witty tale he had two mediocre made-for-TV fantasy-horror movies, and the kid instead of going to sleep with dreams of high adventure and romance was instead left with nightmares of demonic familiars and cursed deadly toy monkeys? In a world where schlock truly exists anything can happen. I love this one, it's all so bizarre and inexplicable. It's easy to make fun of Ernest Borgnine (hell, I do it too) but he had a long career and seemed like a good guy. In subplot land Pearl performs an experiment on Mike and co. for the Mad Science accreditation board. Taste the rainbow of fruit pain! Merlin's Shop of Mystical Wonders is available on YouTube. Premiered September 12, 1999. By the way: this was the last new episode of MST3K to appear on the Sci-Fi channel, actually showing after the series conclusion. Ten episodes left. [more inside]
"VIBRANT... UNPREDICTABLE... She hungered for fame... the men in her life offered love, danger, excitement!" "She murdered for fame, but the price tag was too much!" Michele is a dancer with big dreams: to work as a go-go girl in a seedy restaurant called EAT. Her meteroic rise is troubled by the conflicting attractions of EAT's janitor (name of "Critter"), and Buz, EAT's drug dealer. Will she be able to keep her pretty pretty mind? Will you? There are only four Sci-Fi Channel era episodes that don't have to do with sci-fi, fantasy or horror, and this is the first. Although the horror could come from all the slime dripping off the film, which is off-putting to sane people. This episode kicks off the "Mad Scientist accreditation" subplot in Castle Forrester, which would last to the end of the show. Episode 1002 can be found on YouTube. Premiered June 27, 1998. 11 episodes left. [more inside]
"There is no stairway to heaven." Because it turns out to be an elevator. Some dumb teens cross the Maximum Allowable Dumb line and are punished via a car crash that kills them. But wait, maybe they aren't dead? Because it turns out the Grim Reaper (Joe Estevez) is incompetent and can't leave personal issues at home. His boss (Robert Z'dar) is so going to write him up. This is a great episode, not just because the movie is goofy and the riffing excellent. This is the episode where "TVs" Frank Conniff and show creator and first host Joel Hodgson come back to visit! This is the first episode of the 10th season of MST3K, the final classic season of the show. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered June 27, 1998. 12 episodes left. [more inside]
"In an age of swords and sorcery, one young hero holds the key to infinite wisdom--and ultimate power." Not any sorcery, actually. Somewhere in the medieval nation of Europe, a young boy is sold as a slave but bought/rescued by "Baydool," who works for the "Delta Knights," against the villainous "Vultare," who works for "The Mannerjay." They're trying to find the lost treasure of Archimedes, Leonardo da Vinci is with them--if you try to make sense of when or where this film happened you'll go crazy. Roll for initiative! This is an underrated episode I think. The movie's got a crazy premise, the settings seem like they came from a LARP, and it just opens itself to riffing, which is nice after a couple of numbing episodes. Host segments are also great, with the "Loaner AMC Crow," another of Servo's chorus performances, and Pearl doing the riffing for the first quarter of the episode. This is the end of Season Nine of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Assembled people and robots, we have entered the home stretch. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered September 26, 1998. 13 episodes left. [more inside]
"FREE! We Guarentee To Bury You Without Charge If You Die Of Fright During SCREAMING SKULL!" A man and his new wife move into a house. Wait, the house was owned by his previous, now dead, wife? Who died mysteriously? And the new wife has a lot of money? Can you see where this is going? With short Robot Rumpus: Clayboy Gumby and his pony pal Pokey make robots to do his yardwork, but they run amok amok amok amok. Most say the movie's extremely drab and hard to watch, but the short is excellent, both fun itself and terrific riffing fodder. The bots do not well handle the sight of the fate of their claymation brethren: "This is how it is in the real world! Horrid lumps of discharge destroy beautiful, innocent robots with impunity!" In Castle Forrester, Pearl and company try to play a bizarre joke on Mike and his contingent, resulting ultimately in the shrinking of Bobo. Hah. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered August 29, 1998. 14 episodes left. [more inside]
"Sink your teeth into pure terror." "Wave goodbye..." Good luck making sense of this horribly-edited movie. A fish (with tentacles somehow) is terrorizing some folk, was made by a villain, and others are trying to stop them. There's some sex in there I think too. Pearl rents the castle out as a cruise ship (what) and Mike twice incurs the wrath of the Space Dolphin empire (what). In a host segment, Crow muses about combining a shark with an octopus, making him technically the ultimate origin of the movie Sharktopus. Thanks a heap, 'bot. Promo The episode itself doesn't appear to be on YouTube. Premiered August 15, 1998. 15 episodes left. [more inside]
"A lost city... A cult of unholy warriors... And a boy's quest for the secret of his father's death." Teenaged orphan Troy is on a quest across Canada to find out what happened to his father. In a pair of improbable coincidences, he meets a reformed, former member of the cult responsible for his death and his old partner, before finally confronting its leader. That reformed cult member goes by the name of Zap Rowsdower.... Fans generally regard this as one of the best of the Sci-Fi Channel era episodes. Both the riffing and the host segments are first-rate. This episode gives us the Canada Song and a Satellite-wide outbreak of Hockey Hair. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered July 25, 1998. 16 episodes left. Extra: The Rowsdower Song, from a post I made some time back. Have some more Rowsdowers. [more inside]
LIKE NOTHING YOU'VE NEVER SEEN BEFORE! A gigantic sea lizard emerges from the ocean off the British coast and wrecks stuff, but is captured. Then its mother shows up. Oops! Mormo could not be reached by press time. Note that the short intro blurbs often seen in these writeups are taken from advertising for the movie. I don't myself claim you've never seen something like this obvious British Godzilla clone before. Leonard Maltin (a good sport) shows up in a couple of host segments! This episode is not available on YouTube. Premiered July 18, 1998. 17 episodes left. [more inside]
"'The Touch of Satan' makes 'Rosemary's Baby' look like a Sunday school picnic!" - LA Free Press A guy falls in love with a weird gal who enchants him by telling him, of a lake, "This is where the fish lives!" Unfortuately, it turns out she's an actual enchantress, that is to say a witch, in turn to say Of The Devil, aka Gorgo and Mormo, and her gramma's both her sister and a murderer, or, as one character terms them, "fromakidal maniacs." Yet another movie not to expect a happy ending from. This is the episode where "Deadly" Beez McKeever babysits Observer (who she calls "Brian") and Bobo (who she thinks is a dog), in some particularly beloved host segments. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered July 11, 1998. 18 episodes left. Zaa! [more inside]
Warning: HOBGOBLINS - May Cause Blindness and Death Boy, that sure is a bad movie, won't you? It sure is, you know! An old guy spends his whole life working as a security guard for an old film studio just to prevent other security guards from unleashing the evil plush toys that live in one of its vaults. He is terrible at this. The "Hobgoblins" get loose, and it's up to a straight-laced new recruit and his upsettingly horny friends to save the world, and themselves, from their hallucinatory, fantasy-granting powers. Of all the movie types we've seen on our tour through the Mystery Science Theater, among them gray 50s sci-fi, brutal biker movies, an Orwellian children's film, post-apocalyptic warrior fightan, barely-clad pepla and vibrant Soviet fantasy, comes a new category: wannabe sex farce/horror. The result is unquestionably another one of the worst movies MST ever did, and yet pretty recent for that. What can you do with those Hobgoblins? Here comes one now! Watch out, you little doodad! YouTube (1h32m) Premiered June 27, 1998. 19 episodes left. [more inside]
MST Club presents your fourth-annual "No Stress" Yuletide Special and Weirdness Marathon: Christmas in Space!
Every Christmas for going on four years on now, those of us in MST Club have held what I call a "no-stress" marathon. A *real* marathon is an arduous ordeal, a harsh test of endurance. *Our* marathon, we don't care when you join us or when you leave. It's Christmas!
For the two days in question, December 24 and 25, we'll be showing Christmas specials (both weird and good), MST Episodes, Rifftrax and other yuletide oddities, with some other things mixed in for leavening, in the MST Club cytube room. Watch with us and joke along in the chatroom, or leave us on in the background. Our aim is to be the amiable background radiation to your holiday season. This is the planning thread. [more inside]
Kids serve the telepathic bidding of a Blob from Space to sabotage military weapons. The twist: the Blob is a good guy! With short Century 21 Calling: At the Seattle World's Fair, everyone is excited about PHONES. You'll be able to record frequently-called numbers onto little plastic cards! An uncommonly ridiculous movie and short combo. Warning: contains Uncle Fester in shorts! This is another episode that's not on DVD, and probably never will be. Vimeo (1h32m) Premiered June 13, 1998. 20 episodes left. [more inside]
"hives of horror! Excited by the smell of fear they inflict their fatal stings!" A British singer collapses on television and is sent to the countryside to recuperate. I guess she shouldn't have used AirB&B. Also apparently the British take forever to investigate anything. This episode is infamously unavailable commercially by any means, not YouTube, DVD, Video on Demand or streaming; it's one of those final few episodes where the copyright owners seem almost affronted at the temerity of that Midwest puppet show at making fun of their movie and have refused to license it for release. In subplot news, the other Observers are back and try to take Brain Guy away. Pearl and Bobo's attempts at getting him to stay is as close to touching as this deeply ridiculous show ever gets. Premiered May 9, 1998. 21 episodes left. (guy with bowler hat appears mysteriously, nods, and walks off into distance) [more inside]
aka Arizona Werewolf. "Rest in... beast." Did you know you can contract werewolfism through improper handling of teeth? Yuri discovers this and infects Paul with Involuntary Furry Syndrome. He did this to make money exhibiting Paul-as-wolf, since as we all know sideshow exhibitions are so very lucrative. Paul escapes this fate through the application of a timely mauling and hooks up with his GF, who becomes a werewolf too. Now the two of them spend their nights terrorizing the townfolk; what a romantic ending! It's another fan favorite episode! When this episode was made, the movie was only three years old! This is the episode with the brilliant "Tusk!" bit over the movie's credits music. Satellite News subsite Ward E cataloged all the references, and this YouTube video overlays the MST versions with the originals (2m). YouTube (1h32m). Premiered April 18, 1998. 22 episodes left. [more inside]
AKA "L'uoma Puma." Donald Pleasence has stolen a mind-control mask, and it's up to The Pumaman to stop him! But we don't know who that is yet! So faithful priest Vadinho throws people out of windows until he finds the one guy who survives it: must be him. Watch him soar through the air with the opposite of grace! We are all surely doomed. This is a beloved episode, the riffing is terrific throughout. The great improbability that our hero could be an Anything Man makes the whole thing ridiculous on its face, but it keeps on stretching the premise further and further. In Castle Forrester, Pearl plans a ball but Brain Guy's party to watch the new episode of Sliders is more popular. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered April 4, 1998. 23 episodes left. [more inside]
"Science Shocker of the Space Age!" "See!! A 6ft astronaut shrink to 6 inches before your very eyes! See!! The Moon Maidens! See!! The attack of the Fire People!" An astronaut is stranded on a planetoid that makes him small. There are other small people there, and he assimilates into their culture. Then they're destroyed and he's rescued. Film that for long enough and you have yourself a movie. You know, every year of my life I grow more and more convinced that the wisest and the best is to fix our attention on the good and the beautiful, if you just take the time to look at it. In Castle Forrester, Pearl gets her Mad Scientist kit. Promo YouTube (1h32m) Premiered March 21, 1998. 24 episodes left. [more inside]
"Born a man... turned into a living laser beam by science's most gruesome experiment!" "A Billion Volts of Death in Every Finger!" Another dang fool scientist is inventing a teleporter, and again he's impatient for results so he tests it on himself and becomes a monster. Isn't it weird when a movie's hubristic Tampering In God's Domain amounts to moving somewhere? Hey here's a thought, why not just walk a few steps across the room and maybe not turn into a deformed horror? Lembeck is staying! The movie's okay but the thing about this episode is that the "endless chase" subplot is finally over, although it takes a season for the opening theme to catch up with this fact. Pearl and henchies finally arrive at and settle into ancestral family home Castle Forrester, the show's site until the end of the classic era. Pearl discovers a family history in which she finds out her family has been forcing bad art on hapless subjects for ages. In this, we find out that the female half of her family basically have the same first-naming conventions as the Crystal Gems, which could make for some really odd fanfiction if anyone wants to write it. (Kinga breaks that trend though.) YouTube (1h32m) Premiered November 22, 1997. 25 episodes left. [more inside]
"Caught in a future world, his only escape is back in time." Raul Julia is Aram Fingal, who lives in a future dystopia and gets in trouble by scrolling up Casablanca at his data entry job. So he's doppled into a baboon--thankfully, not an anteater--but an impish schoolkid loses his body, so he's then-doppled into the world-running computer for safe keeping. He pretends to be Rick from Casablanca, meets his dead mom of whom he asks, "My nuts?" and runs afoul of both computech Apollonia Jones and the CEO of Novicorp. Look, I've seen the movie several times and I'm just as lost as you are. This has gotta be the most nonsensical movie in MST3K's rich history of nonsense. Gloriously silly and yet seems not to even notice. Made for public television, it's another strong contender for Worst Movie They Riffed. It's filled with heaping helpings of made-up future jargon like a kind of sad Nadsat. Get ready everyone, it's Fingal time! In the host segments, Pearl decides to run her own pledge drive and rake in the dollars. This is the end of season eight of Mystery Science Theater 3000. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered November 22, 1997. 26 episodes left. [more inside]
aka Tangents. "His Mission is to Save the Future. But Time Waits For No Man...." A guy invents a time machine in his airplane, but a huge corporation plans on misusing it. Yeah, it's kind of like if Michael Moore made Back To The Future. Wow, evil corporations, huh? You can always turn to them when you need a good villain. I am not pointing this out to subvert it; they are a power for evil in our world, a blight upon the land. Anyway, this is a pretty darn decent episode. Thankfully all that Roman Times stuff is over with, and for the last couple of episodes of Season 8 the show was free to just drift out in space (well, that and a public television station, we'll get into that next week). Mike and Pearl have a nice little talk in the Widowmaker! It's nice to see neighbors get along, even when one of them is a mad scientist and the other is her hapless movie-watching victim. Also, in the movie segments, a couple of segments have the big brother of Mike (the character), Eddie, in the theater, played by Mike (the actor), who is rather less congenial than Mike (the character). Er, you understood that, right? Observer gets in a visual riff during the credits! And at the end there's a spare Crow hanging out in Minnesota who is never mentioned again. Next week is the last episode of Season 8. Episode 821 TIME CHASERS does not appear to be on YouTube. Premiered November 22, 1997. 27 episodes left. [more inside]
aka "Mutiny in Space" "There Is Nowhere to Hide from the Enemy Within!" On a colony ship sailing through the void of space, very very white people fight off a rebellion of equally-white mutineers. Titles provided by an Apple ][. This movie falls right in that zone of inept yet not abysmal, and the riffing is great. Not only do I think it's a terrific introductory episode, so does the A.V. Club. This is the episode where they keep making up names for the beefy guy ("David Ryder"). Slab Bulkhead! Fridge Largemeat! Punt Speedchunk! Here's a list of them! Here's a supercut! In subplot news, it's finally the last of the Roman Times episodes, preparing for the premise that would carry the series to the end of its original run. YouTube (warning: ad in annotations) Premiered November 7, 1997. [more inside]
Non-threating, clunky robots from space invade Japan, and the country's only defense is a bunch of children and Space Chief. The robots turn into women, but their threat level does not increase measurably. Satellite News identifies this as another of the worst movies MST ever did, where a lot of the humor comes from the suffering of the riffers. There are a lot of little moments to watch for, like Tom Servo's "Song About Stock Footage," him saying "Just when I think I've seen the worst movie ever made, along comes the WORST movie EVER MADE!", Mike and Crow just wandering out of the theater at one point, and a number of excellent host segments including Noh Theater, Roji Panty Complex, the return of Krankor, and Crow's Letter To Japan. Oh, and the sudden and unexplained presence of the Hitler Building. Despite all of that, I'd say this one of tough going. In the subplot, an amnesiac Bobo is revealed to be the "Mad Goth," who gets his memory back just in time to get him, Pearl and Brain Guy captured at the end of the episode. YouTube Premiered October 11, 1997. [more inside]
"What is the strange terrifying evil secret of the dummy... and why is it locked in a case every night?" Some people create their own hell for themselves. Such a person is Dr. Vorelli, a man who hates puppets but has a successful ventriloquist act. His marionette Hugo has a dark secret, but it involves ham. And what is it about sinister hypnotist types who put the whammy on women that dooms them to stage performance? There appears to be a lot less money in Svengali-ing than you'd think. It turns out Rasputin's real trick was networking. This is an episode that tends to grow on people. During one's first viewing it's easy to get overwhelmed by the Vorelli's hatefulness and the overall aura of bad, but there are some great lines by Mike and co. And Pitch, a character from the Comedy Central era (a reference to Santa Claus), features in host segments! In the subplot, "Apearlo" and "Brainguyus" are still in Ancient Rome looking for Bobo. Promo - YouTube Premiered October 4, 1997. [more inside]
"WEIRD Atomic Beasts Who Live Off Human BLOOD!!!" "The First Horror Monster Musical!" Suspeciously old teens gyrate while radioactive waste dumped off-shore creates mutant monsters, in what appear to be laughable costumes, that lumber ashore to eat straggers from their barely-clothed herd, until their special weakness is found: SODIUM. Another of those laughable 60s monster movies, with particularly ineffective monsters. In the subplot, the guys arrive in ancient Rome to spend a few episodes bumping around. YouTube (1h32m) Premiered September 6, 1997. [more inside]
A guy working as a bootblack on the streets of Tokyo, who keeps a horde of kids with him also plying his trade, is secretly the interstellar hero Prince of Space! Defender of Earth from the dastardly chicken people of Krankor! Those who would invade us to obtain the athletic cup technology of which their own race is so woefully deficient! One of the most classic episodes of Season Eight, in terms all of riffing, of host segments, and of sublime movie weirdness. I like it very much! As for the show's "plot," all the guys go into a wormhole and strange things begin to happen.... Promo - YouTube (ih32m) Premiered August 16, 1997. [more inside]
"A blast of blood-curdling terror from outer space!" "They used the world's deadliest weapons against this super-secret agent! Women! Women! Women!" A spy tries to stop the use of a flesh-decaying substance from being used for evil by commies. Generally a good episode I think, in the middle of a streak of good episodes. This is the one where Mike is put on cosmic trial for blowing up those planets. YouTube (1h31m) Premiered August 2, 1997. [more inside]
"An Unforgettable Excursion Into Adventure." Two stories with little in common except that they deal with the adventures of a secret agent guy who can become invisible, stitched together from the 70s show Gemini Man. Why a guy who can become invisible is called Gemini Man escapes me. Another popular episode among fan reviewers, the most amazing thing about it is that TV's Frank wasn't on hand to select it. I like to think his spirit (having temporarily escaped his body) hovers over the episode. Lots of riffs on the actors (especially lead Ben Murphy) and their other roles. Sketches are weird but fun, including Mike as a teppanyaki chef and Crow as Turkey Volume Guessing Man. Promos - YouTube (1h30m) Premiered July 19, 1997. [more inside]
AKA "Morozko," or (stupidly) "Frosty." "All the magic of the winter-time wonder-maker to fascinate young and old!" A headstrong Russian guy gets into trouble with a mushroom sprite and his head's turned into that of a bear. Meanwhile a girl has parent issues and is abandoned in the woods. Can Father Frost get these two knuckleheads together? A throwback to the Russian movies of the Comedy Central era, it's another fairly good folktale adaptation made riffing fodder mostly through no fault of its own, the comedy coming from a dreamlike atmosphere, cultural barriers, and the fact that most folktales are pretty dang weird anyway. In the channel-mandated subplot, Pearl's still on her way back from dropping off the space children, leaving Brain Guy and Bobo to bond on Camping Planet. The word is that this movie is shown in some countries on TV around Christmastime, which may explain why it isn't on YouTube in entirety, although there is a 38-minute Best Of reel. If you can find it, it's a classic episode. Promo. Premiered July 12, 1997. [more inside]
(Note: title slightly condensed to fit in the form) "MONSTERS COME REAL! CRASH OUT OF SCREEN! INVADE AUDIENCE! ABDUCT GIRLS FROM THEIR SEATS! Not 3-D. Don't Miss It!" "SEE: The world's first monster musical!" Why do supposedly powerful magicians and sorceresses work at carnivals? Estrella tells fortunes, hypnotises people to make them kill her enemies, and keeps a small heard of mixed-up zombies, overseen by her employee Ortega. In between scenes, there are pointless musical numbers. This one's a full 10/10 for pain folks, beware! Some consider it to be one of the worst movies ever made, and it is the first such MST film of the Sci-Fi Channel era. It is extremely weird at the very least. In the subplot, Pearl takes the space children from last week to return them to their parents, and Observer has a very bad experience with Bobo. Promo - YouTube, Official, with Annotations! (1h32m) Premiered June 14, 1997. [more inside]
"The only thing they don't use... is the scream" We know a remote farm in California, where Dick Sargent lives. Every July, dweebs grow there. One day a particularly upity dweeb decides to go see this "America" he's been told is so great and discovers he's a clone raised by a secretive organization to provide transplant organs for powerful people, in his case an important senator. Really. It's a stupid fate for a stupid guy in the stupid world of a stupid movie. The movie has the advantage of a higher budget than the average MST film, but that's more than offset by the great ridiculousnesses of the plot. We're expected to see the campus of the Clonus Project as a terrifying dystopia akin to The Village, but most of the time it ends up looking more like a resort for chowderheads. BTW, it has both Peter Graves and Keenan Wynn in it! In subplot news, Pearl and company find a group of runaway omnipotent space children and have to play babysitter. Bobo takes quite a bit of abuse. Trailer - Promo - YouTube (1h32m) Premiered June 7, 1997. [more inside]
"Creeping!... Clawing!... Crushing!" Spider! He is our hero! Well it's not the hero of a small town in Wisconson, as it goes around eating residents, or it would be if he were actually a spider and not a poor special effect. Rioting and chaos are left in its wake. Guys, maybe it's friendly, and is trying to communicate by killing us? Okay maybe not. The movie this week is, once again, tough going. It's brought to us by MST All-Star Bill Rebane, who made... (wait for it)... MONSTER A-GO-GO. Mwa-ha-ha-ha! A film of the genre of people getting devoured by an otherworldly menace, in which way it is eventually poisoned by their accumulated awfulness. In Subplot Land, Pearl's group and the SOL are bothered by pod people. MRxL MRxL MRxL! GO PACKERS WHOOO YouTube (1h33m) Promo Premiered May 5, 1997. [more inside]
"The Most Amazing Picture of Our Time!" A hypnotist gives Michael Landon a substance that turns him into a werewolf. Who gave this guy funding? What, another hypnotist? One of those was the villain last movie! Pearl and company are now on what the show's staff called "camping world." Meanwhile on the SOL, the show gets invaded by an alien. Y'know, again. At least the stingers are back! YouTube (1h32m) - Promo (17s) Premiered April 19, 1997. [more inside]
"HYPNOTIZED! Reincarnated as a Monster from Hell!" "IT CAN AND DID HAPPEN! Based on authentic FACTS you've been reading about!" Facts eh? In this movie, an evil hypnotist tells a lady to SLEEP!, causing her to summon an ancient lobster woman from the sea, who goes on a rampage. Because all prospective licensed hypnotists learn about calling crustacean people on the first day of class. This is exactly why you shouldn't get your news of current events from movie posters. It's the last episode on Observer world and the last we see of the other Observers (well they do turn up again once later). YouTube (1h31m) Premiered April 5, 1997. [more inside]
"From time unborn... a hideous she-thing!" Guy invents a machine that can send things to and from the future. One of the things that comes is a winsome young future girl who seeks a mate to save future humanity. Sounds good, right? Ha ha no it's a horrible radioactive hellscape and she wears a leotard with sparkly bits on it and kills people and must be stopped. At the end they wonder if they should have helped the future folk after all, and conclude they can do that by avoiding the nuclear apocalypse that created the bad future. Yeah, I'm sure that will happen. It's the last full episode on Observer World, and it's the last Observer-takeover stinger. Mike and the bots get up to some time travel adventures themselves. YouTube (1h32m) - Promo Premiered March 15, 1997. [more inside]
"Take the Most Terrifying Journey of Your Life!" "4,000 miles to the center of the earth is a world within our world." We've already been to the Center of the Earth with Kathy Ireland in a Jules Verne adaptation, let's now make the trip with Edgar Rice Burroughs why not. This one's got less vaguely Austrialian dystopia and more dinosaurs and cavepeeps. The day of Kinga's ordained wedding (by Kinga) to Jonah for ratings has arrived and Max isn't too happy about it. We also visit with Pearl and company again, meet the Head Observer, through whom we learn you can hire Observers out to fill out crowds, which is pretty enterprising of the omniscient brainguys. And we meet Jonah's robot Growther and a "Reptilicus Metallicus." Also, cliffhanger ending! Creepy outro! Episode 1114, the final episode of Season 11, is on Netflix. [more inside]
"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. [more inside]
aka "Il Natala Che Quasi Non Fu." Mr. Whipple (not the Charmin one) is a lawyer with a case that may have far-reaching consequences: he's defending Santa Claus from being evicted by his evil landlord. Wait, the North Pole is ownable property? Isn't it just an ice floe? The promised Christmas episode the Kickstarter funded. As the Mads note, most people will be watching this nowhere near Christmas. Like on July 6th or around then. In subplot news, events are rushing towards Kinga's wedding at the end of the season... next episode. Movie in the hole! Episode 1113 is on Netflix. [more inside]
"The Grave Can't Hold It... Nothing Human Can Stop it!" A psychic lady stumbles upon a Box of Evil on the ranch, evidently the cousin of Señor Wences' friend Pedro. It bends the very wills of the people there until it is reunited with its body... and then is instantly defeated, because apparently its demonic powers end at that moment. S'not alright! We just got done with The Beast of Hollow Mountain and now we've got another Weird Western! In subplot news, this is the episode that introduces the Observers, and one particular Observer as a regular character, played by Bill Corbitt. Episode 805 is unavailable on YouTube. Premiered March 3, 1997. [more inside]
"Elvin Feltner Presents..." A two-bit magician at a one-bit carnival turns out to have the one thing that could make his act quasi-bearable, a sorta-talking chimpanzee. If animals could talk what would they say? According to this movie, absolutely nothing of interest. Beware guys, this movie is the closest we come in Season 11 to the abysmal category, the realm of Manos, Hobgoblins and Monster A-Go-Go. The carnival itself puts out some serious Pirates World vibes. In subplot news, Kinga reveals her diabolical plan to increase her ratings by marrying Jonah. Oh, and there's a guest appearance by someone you may have heard of: Mark Hamill. Episode 1112 is available on Netflix. [more inside]
"The Most Dangerous Monster That Ever Lived!" "Out Of a Million Years Ago... A Thousand Tons of Terror!" A big bug eats people and destroys things, until someone crashes a jet into it. Weak sauce! I'm just saying, the Giant Claw wouldn't have been undone by a simple jet crash. The episode's got a pretty good reputation! In this week's subplot watch, some bomb-worshipping mutants show up in Deep Ape. This results in the end of one theme (Deep Ape itself) and the beginning of another one (Mike seemingly being unable to keep himself from blowing up planets). Oh also, Pearl finally begins the chase of the S.O.L. promised in the theme song. Episode 804 doesn't appear to be on YouTube. Premiered February 22, 1997. [more inside]
"Across the Sea of Dreams... behind the Curtain of Time... lies the land of ultimate fantasy." I bet you weren't looking forward to another visit to the world of last week's movie. Good news, other than the name and executive producer Roger Corman, this movie has nothing to do with the first one! A shepherd who's also a wizard tries to save the world from bad wizards blah blah Tolkien Eddings Brooks. A lot of people think Part 1 was a highlight of the season, but many also think this is a lowlight, so beware guys. A subplot begins in this episode, with Kinga deciding to marry Jonah. And we have another visit from Pearl! Episode 1111 is available on Netflix. [more inside]
"TERRIFYING Monsters From A Lost Age!" Archeologists discover an ancient subterrainian civilization beneath a volcano and, using the awesome power of their mighty FLASHLIGHT, free the titular mole people from their oppression. A weird movie. In the original screenplay the underground girl Adal was supposed to go off with Our Hero, but because that might be seen as an interracial relationship they had her get squashed under a pillar! There's a lot of MST veterans in this movie, particularly John Agar and Hugh Beaumont. This is the episode with The Load, a remarkably burdensome member of the heroic party who exists only to slow them, and the movie, down. YouTube (Official, with annotations! 1h32m) Premiered February 15, 1997. [more inside]