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Sampo & Erhardt

Sci-Fi Archives


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

Goodbye Sci-Fi

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

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Episode guide: 702- The Brute Man (with short: ‘The Chicken of Tomorrow’)

702s

Short: (1948) The many aspects of the modern chicken farming industry are shown.
Movie: (1946) A disfigured man takes revenge on the college pals he believes caused his condition.

First shown: 2/10/96
Opening: Tom is getting into real estate
Intro: Pearl is going out and puts Crow in charge
Host segment 1: Tom is inside an egg
Host segment 2: Mike calls his old girlfriend to ask her to help him escape
Host segment 3: Crow wants Mike and Tom to sing “Hang down your head, Tom Dewey”
End: Letters, Tom is not a good landlord, and Dr. F. turns Pearl’s date into a chicken of tomorrow
Stinger: “Creeper, Creeper, Creeper! YOU give me the creeps!”
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (210 votes, average: 4.30 out of 5)

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• This is one of those episodes where the short really builds up a head of steam, but the riffing of the movie just can’t maintain the pace, so it starts to drag in the last half hour. But overall it’s a great episode, with mostly good host segments with Dr. F a bit less wimpy than last week.
• This episode is included in Shout’s “Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Vol XXII.”
• You can read Paul’s comments on this episode here.
• In the opening, watch Mike think about Crow’s “cajones” remark for several moments before objecting. Nicely done.
• I had no memory of the bit in the intro where they seem to be extracting a portion of a stuffed animal from Gypsy’s teeth. Nice little random element.
• Why is Dr. F quietly sewing the head of piglet onto the body of a fish? Why not?
• Of course that’s Paul as the oily lothario Sandy. Poom!
• Pearl again calls Crow Art.
• Mike is pitch perfect as a pouting 7-year-old when told Crow will be his babysitter.
• Note for anyone seeking an unMSTed version of this short: There is a different short with same title at archive.org. It does include some of the same footage, but it’s definitely a different short.
• There is so much realty talk in this episode. Who on the writing staff was buying a house?
• Obscure reference: Mike mentions a painter named Susan Rothstein. I’ve googled her and there does appear to be such a person, but she’s pretty obscure.
• Only slightly less obscure: Mike’s reference to Alicia de Larrocha. Also pretty obscure: references to jazz musicians Terry Gibbs and Diane Schuur.
• In the short, the narrator claims there is no county in a America where somebody is not raising chickens (I assume he means commercially). That’s a remarkable thing, if true, and I bet that’s not true any more (again, at least not commercial chicken farming; raising a few chickens for personal use is, I think, on the increase).
• Sadly, this is the last short for more than 30 episodes.
• Season seven brings us a new non-spaghetti ball bumper: A shot of a movie projector with the name of the movie on a card nearby. Rather than the rotating series of bumpers we had in season six, either the projector or the spaghetti ball was used.
• Callbacks: “Oh, it’s true.” (The Dead Talk Back)
• This is one of the oldest movies MST3K did. Only “The Corpse Vanishes,” “The Mad Monster” and “I Accuse My Parents” are older. By the way, the woman playing Joan Bemish is Mickey Dolenz’s mom.
• Of course, an early highlight is the old grumpy shopkeeper Mr. Harkins, who seems to have cracked them up.
• In segment two, for the first time in a long time, we find Mike actively trying to escape the SOL. That’s not something that had really been on the front burner in the latter half of season six.
• That’s Bridget on the phone, and, I think, Paul as the little kid.
• Interesting line when Crow sees the “23” on the Creeper’s lair: “Hey. it’s KTMA!”
• Segment 3 is one of those sketches about a bad idea for a sketch. The brains seem to enjoy the meta-ness of them. But they’re not so much funny as kind of wry.
• Cast and crew roundup: Producer Ben Pivar had a story credit on “The Leech Woman.” Editor Philip Cahn also worked on “Lost Continent.” Makeup guy Jack Pierce also worked on “Amazing Transparent Man.” Set designer Russell A. Gausman also worked on “The Leech Woman” and “This Island Earth.” “Revenge of the Creature,” “The Mole People,” “The Deadly Mantis” and “The Thing That Couldn’t Die” (which I think is why you keep seeing that hamburger/map picture on people’s walls). Sound tech Joe Lapis worked on “The Leech Woman.” Score composer Hans J. Salter also worked on “This Island Earth” and “The Leech Woman.”
In front of the camera: Tom Neal was also in “Radar Secret Service.” Fred Coby was also in “Jungle Goddess.” Peggy Converse was also in “The Thing that Couldn’t Die.” Tristram Coffin was also in “Radar Secret Service,” “The Corpse Vanishes” and “The Crawling Hand.”
• CreditsWatch: Host segments directed by Kevin Murphy. This was prop assistant Dean Trisko’s last episode and Beth McKeever’s last episode as an intern.
• Fave riff from the short: “I’ve seen the episode where the eggs are coming too fast and she puts them in her mouth!” Honorable mention: “You think I can wear these pants out tonight?”
• Fave riff from the movie: “Honey? My face is as big as ever and someone shot my sizzler off!” Honorable mention: “Clog dancers!”

150 Replies to “Episode guide: 702- The Brute Man (with short: ‘The Chicken of Tomorrow’)”

  1. Angie Schultz says:

    Rondo’s character is a jerk…his friend the former presidential candidate, however, is an even bigger jerk

    I disagree. Hal, the proto-Brute Man, is a much bigger jerk than Cliff.

    What I don’t get, though, is the behavior of Virginia, the girl Hal and Cliff are both after, who later marries Cliff.

    Hal fetches her for a dance, though she’s supposed to be Cliff’s date. They have “car trouble” on the way there, and Virginia does not seem to be mad at Hal for this ruse. Then, Hal immediately whirls her off for a dance, under Cliff’s very nose, and Virginia does not object. Days later, Cliff taunts Hal by walking Virginia past the lab, and again Virginia seems to have no emotions whatsoever. It’s as if she has no will of her own. Maybe that should have been the movie.

       4 likes

  2. robot rump! says:

    Sitting Duck #99
    o.k. yes after further review, Tom Dewey is dead.
    Angie Schultz #101
    i see your point. i guess i just tolerated Creeper’s jerkiness…no..jerkolog..mm wait…jerkhood?
    anyway i guess Creeper being a one man football team made his attitude more reasonable to me than the mean spirited intellectual Tom Dewey. who as i understand is still dead.
    and as for Virginia, the woman not the state, her lack of personality or depth was either due to it being the 40’s and that’s how your female supporting actress was supposed to be, or they spent so much time trying to develop the storekeeper’s back story they kind of forgot her.

       2 likes

  3. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    FYI: Rondo Hatton also played The Creeper in “House of Horrors,” a movie released earlier that same year. That character was also a disfigured deranged serial killer, although in that case he was killing people designated as victims by a sculptor who’d befriended him. Whether that was to be considered “Hal Moffat: The Hidden Years” or to feature a completely different disfigured deranged serial killer called The Creeper is uncertain.

    #9:
    Hal wasn’t abandoned by his friends, HE abandoned THEM. He shut himself off from human contact, allowing his anger to simmer and boil before finally “avenging” a misfortune that was, ultimately, no one’s fault but his own. Geez, it’s not like anybody TOLD him to throw the chemicals to the floor…

    #22:
    “The man said murder!” / Tom: I may have to use my huge face on them!

    Given what turned out to be the nature of the murderer, that riff’s sort of ironic, isn’t it?

    #44:
    Well, he WAS a SERIAL KILLER, that’s going to put a dampener on any relationship.

    #82:
    Well, it was 1946, people had seen much fewer horror movies back then.

    #94:
    “The movie: I love the little girl who wants to play boogie woogie.”

    Actual 1940s child or 1940s screenwriter’s vague idea of what a child would say? YOU make the call. ;-)

    #101:
    She was playing the two guys off of each other for her own amusement. Veronica Lodge used to do (and for all I know still does) the same thing with Archie Andrews and Reggie Mantle.

    So, what does it say about Hal that he was so desperate to restore Helen’s sight so that she could see him and, presumably, reject him? Or was he desperately hoping that she’d see him and NOT reject him? Unless omitted dialogue clarified the point, I guess we’ll never know.

    Oh, and while buying the jewelry for Helen, “I’ll pay you tomorrow”? Did he SERIOUSLY think the jeweler would go along with that? In MANHATTAN? I mean, there’s deranged and then there’s DERANGED. He would’ve been better off just outright stealing the jewelry from the start.

    “Hope you like it. I was going to pay money for it but I decided to take out its cost in human life instead.”

    And “robbery not motive”? WTH, police department? Knowing that the guy killed for robbery would actually render him more comprehensible and at least marginally less frightening to the public. It’s the guy who kills for no obvious motive that frightenes the public the most, because THAT guy could go after ANYBODY.

       4 likes

  4. robot rump! says:

    Just for the record. have we ever established who is the biggest MST’d jerk?

       2 likes

  5. Sampo says:

    Robot Rump: We had a “smuggest character” thread but that’s not exactly the same thing, I think. Hmm…

       1 likes

  6. GizmonicTemp says:

    Sampo #105 – Oh please oh please oh please! I have my list all ready to go!

       2 likes

  7. robot rump! says:

    of course, based on the feedback that Mr. Crotchety Q. Storekeeper has garnered on this post. one could also ask which supporting character stole their respective movie the most?

       3 likes

  8. ToolAssist says:

    I LOVE THIS EPISODE SO MUCH. It’s actually really sad, because imo, season 7 is extremely piss-poor. Let’s brace ourselves…

       1 likes

  9. Depressing Aunt says:

    @#103

    Is it something a 1940s kid would say? Hmmm, maybe not. But that young actress looked like SHE believed it. When I was a kid taking piano lessons, I desperately wanted to learn to play something cool. Too bad I was so untalented. I still say, that girl’s all right. :)

    I’d like to add, I do like this episode. It’s mostly because Mike, Crow, and Tom really sound like they’re having fun in the theater.

       3 likes

  10. jjb3k says:

    Of the handful of MSTed movies from the 1940s, this one is my favorite. The Brains clearly had fun with this creaky old mess of underlit scenes and outdated lingo. Huge-faced Rondo Hatton gives them plenty to work with.

    Love the randomness of Crow and Mike extracting a half-eaten cat from Gypsy’s throat. “There’s your smell!”

    People rag on Season 7 because they say Dr. Forrester was too much of a wuss. But I really think that’s only an issue in “Night of the Blood Beast”. Throughout the rest of the season, he’s still put-upon, but he remains his usual quirky evil self. Sewing a pig and a fish together, then turning Sandy into a giant chicken – that’s classic Dr. F as far as I’m concerned. :)

    “Crow!”
    “Shut up!”
    “Crow!”
    “Shut up!”
    “Crow!”
    “Go to bed!”
    “Crow!”
    “…You may live.”
    “Thank you.” (This bit kills me. :D )

    “Chickens!” Sweet mother of monkey milk, I freaking love this short. It’s the last one of the Comedy Central era, and boy, do they go out with a bang. So many great quotables – I still drop “Eggs are complicated, they should cost like a hundred dollars each” whenever I’m at the grocery store.

    “But wait a minute, you may be asking…”
    “Why am I watching this?”

    Another great “riffback” moment, when Servo turns out to be 100% correct about baby chicks being able to survive a three-day car trip without food. His surprised “Heh, I was right!” always makes me giggle.

    “Attention, all cars…”
    “That’s a lot of cars.”
    “General alarm…”
    “Kill your owners.”
    Less than a minute into the movie and I’m already falling on the floor laughing.

    Lots of giggling in the theater this week, and not just from Mike’s famous breakdown over the crotchety shopkeeper. I love the guys’ reaction when Servo responds to “I’m not a burglar” with “I’m a hot dog”, as well as his hasty justification (“It sounded like ‘burger’!”) Somebody once made a comment around here that I’m inclined to agree with – these later episodes feel less scripted than the first couple of seasons, because of moments like this where Mike/Joel, Kevin, and Trace/Bill genuinely crack each other up, even after half a dozen rewrites. It’s part of the reason why I think the show was at its best during this period.

    *shot of the clock*
    “You know, by itself, that doesn’t establish much.”

    “How are things in homicide?” What’s the deal with the incompetent comedy relief detectives? Who cares, they just give the Brains more stuff to work with. Even when Trace blows a line (“Who put the cookie in the cuh-cookie jar?”), I’m still laughing my ass off. “Get his puffer!”

    “Hey, it’s KTMA!” That got a big fanboyish laugh out of me. :D

    Love the flashback to Hal’s college days. I really need to use the line “Good pickles, huh?” next time a conversation peters out in the middle.

    “Her hair looks like something you’d pound meat with.”

    The meta-ness of the Tom Dewey thing is a great bit of insanity. The sketch works because Crow is the only one who’s into it. If Mike and Servo were excited too, it’d totally fall flat, but instead, Crow is left to play in his own little world where “Hang On Snoopy” is the funniest thing ever. More great puppetry from Trace in this segment, too. :D

    The ACEG has a bit called “Your Area and You” where they discuss the term “area” and its myriad synonyms (batch, place, pouch, etc.) and encourages you to add your own. This episode introduced me to another one – “Ooh, right in the mess!”

    “Ladies and gentlemen, in the center ring, the Creeper will now attempt the High…Thing.” Love how everyone cracks up at this.

    “Honey? My face is as big as ever and someone shot my sizzler off!” (Another synonym!)

    What is it that Dr. F is watching on TV at the end? Sounds like a scene from Last of the Wild Horses, but I’m not sure.

    All in all, another winner from Season 7. As I stated last week, I adore this season, and I put this one on a lot. It’s a good nighttime episode, the kind I can put on right before bed. It takes place almost entirely at night anyway, so it seems appropriate.

       7 likes

  11. Kali says:

    “Creeper! Creeper! You give me the creeps!! Now you just creep out of … I mean, just get going!!!”

    Still love the scene when the little police commissioner shows up:
    SERVO: Ah, midgets!!

    Commissioner: Shall we go?
    ALL: “We represent the Lollypop guild!”

    Admittedly, you can’t call this a classic episode, but it does have some great moments.

       2 likes

  12. OnenuttyTanuki says:

    I have no idea how many times I’ve re-watched this episode between taping it off the T.V. on a blank VHS when it first aired and to the viewings on the Shout Factory DVD, but it was not till my latest viewing that I caught/heard the “Hey, It’s KTMA!” riff. I had always some how thought Crow was saying “Hey it’s K.D Lang!”

       1 likes

  13. This was the first episode I ever saw. I was over at my friend Trista’s house, and she came across this episode after flipping channels for a few minutes. “Oh, this show is great, these robots make fun of these bad movies.” I just laughed my fecking face off, especially at the “Hang Down Your Head Tom Dewey” skit. I went home and told my sister, but since my dad didn’t get cable and I didn’t know the name of the show, it wasn’t until I was flipping past Sci-Fi that I recognized those familiar seats at the bottom of my screen that I yelled “hey, it’s that awesome show with the robots and the bad movies!” And thus, a great obsession was born for both of us.

       6 likes

  14. Sitting Duck says:

    @ #92: I respectfully disagree. There’s nothing to indicate that they’re anything but regular chemicals. In fact, exposure to chemicals is how Rondo Hatton allegedly ended up with acromegaly (in his case, mustard gas during his wartime service). No radioactive spiders here. As such, the talk about Rondo being exploited by the studio can be said to be not entirely sanctimonious hand-wringing.

       0 likes

  15. EricJ says:

    Favorite Psychic Lawn Dart(tm) in Brute Man:

    (Creeper creeps up behind Blind Girl)
    Girl: Who is it?
    Crow: “It’s da plumber, I’ve come to fix da sink!”

    (Nice to know there are old-school Electric Company fans among the Brains:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PTEeJE3tzDE )

       3 likes

  16. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    Hm, the Creeper, Dirk from The Sinister Urge, Mr. Wilson from Teen-Age Strangler, Steve from The Incredible Melting Man, the Butcher from The Indestructible Man, Tony the Zombie from Zombie Nightmare, J.C. from The Sidehackers, I wonder how many serial killers MST3K movies have featured over the years. I’m not interested enough to continue the process right now, though. ;-)

    Think how weird movies might be if the film serial killers of the 1940s and 1950s had caught on like the ones of the 1980s and 1990s.

       3 likes

  17. mstgator says:

    Re Sampo: “Also pretty obscure: references to jazz musicians Terry Gibbs and Diane Schuur.”

    I could be off base here, but I believe the reference is actually to Terri Gibbs (who, like Diane Schuur, is a blind female musician). Best known for her 1981 country/pop crossover hit “Somebody’s Knockin'”.

       2 likes

  18. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    Minor point: Despite his grumbly ways, the storekeeper was pretty quick to report the delivery boy’s disappearance AND to mention The Creeper, wasn’t he? See, he CARED, so there’s that, anyway.

       5 likes

  19. pondoscp says:

    In Laserblast, we get another non-spaghetti ball bumper, the episode title against the SOL in space

       1 likes

  20. Tim S. Turner says:

    Terrible episode that’s a sign of the god-awful season to come. For anyone who has anger against the MST3K movie for leeching the wit and energy from the series, season 7 is your vindication. Terrible, unfunny writing. I detested Pearl during this season. Thank God she evolved during season 8. I never watch anything from this season, except occasionally “Laserblast”. Terrible, terrible season. Have I mentioned it’s terrible?

       0 likes

  21. Sitting Duck says:

    @ #120: Yes you have. Now go to bed, old man. :P

       10 likes

  22. JCC says:

    LMAO I was going to apologize to Tim S. Turner as I recalled I went off on him for being a broken record about hating Season 7 in one of the episode comments section. I’m not as high on S7 as I used to be and realized that, hey, it might not be everyone’s awesome cup of tea that I thought it was. He still really hates the season though. :shock: :car:

       1 likes

  23. mstgator says:

    @ #119: SOL bumper also used in episode 705 – Escape 2000 (I got crazy and watched Season 7 in its entirety this weekend).

       1 likes

  24. Tim S. Turner says:

    I realize that it seems to a crime to dislike any MST, but I stand my ground. It’s my favorite show of all time, and like any show, there’s good stuff, and some not so good stuff. Once they went to Sci-Fi, they really seemed like they had a renewed energy and it shows. So many classic episodes in season 8, and the introduction of Bobo and Observer. I think Bill Corbett brought a fresh take to Crow, and his Brain Guy is hysterical. So yes, it is possible to love this series and still realize when it wasn’t at its best. Season 7 showed a battle weary BB crew (after the MST movie) struggling to figure out how to deal with the loss of Frank. The Dr. F/Pearl partnership never jelled. I love them both, but no, it never did. The dynamic was thrown into disarray. Is there some good stuff in season 7? Yes, but it’s spread out. “Laserblast” is the best of the bunch, but no one, but no one will EVER convince me that “Escape 2000” or “Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell” are funny. “Escape 2000” is laugh free. Never understood the love for the whole “Toblerone” gag. Anyway, my point is that everyone has eps they like and ones they don’t. I’m not an idiot for not liking this season. It’s just my opinion. But hey, maybe I should really just relax.

       0 likes

  25. JCC says:

    It’s not a crime to dislike certain elements of MST3k or episodes/seasons, and I don’t think anyone here would call you an idiot for disagreeing about the show. I was just surprised you would still be so vehement about it. I actually do apologize for calling you out in the #704 comments section. I try to “really just relax” but sometimes it stings a little when the things that I hold near and dear to me are assaulted on the internet. And yes I know that’s pretty much the point of the internet. And I love “Escape 2000” and “Deathstalker” but, hey, I’m gonna have to agree to disagree there…although I do see some moments where Best Brains seem weary/tired but I never felt it affected the riffing in the theater (See also: Season 10).

       1 likes

  26. Tim S. Turner says:

    No harm, no foul, JCC. We both love the same show. So it’s all good. And yes, I do tend to be pretty vehement in my dislike of something, especially when I feel that it’s unjustly praised (in my opinion). I also feel the same way when something I love is hated unjustly (again, in my opinion). I love the Sci-Fi era. I feel the writing is top notch, and they really have a groove going. I loved the storyline, even though I know they hated doing it. I started with MST3K in 1990, so my love of seasons 8-10 has nothing to do with when I became a fan. To me, the Mike episodes (season 7 excluded) are sharper, and better paced. I also prefer the meaner tone of their approach to the films. To me, it makes more sense to be negative towards the movies. They ARE meant to hurt them, after all. I know everyone will jump me for preferring the Mike shows, but there you are. I adore Joel as well, and Frank of course. But I think the writing didn’t get to the level we expect from the show until season 3 or so. That limits the number of Joel shows that I consider top notch. Anyway, kudos to you for having the good taste to enjoy such a wonderful program! :laugh:

       1 likes

  27. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    I just realized how Hal SHOULD have dealt with his situation:

    “Is your face odd? Misshapen? Join the Air Force!”

    Of course, the Air Force didn’t actually EXIST as a separate branch of the US Armed Forces in 1946, so there IS that…

       8 likes

  28. Hey Cabot! says:

    I’m amazed no one has mentioned Servo’s joke near the end of the short, where the narrator is describing how the industry has progressed to put out more chicken and Servo keeps interrupting with “to be killed.” That joke is so hysterical to me because it shows how the narrator attempts to anthropomorphize chicken while conveniently ignoring the process of slaughtering chicken.

       6 likes

  29. goalieboy82 says:

    The Chicken of Tomorrow,
    the Bill Clinton story!

       1 likes

  30. MSTie says:

    One of the best shorts in MST3Kdom! “…to be killed” added on to basically any statement about the chickens never gets old for me. The movie, however, I have a tough time with because I feel so sorry for Rondo Hatton. Not that I feel he was exploited, because what else was he going to do with his (at the time) incurable condition? I admire him for making a career out of it, and I loved the special feature about his life. I mean, how many people have an award named after them? Maybe someday someone will make a good biopic about him, a la The Elephant Man.

       2 likes

  31. Sitting Duck says:

    Rifftrax did what could be considered a companion piece to Chicken of Tomorrow called Eggs to Market (which is in the May the Shorts Be With You collection).

       5 likes

  32. Goshzilla says:

    If you have the Shout boxset and haven’t watched Ballyhoo’s Rondo Hatton documentary, I recommend you do. His life is a fascinating story. The short version: Exposure to mustard gas in World War I kickstarted his acromegaly and faced with few options in his later years headed for Hollywood to cash in on his deformity. The Brute Man writers lifted the Creeper’s backstory directly from Rondo’s real life, only swapping the chemistry lab accident in for the War.

    The Brute Man was Rondo’s final role, filmed in the last year of his life, which might make the movie feel exploitative, but it kept him busy and paid, so I imagine he was grateful for the relative success he squeezed from his misfortune. You were enjoyed, Rondo.

       5 likes

  33. new cornjob says:

    goalieboy82:
    The Chicken of Tomorrow,
    the Bill Clinton story!

    like “the matrix” reboot, that joke’s 18 years old! (and that rhymes with “IT’S BOOOOLD!!”)

       0 likes

  34. Goshzilla says:

    So, I’ve noticed that the guys are REALLY cracking each other a lot during Season 7. (Particularly in Laserblast, which I’ve watched the most.) Watch Mike during the shopkeeper’s “Creeper Creeper Creeper… You give ME THE CREEPS!” scene. He completely loses it, and leans over like he’s putting his head between his needs. We know they’ve sat through this scene at least half a dozen times by this point, which makes think Trace or Kevin was doing something we can’t see that broke Mike.

    They’re chuckling a lot during the chicken short, too. Personally, I love when they make each other laugh, but I know they professionally avoided it. I wonder what was different during this abbreviated season. Punch-drunk from the stress of the movie and threat of cancellation hovering over them, maybe? Anyway, I really appreciate the looseness.

       3 likes

  35. thequietman says:

    I’ve cornered myself and no one’s even chasing me!

    This episode sort of feels like a throwback to ‘The Corpse Vanishes’ from back in season 1. A drab murder mystery plot that only sticks in your mind thanks to the lead actor’s unforgettable attributes.

    But this episode’s place in the pantheon is assured because it featured not just the last short of the Comedy Central era, but what I maintain is the last truly great short they did. So many great moments that others have mentioned, but one I like in particular is the overexcited “WOOHOO!” Crow lets out when the narrator first invites us to visit a large chicken farm. Gets me every time.

    Fave short riffs
    If yer nice we’ll hook ya up to th’ milkin’ machine! (Wow, that’s a dirty riff!)

    That guy’s escaping disguised as a chicken!

    (little girls surrounded by chicks)
    How many are you sitting on?
    Dad went a little nuts this Easter!

    The chicken shortage of 1937…

    Fave movie riffs
    Boy, these cigarettes are really addictive! I wonder if they know about that?

    She’s using a harmonica on her nails!

       2 likes

  36. EricJ says:

    Goshzilla:
    So, I’ve noticed that the guys are REALLY cracking each other a lot during Season 7. (Particularly in Laserblast, which I’ve watched the most.) Watch Mike during the shopkeeper’s “Creeper Creeper Creeper… You give ME THE CREEPS!” scene. He completely loses it, and leans over like he’s putting his head between his needs. We know they’ve sat through this scene at least half a dozen times by this point, which makes think Trace or Kevin was doing something we can’t see that broke Mike

    Yeah, thought “Boy, that’s…one…rollicking jawdropper of a ‘strange’ line, yep…” ?:-)
    The relative patience and tolerance of one set of comics over another in having to sit through the same repeated stress of the movie in writing sessions often turned the humor TOO much into avenging some strange line they saw coming over and over, to points that might have baffled the more innocent-bystander audience–But the theory of on-set shenanigans sounds pretty plausible too.

    The early seasons had a more sense for the mechanics of comedy, to exploit how a memorably silly line symbolized the overall holistic badness of the movie (“Watch out for snakes!” isn’t exactly a kneeslapper by itself, unless you remember the scene and significance), but the later seasons, on into RT, just wanted to physically grab the movie and rub the line back in its face six or seven times, as there was no toilet handy to do a swirly. Which is pretty much what watching movies repeatedly will do to you when you don’t have much instinctive love for watching them in the first place, good or bad.
    Hey, guys, when the episode airs, we’re watching it for the first time, ‘kay??…We’re victims of soicumstance!

       0 likes

  37. Johnny Drama says:

    Season 7 is pretty good overall. But this episode is just sad. Between the shell removal of the chicken eggs (just grosses me out), and the sadness of Rondo, this episode, while having it’s moments, is overall depressing. Even Mary Jo in the dvd intro said they probably shouldn’t have done it.
    An interesting side note, apparently the majority of this one was written by Mary Jo and Paul, since everyone else was busy with the Movie.

       2 likes

  38. EricJ says:

    @124, 125 – Season 7 does show some “Battle weariness” in the riffing, and not just in the host-segs where they parody movie studios and spec scripts.
    I’ll toss “Incredible Melting Man” on the “battle-weary” casualties, where we see some future victim say one line in what seems to be a Southern accent, and is promptly and immediately dogpiled with bass-on-the-wall You Might Be A Redneck jokes for the rest of her brief role in the movie….I know someone who didn’t get up on the right side of the bed this morning.

    I’ll agree that Escape 2000 was 99% laugh-free (the 1% for Toblerone’s buoyant overacting being the one standout bright excuse for riffing a cheap Italian PD), and Deathstalker was inappropriate in so many ways that aren’t funny, but it gets back to the too-close-to-the-material point that guys, WE’RE not as angry about the movie as you are, yet, you’ve got to convince us. And to do that, you’ve got to distance yourself, be professional, keep your mind on the job, and be the dancing-monkey standup comic you started out as.

    (…Oh, and could we have longer Edit buttons, too? :) )

       1 likes

  39. goalieboy82 says:

    new cornjob: like “the matrix” reboot, that joke’s 18 years old! (and that rhymes with “IT’S BOOOOLD!!”)

    but its still funny after all of these years.

       1 likes

  40. Cornjob says:

    Major bummer about Rondo Hatton getting gassed and then sick like he did. He seems to have made the best it, but geez. No one should have to go through that. Kinda puts my own health issues in perspective.

    The guy who invented chemical weapons thought he was doing the world a favor. Called it “a higher form of killing” or something like that. As if it was some kind of spiritual refinement to use gas as a murder weapon. Thanks.

       2 likes

  41. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    jimmy:

    Newspaper Headline “Backbreaker kills again!”

    “The Backbreaker” seems like it might be a more appropriate nomenclature. It clarifies how he kills. “Creeping”? That could mean almost anything…

       1 likes

  42. Dihgdfj says:

    Maybe creeping was creepy-er back then.

       2 likes

  43. Cornjob says:

    “You give me the creeps!”

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  44. Cornjob says:

    Although a tragic figure, The Creeper is definitely a jerk. He’s cheating in college, sanctioned cheating, but still. Then he betrays the person who’s doing his cheating for him. When said friend uses the Creeper’s reliance on him to stick it to him, he throws acid around inadvertently disfiguring himself. At no time has creepy taken any of the ample opportunities for self reflection to examine his decisions and how they contribute to his problems, and he’s not about to start now. He rejects his friends, stews in anger, then goes on a revenge murder spree. Some of his victims are blameless like the jeweler that didn’t extend credit, and even those who had crossed him really didn’t deserve to die for it. His fondness for the blind lady is somewhat redeeming, but completely undercut by his deciding to kill her after he got her in to trouble by giving her property stolen from a murder victim. What a jerk.

       4 likes

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       0 likes

  46. Cornjob says:

    I think this movie might be an extended anti-cheating short. If Hal Moffet had done his own schoolwork none of this would have happened. Cheating is bad. Richard Basehart on the other hand, is good.

       4 likes

  47. EricJ says:

    Johnny Drama:
    Season 7 is pretty good overall. But this episode is just sad. Between the shell removal of the chicken eggs (just grosses me out), and the sadness of Rondo, this episode, while having it’s moments, is overall depressing. Even Mary Jo in the dvd intro said they probably shouldn’t have done it.

    But they went ahead and did it anyway, because…….the Golden Turkey Awards told them to.

       0 likes

  48. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    I’m still not sure what Hal’s eagerness to help her regain her sight is supposed to mean. Is he subconsciously trying to sabotage the “relationship” or is he just presuming that she likes him so much that she won’t care about his appearance and is eager to experience that? Then again, it’s not like she couldn’t already have figured out that he was deformed by just, you know, TOUCHING his face. Oh well.

    And again “I’ll pay you tomorrow”? He REALLY thought that would work?! The screenwriter thought that we’d think that was a sensible thing for him to think would work?!

    Cornjob:
    The guy who invented chemical weapons thought he was doing the world a favor. Called it “a higher form of killing” or something like that. As if it was some kind of spiritual refinement to use gas as a murder weapon. Thanks.

    Well, it’s debatably better than receiving multiple bullet wounds and being left to spend hours bleeding out one’s life on the battlefield. Debatably.

    When the crossbow was invented, some people supposedly thought it was such a monstrous weapon that it would actually bring an end to war. Yeah, not so much.

       1 likes

  49. touches no one's life, then leaves says:

    I like shorts with narrators because that way I can just LISTEN from the next room and still get the gist. :-)

    BigZilla:
    Oh – and then there’s this exchange:

    “How much?”

    “A $1 & a quarter.”

    “Here’s a toe nail.”

    I think it might have been funnier as: “Here’s a toe nail. Keep the change.” :-)

    Sitting Duck:
    And I’m a bit surprised that there weren’t any remarks made about the rough handling of the chickens. Especially when you consider the riffs from Catching Trouble. Maybe Joel and/or Frank were the primary sources of those riffs.

    IMHO the situations aren’t all that similar. Chickens as we know them basically exist only because human beings raise them as food (that’s why one rarely sees chickens running free in the wild) which kind of sparks a “we in effect created them so we can do whatever the heck we want with them” point-of-view, which I’m sure some people would find convincing.

    Furthermore, IIRC they aren’t handled all THAT roughly — compared to how chickens are treated nowadays, they’re practically treated like royalty — and, as Tom points out, every last one of them is going to DIE (“to be killed”) anyway, so… Well, I dunno.

    “Catching Trouble,” on the other hand, involved actively seeking out and capturing wild animals who were just minding their own business. Chickens are part of “the human world” and wild animals aren’t. So there’s that, anyway.

       1 likes

  50. MegaWeapon says:

    The Chicken of Tomorrow is one of the most hilarious shorts that they ever did, but man oh man is this movie a dreary, sluggish, gloomy slog. I’ve only managed to power through it once.

       0 likes

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