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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: 1110- Wizards of the Lost Kingdom


Movie: (1985) In a fantasy kingdom, a wizard’s son and a warrior battle an evil wizard.

Opening: Max makes a fascinating discovery
Invention exchange: J&tB have Verbal Smoke Bombs; The Mads have the Sponsor Clock
Segment 1: Reasons Kor got the name “conquerer” and explanations for Kor’s face after killing four guys
Segment 2: Jonah sings “The Magic Inside of You”
Segment 3: J&tB read some viewer mail
Closing: Jonah shows Tom the “Wizards of the Suicide Cave: A Place that Feeds on Fear” play set
Stinger: The bowl explodes
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (79 votes, average: 3.81 out of 5)

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• The first time I watched this one, I really didn’t like it. The movie is just soooo cheap. But this time through, I found myself laughing quite a bit. I’m definitely upgrading my opinion. But, ugh, this movie.
• The whole mysterious key plot in Moon 13 starts with this episode. I’m not quite sure it works, but, like with this episode, I’m giving it another chance.
• Chris Hardwick has gotta be happy for namecheck.
• One of the things people gripe about with the relaunch is that it’s sometimes hard to distinguish between Tom’s and Crow’s voices. I usually don’t have that problem, but if you wanted to cite a good example of that, look no further than the numerous Cryptkeeper impressions in this episode, which both Tom and Crow seem able to do quite easily and interchangeably.
• There’s no credit for “The Magic Inside of You,” so I have to assume it’s another Paul and Storm gem.
• Callback: “…tampered in God’s domain.” (Bride of the Monster)
• Jonah mentions Dr. F and Frank and Joel and Mike. I know, I know, it’s just a show, but should he know about any of that? Maybe the bots told him?
• No Rowsdower reference? Seemed pretty obvious to me. Maybe they decided it was too obvious?
• Cast and Crew Roundup: Thom Christopher was also in “Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell.” Roger Corman … well, that’s all I need to say.
• Fave riff: “Ralph Maccios assemble!” Honorable mention: “I would face a thousand cyclops brides before I swam through whatever that is.” “Oh they’re showing ‘Little House on the Prairie.’”

138 Replies to “Episode guide: 1110- Wizards of the Lost Kingdom”

  1. This was the episode that broke us.

    After nearly three decades of watching MST3K, then Film Crew, then Cinema Titanic and Rifftrax and having great fun with each and every show, we came to the one we absolutely hated. Halfway through, my dear wife (whose opinion and values I trust more than anyone I’ve ever known) turned to me and said “Do we have to finish watching this?”

    It sounded blasphemous to me, but I understood perfectly, and we turned it off (we came back, days later and fortified with alcohol, and completed it, and the alcohol helped a lot, but it still wasn’t fun).

    There have been bad movies riffed (I can’t imagine anything more awful than Manos, or Birdemic, or, hell, that crazy balloon parade) but they all were still FUN. This wasn’t fun at all, and I lay most of that blame on Jonah and company who failed to find the joy by not acting as if this was anything other than just a regular ole S&S film to be handled as they do all of them, with practiced snark and polished wit instead of slack jawed amazement that something this putrid could exist. The movie itself is competent, but made without any conviction at all, as the filmmakers KNEW they were making something ridiculous and they didn’t care. But even Sharknado was made fun by Rifftrax – this one was mishandled from the beginning to the end.

    The only good news is that, in comparison, the rest of the season now looks MUCH better. I raise all my reviews by 1 now.

    This one: 1 out of 10 (and that’s generous).

       18 likes

  2. Volcanosaurus Rex says:

    I love this episode so much! I always like goofy fantasy movies, and this one has the comforting familiarity of one of my favorite classic episodes, Deathstalker—right down to the same cheesy music and overacting Thom Christopher. Plus, it’s colorful and easy to watch, and Kor is like a somehow-likeable combination of Deathstalker and Rowsdower. The only thing I don’t like is the early riff about giving the gargoyle “the soul of a cat that was run over by a Camry.” That line seems just a little too accurate, and conjures up images that are just too sobering to be funny to this cat lover. Other than that, every minute of this episode is a lot of fun!

    What is the explanation for Max’s ceiling friend? Is it related to the “supernatural manifestations” that Joel’s character hinted at in previous episodes, when the movie “spilled”?

    This younger (than in Deathstalker) version of Thom Christopher makes a surprisingly intense villain, even with the occasional overacted outbursts. Watching him creep on the young princess is pretty uncomfortable. Also, the first time I watched this episode, it took me a while to connect Jonah’s “Crabby” voice to the crab hat—I thought he was voicing Apula at first.

    The host segments aren’t bad in this episode, either. The song about wizardly puberty is fun and clever, and doesn’t drag on too long. I like the zombie-Crow backup singers. It’s also fun to see some fan mail and kid’s drawings on the show again.

    The moment in the theater when Jonah knocks the bots together for overdoing the cryptkeeper jokes makes me crack up every time…

    Favorite riffs:

    A young Scott Baio takes his pet wampa to the park…

    Prepare to face the wrath of Fat Sting!

    It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a holy what is that?!?

    [The lizard guys looking like hip-hop artists onstage] Aww yeah, Kor, yeaahhhh…

    I should store this somewhere besides my spinal column…

    [When Simon’s last spell wipes out Shurka without a problem] Oh wow, I should have done that right at the beginning!

       15 likes

  3. Danzilla "Cornjob" McLargeHuge, Student of Kaijuology says:

    Wow.

    What an astoundingly insane movie this is. And what an instant classic of an MST3K episode it has become!

    Carrying on the tradition of Cave Dwellers (sort of), The Magic Sword, Deathstalker, and Quest of the Delta Knights, Season 11 returns to the fertile fantasy genre, and strikes gold. Despite waiting for an Ator reference that never came, I had SO much fun watching this episode. One of the season’s best.

    Some thoughts:

    -First off, there’s the funny but bizarre Reptilicus Metalicus opening. I wonder what the deal is with this thing. Does Moon 14 have a history pre-Kinga? Where does this thing come from? How does it eat and breath and other science facts?!

    -I’ll take three Sponsor Clocks, please!

    -James Horner?!?! Wow. I got some John Williams/Daddy-O flashbacks from that revelation. James is one of my greatest film composer heroes. May he rest In peace.

    -Dear GOD, the opening of this movie is an insane fever dream.

    -Callbacks: Aside from Tom mentioning that he “tampered in God’s domain” in Segment 2, I didn’t catch any during the movie this time. I think this is the only episode this season without direct callbacks to previous episodes during the riffing. Correct me if I missed any.

    -Classic MST3K Bits: “Saaaayyyy…”; “Here’s the wind up… and the pitch!”

    -Star Wars References: “Your father is white Wookie?!”; “A young Scott Biao takes his pet Wampa to the park.”; “One day I’m gonna cut Golfax open and sleep in him!”; “…Skywalker? …Skywalker?!”; A mention of Selacius B. Crum; At least 1 more Wookie reference

    -During the early pillaging scene, there’s a one second long shot of a table with fruit on it falling over, and Jonah just yells “FRUIT!”. I died laughing. I love riffs like that.

    -Ah, Crabby… how I love Crabby. I know the running joke didn’t work for some people, but it worked for me. It doesn’t hurt that he’s hanging out on Troxartis’s head, either! But still, no callbacks.

    -Bo Svenson’s Kor the Conquerer is destined to become a much revered MST3K character. Also, we have yet ANOTHER of those Tor/Torq/Ator/Torgo type names. There’s something fascinating about that, as Sampo has pointed out before…

    -The Kor bashing starts in Segment 1, and just gets funnier from there. Jonah is again working on his spacesuit.

    -Kor and Simon have a real Rowsdower and Troy relationship going on. (#EricJTriggers)

    -Again Jonah points out practical effects that could have been harmful to an actor. There are a lot of those in this season’s movies.

    -That giant bug prop is actually pretty cool! Maybe that’s where the budget went.

    -Segment 2 is awesome! Yet another great song, and another instance of bot duplicates running around the ship. Tom mentions that he “tampered in God’s domain” too! That callback has popped up 4 times so far this season!

    -So… no Grandfather Mushroom impressions for the little gnome guy? He kinda sounds a bit like Roger Rabbit, too.

    -Wow, that little imp really does look like Victor Buono.

    -Yay, fan mail!!!! I’m betting the two letters read this season came in during Joel’s call for fan mail in November 2015, during the Kickstarter campaign. They need to do more of these segments next season. Also, there’s something satisfying about the new season finally acknowledging Deep 13, Dr. Forrester, Frank, Joel/Mike, and “old Cambot” by name.

    -Jonah kinda flubs a line during the final fight, then recovers. They kept the take, and I’m so glad they did. It really reminds me of the old days, and this season needs some more of that “done live” feel. I say keep as many flubs (as long as they aren’t straight up bloopers) as possible.

    -The “what happens after the movie” bit during the credits felt like something from the Mike era. I wish the credits had gone on longer so the bit could have continued, but again the guys leave the theater before the screen fades to black. I miss the credit conversations of yesteryear.

    -End Credits Music: Sidehackin’; United Servo Academy Men’s Chorus Hymn; To Earth; The Canada Song; The Magic Inside of You

    -Favorite Riff: “Fud Ruckers.”

    -Honorable Mentions: “Sure, that sounds like a name.”; “Safely in the hands of my wonderful sun.”

       16 likes

  4. skrag2112 says:

    This looked like ‘Quest Of The Delta Knights’ but with 1/4th the budget.

       6 likes

  5. Brian Porter says:

    This episode is really difficult for me, for the worst reason. I had already seen it riffed, because Rifftrax did it in the summer of 16. It was up for two or three weeks, then yanked due to undisclosed “rights issues”. Since I bought it, I can still watch it, and comparing the two is frustrating. Many riffs are similar or similarly themed, though RT found Gulfax a lot more horrifying. While I worry that MST3K may have been the “rights issue” that killed the Rifftrax version, the bigger issue may be that watching the two together really highlights concerns that 11’s riffs are flat, rapid fire and milquetoast.

       25 likes

  6. gf120581 says:

    Aside from “Cry Wilderness,” this is my favorite of the season. The incoherent and cheaply done fantasy flicks like “Cave Dwellers”, “Outlaw” and “Deathstalker” have always been prime riffing fodder and this one is no exception. And unlike its “sequel,” this one has an earnest feel to it. It feels like the kind of film a bunch of fantasy loving kids might have made; high on enthusiasm, low on skill.

    Random thoughts:

    – Uh oh. Max has a new friend. This doesn’t seem likely to end well.

    – Like all those characters you saw in the opening montage? Yeah, you’ll never see them again. Way to cut costs with the stock footage, Roger!

    – James Horner’s presence gets the jokes, but “Conquerer” Bo Svenson also has films like “North Dallas Forty” to his credit. Working men both.

    – Our insufferable whiny little hero is played by Vidal Peterson, best known as Will Holloway in the film version of Ray Bradbury’s “Something Wicked This Way Comes.” Seeing him here, I felt a little part of my childhood wither and die.

    – As others have mentioned, our two main heroes really came off as a fantasy Rowsdower and Troy.

    – I do not envy the actor who had to wear the albino Bigfoot suit while shooting in South America. Guy must’ve been dying.

    – Such glee at seeing THOM THISTOPHER! as the villain. And this time he has scene stealing Crabby to support him.

    – As pointed out numerous times, this film could well be called “Anti-Climax: The Movie.”

    – Favorite host segment; the discussion of how Kor got the title “The Conqueror” (original title holder stripped of it for drug use, got high score in “Frogger” at the arcade, etc.).

    – Favorite moment; Jonah banging Crow and Tom’s noggins together after they refuse to lay off the Crypt-Keeper impersonations.

    – Another classic ending credit bit; Crow and Tom’s graphic description of our young hero’s inevitable corruption and downfall now that he’s in charge (bloody purge of villain’s loyalists, establishment of theocracy to please wife, descends into paranoia, best friend joins rebellion against him, dies in battle against own son “so cycle can begin anew”).

    Favorite riffs:

    (As title comes up)
    “Check in the car! Did you leave it in the car?”

    (During stock footage montage opening)
    “Jonah, I’m having a hard time keeping track of the characters in this movie. We’re two minutes in and I’ve seen like 90 people.”
    “Maybe this is the menu and we have to click on one of these to choose the story we want.”

    “Help me reign over my lobby palace and 800 square feet of a kingdom.”

    “Yes, when Cameron was scoring ‘Titanic,’ he said, ‘I want that Wizards of the Lost Kingdom sound.'”

    “I intend to rule Axhome. I will need a queen at my side.”
    “You know, to the stop the rumors and all.”

    “He bought their loyalty with Vikings tickets.”

    “Surprisingly upbeat music for a scene featuring a woman being shot in the back with an arrow.”

    “Don’t you want to marry me?”
    “Wow, child bridezilla!”

       10 likes

  7. Ro-man, aka one of several possible Steves says:

    Well, I figured this was be a polarizing episode, and the 1st two posts certainly demonstrate that. I hope we can keep the disagreements civil.

    Truly a bizarre film, but great riffing material. I felt that Thom Christopher as Shurka was just great, deliciously over the top (and I thought the recurring voice of “Crabby” was a hoot). Oh, remind me, how did the giant walking cotton-ball advance the plot? And I agree with Sampo…. I’d have expected some Rowsdower callbacks with Bo Svenson’s Kor character.

    I think this is one of my boys’ favorites from this season (though Wizards II might be close). And they keep randomly bursting into the “there once was a maiden who went for a walk… she went for a walk meeeerrrrrrily!” for some reason.

    Me, I liked this episode just fine. I laughed a lot. Just fun.

       10 likes

  8. gf120581 says:

    Ro-man, aka one of several possible Steves: Oh, remind me, how did the giant walking cotton-ball advance the plot?

    I do not remember a single thing the albino Bigfoot did in the film other than stand around and look like part of the scenery. He was just there to give it the “fantasy look” is my best guess. Crabby had more of a role than him.

       3 likes

  9. Steve K says:

    skrag2112:
    This looked like ‘Quest Of The Delta Knights’ but with 1/4th the budget.

    I’m going to guess the opposite. This movie has more locations, better costumes, better film quality, and better effects. What it clearly didn’t have was a production team who cared at all.

    QotDK was likely a passion project by a team who didn’t quite have the skills or budget to carry it off.

    WotLK was likely a cash grab by a production company which saw an uptick in popularity of fantasy epics and tried to capitalize on it.

       5 likes

  10. Steve K says:

    Ro-man, aka one of several possible Steves:
    … I’d have expected some Rowsdower callbacks with Bo Svenson’s Kor character….

    I don’t know. I don’t see much of a comparison. Yes, they’re both drunks, but Rowsdower’s a beer drunk and Kor’s a wine drunk…

       4 likes

  11. Anthony says:

    I’m rather surprised by Sampo’s reaction, as I consider this one of my favorite episodes of the season – the Crabby the Hat runner is probably my favorite running joke of the whole season, I laughed quite a bit throughout at stuff like all three riffers’ Napoleon Dynamite impressions (all of them were at least not bad, and Hampton’s was dead on), and the sheer crappiness of the movie (cue “They Just Didn’t Care”) is something to behold. But at least it’s the fun crappy and not the painful crappy of the next one.

    One thing that was pointed out to me by someone that didn’t really like Season 11 was that MST3K was almost (if not entirely) alone during the 90s in the way it exposed the rather thick line between good filmmaking and bad filmmaking, but now that SO many other outlets do it in 2017 some of that flavor is lost with MST3K’s return (yet another “it’s not the old show” thing – just the comparison to Rifftrax’s version, favorable or not, speaks to that). I thought about that the most during this season with this episode – Gulfax having zero relevance to the plot, the continuity error of Shurka’s vision pool, the tiny magician not doing anything, the mashed up footage from other movies, the cheap costumes, and so on. If this was 1992, you’d have no real frame of reference to **** on this movie besides Joel, Trace, and Kevin. Now you have a billion options to imagine – some you might even like more than Joel, Trace, or Kevin. That’s not an excuse or anything for S11, just something that I think is true and deserves a bit of consideration.

    Anyway, I enjoyed this episode as much as some folks disliked it. This will be one I return to often. Could’ve done with a few less references to thinkpieces, though…

    Favorite riff: “They really should pixelate Gulfax’s crotch.” Runner-up: “You need a little more savoire faire / Boss, you don’t pay me enough for subway fare!”

       9 likes

  12. I really HATE magical kid movies. This movie was so annoying it really blanked out the riffing for me. The whiniest protaganist since Paper Chase guy. There were no redeeming qualities at all. At least Wood and Francis put some effort into their works. There was no effort from script, acting, special effects and direction. I will try to watch it again but not very hopeful. Although all movies in this arena are considered bad this is the most boring and stupid m0vie for them to select, until next weeks feature.

    I don’t expect any agreements nor is there any slams intended.

       2 likes

  13. trennerdios says:

    Whoa, guess I didn’t expect this one to be quite as polarizing; I figured the next episode would be more divisive. Anyway, after a 2nd viewing I found myself laughing out loud at the riffs in this more than any other episode so far. I still have more to re-watch, but one thing that I’ve noticed this season is that even the funnier riffs aren’t as immediately memorable to me most of the time. This one was a bit of an outlier in that regard, which was nice. I’m sure after multiple viewings of each ep that will change though.

    Definitely got a nice Deathstalker: Quest of the Final Sacrifice feeling in this one.

       9 likes

  14. jay says:

    I watched this one way back when it first was available on Netflix and now I honestly remember almost nothing about it. That is most unusual and what that says about this episode I will leave up to you, the reader.

       3 likes

  15. privateiron says:

    I liked this one, but the sequel is better (as an episode; as movies, I cannot even begin to parse the nano differentials in quality here.) Bummed that apparently my RT copy is now “unauthorized” and they did not bother to inform me. (Something happens to my current disk, I cannot burn a new one or stream; so I would think that was an issue to tell your customers about.)

    Thom Christopher really does help with my enjoyment of this film. One can now imagine him as an archetype, similar to Donald Pleasance.

       1 likes

  16. Danzilla “Cornjob” McLargeHuge, Student of Kaijuology:
    -Dear GOD, the opening of this movie is an insane fever dream.

    And just as Wizards I gets used as the opening fever-dream “explanation” for the unrelated Wizards II, we now get the MSTie Trivia Challenge of what unrelated Corman fantasy film was used as the opening “Previously, on Wizards of the Lost Kingdom…” explanation for Wizards I. I couldn’t recognize which one, but they all tend to blur in the memory anyway.

    Anthony: Gulfax having zero relevance to the plot

    Did you know that the gull is the most common North American seabird, lives mostly on a diet of fish and scavenging, is found on nearly every world seacoast, and mates for life?
    Tune in to Wizards of the Lost Kingdom for more fun and interesting Gulfax(tm)!
    (All Gulfax are verified by the Audubon Society and Ranger Rick magazine.) ;)

    And yes, the attempt for the movie to try and put it in its own money-Chewbacca that had no lovable face or dialogue to make it identifiable, and did absolutely nothing to give it any perceptible personality, the “You didn’t contribute to the plot in any meaningful way but I’ll miss you…” riff perfectly caught it.

    Volcanosaurus Rex:
    Plus, it’s colorful and easy to watch, and Kor is like a somehow-likeable combination of Deathstalker and Rowsdower.

    What, a goofy, boozy older-guy mercenary comically griping about being stuck with a teen kid? Nooo, I don’t think they were aiming for any Rowsdower audience-kissups with this Corman New-World package choice…
    It may have been too “obvious” to riff, but there was definitely that knowing wink of “You know WHY we picked this movie, don’t you, fellow young SciFi fans? ;) ”

    gf120581:
    Aside from “Cry Wilderness,” this is my favorite of the season.The incoherent and cheaply done fantasy flicks like “Cave Dwellers”, “Outlaw” and “Deathstalker” have always been prime riffing fodder and this one is no exception.And unlike its “sequel,” this one has an earnest feel to it.It feels like the kind of film a bunch of fantasy loving kids might have made; high on enthusiasm, low on skill.

    Wizards II at least had an experienced screenwriter and part-time Corman director behind it trying to give it some actual structure, but here, it’s backyard weekend-RPG-game home-movies just wandering around without a clue.
    Folks who haven’t seen next week’s cheaply unrelated movie yet, you will be THANKFUL for the tighter hand on the second movie’s writing/direction, however painful.

    – Our insufferable whiny little hero is played by Vidal Peterson, best known as Will Holloway in the film version of Ray Bradbury’s “Something Wicked This Way Comes.”Seeing him here, I felt a little part of my childhood wither and die.

    As someone who watches Disney’s SWTWC almost every Halloween (and encourages the practice), I, in my best Johnny Carson voice…..did not know that. 0_0
    Ol’ Tom Fury may know when the storm’s a-comin’, but have to admit, I didn’t see that one ahead.

    And the utter wrongness of necromancing the dead just to try and play that “Sorcerer’s Apprentice” motif (NOW you know why Mickey Mouse used brooms) is the perfect stuff of Jonah host-seg songs. Never overdo the songs unless they’re for a good reason.

    gf120581:
    “Yes, when Cameron was scoring ‘Titanic,’ he said, ‘I want that Wizards of the Lost Kingdom sound.’”

    Oh, please: Anyone who’s ever watched more than two or three low-budget 80’s New World pictures on cable/streaming knows that Corman spent the money getting a young James Horner (who was clearly working out first drafts for his ’83 “Krull” score) for 1980’s “Battle Beyond the Stars”, and waste-not-want-not Roger recycled it for EVERY single science fiction or fantasy-epic movie since then. Any casual bad-movie fan can name at least two or three bad New World films it appears in (most will say “Sorceress”, I’ll go for the obscure choice and say “Space Raiders”), and probably heard it somewhere else before realizing where it came from–
    Battle Beyond the Stars is an underrated classic, but the Horner theme itself has become a running joke whenever it shows up in anything else that couldn’t afford it.

    (And besides, everyone knows that when Cameron was scoring Titanic, he wanted that Enya sound—“Y’know, because she’d done that ’Sail Away’ song!”—and then hired Horner to rip off every song she’d ever written after she turned him down.
    If you happen to know a lesbian Wiccan vegan crystal-artist at your local Ren-fest who listens to Enya, they can probably pick out by ear WHICH songs Horner cribbed for Titanic’s score.)

       3 likes

  17. privateiron says:

    Correction to my previous comment: my copy of WotLK is still available in my library at RT. It sucks that new people will not be able to get it though.

       1 likes

  18. Weird. This episode is probably in my top 5 favorites for this season.

       4 likes

  19. majorjoe23 says:

    privateiron:
    I liked this one, but the sequel is better (as an episode; as movies, I cannot even begin to parse the nano differentials in quality here.)Bummed that apparently my RT copy is now “unauthorized” and they did not bother to inform me.(Something happens to my current disk, I cannot burn a new one or stream; so I would think that was an issue to tell your customers about.)

    Thom Christopher really does help with my enjoyment of this film.One can now imagine him as an archetype, similar to Donald Pleasance.

    As long you bought it from Rifftrax, it will still be in your account for streaming/downloading. I’ve purchased several movies that they’ve since lost the rights to and still have access to them.

       5 likes

  20. Stoneman says:

    Some random observations about this episode:

    I liked this one. The riffig had me laughing out loud regularly. Some of my favorites:

    “Patrick Duffy is Greg Brady in ‘Julius Caesar’!” (those have always been one of my favorite riff types).
    “Citizens Bank Park is proud to present The Rolling Stones!”
    “It’s a ‘Gladiator/Little House On The Prarie’ mashup!”
    Gnome: Shurka’s creatures are returning! “Fight them while I call your sponsor!”

    Not sure if I like Jonah’s “magic inside of you’s” resemblance to “Beauty School Dropout” from “Grease”. Didn’t like Jonah & TB’s invention exchange. Did like the Mads’ invention.

    This is the start of a host storyline, of sorts, that culminates in the last episode. When I initially saw these episodes, I can’t remember liking or not the in-host segment plot. When we get there in a few weeks, I am sure my feelings about it will solidify. Enough on that…

    Gulfax’s costume was ridiculous. Just as bad as the polar bear in “Santa Claus Conquers The Martians”. BTW, Original EricJ, I liked your “Gulfax”. Information about God’s creatures is always welcome.

    I could not suspend my disbelief far enough to accept Bo Svenson as the ass-kickin’ hero. Just, no…

    I felt the cinematography, at least, for this film was actually really good. The sets and props, and some of the non-creature costumes, are not horribly amateurish. However, the acting, characters, dialogue, fight scenes, creature-costumes, stunts, and especially the special fx were particularly cheesy and uninspired.

    Overall I rate this episode 6 out of 10.

       3 likes

  21. Stoneman says:

    In my initial post, I meant to say I could NOT suspend my disbelief far enough to accept Bo Svenson as the etc.

       1 likes

  22. majorjoe23 says:

    Here’s my usual list of stuff for this movie. The Aug. 30, 1997 factoid is my favorite.

    Director Hector Olivera, born April 5, 1931
    Writer Ed Naha, born June 10, 1950
    Actor Bo Svenson, born Feb. 13, 1941
    Actor Vidal Peterson, born Nov. 6, 1968
    Actor Barbara Stock, born May 26, 1956
    Producer Alejandro Sessa, born June 19, 1928, died July 10, 1998
    Composer Christopher Young, born April 28, 1957

    Connections
    Actor Thom Christopher was also in Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell
    Roger Corman was the executive producer, who was also involved with so many other MST3Ked movies. So many, you guys.

    Other dates
    Nov. 30, 1985: Wizards of the Lost Kingdom is released in the Philippines
    April 4, 1994: Wizards of the Lost Kingdom has its TV premiere in Germany
    Aug. 30, 1997: the Sci-Fi Channel aired Wizards of the Lost Kingdom, followed by the MST3K episode Prince of Space.
    Sept. 19, 2015: Bo Svenson won the New York Screenplay Contest’s Park Avenue Prize for Drama for his screenplay “Don’t Call Me Sir!”
    Nov. 30, 2015: Bo Svenson won first place in drama for his screenplay “Don’t Call Me Sir!” at the Los Angeles Screenplay Contest.
    March 11, 2016: Rifftrax released its version of Wizards of the Lost Kingdom, which was only available for about two weeks before being pulled due to rights issues.

    Fun fact: Screenwriter Ed Naha also wrote Honey, I Shrunk the Kids
    Fun fact: Bo Svenson took over the role of Buford Pusser from Joe Don Baker in two Walking Tall films, as well as the TV series.

       8 likes

  23. knight5000 says:

    This is not specifically regarding this episode but for the relaunch in general:

    I am glad that MST3K is back like all and I like it….but not all of it.
    Kinga and Son of TV’s Frank are boooooooring. Remember – or better yet – watch Trace Beaulieu and
    Frank Conniff in action and weep! No offense to Patrica Day and Patton Oswald but your roles……humbug

       10 likes

  24. Sitting Duck says:

    Wizards of the Lost Kingdom fails the Bechdel Test. None of the female characters converse with one another.

    Having the prologue open in Moon 13 instead of the Satellite of Love is certainly different.

    Perhaps it’s just me, but Kor looks kind of like Alan Tudyk, just all bloated and washed-up (no I won’t apologize for that). Obviously it can’t be Tudyk, since he would have still been in high school at the time this film was made.

    The exploding scrying pool is another perfect stinger choice.

    gf120581:
    – Another classic ending credit bit; Crow and Tom’s graphic description of our young hero’s inevitable corruption and downfall now that he’s in charge (bloody purge of villain’s loyalists, establishment of theocracy to please wife, descends into paranoia, best friend joins rebellion against him, dies in battle against own son “so cycle can begin anew”).

    Much like the similar end credit discussion for Soul Taker.

    gf120581: I do not remember a single thing the albino Bigfoot did in the film other than stand around and look like part of the scenery. He was just there to give it the “fantasy look” is my best guess. Crabby had more of a role than him.

    I seem to recall him attacking a mook during the climax. But yeah, he does just kind of hangs around not doing anything worthwhile.

    skrag2112:
    This looked like ‘Quest Of The Delta Knights’ but with 1/4th the budget.

    Steve K: I’m going to guess the opposite. This movie has more locations, better costumes, better film quality, and better effects.

    No kidding. You didn’t need the acknowledgement in the end credits to figure out that Quest of the Delta Knights was shot at a Renaissance Festival.

       5 likes

  25. Kenneth Morgan says:

    I figured this was another case of good episode, lousy movie.

    I agree with the comparisons with “Quest of the Delta Knights”. At least “Quest” had David Warner (both of him), who’s like Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee in that he makes even a bad movie somewhat watchable. And Tee could be somewhat competent, at times. Simon, however, is a truly annoying so-and-so. I’m a bit surprised Jonah & the ‘bots didn’t reject him as the hero, like Mike & the ‘bots did in “Time Chasers”. As for Thom Christopher…well, he ain’t boring.

    I liked the song, and I agree that the credits bit was very much like the one for “Soultaker”. But no feety pajamas option, though. (Actually, come to think of it, the guys pretty much described the “Star Wars” EU after “Return of the Jedi”, but that’s another story.)

    And the time you spent reading this post was brought to you by the Grill-O-Mat Snack Bar, Paignton.

       4 likes

  26. tibber says:

    So which is worse, this or the sequel? My first instinct is to go with the sequel, but then I remembered that it has David Carradine and Sid Haig (and the obnoxious kid from Tremors!)

    Also, the “Who are you? Does it matter?” exchange should have been the stinger.

       1 likes

  27. Denver Brown says:

    This episode wasn’t too bad, but I do prefer the next one, a little disappointed that they didn’t make any Truksartis Deathstalker references though. Also hopefully in future seasons they do not limit their movie choices to only color widescreen movies, there are still many riffable black & white standard screen movies, and I think the essence of the show is from the old B&W movies.

       5 likes

  28. Johnny Drama says:

    This was one of the stand outs of the season, as I love a good DIY D&D flick. Then I loved II even more! But this one is really good, prime MST3K. The kind of episode where you can’t believe what you’re watching.
    Surprised that Sampo didn’t mention the “geeky scandal” about this episode, the fact that it’s the only MST3K episode that was RiffTrax first. I remember when that one disappeared almost instantly. It has to be because of MST, doesn’t it?

       7 likes

  29. Cornjob says:

    I had a bit of a weird response to this one. The first time I watched I was so annoyed by the stupid leading kid that it nearly ruined the episode for me. I was dreading this one the second time I watched through the series, but although I certainly don’t like the kid he doesn’t irritate me to distraction like he did at first.

    Aside from that I thought Trox-… I mean Thom Christopher did a pretty good hammy job. Him and the costuming were the best parts of the film. The episode is pretty funny if you can get past the crappiness of the movie.

    BTW I know a lady who was an extra in Quest of the Delta Knights, and yes, the director of that movie basically took over a Ren Fair to shoot it.

       7 likes

  30. Steve K: I don’t know. I don’t see much of a comparison. Yes, they’re both drunks, but Rowsdower’s a beer drunk and Kor’s a wine drunk…

    I wonder if there’s wine on the sun.

       9 likes

  31. Steve K says:

    Johnny Drama:

    Surprised that Sampo didn’t mention the “geeky scandal” about this episode, the fact that it’s the only MST3K episode that was RiffTrax first. I remember when that one disappeared almost instantly. It has to be because of MST, doesn’t it?

    Gosh, Johnny Drama, trying to live up to your handle?

    No, it doesn’t have to be because of MST. Rifftrax has had to pull other riffs because of rights issues; and there have been many re-riffs (e.g, Manos, Time Chasers, Santa Claus Conquers the Martians) which generated controversy only with certain inflexible fans.

    Could it be related? Could Joel & crew have said to Mike & crew “Hey you guys just did a riff that we are in the process of doing for the new season and we don’t want to start with a re-riff situation”? Maybe, but the more I think of it, the less plausible it seems. Taking the riff down after it was published would only serve to fuel the controversy in the mind of those to whom that kind of thing matters (as in fact it did.)

    Rights issues are more plausible in my mind, especially as those can be a rat’s nest.

    However, the timing does suggest one more possibility: Maybe when the MST team researched the rights to WotLK, they uncovered an issue that the RT team was unaware of, which led to them having to take down their version.

       2 likes

  32. Ro-man, aka one of several possible Steves:
    Well, I figured this was be a polarizing episode, and the 1st two posts certainly demonstrate that.I hope we can keep the disagreements civil.

    Truly a bizarre film, but great riffing material.

    Me, I liked this episode just fine.I laughed a lot.Just fun.

    This is a film that I would love straight up. It is so preposterous, so spectacularly awful, so mind bendingly stupid I can riff it myself. Furthermore, elaborate, high budget films that fall flat on their faces are my favorite targets.”Manos” should get some slack because it was low budget and produced by amateurs. This crap deserves no mercy.

    I think there are some people who come for the bad movie and take the riffing as a bonus, and some who don’t care for bad movies, but good riffing can make it tolerable. I fall into the former category, so I have a good time even when I can’t understand what the SoL crew is saying. Which is often.

    Maybe this division between viewer types is at least part of the reason for the polarization over season 11. I don’t really care much if the riffing is mediocre (maybe it is) or too rapid fire (definitely is), but for those who don’t enjoy the schlock on its own (de-)merits S11 might be more than a bit of a disappointment.

    I think the writers don’t appreciate how much time it takes to properly digest a riff. It takes more time to digest this sort of parody than to get just a regular joke, so when they get thrown together too quickly they all get lost. There were places here where I was still trying to process the first joke and they were already on the third. Maybe that should be the writer’s lesson for season 12: sometimes, less can be more.

       6 likes

  33. Hi all. Long time reader,first time poster. I’ve been a fan since the early Comedy Channel times and I enjoy all incarnations of MST3K. I will admit I had to watch this movie a few times to “get it” but now it’s one of my favorites of the new season. What did I enjoy about it? I thought you’d never ask. From Jonah’s first riff of “This was the right day to wear my Crabby the crab hat!”, the Crabby riffs really had me laughing. When we first meet Kor and he keeps saying “Hold it!” to which Tom says”Tha ts my

       2 likes

  34. Sorry. Somehow I sent half a comment. Anyway, when Kor keeps saying “Hold it!” and Tom says “That’s my catchphrase. Copyright. Trademark. Me.” When Simon is running away from the “Phantom” and Jonah says “Get back here, you freakin’ idiot!” in his teenage slacker voice I cracked up. The other riffs I liked were “Does everybody in this kingdom have the power to spy on each other?” and “Does ANYBODY know how to nod in this kingdom?” Well,I’ve taken up enough of your time. I’ll try not to screw up if I post again. My rating on this episode is 7/10.

       5 likes

  35. Sampo says:

    Does anybody know what song the Skeleton Crew is playing in the first break?

       1 likes

  36. Johnny Drama says:

    Pretty sure that song is the the tail end of the Starfighters Chorus song

       2 likes

  37. Endoplasmic Reticulum:

    Maybe this division between viewer types is at least part of the reason for the polarization over season 11. I don’t really care much if the riffing is mediocre (maybe it is) or too rapid fire (definitely is), but for those who don’t enjoy the schlock on its own (de-)merits S11 might be more than a bit of a disappointment.

    I think the writers don’t appreciate how much time it takes to properly digest a riff. It takes more time to digest this sort of parody than to get just a regular joke, so when they get thrown together too quickly they all get lost. There were places here where I was still trying to process the first joke and they were already on the third. Maybe that should be the writer’s lesson for season 12: sometimes, less can be more.

    I think your second paragraph is definitely on point — moreover, when I hear riffs done in such rehearsed and rapid fire succession I also feel a kind of desperation to it, as if the comic feels the material is so weak that they had better move on. Letting a joke “land” is an art in and of itself and one that seems to be missing from nearly ALl the episodes this season.

    But as to the first point — I won’t speak for others (see?) but I do enjoy good crap with the best of them. As you say, you can always riff yourself. This season (and, in particular, this episode) seem to feature more poorly made movies than most, rather than just those who are pretentious, and I think it’s the latter that I enjoy the most. I like seeing pomposity taken down, and filmmakers who believe they are making a contribution to the art in some meaningful way are the ones that are most deserving of scorn.

    But here? The people that made this film could care less what you think of it, and that to me is a film that just can’t be riffed. If you talked with them they’d say “So what? Yeah, it’s total crap and I got my paycheck”. Those are not just sitting ducks, they are already wrapped and set out for the table to eat. This film (and the next one, made most likely by the same filmmakers even if none of the rest is that much of a “sequel”) was just a very poor choice, made so much poorer by the effort of Jonah and company.

       7 likes

  38. McLargeHuge says:

    I’ve watched all of season 11, and the feeling I had during the season is the same feeling I had during this movie – I have no desire to watch it again. I forced myself to complete the season, just because I had to. But this episode unfortunately sums up season 11 for me.

       8 likes

  39. A Jerk says:

    “No Rowsdower reference? Seemed pretty obvious to me.”

    They shouldn’t cater/pander to people just because it’s “obvious” (and to the people who want to be pandered too: why?). Just because it’s something that people “know” doesn’t automatically make it funny or great. There has to be more substance and a good set up behind it to make a reference funny.

       4 likes

  40. A Jerk:
    “No Rowsdower reference? Seemed pretty obvious to me.”

    They shouldn’t cater/pander to people just because it’s “obvious” (and to the people who want to be pandered too: why?). Just because it’s something that people “know” doesn’t automatically make it funny or great. There has to be more substance and a good set up behind it to make a reference funny.

    So, did RiffTrax’s Wizards pretty well beat the “Korsdower!” jokes and pander-quotes into the ground on their version?
    The Jonah season tends to wink to the “obvious” recognizable-actor or past-episode-lore jokes early with one clear drive-through riff and then try to take them off the table, because they’re a little more interested in the material, and not in fostering and indoctrinating cult-loyalty for lines and icons from the past franchise.

    MK&B KNOW “Why?” they think some of their fans would want to be pandered to, and it’s the most visibly obvious philosophical difference between the two fandoms at the moment.

       2 likes

  41. Scott Strong says:

    I must admit. I’m a Thom Christopher fan. Hawk from Buck Rogers was one of my favorite sci-fi characters of the late 70’s early eighties. And he has that great voice. So that made this one quite memorable for me even though I thought the riffing was a little off. Obviously reminded me of Deathstalker. And as a Final Sacrifice fan all I can say is “missed opportunity “!

       2 likes

  42. Brian says:

    It seems Sampo’s Theorem is in full effect here. I really enjoyed this one.

       7 likes

  43. Ray Dunakin says:

    A Jerk:

    They shouldn’t cater/pander to people just because it’s “obvious” (and to the people who want to be pandered too: why?). Just because it’s something that people “know” doesn’t automatically make it funny or great. There has to be more substance and a good set up behind it to make a reference funny.

    All this talk about “pandering” makes no sense to me. The fact that only fans might get the reference to a previous episode, and thus the joke, is no different than any other obscure/no-longer-current reference.

    When they make a Gilligan’s Island reference, they aren’t pandering to GI fans. When they make a Pinter play reference, they’re not pandering to Pinter fans. And when they make a reference to some past episode, they’re not pandering to MST3K fans.

    The only thing that matters is whether the riff is funny or not. Who cares whether it’s “self-referential”??

       17 likes

  44. Ray Dunakin says:

    The Original EricJ:
    The Jonah season tends to wink to the “obvious” recognizable-actor or past-episode-lore jokes early with one clear drive-through riff and then try to take them off the table, because they’re a little more interested in the material, and not in fostering and indoctrinating cult-loyalty for lines and icons from the past franchise.

    And you know this…how? Were you in the writing room with them?

       20 likes

  45. Ray Dunakin: All this talk about “pandering” makes no sense to me. The fact that only fans might get the reference to a previous episode, and thus the joke, is no different than any other obscure/no-longer-current reference.
    When they make a Gilligan’s Island reference, they aren’t pandering to GI fans. When they make a Pinter play reference, they’re not pandering to Pinter fans. And when they make a reference to some past episode, they’re not pandering to MST3K fans.

    And when Cameron Mitchell shows up in any Rifftrax episode and MK&B shout “Captain Santa!”, they’re definitely not pandering to Gilligan or Pinter fans…

       1 likes

  46. Ro-man, aka one of several possible Steves says:

    To the recurring point about the rapid-fire, almost on-top-of-each-other riffs this season… while a bit off-putting initially, I’ve gotten used to it so it doesn’t bug me like it did at first.

    And — BONUS! — it makes for great new discoveries on a second watching. It’s like two… two… two MST3Ks in one! ;)

       11 likes

  47. privateiron says:

    Scott Strong: Oh my God! Thom Christopher is the origin of “Bird Person.” That blows my mind.

       1 likes

  48. This movie used to play on the Sci-Fi Channel all the damn time and I remember seeing it on there and thinking for sure it would end up on MST3K. I didn’t think it would be 20 years later, though. Gulfax is just one of those things where you simultaneously know what they were going for (a Chewbacca ripoff) but also don’t understand at all because it just looks likes they made it out of carpet and the face is really hard to make out and it just looks so terrible you’re shocked they put it on film.

    I hate to say this because the episode is funny and it’ll sound like I’m being too critical of new MST3K but this episode made me appreciate Rifftrax a lot more. The new MST3K version has more jokes and some really funny ones but the Rifftrax one is just loose fun and for me was more enjoyable. I re-watched Rifftrax’s version for a second time at some point after watching the new MST3K version. That’s a weird experience since I like the trappings of MST3K and the puppets and I love the beautiful HD version of Wizards (people taking the time to make HD prints of horrible movies are awesome) but can’t help but admire how funny the Rifftrax guys are with just microphones, a really bad VHS transfer of the film, and nothing else. They’ve been doing this a long time and they’re great.

       11 likes

  49. Cornjob says:

    The kid in this movie really is one of the worst protagonists ever. He makes the Delta Knight kid and Troy from Final sacrifice look like Jason Statham. There’s little for him to do except wander around, fail, and make awful decisions on the rare occasion that he shows any initiative. This is coupled with one of the worst child actors ever. He looks too young to even want let alone have a girlfriend. And there’s nothing to indicate that he’s trying at all or even enjoying himself at all. Thom Christopher seems a bit like the kid who gets in to it the most when playing pirate on the playground. The actual kid is getting in to it the least.

    The people of this enchanted Kingdom might not have much going for them, but they do a mean load of laundry.

       8 likes

  50. trennerdios says:

    The Original EricJ: And when Cameron Mitchell shows up in any Rifftrax episode and MK&B shout “Captain Santa!”, they’re definitely not pandering to Gilligan or Pinter fans…

    I find it odd you have such extensive knowledge of something you so clearly despise.

       19 likes

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