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Sampo & Erhardt

Sci-Fi Archives

Visit our archives of the MST3K pages previously hosted by the Sci-Fi Channel's SCIFI.COM.

Goodbye Sci-Fi

Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett reflect on MST3K's final broadcast.

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Episode guide: 519- Outlaw (of Gor)

Movie: (1987) A hero returns to the primitive planet Gor, and is soon caught up in palace intrigue involving an evil sorcerer.

First shown: 12/11/93
Opening: M&tB are roughhousing, and it doesn’t go well for Tom
Invention exchange: The Mads present their “really real” time machine, while M&tB show off their Fabio kit
Host segment 1: The bots find Mike’s theater scrapbook, and the photos all have something in common
Host segment 2: M&tB sing: “Tubular Boobular Joy”
Host segment 3: M&tB read relevant passages from “Palance on Palance”
End: Cambot puts together a compilation of buffalo shots!, while the Mads dance through the years
Stinger: “Get out of here, you disGUSting WOORRRRRM!”
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (222 votes, average: 4.71 out of 5)


• I love-love-LOVE this episode. Great riffing, great segments, seriously wacky but very watchable movie. It’s also a great gateway episode for newbies. For a while it was my all-time favorite Mike episode.
• This episode was the one that was submitted to the Peabody Award people, and won them the award.
• This episode was released as a part of Shout’s Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection Vol. XXX.
• It’s hard to imagine Joel “roughhousing” with the bots the way Mike does here. Maybe that’s the point.
• Slightly irritating thing in the Mads’ invention exchange: the little signs say “60’s” and “50’s” and “40’s.” Those apostrophes are grammatically incorrect.
• Remember when Fabio mattered? Neither do I. Best line: “Even Janis Ian kneels at his altar.”
• Gypsy singing “I sing whenever I sing…” is the first of a boatload of callbacks in this episode. Others include: o/` “Harry Alan Towerrrrrs!” o/` (Fu Manchu), “Mah-mah-mah-mah-Mitchell (Mitchell), “They’re on the ‘Moon Zero Two’ set!” “Watch out for snakes!” (Eegah), a reference to the Warrior of the Lost World set, “Sampo…Sampo…” and “Want some?” “Thanks Daddy O.”
• Note that when Dr. F is in his caveman outfit, his Deep 13 patch is attached to his skin.
• Servo says, in a stupid voice, “Can we listen to Z-Rock?” I assume this is a local Minneapolis reference?
• Anybody ever play that Cabot drinking game? Did you live through it?
• I’ve eaten at the Perkins on 494.
• Non-spaghetti-ball bumpers: pan to beaker, pan to notebook, close up on film canister, focus on blackboard as what looks like beach ball goes by.
• The debut showing of this episode took place during one of those theme weekends Comedy Central used to have. This one was called “Radio Active TV” and they got radio DJs from around the country to do little bumper bits. For this episode, the DJs were Dave Rickards and Cookie “Chainsaw” Randolph from a station in San Diego. (In a past go-round, I noted that, “astonishingly for an industry where a run of a year or two on any one station is amazing, those two are STILL doing the morning show there 15 years later.” Since I posted that, they were abruptly — or, more accurately, typically, since all radio firings are abrupt — fired. Fans complained, the station held firm. They were out of work for a few months, then they got hired at a competing station in San Diego, where, amazingly, they STILL are.) For some reason, also present in the bits was actor Marc Price, who played Skippy in the ’80s sitcom “Family Ties.” His presence was never explained. And, for some reason, Rickards and Randolph were under the impression that the movie being watched was the Howard Hughes classic film, “Outlaw.” It made them seem pretty clueless.
• Segment 1 is probably the least funny, but even that one is very clever. Mike does look good in a sailor suit.
• First Firesign Theatre reference in a while: “Don’t crush that dwarf! Hand me the pliers!” Maybe Joel was the main Firesign guy?
• Everybody gets to do their Palance impressions to death. Hope their throats were okay at the end of the day.
• Segment 2 was an instant classic, also sung on the live show at the first convention in 1994. The first time I heard the phrase “hung like a horsical” I did a beer spit-take.
• What song are Crow and Tom singing during the scene where the slavers are chasing the slaves around? They don’t seem to know the words.
• M&tB suspect that’s Italy at the end. Actually, despite a mostly Italian film crew, a lot of this was shot in South Africa. That could be Johannesburg.
• The USA Network movie sketch, hard on the heels of the womany movie sketch a couple of episodes ago, means another great credit sequence.
• This ep marks the third mention of Chris Lemmon in three episodes! Somebody really didn’t like him!
• Terrific editing of the buffalo shot compendium. Cambot gets the credit but I assume it was really Brad Keeley.
• Somebody named Kristin Land choreographed the dance number at the end. Great stuff.
• “Kathy Lee had her baby.” They’re referring to the birth of KLG’s second child, Cassidy Erin, who’s now an aspiring actress in her 20s.
• Cast and crew roundup: Producer Avi Lerner was the executive producer of “Alien From L.A.” Producer/screenwriter Harry Alan Towers, of course, also produced “Castle of Fu Manchu” and “Million Eyes of Su-Muru.” Makeup lady Debbi Nichol also worked on “Space Mutiny,” as did art director Geoffrey Hill. In front of the camera Russel Savadier was also in “Alien from L.A.” and, of course, Jack Palance was also in “Angels’ Revenge.”
• CreditsWatch: Crist Ballast takes over hair and makeup for the next three episodes. Host segments directed by Trace Beaulieu. “Tubular Boobular Joy” written and arranged by Michael J. Nelson and Kevin Murphy.
• Fave riff: “You see, freedom is–what the–P-P-PLEASURE???!!!” Honorable mention: “I brought the wrong bowl.” Also: “Please invent the battery!”

163 Replies to “Episode guide: 519- Outlaw (of Gor)”

  1. emily in winter says:

    This is one of my favorite Mike episodes. I have a perverse fascination with bad sword and sorcery anyway, and they really tore into this one. And crow’s Fabio chin makes me lose it every time.


  2. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    ( Must watch this one again tonight )

    Firesign Theater: I think Mike is a little tiny bit young for Firesign Theater. I myself was a little young for it, and I’m older than he is.

    Possibly Very Obscure Cultural Reference from the USA Network bit: I’m not sure if many people out there remember the hoax-novel Naked Came The Stranger. I was too young to be aware of it then ( 1969 ), I first learned of it later by seeing Sybil Fawlty reading it on Fawlty Towers.

    As for Z-Rock, Wikipedia says :”Z-Rock” was a nationally syndicated radio network based out of Dallas, Texas, USA, in the mid-1980s through the mid-1990s that played heavy metal and hard rock music. The format was one of ABC Radio Network’s 24-hour satellite formats (formerly Satellite Music Network). Z-Rock debuted on Labor Day 1986 and is credited with being the first nationally focused radio station/network.[citation needed] In March 1990, Z Rock was nominated for Billboard Awards, the only fulltime hard rock/metal programming ever nominated in the history of Billboard magazine. After several changes in personnel and programming direction, the network was discontinued on December 31, 1996.


  3. Cabot says:

    Cabot? Cabot! Cabot. Cabot? Cabot! Hey, Cabot! Cabot? Cabot! Oh, Cabot! Cabot. Cabot. Cabot!!

    Whew! Got that out of the way.

    One of my top 5. I love their impersonation of Cabot’s small friend.

    This one is a great one paired with Deathstalker, if smarmy blonde “heroes” are your thing.

    Is it wrong that I keep rewinding it to the scene of Talena’s cage match?



  4. jjb3k says:

    “What are Crow and Tom singing during the scene where the slavers are chasing the slaves around? They don’t seem to know the words…”

    It comes immediately after the “Warrior of the Lost World” callback. They’re singing “All Du Peepo Abba in da Wooa”. (Even though that song played at the end of the film, not during the fight sequence that the scene in question resembles…)

    I love love love this episode too! Matter of fact, it’s my all-time favorite MST3K ever, and the episode I use to introduce all my friends to the show. It’s got a little bit of everything that makes this show great (except maybe a short, but it still holds up without one). And you know, I even kind of like the fantasy universe presented by the movie – it’s handled in a thoroughly inept fashion, but it sure has the potential to be interesting.

    Between this episode and the invention exchange from “Being From Another Planet”, MST3K has taught me how to perfect my Jack Palance voice. I quite enjoy perplexing my coworkers by growling “The book says the doves are supposed to come out now…” at random intervals.


  5. Ben Murphy says:

    One of my favorites.

    Hot women, stupid sidekick, great riffing.

    This one is a five star ep!


  6. Sitting Duck says:

    Is it just me, or does Tubular Boobular Joy use the same tune as Bibbity Bobbity Boo from the Disney version of Cinderella?


  7. Creepygirl says:

    I watched this one last night and really enjoyed it. I probably haven’t seen it in ten years. I’m not a big fan of sword & sorcery pictures. “Tubular Boobular” is a classic. I completely forgot it was from this episode! I also agree a great Mike ep.


  8. jason says:

    You disgusting worm! Wouldn’t it be great if you stuck in another diminsion with an annoying guy and he brought beer. 2 of my favorite riffs. I think this wa sa great epsidoe. I think they did a great job with the sword medievil films they did.


  9. GizmonicTemp says:

    Click above for my FULL review!!

    I watched this episode last night, and for the first time was struck by all the inaction. No one seemed to care, guards stood around, and music crescendoed while Cabot slowly descended a hill. Some movies have bad acting, but this is one-take bad acting. ARGH!!

    That being said, I LOVE this episode!!!

    Can someone please tell me, though, what Frank and Clay dancing had to do with anything? It seemed like a cheap cop-out sketch after the great Cambot montage.

    Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot, Cabot!!!!


  10. GizmonicTemp says:

    I just thought of a good contest. All future posts on this thread have to include a guess as to the amount of times that the word Cabot is uttered in this movie. I’ll volunteer to watch again tonight and report back tomorrow. The person closest to the actual count, wins their showcase.


  11. Cabot says:

    It also amuses me that when the evil queen utters her famous line, it’s so over the top and ridiculous that M+TB are actually dumbstruck. Perfect.


  12. underwoc says:

    You know, there’s been a lot of discussion recently as to mysogyny in MSTed films (The Brain that Wouldn’t Die and The Atomic Brain, in particular). Outlaw of Gor hides it a little more under the fantasy glitz, but if you’ve ever read any of the books that this film was based on, you know this film should go right to the top of that list.

    That said, as a male, I kinda dig bad T&A movies like this…


  13. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    Sitting Duck #6. It’s not just you. It’s a big part of the gag ( if you KNOW the original song in the first place ).

    People can certainly enjoy it without knowing Bippity Boppity Boo ( sp? ), but it’s better with.


  14. Evan K says:



  15. Evan K says:

    GizmonicTemp #10:
    I guess . . . 113 times.


  16. Dyne says:

    Guess I’ll get right to it:

    * For most of my tenure at college, I would show an episode of MST3K for a group of friends during our dorm’s visiting hours (members of the opposite sex weren’t allowed in rooms except certain periods of the week) and one friend kept recommending it. Sadly I was never able to get ahold of it until after I moved out.
    * The first line that always comes to mind because of the abundance of buffalo shots is “My eyes! The goggles do nothing!”
    * I never felt dirty about being a “leg” man until I learned Whatney is one too. At least Lara is hot.
    * I’m surprised there aren’t more outtakes from “Tubular Boobular Joy” in “Poopie!” That one must have taken several takes other than Servo’s head falling off.
    * If I’m counting correctly, foreign films done by Italians are the second-most common in the MST3K run (Japanese being the first, mostly thanks to all of the Gamera movies in season 3).
    * “Cabot” has been my invisible friend since I saw this episode. I tease my fiance by talking to him while impersonating the midget.
    * Speaking of the midget, is he ever even named?
    * I honestly expected the stinger to be when the spear that pierces Lara (she’s hot, btw) is “thrown.” It’s mostly the same effect as when Bart Fargo drops his watch at the end of Danger! Death Ray.
    * I admit it, I like the music in this movie!
    * The title “Death Spank” inspired a lame duck supervillain I designed recently.
    * I’ve also used the outfit that Lara (have I mentioned she’s hot?) wears as a template for a generic villaness outfit.
    * Favorite riffs: “I am SO heterosexual.” and “And so the Osmonds are marched from Utah.”


  17. Satan's Jockstrap says:

    The worse the movie then the better the episode…and Outlaw is one of the worst films in existence, so this ep is a slam dunk!

    I remember Z-Rock! Wow, was it really THAT long ago???


  18. Green Switch says:

    If what Trace Beaulieu said was accurate, this was the episode that they submitted for Peabody Award consideration. And if that’s the case, they chose wisely. Very, very funny stuff.

    I read “The Amazing Colossal Episode Guide” long before I saw this episode. I was wondering if the “Cabot! Cabot? Cabot? Cabot!” thing was exaggerated.

    Man, oh man, I’m happy that that wasn’t the case.

    GREAT episode – I love that moment when Mike keeps Crow from making too many “I crap bigger than them” references to Jack Palance.

    All in all, this one makes for a fun time alongside “Cave Dwellers” and (as Cabot noted in Post #3) “Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell.”


  19. outmywindow says:

    Easily a top five episode for me. I remember being awestruck at how FANTASTIC this episode was the first time I saw it.

    Just thinking about Jack Palance in the “buttered split-top muffin” hat makes me laugh.

    I was really hoping this one would be in the 29th Anniversary set, but I will live. Hopefully Shout Factory will release it at some later date.


  20. outmywindow says:

    ^^^ I meant 20th Anniversary set… Oops.


  21. Skenderberg says:

    I think Outlaw is a fantastic episode, but then I’m biased in favor of bad sword and sorcery anyway. This is one of the most scantily clad movies they’ve ever done. About half of all the fabric in Gor is worn by Jack Palance, and really, thank goodness for that.

    Regarding the dancing sketch at the end: during an online discussion someone once tried to explain to me that the music was moving them through time. It was a fairly convoluted theory, and I don’t remember enough about it to reproduce it here, but he seemed passionate about it. It seems as good an explanation as any.


  22. adoptadog says:

    Gizomnic Temp #10, I’ll say 83 for the number of “Cabot!” shouts in this film – probably lowballing it, but still.

    The flashback reminded me of Cave Dwellers, but it was much shorter and more coherent, at least.

    “Boobular Tubular Joy” is one of my favorite songs. Servo’s crying and the line, “My mom says you have to go home now” during the opening segment is perhaps my favorite Kevin Murphy-as-Servo moment. So this ep fits nicely into all the various weekend discussions.

    All the USA original movie titles during the closing credits are lots of fun, and sound all too real; “Peekaboo Lace, PI” and “Deathspank” always make me laugh.

    Great riffs: “Honey, I shrunk the Nelson.”
    *”You wanna just go to the food court? I need a baked potato or something.”
    *”Oh, god, please invent the battery!”


  23. Bob says:

    For me this may be the best post-Joel episode and the one that proved that when at their best the show could still hit the mark on every joke and host segment the way it did so often before the loss of its creator. I like this one so much that it is difficult to talk about briefly, there is just so much great comedy here. Everything from the opening with the time machine bit to “Tubular Boobular Joy” and beyond is just great and the riffs during the film are some of the best ever.


  24. MikeK says:

    I love this episode. I’m already partial to the newer movies used in the show, but this one is really something. I really enjoy the “Palance on Palance” host segment and anytime the Palance voice is use during the riffing.

    The platinum dwarf is cool. As he sits down, he inspires the line, “The littlest buffalo shot of all.”

    The bounty hunter dude was cool as well.

    The evil queen has got to be one of the worst villains ever. There is no one around her that likes her, even those she conspires with.


  25. fireballil says:

    My guess is 105 for the ‘Cabot’s. If I guess within five, do I get both showcases?

    As for the DJ’s, Dave and Chainsaw were one of my favorite teams when I was living in San Diego. Of course, it’s beautiful out there, so I can imagine a lengthy run for anyone. One morning show team has been there since ’87 or ’88 for four different stations-one station twice! And Chainsaw was there with the previous morning show team.


  26. Sean says:

    This is by far one of my top 5 favorites. “Please invent the battery!” is a toss up of my all time fave lines. “OOPS, Sorry dad!” in the short Johnny at the Fair is the other. Cabot hitting the sword with his knife and crow riffing “Bitch!” is priceless!


  27. Shh! I’m acting!


  28. Dyne says:

    My mind’s been pulling a blank. What part of the movie has the “Please invent the battery” riff?


  29. RPG says:

    The midget’s name was Hup, as was called when he popped out of the wine cask. It’d be interesting to pair him with Dr. Orloff from ‘Vampire Women’.

    One thing you forgot to mention, was how this was the last episode to feature the invention exchange. Definitely a sign we were moving out of Joel’s territory.


  30. GizmonicTemp says:

    Dyne #28 – The battery riff when when Lara is being carried in her chair through the village and passes a very large, um, thing, that resembles a phalus. Mike implores the bots to not even mention, and then himself utters the battery riff under his breath. Shame on him!


  31. Jeff says:

    I’d just like to point out that the car Cabot drives is a Firebird, not a Camaro.

    I love this episode. I fell asleep watching it a week ago, and this post reminded me to watch the rest of it.


  32. GizmonicTemp says:

    Sorry to be a thread-hog, but something else bugs me. When Cabotcabotcabot and Watney enter the city for the first time, there is a shot of the city entrance and in the background is a green field with houses and trees far off. Was that SUPPOSED to look like that or was there supposed to be some special effects work done to replace the field with sandy mountains and rocky plains?


  33. Scott says:

    I named my cat Cabot.


  34. GilBates says:

    Weird personal riff: I had a roommate in grad school who looked just like the guy in the bar with the baseball cap, and HE came home drunk one night and left macaroni and cheese on the stove and then fell asleep. Luckily he didn’t burn down the apartment.

    Some comedian picked up on the “dance through the ages” gag.


  35. MikeK says:

    To post 32:

    I don’t know if we were supposed to see those fields in background, but I think it works whether it was intentional or not. If the city was at all prosperous I think it would have some good farmland.


  36. Clint says:

    My copy also has the 101 KGB-FM San Diego bumpers with Dave Rickards and Cookie “Chainsaw” Randolph.

    I loved the Italy riffs at the end: “Italian actors pretending to be gay American cops.”

    “You know, they had three different governments during this shot. Haha, ITALY!”

    I also liked the retro Comedy Central spots for the Martin Mull hosted “Documentary of… the making of… the re-make of… The Attack of… The 50-Foot Woman.”


  37. Sean says:

    This one won the Peabody Award, didn’t it? Why isn’t that mentioned in the description?

    Or is it?


  38. H says:

    Great movie. Can’t believe nobody’s mentioned it but this was the final invention exchange (If you don’t count Hypno-Helio-Static-Stasis and I wouldn’t).
    Movie is great. Host segments are great too, especially “Tubular Boobular Joy”.

    ‘Hey guys, how’s the movie?’
    ‘It’s breastacaboobical …’


  39. Tom says:

    The first segment becomes extra funny if you read Mike’s book “Mind Over Matters” where he discusses his humiliating time in musical theater.


  40. Puma says:

    I don’t think I’ve seen this episode since it premiered. Seeing how much people love it, I really want to see it again.


  41. Trilaan says:

    Servo says: “Mike, will you make me my own jack-booted dominatrix?”

    Mike: “No!”


  42. Stephanie says:

    This is my favorite episode. FAVORITE! I purposely don’t watch it very much, so I can forget little things, and then find them even funnier next time around, but the Fabio, the Boobular, Tubluar Joy, and Dr. Forrester doing the 20’s style dancing are JUST. TOO. MUCH.

    Lovelovelove it!


  43. GizmonicTemp says:

    Well, I have the Cabot count. There are 89 in the movie and Mike and the Bots mention him 20 times. So depending on how you do the math, fireballil #26 wins both showcases!

    Have your pet spayed or neutered!


  44. GizmonicTemp says:

    MikeK #36 – I agree, but if “Gor is a harsh world and she breeds harsh people.”, what’s with the grain silos and cozy farmhouse where Ma is cooling a rhubarb pie on the windowsill?


  45. John Seavey says:

    This is one I desperately want on DVD, because I haven’t seen it in ages. Truly one of the great ones. I remember seeing it during either the ‘Free Cheese’ or ‘Fresh Cheese’ tour on the University of Minnesota campus (I think it was ‘Free Cheese’, which would mean it was also when I met the cast, but I’m not sure.)

    “Tubular Boobular Joy” never stops being drop-dead hilarious.


  46. Kouban says:

    #33: Wasn’t there also a city in the distance?


  47. crowschmo says:

    So—our hero’s name is WHAT, again?


  48. countrybat says:

    I love Outlaw. It’s one of my favorite Mike films. This seriously needs to come out on DVD soon. I don’t care what other ones are in the collection, I’d gladly pay for this film, just like I bought Collection 11, just for Tormented. The other films were great too, but Tormented is what sold me on the collection.


  49. Sean says:

    “They’re wearing dance belts!! AHHHH!!!”

    “Stinky pits!!”

    Ost was hung like a horsicle…I can’t believe that wasn’t edited.

    “He dislocated his mandible!!”

    “Come for the midgets!!”

    “Honey, where’s the Christmas tree star?”

    “Yeah, this is as far as he’s ever gotten with a woman!!”

    “Saw Russel’s butt today!!” In Palance On Palance


  50. Cornjob says:

    “My seedpod is splitting”


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