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Sampo & Erhardt

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Episode guide: 703- Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell

Movie: (1988) In medieval times, a smirky hero goes on quest for some magical stones and battles an evil sorcerer.

First shown: 2/17/96
Opening: Crow has new hair–and calf and hinder implants
Intro: Pearl is sick, and M&tB’s fast food restaurant just makes things worse for Dr. F
Host segment 1: The bots put on a Ren Fest for Mike
Host segment 2: Mike just can’t get enough of the Ren Fest
Host segment 3: Crow reads a trashy romance novel to a medicated Pearl
End: Mike reads a letter while Servo forges the One Ring; meanwhile Dr. F. goes Hitchcocky
Stinger: “Potatoes are what we eat!”
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (180 votes, average: 4.62 out of 5)

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• You can read Kevin’s comments on this episode here.
References.
• This episode is available on Shout’s “Volume XXXV.”
• After two good-but-not-great installments, the season really picks up steam with this one. I love it! Zany movie, great riffing, funny segments, just lots of fun.
• Kevin has a few thoughts about Pearl’s endless cries of “Clayton!” I loved it. Great work by Mary Jo. Great work by Trace. Hilarious bit, but even funnier by the intrusion of M&tB doing an elaborate fast food bit that drives Dr. F to the brink.
• Note that Crow and Tom’s name tags say “Mary Jo” and “Paul.”
• Crow and Tom wear the goofy hats into the theater, but Mike soon removes them.
• “Aw, this is a sequel to somethin’!” cries Crow in dismay. Indeed it is. It is a sequel to “Deathstalker” (1983) and “Deathstalker II: Duel of the Titans” (1987). But wait! There’s more! It is also a prequel to Deathstalker IV: Match of the Titans (1990). Sheesh.
• M&tB take on Ren Fests once again (previously pummeled in episode 303- POD PEOPLE and also given the razz by Frank in an invention exchange in episode 402- THE GIANT GILA MONSTER, with his renaissance festival punching bags). But here they devote two entire segments to it.
• Then-current reference: Douglas Brackman, a character from the TV series “L.A. Law” played by Alan Rachins.
• The bots mention Edgar Bronfman a guy who was looming large in BBI’s life at the time: he was at the heart of a series of big media deals that were causing various companies that were paying BBI to repeatedly change hands, causing them to have a constantly changing series of corporate overlords.
• The line “I dreamed a gold man was reading to me from a dirty book” will live forever in the hearts of MSTies.
• When, toward the end of the movie, they yell “Sampo! Sampo!” I assume they are talking about me. You are invited to think so, too.
• I hadn’t noticed before that this episode has an instance of “I thought you were Dale.”
• Callback: “Mr B…Natural!”
• Being a LOTR buff makes this episode extra fun (and remember that this was still years before the popular movies came out, and LOTR was still the province of uber-nerds). We hear Tolkien proper nouns like Saruman, Gandalf, Radagast, Khazad-dum and Nazgul. There’s even a segment in which Tom tries to forge The One Ring (and apparently succeeds – good for him!). I know that Paul was a LOTR fan (when Erhardt and I visited BBI just before the beginning of season eight the topic somehow came around to Tolkien and he admitted to being a fan and even used the phrase “ash nazg gimbatul,” which caused much derisive snickering among his cohorts).
• The final bit with the glass of milk is a reference to Hitchcock movie “Suspicion.”
• The cast and crew round-up has only one entry this week: Miguel Angel Fuentes is also in “The Pumaman.”
• CreditsWatch: Host segments directed by Trace Beaulieu. She was credited as a “prop assistant” in episode 701 (both versions) but then was not in the credits for 702. But in this one, Beth “Beez” McKeever returns as “Prop assistant/Buyer.” Ben Mooers begins a four-episode stint as an intern, apparently replacing Beez.
• Fave riff: “Guess what I’ve been doing!” Honorable mention: “I put the .. beats … in my own … script and I’m sticking … with them!” and “That was the name of the last guy!”

161 Replies to “Episode guide: 703- Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell”

  1. MikeK says:

    “I want to put you in fur.”

    “Guess what I’ve been doing!”

    One of my favorites. I love how Thom Christopher fully embraces his role of the chiffon-wearing Troxartis. He’s such a fun villain.

    The bed-ridden Pearl is so funny and obnoxious. I enjoy the host segment where Crow reads to her from Love’s Sweet Throbbing Gondola. “A small gold man was reading to me from a dirty book.”

       2 likes

  2. Ray Dunakin says:

    I love this episode. The movie is stupid and cheap and full of goofy, scenery-chewing performances, so there’s a lot of good riffing material.

    As a bonus, it also has Terri Treas, who is gorgeous and has more acting talent than everyone else in the movie combined. And it’s nice to see her with hair instead of an alien chrome dome. (She used to be on “Alien Nation”.)

       1 likes

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

    MikeK:
    “A small gold man was reading to me from a dirty book.”

    Kind of odd (well, to me, anyway) how she went from considering Crow a “man” to (in the SF Channel years) calling him and Servo “tinkertoys” and “chattering objects” and so on. Oh well.

    And why is sex considered “dirty” anyway? What kind of message does that send? Oh, again, well.

       1 likes

  4. Mr. Krasker says:

    MikeK:
    “I want to put you in fur.”

    “Guess what I’ve been doing!”

    One of my favorites.I love how Thom Christopher fully embraces his role of the chiffon-wearing Troxartis.He’s such a fun villain.

    The bed-ridden Pearl is so funny and obnoxious.I enjoy the host segment where Crow reads to her from Love’s Sweet Throbbing Gondola.“A small gold man was reading to me from a dirty book.”

    I believe you mean Thom Thristopher!

       1 likes

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

    Sitting Duck:
    Deathstalker and the Warriors from Hell fails the Bechdel Test.
    Hard to look menacing when you’re dressed like Maude.

    Who doesn’t find Bea Arthur menacing?

       2 likes

  6. Ray Dunakin says:

    On riff that always cracks me up is “I have a cat poster.” It so perfectly fits the princess’ vapid expression.

       2 likes

  7. mando3b says:

    “Ah knew thou wouldst come around!”

    One of my top 10 episodes. A veritable smorgasbord of A-level riffing and just plain wackiness. It was as if the producers set out to make the perfect MST3K film. Inspired by this post, I watched it just last night!

    “Do those flap or are they just for decoration?”
    “Okay, if you’re done debasing the human race could we get on with the film?”
    “His area mocks us!”
    And so on . . .

       0 likes

  8. Ray Dunakin says:

    This movie is so cheap, they weren’t even willing to pay for a stock sound of a hawk’s cry. Instead they used a synthesizer in a laughable attempt to mimic the sound of a hawk. But at least this gave us some good riffs:

    “So the hawk has a lavalier mic and he runs it through a grunge box before sending it to the pre-amp?”

    “It’s a lot of things, but it’s not a bird sound.”

    “I just heard a bird meow!”

       1 likes

  9. Ray Dunakin says:

    I think the most ridiculous thing about this movie is the lead actor. He’s not at all believable as a sword-and-sorcery hero. He looks and sounds like he belongs at a NASCAR race.

       0 likes

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

    Ray Dunakin:

    Terri Treas, who…has more acting talent than everyone else in the movie combined

    And I’m a nicer guy than Stalin…

       1 likes

  11. Htom Sirveaux says:

    One of my favorite go-to episodes. I have seen this episode numerous times and “I have a cat poster” is still a riff that makes me laugh a lot every time I hear it.
    It is definitely my favorite episode from Season 7.

       0 likes

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