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Sampo & Erhardt

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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: 524- 12 to the Moon (with short: ‘Design for Dreaming’)

Short: (1956) Surrealistic fantasy trip to the future, which includes a visit to the General Motors “motorama.”
Movie: (1960) A multinational team of astronauts embarks on a moon mission.

First shown: 2/5/94
Opening: While Crow & Tom play tennis, Gypsy has trapped Mike at a tea party
Intro: While Frank roasts Dr. F., Tom has a tennis tantrum
Host segment 1: Nuveena, lady of the future, pops into the SOL and invites M&tB to come back with her
Host segment 2: M&tB prepare to leave with Nuveena
Host segment 3: Nuveena makes the bots into appliances, Mike disapproves, so she pops out
End: Letters, Nuveena pops into and out of Deep 13
Stinger: “Ahh, ridiculous!”
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (171 votes, average: 4.54 out of 5)

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• For some, I suspect this is another case where the short kind of takes over the episode. “Design for Dreaming” has become an iconic bit of off-kilter fun, and since it’s in public domain, you see snippets of it all the time. The riffing of it is nothing short of brilliant. In contrast, the feature is in black and white, and has some pretty static stretches. But, me, I love these old rocketship movies (they are my favorite kind of MST3k fodder, with the giant bug movies coming in a close second) and this one’s a hoot. It’s reminiscent, in some respects, of “FIRST SPACESHIP ON VENUS,” what with the conscientiously international crew and all. And the characters and situations are so strange, there’s plenty for the riffers to work with, and they do a great job. And, of course, there’s the Nuveena story arc in the host segments.
• This episode is included in Shout! Factory’s Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Vol. XXXV.
• I’d completely forgotten about the “invisible” face shields on the astronauts helmets! A brilliant, albeit cheesy, solution to the problem of not being able to see or hear an actor in a space helmet.
• Everybody knows the bots arms don’t work, but that doesn’t stop the Brains from suggesting that the bots play tennis. In the “then-current” reference department, the sketches refer to a couple of pro tennis incidents that I suspect are largely forgotten by most people (i.e. non-tennis fans.)
• I love Dr. F’s Milton Berle-esque giant cigar during the celebrity roast. The premise of the sketch itself (speaker at roast just viciously attacks the honoree without any semblance of the warmth and humor that is supposed to be part of the format) has been done before, but Frank carries it off well, as always.
• What does “Just call me Bobo” mean? (Update: A commenter says it’s a reference to the movie “The Grifters.”)
• Callbacks: “It’s a salute to Mr. B Natural!” “It’s a sampo!” (Day the Earth Froze).
• Non-spaghetti ball bumpers: Shot of blackboard–a stuffed animal that might be Grover from “Sesame Street” hits it; pan to beaker.
• Tom Servo says “Humphrey!” when he sees the dog. Kevin had a cocker spaniel named Humphrey for many years–he appeared in the ACEG and in episode 904- WEREWOLF. Sadly, Humphrey has since, ahem, gone to live at a farm in the country.
• In what seems to be a warmup for SPACE MUTINY, the hunky American astronaut is similarly called many brawny-guy names. A full list is in Ward E.
• Bridget is terrific — it is maybe her finest hour on the show — as Nuveena. After the show aired, she was an immediate sensation on the MSTie internet. Male MSTies declared their love, and quite a few female MSTies immediately adopted the moniker or variations on it. It was also the first time any human female was on the bridge of the SOL, for whatever that’s worth.
• Obscure reference: “Everybody to get from street!” a reference to a throwaway line in a now-seldom-seen Cold War comedy called “The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming!” (Some commenters took exception to me calling the movie “largely forgotten,” so I’ve changed the wording.)
• Cast and crew roundup: Producer and story writer Fred Gebhardt also worked in “The Phantom Planet.” Special effects guy Howard A. Anderson (also worked on “Women of the Prehistoric Planet,” “King Dinosaur,” “The Amazing Transparent Man” and “It Lives By Night.” Set designer John Burton also worked on “The Girl in Lovers Lane” and “High School Big Shot.”
In front of the camera, Ken Clark also appeared in “Attack of the Giant Leeches.” Anthony Dexter also appeared in “The Phantom Planet” and “Fire Maidens of Outer Space.” Richard Weber also appeared in “The Phantom Planet.” Tom Conway also appeared in “The She Creature.” Francis X. Bushman also appeared in “The Phantom Planet.”
• CreditsWatch: Host segments directed by Jim Mallon.
• Fave riff from the short: “This is a rebuttal to ‘Roger & Me.’” Honorable mention: “Holly-Go-Weirdly!”
• Fave riff from the movie: “You know you can only apply one-sixth the tongue on the moon?” Honorable mention: “Hey, go stink up your own area!”

111 Replies to “Episode guide: 524- 12 to the Moon (with short: ‘Design for Dreaming’)”

  1. Bobo "BuckDat" Briggs says:

    The funniest is Trace’s scream when showing the Impala with the creepy face at about 6:54.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bz7ey_mxYBo

    Every time it’s coming up I try it and hurt my throat. Still kills me every time.

       2 likes

  2. ThorneSherman says:

    A great acid trip of a short, and a decent if unspectacular movie. Loved Servo’s legalspeak disclaimer at the end of the short. The studly names attached to the captain like “Sledge Riprock” always slay me, as they would later in Space Mutiny. I for one like the space exploration movies, at least they have a discernible plotline, even if it is botched.

       4 likes

  3. jon says:

    I used to have this one on VHS, and it used to be one of my favorites of the “lesser-considered” episodes.

       1 likes

  4. losingmydignity says:

    It’s weird but this is one of those eps that I totally forget a day after seeing. I mean, I remember enjoying it, that it’s a solid ep riff-wise but I couldn’t tell you a thing about it except there are a lot astronauts (maybe I should be writing this review while I watch the ep?!). The short is slightly more memorable due to the kitsch surrealness but the film escapes me. A bunch of astronauts…uh….a bunch of astronauts…um.

    But I like it.
    B+

       1 likes

  5. Spector says:

    This is another one where the short is far better and more memorable than the movie itself. So many great lines in this short, but my particular favorites are during the segment showcasing “the dream cars of tomorrow”.

    “Fonzie’s Death Car!”

    “The Schick Electric Razor Car”

    “Unfettered avarice by Madison Avenue”.

    “Pregnant woman and schnauzer optional”.

    “Outfit by Bargain Clown of Hollywood”.

    “The extension of my manhood car”.

    Bridget’s turn as Nuveena in the host segments were terrific. Mike’s a lucky guy in real life to be married to her. Sexy, musical and funny, my kind of girl! We didn’t get to see enough of Bridget’s talent during the show but her few turns were memorable and this was her best.

    As for the movie, it’s ok but as I said it suffers by having a great short preface it.

       9 likes

  6. Uranium - 235 says:

    Man I LOVE this episode. It’s been a while since they’ve done one of these hilariously moronic 50’s space epics, and while they’re at the top of their game, they don’t miss a beat.

    EXCELLENT riffing in the movie. Oddly, the short actually doesn’t have that much riffing (partly because of the non-stop singing) probably because it just made fun of itself. As Trace says it’s a little “musical acid trip”.

    Also when they’re in the meteor shower the first time, look to the right of the porthole – it’s probably a bit of whatever they were using for the effect, but when I first saw it, it looks like a TIE fighter is strafing the ship :D

       3 likes

  7. bobhoncho says:

    Kind of ironic how they had the first goofy name bit and the “Russians Are Coming” reference episode considering that John Phillip Law was in both “Russians” (his only good role; “You kiss-ed me”) and the movie that had the other goofy names gag, “Space Mutiny.”

    And Sampo, FYI, “Russians!” is not largely forgotten for a good reason. In the 80’s on one of my local stations, WJBK Detroit (back when it was a good CBS affiliate, not the crappy Fox affiliate it is now) “Russians!” was one of their most commonly seen “Late Movies.” So there you have it.

       1 likes

  8. I, too, must take exception to “now largely forgotten” in describing “The Russians Are Coming!^2”

       1 likes

  9. Golly, Sampo. You do this much work on a series that’s pretty much created out of references to other pop media and you didn’t know that Bobo was from the Oscar-nominated gem “The Grifters”?

    Just sayin’.

       1 likes

  10. I can picture the short film being shown in what was then the Soviet Union, as a way of teaching children that capitalism was a lustful monster. According to the IMDB it was directed by the prolific and supposedly slipshod William “One Shot” Beaudine, which is a surprise because it’s technically elaborate and has a distinctive visual style, all geometric chrome and fog and darkness. The model sequence at the end isn’t greatly inferior to the effects from Logan’s Run, which were done many years later on a much higher budget.

    The dance lady was played by Tad Tadlock, real name Thelma, whose general attire and hairstyle kept reminding me of Servalan from Blake’s Seven. Sadly she passed away in 2000. The short is doubly melancholic given the current tragic state of the US automobile industry. From the front, the Pontiac Club de Mer doesn’t look too bad nowadays. The fin on the back dates it horribly.

    Of the singers, the IMDB only credits the bassy voice of Thurl Ravenscroft. His real name; Thurl. Judging by Wikipedia’s biography, he is one of those people from the past who led a life. He was a navigator for the US Air Army Transport Command during WW2; then a gospel singer and voice over man for Disney, and also he was Tony the Tiger. He died in 2005 having achieved more than you or I.

    As for the film, I can barely remember the plot. I remember dozens of shots of what looked like a gyroscope in a gimbal. The first half of the film is basically Star Trek: The Motion Picture, complete with inconsequential asteroid attack, mixed with Mission to Mars. Bits of it stood out – the multi-racial crew, the British person – and it was spooky that they predicted (a) the name of the lander and (b) the Apollo 17 “blue marble” photograph. The space suits even look a bit like the cooling garments that real astronauts use. It’s also notable that the major conflict is between the Israeli and the German, and that there’s no hint whatsoever of any tension between the Israeli and the Muslim person. Why should there be, in 1959?

    The moon lander and moon set looked fairly elaborate, but were only in the film for a tiny little bit, and were ruined by the infamous bloopers alluded to above. The IMDB lists Academy Award-winner John Alton as cinematographer, so perhaps the visible studio lighting was supposed to be matted out, but the visible stage hand was inexcusable. Was it actually a shot of one of the astronauts walking into the distance that had been put in the wrong place? Had the set been built for another production, and they only had one day to film on it? Rehearsal footage that had to be substituted for ruined takes?

    “Now I’m activating my wings – and I’ll fly!”

    I understand why Nuveena had such an effect on MST3K fans back in the day. Just after saying “believe me, you won’t need this turtle neck” she wobbles in a very womanly way.

    Two of the characters explore a cave. They find what look like petrified trees, but that’s not important; this bit stands out because the music briefly sounds just like John Barry’s score for The Black Hole. It’s uncanny.

    I’m pretty certain that the present comment #58 (“your blog is so informative”) is actually comment spam.

       6 likes

  11. Sitting Duck says:

    @ #48: Whoa! Normally one thinks of the Book of Numbers as being just a list of temple measurements repeated ad nauseam.

    As for the silly future predictions of the Fifties, we should remember that the predictions about future life being made today will likely seem just as silly sixty years from now as the Fifties predictions look today.

       3 likes

  12. Aram Fingal says:

    Favorite riff from the episode: Crow “Can I eat you when you die?”

    This one’s a favorite of mine. I, too, love the old rocketship movies, and this one seems particularly ridiculous and cheesy to me.

       1 likes

  13. robot rump! says:

    i for one would love to cruise around town with Nuveena in my brand new ‘Fonzie’s Death Car!’
    so while they were looking over the twisted old ferret’s resume, ‘son of Nazi death camp commander’ didn’t ring a bell with anyone?
    i did actually like this one alot when i could see it, even though it would leave me with the impression that the UN called up all the nations and say ‘Hey guys, we’re sending up this kind of important, life and death mission into outer space. Could you just grab some one for us? they don’t have to be smart, just foreign. thanks.’

       1 likes

  14. My Mom doesn't drink!! says:

    (I want a corvette…)…I don’t give a tin sh–…
    This was their rebuttal to Roger And Me.
    Skidoo!! Shadoobee!!
    So you can sit back, and tip back, a quart of Wild Turkey!
    It’s a salute to Mr. B Natural!!
    I call no way, candles and all…
    Give us Syd Cherese!!
    Unfettered avarice by Madison Avenue!!
    OooooOoooHhh, Black Diamond…
    AAAAhhhh!!! Drakul!!
    Someone invent rock and roll, PLEASE!!
    It’s the extension of my manhood car!!
    Look-dead raccoon of the future.

    No, I don’t love that short or anything…

       4 likes

  15. Tom Carberry says:

    Before the recent financial collapse that almost took the American automobile industry down with it, General Motors was the largest car company on earth. Design for Dreaming was their idea of the future (oh, if they only knew). Directed by William (“one-shot”) Beaudine, this 1956 short starring Tad Tadlock (the woman who looks like Carolyn Jones) and Marc Breaux (who reminds me of Secret Agent Super Dragon in that mask) was actually filmed in Miami, Florida (not at the Waldorf-Astoria).

    Favorite lines (Design for Dreaming):

    That is the nicest oxygen tent I’ve ever seen… and Tommy Tune arrives.
    A subpoena, for me?
    [Nuveena in blue Buick] She’s gonna roll it!
    Security to the showroom floor please.
    While she’s dancing, the Japanese are making great cars.
    The Schick electric razor car.
    Clown suit by Bargain Clown of Hollywood.
    Stockard Channing is Peter Pan
    Future may not be available as seen, personal fates may vary. Future not available in Africa, India, or Central or South America.

    Favorite lines (12 to the Moon):

    Martha Stewart planned that seating arrangement.
    Yes, I’m Captain Cliff Beefpile.
    What’s going on around here? Any of you Euro Freaks speak English? Let’s get this rule straight right away, we’re speaking English.
    Freight elevator to the moon.
    Aw, they couldn’t get anyone to take care of the dog.
    When I get out, Starsky’s a dead man.
    “Brilliant as I am, what brilliance?” Oh, god, he’s been drinking again.
    Contents may have shifted during flight.
    Gee, the moon’s covered with Fresh Step.
    Exploding urinal cake.
    You know you can only apply one-sixth the tongue on the moon.
    “Everybody go below, Dr. Heinrich suffered from a heart attack.” And let that be a lesson to the rest of you.
    [Washington, D.C. freezes over] I guess Nancy Reagan is back in town.
    We didn’t like the cats. Eat ice, Earth dinks.

    Final Thought: Morticia Addams dances for GM. I give this one 4 out of 5 stars.

       5 likes

  16. jjb3k says:

    This is one of those delightfully goofy episodes that grows on me more and more with every repeat viewing. So much to love in this one, from the wacked-out short to the equally wacked-out movie.

    Mike at Gypsy’s tea party is so great. I’ve been in that situation tons of times, trying to bluff my way through a conversation of which I know nothing about the topic. “I was definitely watching a show, and there were women on it, and it seemed like they were designing…”

    Nobody yells quite like Kevin Murphy, ‘specially when Servo does his John McEnroe. “OUT?! WHAT ARE YOU, BLIND? WHY DON’T YOU GROW SOME HAIR?”

    I found the unriffed “Design for Dreaming” on Comcast OnDemand once years and years ago, and I had fun riffing along on my own. Still, it’s not quite the same without Crow reacting to that one angry-faced car. “RRRRRR! RRRR-HRRR…”

    When I first read this episode’s title online, the first riff that came to mind was “12 to the moon, Alice!” Sure enough, there’s a Jackie Gleason riff during the credits (“Oh, you’re goin’ to the moon, all right!”) Between that and all the Honeymooners jokes in the short, he seemed to be on the Brains’ minds this week.

    “At this moment…”
    “I may die.”

    So here we have the inauguration of the famous “chunky action hero names” gag that was made popular three years later by “Space Mutiny”. I’m hard pressed to say which episode’s names are better, but I know “Bronc Drywall” is one of my favorites.

    Mike’s a lucky guy to have married a gal as lovably goofy as Bridget. I can tell she had tons of fun shooting these host segments. “Ew, you’re gonna kiss her, aren’t you?”

    “Cleaned by ultrasound and massaged by airspray jets!”
    “No, I don’t buy it for one minute.” Neither do we, Mike. :D I love how the filmmakers tried to use “ultra-futuristic technology” as an excuse for their total lack of special effects. Nothing beats that invisible face shield.

    Things I learned from MST3K: There is no steam in a vacuum.

    Yeah, the alien writing kinda sorta looks Chinese, so of course the Chinese woman can understand it fluently. Whatever, movie. “Flowerpot. Pitchfork noodle.”

    “You gonna sell me down the river too, you bastards?”

    “You disconnected it, you crazy man!” is a line I really need to use in casual conversation more often. Spoken in the same dull German monotone, too. :D

    “So what do you think we learned here? Three, maybe four people would have worked a whole lot better than twelve. Oh, and always bring cats.”

       11 likes

  17. schippers says:

    Some random thoughts:

    I just saw a Jaguar on sale at the Thornydale Bookman’s here in Tucson for, like, $80. I had a Jaguar for a short while, long after the platform died, and while I got some limited enjoyment out of Tempest 2000, the console as a whole deserved the death it suffered. Now, the Lynx, though… that’s a sad, sad tale.

    In a sense, the future now depicted in Design for Dreaming doesn’t look dramatically different from future representations in contemporary films. It’s been a while since I’ve seen Minority Report (and have little desire to re-see it), but I seem to recall Tom Scientologist cruising (heh) around in a skyway robo-car. Hmm, now where have I seen that idea before?

    I am a great fan of 50s rocketship movies. I am ESPECIALLY a fan of any rocketship movie that puts us on an alien planet or moon, as this one does.

    This movie raises many questions:

    1. They reference an “international space order.” Who is in charge of this body? Is it a UN-chartered organization? Does the UN exist in the future of this movie? If not, why?

    2. There is some flabble over Israel at one point. It seems that in this future, Israel has been conquered or annexed by “Russia” (the term “Soviet Union” is not used, if I remember correctly). At what point in the future of this movie did “Russia” conquer Israel? What did the United States have to say about this? Was there war?

    3. Sparking off of #2, the French astronaut is revealed to be some sort of fifth columnist, but the filmmakers are kind of coy about his reveal. So, does that mean there IS still a Soviet Union? Or, in this movie’s future, has Bolshevism gone international by way of subversive cells, as Americans of the 50s thought it did/would?

    4. The Japanese astronaut has little trouble reading the moon aliens’ pictographic writing. Why should this be the case? Are we expected to believe that moon alien language and writing systems developed in almost exact parallel to Chinese? Now, the aliens say they can read humans’ minds, and that they’ve been doing it for a while now. If this is so, isn’t it reasonable to expect that they would find some way to communicate with the humans in such way that doing so did NOT depend on the presence of a Chinese or Japanese astronaut on ship? It just seems like a really sketchy plan for such an apparently advanced race.

    5. The aliens state that if the two captured humans’ love turns to hate, then bye-bye all humanity. Why? That’s a REALLY extreme inductive leap to make, isn’t it? These aliens aren’t much for statistical error, it seems to me.

    6. One of the astronauts theorizes that the aliens’ freezing ability is “the principle of the hydrogen bomb in reverse.” Um, like a fission reaction?

    7. There’s little real resolution to the film, in the sense that we don’t know what anyone (besides the aliens) have learned from the experiences we’ve seen. Is the “international space order” going to charter another trip to the moon? If so, what will be the goal? The aliens sort of nebulously hedge about “when you come back,” but since the humans have demonstrated the ability to get to the moon with little trouble, are the aliens assuming a repeat voyage is not immediately in the offing? Seems kind of naive to me.

       2 likes

  18. Cheapskate Crow says:

    Very meh episode for me, but the short was absolutely insane and I wonder who was the audience for this. Was it shown in GM showrooms? In theaters before the main event? I had completely forgotten about this short since I only watched this episode once back when it came out. It may be another 20 years before I break this out again, while I love ’50s movies on MST I really don’t like the rocketship ones, and this goes for CT’s Doomsday Machine which I didn’t care for either.

    It was nice seeing yet another reference to Crow’s brown pants (from I believe the Killer Shrews where it was not a well appreciated present) when they are packing everything up in segment 2.

       2 likes

  19. Thomas K. Dye says:

    Let’s have a rundown of these “12 to the Moon,” shall we? I assume nobody was psychologically vetted before they embarked on this trip.

    John Anderson (Ken Clark): Walks around the spaceship in a towel, despite the showers not running any water, which was clearly stated about thirty seconds earlier in the scene. Agrees to throw a couple of cats outside the airlock when prompted by some gibberish “alien message.”
    David Ruskin (Richard “Good and the Beautiful” Weber): Launches into a tirade against the Russian astronaut completely out of left field; also starts bitterly ranting about Bernauer while staring at the German astronaut, despite not knowing the German was related to Bernauer (yet). Nearly the most maladjusted character on the ship.
    Hideko Murata (Michi Kobi): Perhaps the most competent one on the ship, although she’s just a convenient “go to” to translate pitchforks and noodles.
    Luis Vargas (Anthony Dexter): …did this guy actually DO anything, apart from occasionally order the captain around?
    Dr. Erich Heinrich (John Wengraf): Has a heart attack onboard ship. No one seems to have assessed his medical history before he came on board, thus prompting multiple “old” remarks.
    Feodor Orloff (Tom Conway): Becomes megalomaniac on the moon regarding the “Medea Stone” and sticks his hand into burning acid without any prompting. Insults others’ religious beliefs for no reason.
    Roddy Murdock (Robert “brother of Elizabeth” Montgomery, Jr.): Is depended upon to provide the magical math equation to get them out of trouble, as whinily and terrifiedly as possible.
    Selim Hamid (Tema Bay): Snogs with Swede on Moon and walks into unknown Miss Saigon logo for no reason.
    Dr. Sigrid Bomark (Anna-Lisa): Snogs with Turkish guy on Moon and walks into unknown Miss Saigon logo for no reason.
    Etienne Martel (Roger Til): Sabotages Ruskin and Heinrich’s escape rocket for completely baffling reasons. THE most maladjusted and worst-accented character on the ship.
    Asmara Markonen (Cory Devlin): Superstitious, though his instincts do pay off. Barks meaningless things at people when trouble occurs.
    Dr. William Rochester (Phillip Baird): Walks right into quicksand and is incompetent enough to let it suck him in.

    All of them are doing medical examinations WHILE ON THE SHIP, asking others about basic operations as if they hadn’t been briefed, and generally being redundant. (Luis Vargas is especially pointless.) For having twelve people on there, it’s about as disorganized as a family camping trip planned an hour earlier. I wouldn’t have been surprised if they’d all forgotten to go to the bathroom half an hour before the rocket took off.

    Fred Gebhardt may have thought he was undertaking a Meaningful Dialogue about Peace on Earth, but as Maltin said, it was an “ambitious failure.” Everybody’s horrible and shallow, and even the final “sacrifice” of the German and the Jew is rendered pointless because you have no idea what they’re doing or why they’re doing it. (Crow: “Why did they need two people for this job?”) The situation is solved because the aliens Saw That Humans Were Redeemable and stopped the ice age, which, up until that point, the astronauts had taken in stride. (Let’s not think of how the heck the Earth survived all these multiple cold waves arriving and disappearing so fast.) Just a cheap, badly-thought-out movie with bad sets, bad actors and bad direction.

       10 likes

  20. Jbagels says:

    Never mind a female, this has to be the first time a human besides Mike or Joel was on the SOL bridge right? I can’t recall any others up to this point.

       0 likes

  21. Fred Burroughs says:

    This is one of the last MSTs that I saw; unfortunately, because it seemed like parts of several other MST movies recycled into a movie. The sad emo co-pilot form Phantom Planet, with the Old patriarch; the Uber-bland Sheriff Jerk from Giant Leeches, the officer from Fire Maidens and Phantom Planet; Old arrogant guy from She-Creature. The same plot and effects from Spaceship to Venus, Rocket XM, Firemaidens etc etc. Overall, a pretty lame attempt at an international crew: lame accents and politics. Venus was so much better, yet did not have the political tension tried in 12TTM. I don’t get the romance between the Swede and the other guy, it came out of nowhere, they just start mashing lips the moment they take their helmets off. Maybe it was the exploding flower he helpfully gave her. (“Would you stop handing me things like that!”)

    Messiah tracks. 2, maybe 3 days old . . . they lead off toward Emmaus!

       1 likes

  22. Bombastic Biscuit Boy says:

    Episode 524, by me. 12 to the Moon was bad (less goofy and colorful than the similar First Spaceship to Venus). Design for Dreaming was good. Richard Basehart is still good.

    On the plus side, i learned that cats (as well as vanilla pudding) are accepted interplanetary currency.

       2 likes

  23. Mitchell "Rowsdower" Beardsley says:

    I’m probably alone on this, but I like to watch this, Fire Maidens of Outer Space and Phantom Planet as my Anthony Dexter Triple feature.

       4 likes

  24. snowdog says:

    I loved how the movie seemed proud to have an international space crew (pre-dates Star Trek by six years!), but the moment the beefy American Captain steps into frame, the music swells and we’re treated to several seconds of his posing and pretending to look around before finally boarding the ship. Mike’s riff here, “Any of you Euro-freaks speak English?” gets me every time.

    Seemed odd to me that Bridget didn’t get credit for her wonderfully goofy performance. Instead, we get “Nuveena as herself”. It was cool to watch her dance with Mike since they would end up wed. (Had that happened already by this point in the show?)

    Also, I think having the host segments arc from the short helps save the movie in the case.

    Four stars.

       6 likes

  25. Dan in WI says:

    Bombastic Biscuit Boy says:
    Richard Basehart is still good.

    No truer words were ever spoken.

       3 likes

  26. Watch-out-for-Snakes says:

    @73…yeah. You’re alone on that one….


    Season 5 comes to an end. I feel like Mike has gone through some growing pains early on in his tenure as host, but I know of the greatness to come… As for 12 TO THE MOON, I find it to be a half and half episode, half really good, half meh. The movie has some weirdness to it (the thing with the cats) and cheap-o special effects, but half of it is repeptative and lame drama. The riffs are good, especially the running gags. I for one, don’t really care for the Host Segments in this one. The Nuveena storyline does nothing for me, the payoff of seeing Crow as a mixer in HS#3 is not worth it.

    The short is really good though, very weird… #65 mentioned it above, but I noticed it too. Dude in the mask totally looked like Secret Agent Super Dragon (missed callback!).

    RIFFS:

    short-

    Servo: “No wonder they need a car, he has to carry her everywhere.”

    Mike: “Lookout! The bridge to the future is out!”


    movie-

    Crow: “Tonight in SPACE COURT!”

    Servo: “Dump HugeLarge at the controls.”

    Crow: “Vince Coleman is here, lookout!”

    movie: “Come in Central Earth Control.”
    Mike: “I’m making keys, over.”

    Mike: “My work here is done. Now you can all look at my clearly defined area.”

    Crow: “We’ll give you your stinking cats back. They scratched up our entire planet.”

    3/5 to the Moon….

       3 likes

  27. GizmonicTemp says:

    Mitchell “Rowsdower” Beardsley #73 – Triple Features? Hmmm. Weekend Discussion Thread anyone? :yes:
    I suppose at the end of a Coleman Francis Trilogy, ones heart would explode from caffeine poisoning.

       3 likes

  28. agrob says:

    so who was that guy on the moon already?

       2 likes

  29. Dan in WI says:

    If I may quote Crow “Oh wow this is going to be great. Its got a rocket and everything.”

    The tea party/Designing Woman cold opening was great. It just felt like a date that isn’t going well. Mike tries so hard to BS his way through it but Gypsy calls him on it everytime.

    The Dr. Forrester Roast: The green tie and cumberbund are a good touch. Frank shines and delivers everything you would want from the Roastmaster role. He enjoys it too much yet fears the inevitable reprocussions.

    Meanwhile I think the tennis bit was great as well. Tom Servo absolutely nails John McEnroe. Then somewhere along the way he goes from a tennis rant to a courtroom drama rant.

    There’s a couple nice visual jokes in the packing for Earth segment. One of Crow’s crates are labeled “sensible brown pants” which I thought Mike used in one of his escape attempts and the other smaller one is labeled “spec scripts.” I suppose “Earth vs. Soup” and Peter Graves at the University of MN among others would be in that crate.

    Favorite Riffs:

    Short:
    Mike “I call no way.”

    Nuveena rides a platform in fog. Mike “Oo-Oo Black Diamond.” [Kind of a call back when Joel did it as a Swamp Diamond riff.]

    Crow “the Schick electric razor car”

    Movie:
    Astronaut “I am now turning on my invisible electro magnetic ray screen.” Mike “Even I don’t buy it.”

    Tom “One small step for man and one small soda with extra fries.”

    The Earth is freezing over. Mike “This kind of weather wouldn’t even phase the Midwest.”

    Mike “Let’s draw straws to see who we cut open and crawl inside.”

       2 likes

  30. bobhoncho says:

    Snowdog #74, As I recall, Mike and Bridget wed in ’89.

       1 likes

  31. snowdog says:

    Thanks Bob! So, they had already been married for several years. Still sweet to see them dance and sing to each other.

       2 likes

  32. sol-survivor says:

    I’m in the process of getting a different car myself because mine was totaled earlier this week. :curse: I don’t recommend getting rear-ended to anyone. I kind of like the Golden Rocket, but I don’t think it would fit in my driveway. It looks bigger than the mini-van rental I have at the moment.

    The cheesy 50s and 50s space adventures are some of my favorite episodes, and this one is no exception. I have a cat right now who seems to be from outer space. Maybe she’s one of the moon kittens.

       3 likes

  33. GizmonicTemp says:

    sol-survivor #82 Are you going to spring for the Pregnant Woman and Schnauzer option?

    On a side note, my wife wanted me to mention that the masked, bass-singing, tuxedoed guy is very good looking. Unfortunately, I can’t agree as far as the leading lady is concerned. Short hair just doesn’t do it for me.

       2 likes

  34. Cheapskate Crow says:

    @82: Don’t tell me you have THE cat from outer space!

       2 likes

  35. sol-survivor says:

    @83 Nah, I don’t even have any kids of my own, and the psychotic cat wouldn’t like a Schnauzer.

    @84 Could be. She’s mostly black, and when she was a kitten she had one long white hair sticking straight up off the top of her head. We used to say it was her antenna for contacting her home planet.

       3 likes

  36. pondoscp says:

    It looks like I’m the only one here who really doesn’t like that short, because it creeps me out beyond belief! That, combined with a meh movie, makes for an episode I usually skip in the rotation. Host segments are the best part of this episode.
    There are a handful of episodes of MST3K that have a creepy factor, that the more I watch them, the more dreadful and overwhelmingly negative they become. Another that springs to mind is Blood Waters Of Dr. Z. Ugh. I have to watch at least two upbeat episodes after that just to cleanse my brain. It’s funny because episodes I love (Sidehackers, Kitten With A Whip) cause others to have the same reaction that I have to these episodes.
    The Big McLargeHuge stuff can be traced back all the way to Rocketship X-M, which makes me think it’s a Mike joke. It also plays heavily in one of the Hercules flicks (Moon men?), when Joel teaches the bots how to make up names like that. For me Space Mutiny is just an episode filled with the culmination of all those old jokes, like an episode full of callbacks. I think people who love Space Mutiny are most likely not familiar with the prior episodes that set the joke up. It’s kind of like saying I love that Torgo character from San Francisco International, having never seen Manos. But I blame Sci-Fi for that; taking old episodes out of circulation so newcomers think that what they’re seeing is the origin. (I know, I know, it would’ve cost too much to show CC episodes on Sci-Fi, but it was very unfortunate that they didn’t, and that helped divide the fan base) But if you love any MST, you’re okay in my book. Hey, there’s a triple feature for you: Rocketship X-M, Herc and Moon Men, and Space Mutiny! (Or a quadruple feature if you include 12 To The Moon!)
    But we’re here to discuss 12 To The Moon. Nope, can’t watch it. That short is nightmare fuel for me.

       4 likes

  37. bartcow says:

    I may have mentioned this the last go-round, but I STILL want a Firebird II. If I remember correctly, apparently only a handful were ever made (just past the prototype phase).

       0 likes

  38. Kali says:

    Had a soft spot for this one: the director is David Bradley, who taught cinema arts for years at my school (and at UCLA). I took a couple of his classes.

    On the other hand, his obit said that he was the one who discovered Charlton Heston.

    So, I guess the jury’s still out on this one.

    But the movie’s still not bad – and Nuveena creates another classic moment in MST history.

       2 likes

  39. losingmydignity says:

    Watched this again recently. Definitely my grade is going down. Just isn’t funny enough on multiple viewings.

    B

       0 likes

  40. GarrettCRW says:

    I would argue that Tom’s McEnroe-esque meltdown would still resonate with anyone who knows who McEnroe is-in fact, McEnroe still plays off his reputation when endorsing products, even though he’s generally much more sedate as a tennis analyst.

    Speaking of Bridget as Nuveena, was there any laughter on Mike’s part (evil or otherwise) at the first convention when the inevitable, “AWWWWWW!!!!” moment happened?

       2 likes

  41. Cornjob says:

    Re: Medea/Midian Stone

    I think there’s some meteoric rock revered by Muslims (or some of them at least) that has a name that starts with the letter M. Maybe that’s what the movie is referring to.

    And I think Bridgette looks nice as Nuveena.

       0 likes

  42. Depressing Aunt says:

    I think Frenchie atro-NOT has a look that reminds me of “Fargo” actor Peter Stormare.

    Lloyd Bridges in “Rocket Ship XM” points out that the moon is like an aphrodisiac. My theory of that couple’s instant rapport.

       2 likes

  43. MikeH says:

    Just a brilliant episode, need to watch it again soon!! The extreme cheapness of the movie itself (helmets without glass on them) the stage lights seen and the crew member leaving the moon set, nobody in the editing room saw this??

    Announcer: At any given moment..Tom: “I may die!!”

    Also on the short my favorite part was when they were showing the new cars, one of them had a large grill resembling a bit like a mouth and Crow goes: “GRRRRRRRRR!! RRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!! RRRRRRRRRR!!”

       2 likes

  44. Strummergas says:

    Not too sure about this one. Upon watching it, I had to fight the urge to stay awake after the short. After reading the comments here, other posters were bringing up some riffs that I thought were pretty funny while watching the episode. My last time watching it was my first, so maybe I need to see it again? Won’t be anytime soon though, can’t wait for Girls Town!

    This one gets a penciled in 2.5 stars from me.

       0 likes

  45. Chaotic Yak says:

    @91 — There is a stone which is traditionally thought of as meteoritic in origin that makes up one of the cornerstones of the Ka’aba in Mecca, but to my knowledge, it’s just called the Black Stone, and its origins as a stony meteorite have recently come into question.

    I really like this episode, although I generally forget that I do every time I watch it. While there are numerous stereotypes going on, I can at least give the director props for TRYING to have people of other nationalities in his movie…even if the actual execution was rather disappointing. …and the bad guy wasn’t the Russian, the German or any of the women. It was the Frenchman.

    I really love the riffs on the strange, empty set in which Ruskin and Heinrich pilot the “rocket” to drop the missile, especially Mike’s “Have you ever sat on a German before? I mean RIGHT ON him?”

       3 likes

  46. pondoscp says:

    On a whim, I gave this one another shot, and it was one of those moments! I totally get this episode now. There’s some really funny moments in there, especially Frank and Bridget dancing at the end and then she pick pockets Frank. Classic. The short finally didn’t creep me out! It just seemed goofy this time.

       3 likes

  47. Ro-man says:

    “Look, dead raccoon of tomorrow.”

    In my opinion, one of the funniest out of nowhere riffs ever; NEVER ceases to make me burst out laughing. :laugh:

       10 likes

  48. Sitting Duck says:

    12 to the Moon passes the Bechdel Test. Hideko and Sigrid talk about the ultrasonic showers.

    Perhaps I missed it, but the Highway of Tomorrow should have inspired some slot car riffs.

    Regarding the procreation on the Moon, it’s not really feasible. As I understand it, blood flow in the human body in a low gravity environment tends to go away from the batchalogical region, making a certain body reaction extremely difficult at best.

    A treacherous Frenchman. Who’d have thought?

    @ #60: Something like that did happen. Back in the Eighties, the Romanian government had episodes of Dallas aired in their country to illustrate the evils of capitalism. On paper it looks like a brilliant idea, since J.R. Ewing is the perfect caricature of the Ruthless Capitalist. The problem was that even the poor characters on the show had a better standard of living than the average Romanian. So the Romanian government accidentally made capitalism look even more desirable.

    @ #67: If you’re referring to the fact that the Israeli guy has a Slavic surname, IIRC a lot of Slavic Jews had emigrated to Israel following WWII.

    Favorite riffs

    This is a rebuttal to Roger and Me.

    Just because it’s futuristic doesn’t mean it’s practical.

    Clown suit by Bargain Clown of Hollywood.

    Look. Dead Raccoon of Tomorrow.

    Future may not be available as seen. Personal fates may vary. Future not available in Africa, India, or Central South America.

    Look out. The Bridge to the Future is out.

    Hey Earl, I’m looking right at your hinder.

    Hi Mom. It’s our first day in space. Couple of monkey’s on board. Probably eat them at lunch.

    When I get out, Starsky’s a dead man!

    Again with the finger!

    “Now I’m turning on my invisible electromagnetic ray screen…”
    Even I don’t buy it.
    “Which forms a protective shield over our faces.”
    Of course it does.

    TV repairmen on the Moon!

    The Moon has serious gopher problems.

    “It’s gold, isn’t it?”
    Nah, it’s that cheap crap they sell on QVC.

    This makes no sense, and yet it’s working.

    “We are not enslaved by your Earthly emotions.”
    We are Lutherans.

    Here. Attach these jumper cables to his nipples.

    So Mission Fraidy Cat comes to a close.

    It’s just like we saw earlier, only backwards.

    Is this the end of Captain Chuck Hardslab?

    The puppy volunteered in my place.

    My work here is done. Now you all can just look at my clearly defined area.

       3 likes

  49. Gobi says:

    It’s obvious that the visible lighting rigs and the invisible face shields were the director’s way of warning us that the future moon landings would be faked by Hollywood.

    WAKE UP, SHEEPLE!

    (Please note, the above comment is a joke.)

       11 likes

  50. Ro-man says:

    The Lariat:
    Lendl’s “Why now I am having hard enough time!” whine has become a household favorite thanks to the MST3k crew.

    Right there with you. ;-) I remember being actually astonished the first time I saw this skit — that someone else actually mimicked the Ivan Lendl whiny-ness the same way I did. I saw that moment at Wimbledon (:tv: of course) and it had always stuck with me, and has been a part of my cultural-reference repertoire. Like you, my kids have picked up on it too… in fact, to the point of exasperation!

    This demonstrates one of the reasons I love MST3K – the right people will get it, and this is one of those rare moments that I’M the “right people”. :-D

       4 likes

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