Movie: (1956) A Russian hero leads the fight against invading Mongols.
First shown: 12/3/94
Opening: Tom leads Mike and Crow in a game Dungeons & Dragons
Intro: The Mads get a visit from their new neighbors in Deep 12, and ask M&TB to entertain; they soon regret it
Host segment 1: “A joke by Ingmar Bergman”
Host segment 2: M&tB reenact the table cloth making scene
Host segment 3: Ilya Murametz visits on the Hexfield
End: Gypsy’s review of the musical, The Mads have been on a date
Stinger: The wind demon takes a dive
• Of course, this is the third of the Ptushko Russo-Finnish trilogy, starring a lot of the same people as “Day the Earth Froze” and “Magic Voyage of Sinbad.” Like the other two, it’s based on Russo-Finnish mythology/legend, is a very pretty and clearly very expensive movie and is completely OUT THERE. The riffers have plenty to work with here and the riffing almost HAS to be good, and it is. The host segments are fun…mostly.
• You can find this episode in Shout’s Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Vol XXIV.
• When this first aired, it was the fourth new episode in 10 days. MSTies were delirious. It went back to the more typical weekly schedule after this, and within months the show was to go away for quite a while, but this embarrassment of riches was nice while it lasted.
• The opening segment is wacky fun, though “I must take my own life” is probably not the funniest punchline, especially for a sketch about this topic.
• The first time I saw this, when Mike said “Mordor and Rivendell” I said “Those are places!” right along with Tom. What a Tolkien nerd I am.
• In fact the Mads are also very nerdy this week, what with the comic books in plastic bags and the fear of girls.
• That’s Mary Jo (in Deep 13 for the second week in a row) and Bridget, of course, as the girls from Deep 12. Never did find that laundry room, I’m guessing…
• “Supercalifragilisticexpeali-wacky!” is sort of The Capital Steps meets Mark Russell. So, not really funny at all.
• When Servo riffs: “I’m Mike Wallace,” it’s because the writers thought the movie’s narrator really sounded like late “60 Minutes” reporter. But, guess what: Wallace did a lot of things in his career (he was even a game show host) and there’s a reason that voice sounds like him–It really is him!
• Non-spaghetti ball bumpers: Book, bulletin board, film canister.
• Segment 1 was much discussed in the forums. It moved too slowly for some people. Also, not everybody knew who Ingmar Bergman was, and not everybody was familiar with the Upper Midwestern tradition of “Sven and Ole” jokes. So it took some explaining.
• Callback: o/` “Heeey, it’s the undersea kingdom…” o/`
• Call-forward: a “Legend of Boggy Creek” mention.
• Segment 2 is very silly, and another chance for Gypsy to shine. I love the lyrics to her song.
• As for segment 3, well, let’s just give Kevin credit for committing to the bit. “HAM,” indeed!
• Cast and crew roundup: With a few exceptions, everybody here either worked on The Day The Earth Froze (I’ll call it “Day”) and “Magic Voyage of Sinbad” (I’ll call it “Sinbad”). If they worked on both, I’ll just say “both.” Producer/director Aleksandr Ptushko of course worked on both. Cinematographer Fyodor Provorov worked on “Sinbad.” Special effects director Aleksei Renkov worked on “Day.” Costumer Olga Kruchinina worked on “Sinbad.” Production designer Yevgeni Kumankov was art director on “Sinbad.” Music conductor: S. Sakharov worked on “Day, as did score composer Igor Morozov.
In front of the camera Yelena Myshkova was in “Sinbad.” as were Sergei Stolyarov and Sovol Martinson. Buncha commies, the lot of ’em, I’m sure.
One other note: the voice of Kalin and several other voices in this are provided by the great Paul Frees, who wrote and directed “The Beatniks” and whose voice pops up in several other MSTed movies.
• CreditsWatch: Host segments directed by Kevin Murphy. Mike wrote the music for “Supercalafragalisticexpialawacky!!!” The entire staff wrote the lyrics.
• Fave riff: “This baby can handle everything but a three-headed drago-…aw, son of a…” Honorable mentions: “Finland’s annual emotional outburst” and “Kiss your aunt Bernice.”