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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: 405- Being from Another Planet

Movie: (1982) Re-edit of a movie called “Time Walker.” A mummy found in King Tut’s tomb is x-rayed by a university team. This awakens the mummy, and it goes on a killing spree.

First shown: 7/4/92
Opening: J&TB playing movie slogan 20 questions
Invention exchange: The Mads present their “Tragic Moments” figurines, while J&tB demonstrate their Jack Palance impersonation kit
Host segment 1:J&tB’s discussion of mummies leads to a discussion of Bill Mumy
Host segment 2: Crow and Tom are playing haunted house with Joel
Host segment 3: Joel’s rainy-day funsketch and the HFVS funtime holoclowns fail to cheer up Tom & Crow
End: The TV’s Frank shopping network has a great deal, Joel reads a letter, Dr. F invents the “die-master”
Stinger: The heartbreak of extraterrestrial psoriasis
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (188 votes, average: 4.11 out of 5)


• A middling-to-good episode for me. The movie itself is a bit easier to follow than, say, “City Limits,” but waiting for the mummy to actually DO something starts to get tiresome. On the other hand, the movie compensates with some unintentionally hilarious moments, notably the impromptu costume parade through campus (wtf?). The “oh Joel it’s scary in the basement” bit doesn’t wear well for me, but the riffing is generally pretty crisp and funny. Lots of memorable host segment stuff, too.
• Here are the slogans from the “20 questions” sketch that I was able to track down (and note that some of these are not exactly accurate, but are close approximations):
“Fueled by imagination” – “Radio Flyer” (1992)
“Be afraid. Be very afraid.” – “The Fly” (1986)
“The most exciting undersea odyssey ever filmed.” – “The Neptune Factor” (1973)
“100% pure adrenaline.” – “Point Break” (1991).
“It’s not only his nose that grows!” – “The Erotic Adventures of Pinocchio” (1971)
“This time, it’s personal.” – “Jaws: The Revenge” (1987)
“Dudley Moore juggles two women in an attempt to save his sanity” – “Micki & Maude” (1984)
“A sassy brassy musical humdinger.” – “Funny Lady” (1975)
The ones I can’t track down:
“A new high in adventure when they go thrill-deep in danger.”
“A bikini-clad romp through summer’s fun.”
“A shocking expose of souls in bondage.”
Anybody know any of these?
• Watch for the boom shadow on Frank’s face as Dr. F says “Clayton Stonewall Forrester.” They just keep going.
• Joel says “we’ve came up” and they just keep going.
• Dark and obscure riff: “Hey it’s Pete Duel” (Duel, Ben Murphy’s co-star in the western series “Alias Smith and Jones” killed himself on New Year’s Eve, 1971.)
• Callbacks: “Trumpy! You can do magic things!” (Pod People). Also: “Laurence, would you put that down please!” (Catalina Caper).
• For more on Bill Mumy, visit his site.
• Joel mentions Mumy’s early performance in the movie “Dear Bridget” and then mentions another movie where he played “a super-genius mathematician.” Sorry Joel, but you’re thinking of the same movie, “Dear Bridget.” By the way, the “Twilight Zone” episode Joel mentions (where he wishes people into the cornfield) is entitled “It’s a Good Life.” Mumy was also in a couple of other TZ eps.
• Joel and Tom are already in the theater after the first segment, still discussing Butch Patrick, when Crow joins them.
• Then-current reference: “Hey, Jim Fixx!” Also, mentions of Intellivision and the Michelangelo virus (completely forgot that one).
• At one point they call the massive pipes in the basement “Coppolla’s espresso machine.” When I think of somebody who would be rich and powerful enough to have such a massive device, director Francis Ford Coppolla is not the first person I think of. Bill Gates? Aaron Spelling? Sure. But not Francis. Was Francis maybe more notoriously rich and powerful then? I don’t recall.
• Joel makes a reference to the ’60s TV show “The Mod Squad.” Amusingly, he makes virtually the same riff in the first Cinematic Titanic episode, and then follows it with a plaintive “Oh, I’m old!” What a difference 15 years makes.
• Crow once again requests to be carried out of the theater. Joel once again declines.
• During the haunted house sketch, Joel got spaghetti in the jell-o. Bleh. (And my OCD rears its ugly head.)
• Also during the sketch, there is another mention of a “Mrs. Reedy,” previously mentioned in during the “Posture Pals” short.
• Tom explains a riff again: After singing “Michael Goldstein! Michael Goldstein! What a beautiful name!” he adds: “Funny Girl!”
• I think Crow attempts a Dr. Hibberd (from “The Simpsons”) impression but he sounds more like Kingfish of “Amos and Andy.”
• “Sarah …” “Jockman!” Somebody’s an Allan Sherman fan.
• This episode begins our two-part encounter with the impossibly creepy holo-clowns. That’s Mike and Paul, of course, and this is Paul’s first on-screen appearance.
• Gypsy’s still wearing black “lipstick” and it doesn’t look very well applied.
• I love all the Ludlum titles, like “The Mingmang Pa-ting-ting” A full list is in Ward E.
• Nick Gilder’s “Hot Child in the City” is referenced for the second week in a row.
• My copy of this episode is from a showing on or very near Super Bowl Sunday 1996 (the Cowboys beat the Steelers at Sun Devil Stadium in Tempe, Ariz.). It has bumpers that feature Dom Irrera, a comedian I always liked, somewhat desperately wandering around the periphery of the stadium looking for somebody to interview or something to film. Kind of sad.
• At one point, during a shot of Shari Belafonte, Joel says “Oh my God! I’ll never be in another film!” Not true, Joel. Shari has done three movies since “Time Walker” (and many many TV shows and TV movies).
• The bit in which Tom insists this is the worst movie they’ve ever done is in Ward E. Oh and, Tom is entitled to his opinion, of course, but so am I, and no way is this movie worse than most of the movies named. It’s a funny trip down memory lane, though.
• The final segment brings back the notion of the “button that brings down the SOL,” which we heard about a couple of times in season two.
• Firesign Theatre reference: “…and the snake knives, Mrs. Presky!”
• Cast and crew roundup: assistant art director Pamela Warner was an art director for “Alien from L.A.” Sound mixer Mark Ulano also worked on “City Limits” and later won an Oscar for “Titanic.” Music by score composer Richard H. Band can also be heard in “Robot Holocaust” and “Laserblast.” In front of the camera, Robert Random was also in “Village of the Giants,” Austin Stoker was also in “Riding with Death” and so, of course, was Ben Murphy.
• Fave riff: “Sizzler! Heeheeheehee!” Honorable mentions: “Caution: snow angels in progress.” “And if you do find something, stay there.”

101 Replies to “Episode Guide: 405- Being from Another Planet”

  1. GizmonicTemp says:

    This movie had 755 riffs over 1:13:21 of movie time for an average of 10.293 riffs per minute (RPMs). That ranks #24 all-time.

    This is also one of my favorite episodes. “Welcome to the annunciation seminar.”


  2. Brandon says:

    HAHA Sampo, you have OCD? Heehee. Don’t worry, I have ADD.


  3. jason davis says:

    i actually saw this film in the 80’s before they did it on mst3k. i think this is a great episode. i do like them acting all scared from the mummy point of view cam.


  4. RCFagnan says:

    I love the “Tragic Moments” figurines the mads come up with. My all time favorite invention exchange. Favorite riff this episode: the thieving lab assistant sees the gems in the x-rays and Crow says “What has it got in its pocketses, gollum gollum.” Just an opinion, but I think trace did that voice better than the Andy Sirkis (who sounded like one of the Muppet Babies!)


  5. GizmonicTemp says:

    Oh, I forgot to mention that the “Tragic Moments Figurinea” and Dr. F and Frank’s delivery of such is the best invention and quite possibly one of the funniest moments of the series. I love that continued “home shopping” motif in the final host segment. Frank: “…kissing my back pain goodbye.” Tom: “Ha ha- kill him!”


  6. Radioman970 says:

    One of the few I got recorded before CC dropped the show. I’ve watched and enjoyed it many many many times. The clowns are freaking great!


  7. Diamond Joe says:

    I wouldn’t call the Intellivision riff a “dated reference.” That implies it was a contemporary reference in 1992, whereas it’s more of an early-’80s reference.


  8. EpcotServo says:

    I would agree on that, ok to good. Kinda’ depends on how I’m feeling when I watch it. Favorite two riffs are both from “In Search Of”, and both by Tom….

    “Did ancient astronauts leave this rock here?”


    “Did ancient astronauts wear Lee press on nails?”


  9. skenderberg says:

    A very solid middle of the road episode with a halfway-decent bad movie. The mummy manages to move at a decent pace, but he still doesn’t accomplish much. Also, in the early eighties, professors apparently could openly shtoink their female students consequence-free.

    Favorite Comment: Tom, re: the heavy breathing, “Here comes that evil asthmatic.”

    Favorite Host Segment: The invention exchange, including the Tragic Moments figurines (my favorite: Sparky’s Last Ruff) and the Jack Palance Impersonator (“I purchased a new shovel today”).

    My full review of the episode can be found here.


  10. An episode I found to be a little underrated personally.

    As for the Coppola riff, I’ve just finished reading Easy Riders, Raging Bulls and although Coppola claims it’s mainly all false he’s painted as a man who really went out of his way to have the finest things. Basically it wasn’t just his movie productions that hemorrhaged money.


  11. Tork_110 says:

    My favorite part is the scene where something happens and an Atari 800 computer (or something similar) starts flashing. I know the monitor is trying to warn everybody that the mummy has just done something really bad, but it looks like someone is about to start a game of Miner 2049er.

    It’s funny watching this episode after Riding With Death. I can’t see Ben Murphy as anything but the laid-back seventies guy that Mike and the bots were presenting him as.

    This episode is interesting in that it’s the closest the series ever got to slasher films, unless you count Pod People which was another dead teenagers film.


  12. lpydmblb says:

    Darn, Diamond Joe made my comment about the dated reference, except I was going to say Jim Fixx.

    I do like this episode, although I am sorry to say that I rented it under the title “Time Rider” long long ago. James Karen always entertains, whether intentionally or not, plus the movie just flat out hopes that its audience will project onto its characters a level of competence they just do not have.

    Favorite line: “I just don’t want to look like Jackson Browne anymore!” And really, who would?


  13. satanicsprite says:

    I always thought the Coppola reference was partly because he is Italian?


  14. Joel Lillo says:

    Immediately following the original airing of this episode, there was a commercial for the first MST3K Alive show, the one where they riffed on World Without End (Amen). I went to the afternoon show the next Saturday. Good times!


  15. Ben Murphy says:

    Joel: Ahhhh, two scoops of raisins my asssss…..

    Leaves me laughing on the floor every time.


  16. Sean74 says:

    This is a fav of mine from start to finish. The invention exchanges are a riot, the movie provides plenty of fodor for J&TB to riff on, and there’s even a stinger with a guy yelling while his hand is melting away! I love the part where they name off all the movies they’ve watched before, with Servo saying “Worse!!” to every one of them…except “The Castle of Fu Manchu”, which was like getting a root canal AND a rectal examine all at once! The jokes themselves are solid, even sharp, through the opening credits where they goof on names: “James Karen, he’s got an identity problem” to the twit assistant that over-annouciates every line. Episodes like this are what makes this season of MST so good!


  17. fishbulb says:

    I also agree that the “Tragic Moments” invention exchange is one of the funniest moments of the entire series.


  18. Joel Kazoo says:

    Remember watching this with my sister and her getting genuinely freaked out by the flick! A great episode host-segment wise. Love the titles for the unshown Tragic Moments figures:
    “He Raises A Hand In Anger” (personal fave)
    “World’s Deadest Grandma”
    “Dad’s Liquid Breakfast”
    and, of course
    “Who’s That With Mom?”
    The shown figurines look like they were pre-varnished (or whatever you call it) for the kiln, but they ran out of time before they could do it. Any thoughts?


  19. Yeah I don’t see those (Jim Fixx etc) as dated what so ever… and hell if the youngins don’t get it, then think of them as “esoteric references”. Remeber Joel’s statement that “the right people will get it”, and when they do they will smile and feel smart. :wink:

    This was never one of my favorite episodes, but I did love Joel’s “I love baby talk” line


  20. Bob says:

    My favorite riff is said excitedly and with slight hesitation. It is done this way so that at first it appears the comment will refer to something about which someone watching the film would actually care. It regards the prop with the crystals on it being assembled by the “mummy” throughout the film. The delivery of the line is what makes it soooo funny:
    “It’s…that thing that’s driving the plot to nowhere!”

    Another favorite joke for me is the “guaca-mummy” comment referring to the deadly green mold when it is shown in the sarcophagus early in the film.

    There are also many great comments during some of the scenes between Ben Murphy and his female teaching assistant. I love this episode!


  21. Uranium - 235 says:

    “Honk if you hate this film!”


  22. Spector says:

    A very good episode, lags a bit in spots but still entertaining. Many of the previous commentators have already noted my favorite riffs and bits in this episode, but one of my favorites is the kid who looks like hockey great Wayne Gretzky makes a lame joke, gets booed and pelted with beer cans, and Crow shoots back, “Stick to hockey, Wayne!” Laugh my ass at that one every time!


  23. I wish I could buy REAL “Tragic Moments” statues! They’re so much better than those insipid “Precious Moments” ones that make me want to yark.

    The title for this movie reads like half a sentence and you’re supposed to fill in the blank. “Being from another planet, these people don’t know how to make a good movie.” or “Being from another planet, they’ll probably get mugged.” Go ahead, try it!


  24. RLD says:

    The “sassy, brassy…” comment is from The Producers (I think).


  25. RockyJones says:

    Love the host segments, and the riffing is fairly solid, but the snail’s pace of the movie makes it feel as though it’s about five hours long…it seems to go on FOREVER. It’s also got sort of a “made-for-t.v.” feel to it. (Maybe because it stars Ben Murphy)

    fave riff: “Dear Aunt Nefertiti…thanks for the socks?!”


  26. Dan in WI says:

    “Frank, let’s pretend I hurt you and move on.” Boy it sure isn’t like Dr. F to only pretend to hurt Frank. Usually he takes great joy in actually hurting Frank.

    Here we have the first great invention exchange of season 4. The Tragic Moments figurines are a great blend of delightful and horrifying. Somebody sure put a lot of time and care into those props. They really do look convincingly good. I envy whoever got those in the eBay auctions.

    Frank’s oversold “evil” laugh just before movie sign was different. It wasn’t your stereotypical evil laugh.

    Well the anti NBC Mystery Movie behavior modification worked! The movie’s first shot after the credits features a lamp swinging back and forth in a dark tomb. While I waited, the expected riff never materialized. Of course later on they crack a little bit and call it the CBS Mystery Movie.

    The TV’s Frank Shopping Network to me felt like an attempt to recapture of the magic of the Phantom Creeps Infomercial from #203 Jungle Goddess. It is cute and Frank as usual sells his part. But overall it falls short.

    Favorite Riffs:
    Crow “Well there’s no emotional attachment to me. I can die.”

    Tom: “She missed the pool. That’s going to affect her score.”


  27. Stressfactor says:

    There aren’t too many MST3K-ed movies that I remember seeing as a child (usually on good old KPLR) but this is one of them.

    Considering that FVI seems to have gotten hold of it and done their usual credit hatchet job sometime around 1991 I must have seen it under it’s former title of “Time walker”.

    I remember rather disliking it in my youth — not because it was scary but rather because, to my kiddie mind, it didn’t make any sense!!!! I couldn’t follow the plot and I recall thinking the ending was a let-down and I also recall thinking it kind of… cheap… in a bad way.

    As a result I was actually not enthused about watching this one even for the first time with the MST3K treatment. So I didn’t actually force myself to sit down and start watching it until last night.

    The verdict?

    I’ll go with Sampo on this one — it was good but not great. The riffing got chuckles out of me but very few real laughs. It definitely made the movie bearable so that was something of a Herculean task accomplished right there. I also found that, watching it as an adult the plot started to make more sense (not that it was GOOD mind you) but I found that pretty much all the characters are either unbelievably dumb or well, modesty prevents me from using the word I would use to describe most of these jerks.

    But on the other hand, hey, look we get an African American guy in a horror movie and he DOESN’T die! Horror movie cliche busted!


  28. Laura says:

    My take:

    I did not have Comedy Central during this time. When I finally got around to seeing NEW MST3K, my first exposure to Ben Murphy was “Riding with Death”. You can imagine my shock and horror when I saw his name in the opening credits of this experiment.

    I love the “Tragic Moments” figurines. Too bad you really can’t get them. I’d actually give those out as Christmas presents. ;-) The Jack Palance breather masks makes J&TB sound more like Darth Vader with a sore throat than Jack Palance. I’m going to watch this again tonight to give a better review.


  29. Cubby says:

    A quick stroll through teh googel gave me this:

    “A classy, brassy, sassy musical humdinger” – Gene Shalit, NBC-TV
    It was a the top of an ad for Funny Lady in the Miami News, 1975


  30. Tom Carberry says:

    Time Walker (Being From Another Planet) was shot in and around Cal State University, Northridge in 1982. “This toxic waste dump of a movie” starred Ben Murphy (Jones of Alias Smith and Jones, who was selected for AS&J because of his strong resemblance to Paul Newman—remember Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid?) This movie was considered the worse movie they ever did [up until that time] with the exception of Castle of Fu Manchu—which “was just as bad.”

    The Tragic Moment Figurines was a brilliant product line and Dr. F and TV’s Frank Home Shopping Network presentation is amongst their very best [IMHO]. They included:

    • Sparky’s Last Romp—which depicts little Billy’s first hard lesson in life, plus what happens when a dog teases a cow way past the breaking point.
    • By the Fire’s Glow.
    • I’ll Get It [the flagship of the collection], and it depicts what should have been a really fun game of kickball gone tragically wrong.
    • He Raises a Hand in Anger.
    • World’s Deadest Grandma.
    • Dad’s Liquid Breakfast.
    • Who’s that with Mom [of which a 1987 copy recently sold for $400].

    Favorite Lines:
    Indy, throw me the whip…throw me the Idol.
    Oops! Stepped in a Tut pile… Oh, there’s Pete Duel.
    I’m Leonard Nimoy…in Search of My Career.
    Guests of King Tut stay at the California Institute of the Sciences [Note: the building shown is the Oviatt Library at CSUN]
    Dear Aunt Nefertiti, thanks for the socks.
    Oh, teacher petting, extra credit. Please honey, not while I’m decoupaging.
    Hey, was I a Smith or Jones, I can’t remember, it’s been so long? [Note: he was Jones]
    Wally Shawn. I pity the dirt that gets in my way. I’m having dinner with Andre later.
    [of Ben Murphy, Austin Stoker, and Antoinette Bower walking down the hospital corridor] Mod Squad Reunion–Pete, Linc, Julie.
    Bad Movie…you’re soaking in it.
    It’s a honey glazed hand.
    For today’s Crazy Call, we’re gonna call Ben Murphy and tell him we have a good part for him.
    [at the King Tut Party] There spending $8000 a year for this. To them it’s not tuition, it’s a cover charge.
    Honk if you hate this movie.
    Here at DeVry you can work on computers from 1978.
    Gee, Ben, put some pants on.
    Not the deep end Susie…here’s Suzie Louganis off the 10 meter…looks like a gainer…oh she missed the pool and that will affect her score.
    Turns out the mummy is a lame styrofoam headed alien.
    Folks, I apologize, I had no control over the content of this film.
    Did ancient astronauts wear Lee Press-on nails?


  31. Fred Burroughs says:

    I think Tom does the best Jack Palance of the three. I saw this for the first time this year (so that’s where the holo-clowns come from!) and it was hard to get through, such a slow pace. I laughed out loud every time they switched back to the green “mummy-cam” because it became clear after the 8th time that NOTHING WAS GOING TO HAPPEN and it was just a little more padding in the same boiler-room basement. Oh, sorry it was a reactor; one with 1 employee (a janitor) and one grad student who monitors it on his Apple II computer. But I loved the overt display of fear by the bots, don’t know if it’s sincere, or ironic, or even sarcastic, but it was great use of ‘dead time’ in the movie. Which movie was so bad the bots had to be corralled back into their seats one by one? The host segments are all A+ classics.

    fave moment: the double punch line to the ‘haunted house’:
    CROW: “We couldn’t find a good substitute, so we just used a real human brain.”
    JOEL: “Well, that’s a coincidence, because I LOVE REAL BRAIN.” (eats brain.)


  32. 24HourWideAwakeNightmare says:

    Love this one, no matter what any grousing bots may think. “Quick Suzy, run down a completely different hall!
    “That one goes there…idiot.”

    Have fond memories of my Mom spending endless hours watching QVC or HSN, too. First TV based shopping, now online, next is Minority Report style interactive ads…yrkk.

    “A new high in adventure when they go thrill-deep in danger” in toto seems to be unique to MST3K. Same with last half of this sentence, but the first half has some alternates. For instance, some 1976 news clipping promises “A new high in adventure by the author of JAWS.” Or a travel website entices you to “Set yourself for a new “high” in adventure and explore the island of Jamaica.” Get it? “High”? Get it?


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

    Dr. F and Frank may have been ahead of their time…

    #7: Sometimes I wonder how it would work if the riffers restricted themselves ONLY to references that existed at the time the film to be riffed was released (so in this instance, no riffs about anyone/anything that debuted/occurred/etc past 1982). Could they pull it off?

    #14: Is the riffed World Without End available anywhere? If not, WTH?


  34. Creeping Terror says:

    This episode is–by far–the weakest of Season 4. None of the brilliance that the Brains had displayed in “Teenagers from Outer Space” is here. I chuckled a few times (such as at “Honk if you hate this movie”), but there’s nothing that makes me laugh out loud.

    Ben Murphy’s not believable as a college professor (which I’m qualified to judge because I am one), but it’s nice to see that he had aged well since “Riding with Death.” By the way, don’t become a prof because of the fringe benefits with the members of the opposite sex. At my university, tenure doesn’t protect you from that. (Thank goodness.)

    The movie’s stupid and Film Ventures Int (with the re-release) gave away the premise/surprise with the new title “Being from Another Planet.” The 1st host segment (Bill Mumy) is one of these Hey-let’s-talk-about-1960’s-TV-because-that’s-what-Frank-and-Joel-like skits. :-P It’s stupid, rambling, and not funny at all.

    The episode’s only saving grace is the Tragic Moment Figurines (with “World’s Deadest Grandma” being the winner). Besides that, it’s just as boring as some of the worst Season 1 outings.


  35. dsman71 says:

    Joels hair grew out to its max this time around as the next episode he changed his hair to where he really parted it over ..I think somewhere in the next few episodes he gets a new jumpsuit as well where it goes only to his knees
    The movie itself has a minor cult following & was on a ShoutFactory set with Lady Frankenstein and others but it really isnt that good
    Tom Servo is wrong, this isnt or wasnt the worst…
    Fu Manchu, Cave Dwellers were pretty bad and well they were so bad they were still bad ( as opposed to good)
    Joels Hair
    Joels Knees
    Time Walker Being From Another Planet – pick your title, it still sucks
    Therapy time !!


  36. Droppo says:

    I gave it 4 stars. Love the episode, but, it just misses being in the pantheon of all-time greats.

    The final scene is up there with the funniest in any movie they’ve ever riffed on. And I love the callback that happens later in the season.

    I’m also a sucker for just about any 80’s era episode. The sad toga party exemplifies this movie for me.

    If I’m keeping score for the season so far, here are Droppo’s official rankings:

    Space Travelers – 5 stars.

    Giant Gila Monster – 4 stars. Really could be 5. If halves were allowed, I’d say 4.5.

    City Limits – 3 stars.

    Being From Another Planet – 4 stars


  37. Creepygirl says:

    A middle-of-the-road episode for me. I hav’nt seen this one in a long time and truly forgot how the movie actually ended. So that fact alone kept me interested on the movie side. The riffing was good and I pretty much forgot the host segments too that I found all to be good. I tend to stay away from episodes that may be released by SHOUT! in the future but this one was worth a rewatch for this weeks episode guide discussion.

    My copy is very dark and the movies’ sound is really bad. I know the movie is already shot dark but the scene when the kid is thrown against the wall by the Mummy is pitch black. I couldn’t see a thing. Here’s hoping we do see this released by SHOUT! sometime soon.

    All and all this is a good experiment and I’ll give it 3 stars.


  38. Cheapskate Crow says:

    4 stars for me (3.5 stars + .5 stars for featuring an Atari 800, my favorite home computer of the ’80s). Hearing the LOTR riff reminded me of the time when LOTR was still a nerd thing and not the marketing/film behemoth it is today. I don’t know why the Brains were so hard on Bill Mumy, the year after this episode he would start his prominent role in Babylon 5, where he was very good IMHO. Good to hear musical references to the Cars (fitting in an ’80s movie) and I really have to disagree with Tom Servo, this is nowhere near the worst movie they have done. I think Monster a Go Go was the worst movie ever done and by a fair margin.


  39. revlillo says:


    World Without End (Aaaaaaaa-men!) has not been released except for a few brief snippets on the scrapbook tape. (If you don’t have one, get one!) I think that movie would be a great one for CT to do sometime in the future.


  40. Dark Grandma of Death says:

    Silver Buttons @23, I like your term for the only appropriate Precious Moments response. They certainly make me want to yark! I worked for a time in a little store that sold lots of kitschy things, but thankfully, no Precious Moments tripe. People used to come in all the time, looking for them, and I remember wishing we had the Tragic Moments figures to offer them instead. Just once I would have loved to have shocked some sweet little old lady by telling her, “Oh, we don’t have those, but have you seen these? Isn’t ‘World’s Deadest Grandma’ cute? Oh, how about ‘I’ll Get It’?” If only….

    Usually I’m all about the movie, and my love of an episode is based solely on that, but this is an episode that, for me, is entirely made by the host segments. I enjoyed them all, even the pointless Billy Mumy discussion and Frank and the infomercial. The movie itself…well, it had its moments, some fine riffing, but I wouldn’t like the ep as much if it weren’t for the interstices.


  41. dad1153 says:

    Couple of things to start. For the fifth time this season the name for Dr. Clayton Forrester is mispelled in the credits as ‘Forrestor.’ Was this on purpose or just an ongoing post-production ‘poopie’ that nobody noticed because they recycled credits from one show to the next? Second, at 1:20:25 of my commercial-free DVD copy (from Cheepins) right before the girl in the shower collapses on the guy’s arms, I swear there is the faint outline of an areola from the actress’ right breast visible. The video is average-to-low quality though, so I can’t be sure. If anybody wants to check this out, Zapruta-style (a frame at a time), be my guest. :yawn:

    I remember seeing the newspaper ads for “Time Walker” when I was 10 years old back in 1983 during its run in foreign lands (El Salvador actually). I also remember seeing the “MST3K” version at least once back in 1995-96 realizing it was the same movie advertised in my homeland back in ’83. Since I haven’t seen it in at least 15 years “Being From Another Planet” really holds up well now as an “MST3K” experiment (laughed a lot), but that’s because the excellent host segments (all of them, not a single dog in this one) and a handful of golden riffs (‘there’s a steadycam loose in the boiler room!’ :rotfl: ) prop-up an otherwise unremarkable movie with mostly OK riffs (the bots really overdo the ‘scary’ green-tinted steadycam shots, so much so that toward the end they pretty much ignore them).

    “BFAP” is like a blender of early-80’s pop culture references: archeology/Egyptian motiffs from “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” fantastic otherwordly beings from “E.T.” (even though the ‘being’ here looks more like one of the pirates in John Carpenter’s “The Fog”), gory deaths of young people from slasher flicks (a lot of them for being naughty), etc. The filmmakers’ biggest sin though is how boring the flick is when it has so many things it could do or show differently based on the movies it rips off rather than the same old things (peeping POV around lovers and naked women in showers :struggle:, lonely woman in empty building running for her life, etc.). Whether because it had no budget or because Film Ventures/Best Brains edited it for TV, “BFAP” is mostly dull, incompetent filmmaking. Why, for God’s sake, was the student punk that X-rayed the sarcophagus and stole/spread around the crystals not killed by the alien? His death would have been one of the few cheerful moments the flick would have earned. Seeing this punk’s deception shoved in his face (then forgiven with an arm on his shoulder) by Ben Murphy? What kind of lame payoff is that??!! :pray: Why don’t the U President putting finding the mummy ahead of anybody’s safety or his trigger-happy rent-a-cop guard pay for being selfish? The last couple of minutes of “BFAP” are actually so bad that, if you think about them (why did the cop shoot? why did the professor get hit when the guard was aiming at least 45 degrees away from where he was shot? where did the injured professor and the alien go? why did that a**hole assistant to the college president dash and grab that thing that burned his hand?), you would also be hot under the collar like Tom was and call this worse than any other experiment you’d been subjected to except for “Fu Manchu” :smug: If Servo had only known “Manos” and “Monster A-Go Go” were a-coming. :devil:

    Since I’ve seen “Riding with Death” many more times than “BFAP” I couldn’t help but throw in some ‘I’m Ben Murphy’ and ‘at my Murphiest’ riffs of my own during Murphy’s handful of scenes. He, like everyone else in the cast (except for gorgeous Nina Axelrod and a young Shari Belafonte :inlove: ), is easily outclassed by a non-descriptive thing covered in bandages… enough said. Joel and the bots never get into a rhythm with their riffs except for aforementioned (and overdone) ‘scary’ green-tinted steadycam shots (i.e. filler). The result is an uneven riffing patterns filled with some decent lines (-when Shari and Ben are at the radio station – ‘Wow, hot show’) and some well-timed killer riffs (‘he’s at the airport’ as the alien scoots away in an unseen segueway-type device… this one made me laugh so hard!) but often just lots of average-to-forgettable riffs (the “Raiders” ‘throw me the idol’ quips were weak sauce, I expect much better and creative jokes from the Brains). Thank God (if he/she/it exists) the host segments are all winners. Crow’s ‘ARRRRGHHHHH’ after Joel and Servo walk away talking about Butch Patrick (so sue me, I love “Lidsville”) just kills me. The ‘Tragic Moments’ figurines invention exchange and haunted house host segment (with a twist!) achieve the perfect balance of hilarious cute and dark. Even the odd stuff like the Jack Palance masks (none of them sound close to Palance, IMO) and the “Pod People”-inspired freak-out achieve a weird WTF-ness that leads into the still-funny Frank Shopping Network finale that hints, however infrequently the Brains did on the show, that J&TB’s wanted to escape the SOL and weren’t passively taking the abuse. This became more visible during the Mike years, but it’s still kind-of startling to see host segments where Joel actively tries to get back to Earth.

    So, THREE-AND-A-HALF STARS (out of five) for “Being From Another Planet.” With lesser host segments this could have easily ended up a three or two-and-a-half star experiment. MEMORABLE RIFF: ‘Looks like ABBA in college.’ :musicnote:


  42. ServoTron3000 says:

    Tom: OK, I’ll grant you ‘Castle of Fu Manchu’ was just as bad, but we’ve never done a worse film!


  43. JLH says:

    The letter at the end was by a kid named Josh King. They don’t mention it, but he lived at the time at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base in Cuba. How do I know? Because I lived there too, and I went to school with Josh’s sister (he was just a little older than us). I never met him, but my mind was blown when his letter was read. What’s kind of sad, for me, is according to his letter, he started watching the show in August 91. I started in April 91 (the base’s cable company switched from HA! at that time, and by the way, only aired the West Coast Feed, meaning the times on the commercials were always wrong for us. Stayed that way until the week after season 4 ended in Feb 93). Unfortunately, being a kid of 11 I was too shy to send in a letter, and didn’t do so until after season 6. Had I done so I would’ve had an info club number under a thousand (judging by Josh’s number, which is stated to be 1000-something), instead of in the 56,000s.


  44. robot rump! says:

    the Tragic Moments figurines are good, very good. but for me the cholester-do-all from ‘the Painted Hills’ is the darkest by far and my favorite btw. i’ve only seen this episode twice and it never really jazzed me as far as the season 4s go.


  45. fish eye no miko says:

    Like others have said, “Tragic Moments Figurines” is one of my fave invention exchanges.
    This movie also brings us, “Jim Henson’s Babies Babies!” which always cracks me up.


  46. Mr. B(ob) says:

    “It’s that thing that’s driving the plot to nowhere!” Oh how I enjoy this episode. So many great riffs and there’s nothing quite as fun as cheap science fiction or fantasy for MST3K. “Guacamummy” became instantly stuck in my head after viewing this when it first aired. With host segments that are both playful and really funny, this episode has more laughs than the number of years the alien supposedly spent “sleeping” in Egypt. I really hope we get this one on DVD from Shout! in the near future.


  47. schippers says:

    I haven’t seen this one recently, but the last time I did, I said, “Hey, that college administrator guy who gets his hand covered in alien schmutz is the laughably awful leading man from Rattlers!” I think I’m right about that. Anyway, if I am, he is terrible in Rattlers, and equally so in this movie.

    Seems like they let Ben Murphy off pretty lightly, what with the total drubbing they gave him in Riding with Death.


  48. Captain Cab says:

    This is one of my favorite episodes ever. The college campus setting, cheesy alien/mummy and Ben Murphy as usual desperately trying to be cool all add up to a fun episode. As a die hard Nintendo fan, it also gets a high mark from me for including a Metroid reference. :) Also, I dunno why, maybe it’s because I was born in ’79 but movies made in the ’70s and ’80s make for more enjoyable episodes IMHO. Hopefully Shout will get the rights to this one of these days.


  49. Stressfactor says:

    It had occured to me that when Servo says it’s the worst movie they’d ever done perhaps this is Kevin speaking for all the guys who were in the writing room.

    When I started writing this one up for my episode journal I realized just how many “dead spots” there are in the script and how often the guys go back to the same well to cover them (for example: the bots acting scared at the green filtered mummy POV shots). So maybe, like with “Castle of Fu Manchu” this one proved to be a boring slog for the writing team and this was their statement on it.

    And Re: the “Tragic Moments Figurines” — I really get the dark humor behind them but I recently became a dog owner for the first time so the first figurine with the little boy holding the dead dog? Yeah, that one is kind of just past the edge for me.


  50. Meadows says:

    My take on the Coppola riff was just that he’s not only rich, but Italian.


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