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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: 802- The Leech Woman

Movie: (1960) An aging woman travels to Africa to gain the secret to renewed (albeit temporary) youth. But murder is part of the recipe.

First shown: 2/8/97
Opening: Crow deals with the SOL’s prairie dog problem
Intro: The Apes discover that devolution can be fun
Host segment 1: The nanites are on strike
Host segment 2: Pearl is forced to give some laws, and asks M&TB for suggestions — and Tom has some
Host segment 3: Crow and Tom have a plan to get Mike’s pineal juices
End: Tom’s “Beverly Hillbillies” sketch ends in chaos, but the Apes are oh-so-civilized again
Stinger: The wily cop outwits his suspect
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (232 votes, average: 4.39 out of 5)


• The last time through, I put this one in the good-not-great category, but, again, I guess I was in the right frame of mind for this — I laughed a LOT this time. Maybe it’s because you can really see them settling in and really feel them enjoying themselves.
• Read Kevin’s take on this episode here.
• This episode is included in “Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: The 25th Anniversary Edition, (aka Vol. XXVIII).”
• Crow still cannot remember Mike. Not too much longer for that.
• Bill’s version of Crow’s voice is still all over the map in this one, but for the first time we begin to hear little snippets of the voice we would soon get to know.
• Cute prairie dog in the opening!
• Kevin is particularly funny in the intro. His mannerisms and his delivery are great.
• The “original Ray Kroc” was a popular piece of Universal set decoration — it was also on Exeter’s office wall in “This Island Earth.”
• Trivia: The African wildlife scenes were reused footage from Universal’s 1954 movie “Tanganyika.”
• Segment one is more clever than funny, but it’s such a change from the sort of host segment we used to get in the CC days that it’s kind of mesmerizing. The voices are Kevin and Paul as Ned and Wade again, along with Mary Jo as Jody.
• Kevin sings a little Zappa, when the soundtrack sounds like “Moving to Montana.”
• In segment two, we once again get hints at how Tom spent his time at the edge of the universe.
• This ep contains the first of what would be a running gag for most of the season: As Mala looks at her hands after becoming young, Tom says “I thought I was Dale!” What does this mean? Well, It’s actually a complicated goof, and thereby hangs a tale. Back in the 1970s, there was a series of commercials for Ivory dishwashing liquid, in which mothers were mistaken for their daughters, because the mom used Ivory and so her hands were young-looking. At around the same time, there was also a commercial for Grape Nuts, in which a teenage boy mistakes teenage girl Dale’s mother for Dale and utters the deathless line: “I thought you were Dale!” Best Brains only vaguely remembered these two completely unrelated commercials, and apparently mixed them up in their minds. There were apparently never any Ivory Liquid commercials in which a character said “I thought you were Dale!” And the Grape Nuts commercial in which that line was spoken had nothing to do with hands. So basically they goofed. But the writers thought they were making a reference to the Ivory Liquid commercials.
• There were a total of 12 “Dale” riffs this season, and there were Dale riffs in 11 consecutive episodes beginning in episode 805- THE THING THAT COULDN’T DIE. (And there were some in previous seasons! For a complete list, visit Ward E.) From this point forward, they will be referred to as “Daleisms.”
• LOTR reference: Tom gets all enty. (Hom-hoom!)
• Local reference: The Blainbrook Bowl. Do a lot of drunk girls dance there?
• Obscure reference: Tom invokes Earl Camenbert, a character from “SCTV.”
• Mike and Servo take another brief swing around the dance floor, something they haven’t done since 612- Starfighters.
• Firesign Theatre reference: Crow refers to “Arnie’s Whole Beef Halves.”
• What is with the HUGE front door on the house in this movie? Very weird.
• In segment 3, Mike crawls up in front of the “hatch.” First (and last) time for that, I think.
• The ending sketch is one of those sketches about not doing a sketch. They liked those. Not everybody did.
• The stinger in this one is rather unsatisfying. Feels like it was quickly plucked from near the end of the movie without much thought.
• For the record, Kevin holds that “Jeeeeed!” for 52 seconds.
• Cast and crew roundup: Producer Joseph Gershenson also worked on “Revenge of the Creature,” “The Mole People,” “The Deadly Mantis,” “The Thing That Couldn’t Die” and “This Island Earth. He was also music supervisor on “Kitten With A Whip.” Scriptwriter David Duncan also worked on “The Thing that Couldn’t Die” and “Black Scorpion.” Story writer Ben Pivar was the producer of “The Brute Man.” Cinematographer Ellis Carter also worked on “The Mole People” and “The Deadly Mantis.” Costumer Bill Thomas also worked on “The Thing that Couldn’t Die.” Makeup guy Bud Westmore worked on a ton of stuff. See last week’s list. Likewise art director Alexander Golitzen, set designer Russell A. Gausman and sound person Leslie I. Carey. Art director Robert Clatworthy also worked on “The Deadly Mantis.” Set designer Clarence Steensen also worked on “Rocketship X-M.” Sound guy Joe Lapis also worked on “The Brute Man.” Score composer Irving Gertz also worked on “The Deadly Mantis” and “Jungle Goddess.”
In front of the camera: Coleen Gray was also in “The Phantom Planet.” Gloria Talbott was also in “Girls Town.” Arthur Batanides was also in “The Unearthly.” Murray Alper was also in “Lost Continent.” Charles Keane was also in “Project Moon Base.”
• CreditsWatch: Jim retains the producer title, but Kevin is listed as director and associate producer. For the last time ever, Jim is listed as “contributing writer.”
• Fave riff: “We’re all just so RESTLESS.” Honorable mention: “She’s lettin’ the hair play her.” “Are you okay? How many fingers of whiskey am I holding up?”

153 Replies to “Episode Guide: 802- The Leech Woman”

  1. Mr. Krasker says:

    Well, the conversation (such as it was) went something like this . . . “Mrs. Talbot you will never divorce your husband. You won’t have to. He will DIE! His death will give you life . . . a new way of life. YOU are the one in my dreams of BLOOD!”

    So, yeah, Mala’s dreams of blood are only mentioned because of Dr. Talbot’s impending doom.


  2. Gizsonic Screwdriver says:

    touches no one’s life, then leaves:
    Just to be nitpicky, the character’s name is “Granny Moses,” NOT “Granny Clampett.” She was Jed’s mother-in-law and thus did not have the same last name as him (the same confusion arose on “The Munsters,” where “Grandpa Munster”‘s name was actually “Grandpa Dracula” because he was Herman’s FATHER-in-law; what Marilyn(the daughter of Lily’s unseen sister*)’s last name really was is anybody’s guess).

    Of course, if Servo had said “Granny Moses,” almost nobody would’ve known what he was talking about.


    *Herman, to Lily: “She’s YOUR niece, you know. She’s YOUR sister’s kid. Nobody on MY side of the family ever looked like that.”

    Grandma Moses sittin in her rocking chair, chewing on her underwear, needs a new pair….what color?




  3. Well, I’ve been watching my way through the episodes in order, and I have finally caught up to one that still has its chat window open–so I’ll be commenting more from now on.
    With this one, I would just like to say that I’ve just read through all the years’ worth of comments, and am surprised to find no mention (unless I missed one) of my favorite riff in this episode!
    When June is told by Mala that she needs to choose a man to be sacrificed, Crow gives her answer as, “I choose Adam Sandler!” That was my biggest laugh-out-loud moment in this one. And twenty years later, Adam Sandler is STILL a good answer!

    By the way, wasn’t that pool of quicksand a little too conveniently located?


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