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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: 818- Devil Doll

Movie: (1963) The relationship between a ventriloquist and his dummy is even creepier than it seems.

First shown: 10/4/97
Opening: It’s Friday at the dorm and M&tB have a window!
Intro: Tom agrees to send the window back, but a drunken Crow smashes it; meanwhile Apearlo and Brainguyus liven up a dull Roman party with pants
Host segment 1: Crow expresses interest in Pitch’s line of devil dolls, Mike disapproves
Host segment 2: The bots set up a British pub, and it has a *very* stout ale on tap
Host segment 3: Pitch helps Crow transfer Servo’s soul, Mike disapproves.
End: Crow dresses Mike up as Hugo, Mike disapproves. Meanwhile Apearlo and Brainguys, attending Lesser God Day at the Colosseum, see a familar face!
Stinger: Hugo takes a licking and keeps on ticking
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (246 votes, average: 4.35 out of 5)

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• This movie is so weird, but it’s a little dark for MST3K and I think the darkness drags the episode down a bit. Still, the riffing keeps up for the most part. Host segment-wise, it’s a mixed bag. The Roman Times stuff is good for a chuckle, but not many. I do like the bits with reasonable, affable Pitch and intemperate, outraged Mike. Paul and Mike are both terrific. The British pub sketch, however, is too long for a one-joke bit.
• This episode is included in Shout’s “Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Vol. XIX.”
• Paul’s take on this one is here.
References.
• Not included in that list is “Papers, Fawlty!” which is an evocation of the gruff Colonel from the British comedy series “Fawlty Towers.”
• That’s Patrick, Beez and Paul as the “Roman day players.”
• As the Roman Times segment begins, Kevin is singing “And now to Eden” from the “Star Trek: TOS” episode “The Way to Eden.”
• A nice callback to season four with “pants” business, but it takes a while to get there. Another callback from the old days: “Does this bug you?”
• What’s fairly clear, as you watch, is that they used a lot of real-life locations, not studio sets. Example: In the first scene with William Sylvester and his assistant, it appears they are in an actual office somewhere. As he dials the phone, watch the window sill behind him. A tiny shadow goes by. At first I thought it was a mouse but then something transparent goes by, and it becomes clear that that is actual city traffic going by outside the window.
• Callbacks: The appearance of William Sylvester prompts several “Robert Denby” riffs.
• If I recall correctly, there was some trepidation when the Sci-Fi Channel’s counterpart channel in the U.K. began running the show and this episode — featuring the observation that England is populated by “chinless, jug-eared stomach eaters” — first aired. From what we heard from MSTies in the U.K., they loved it.
• Then-current reference: Warren Christopher. The former Secretary of State was an easy target because of his dour persona.
• Servo the toaster strudel riffs for an entire segment.
• Cast and crew roundup: Director Lindsay Shonteff also directed “The Million Eyes of Su-Muru.” In front of the camera, we’ll see Bryant Halliday again in “The Projected Man.” William Sylvester was also in “Riding with Death’ and “Gorgo.” Alan Gifford was also in “Phase IV.”
• CreditsWatch: Produced and directed by Kevin. Intern Dan Breyer begins a stint that will last until the end of the season.
• Fave riff: “Look! There’s the proof: There’s no God. Not a single God…” Honorable mention: “So how many hours have rotary phones added to movies over the years?”

187 Replies to “Episode guide: 818- Devil Doll”

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

    >>>This is the kind of episode I feel was tailor-made for Bill’s Crow.

    Well, it’s more of an MST3K SCRIPT tailor-made for Bill’s Crow. If Trace had been one of the scriptwriters, writing it to suit HIS Crow characterization, a different script would’ve resulted.

    If things were different, they wouldn’t be the same. ;-)

       2 likes

  2. Wampa Joe
    Ignored
    says:

    True, but I meant made for Bill in regards to a darker movie, therefore enabling them for darker host segments (where his darker interpretation of Crow could, uh, shine). Trace’s quirkier sensibilities would have never given us soul transferring Crow (nor the DEBBIE! sketch), and that’s why I feel this is the episode where you could really begin to appreciate the difference between the two.

       0 likes

  3. Colossus Prime
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    says:

    #98

    There’s also a Devil Doll song by the Misfits that is loosely inspired by the movie (like a LOT of their songs) and ranks in my top 5 favorite Graves-era songs. It was originally a B side from Famous Monsters but is readily available on the Cuts From the Crypt album.

       0 likes

  4. John
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    says:

    Very good (not great, but very good) episode. Not a big fan of Roman Times.

    Favorite riff: following the hypnosis-execution…”I guess it was a mistake to call this the Wacky Fun-Time Review”

       1 likes

  5. fathermushroom
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    says:

    I really like this episode. But I have never known what the deal was with the false beard.

    Anyone? What did we miss?

       1 likes

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

    “the false beard”

    Everyone has their inexplicable quirks, I guess…

    Too bad they didn’t give Hugo any beard jokes.

    “You know, Vorelli, I’m still waitin’ for MY beard! I’ve got seniority over Ms. No-Pants there!”

    (upon being “introduced” to the female dummy) “Oh, and I suppose SHE gets a beard right away…”

    (after trading bodies with Vorelli) “You know, having a beard isn’t as fulfilling as I thought it would be.”

       2 likes

  7. Cabbage Patch Elvis
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    says:

    My thought about showing that the beard was false was to reinforce the idea that Vorelli is not to be trusted, that he is not what he seems.

       4 likes

  8. Dr. Fysh
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    says:

    Ahhh, ham! I love it!

       1 likes

  9. Rich
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    If I may post again? This movie is indeeed dark and dreary, but still an enjoyable movie. For a really almost intolerable movie, take a look at “Hamlet”. Now you know what I mean.

       0 likes

  10. Fart Bargo
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    says:

    Fathermushroom @ 105-Hypnotists back in the day copied Svengali who was the most famous/infamous hypnotist at that time. The beard is essentially ‘window dressing’ to sell the mysterious ability of the hypnotist. Also, all the truly evil hypno-practioners in MST movies all have facial hair like Vorelli, Lombardi and Estrella.

       1 likes

  11. Shinola
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    says:

    I completely forgot to note: In the window party opening, Crow’s wearing an Atlanta Braves hat. GO BRAVES!

    Wonder why it wasn’t a Twins hat.

       0 likes

  12. mikek
    Ignored
    says:

    Fart Bargo says:
    December 12th, 2009 at 9:09 am

    “Fathermushroom @ 105-Hypnotists back in the day copied Svengali who was the most famous/infamous hypnotist at that time. The beard is essentially ‘window dressing’ to sell the mysterious ability of the hypnotist. Also, all the truly evil hypno-practioners in MST movies all have facial hair like Vorelli, Lombardi and Estrella.”

    And Neil Connery. Although not evil, probably the only good guy hypnotist in movie history, he was still creepy.

       2 likes

  13. bdtrppr6
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    says:

    #92 Rich how weird. this is a lost ep for me too. i know i saw and recorded it, but have not been able to locate the copy. i just remember the creepy doll.

       1 likes

  14. Manny Sanguillen
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    says:

    One of those episodes like Red Zone Cuba and Blood Waters of Dr. Z that I didnt care for at first, but afterwards and still today I consider one the best riffed episodes of the series.

    I can watch this anytime and often yet still laugh all the way through it.
    They were firing on all cylinders with this one.
    I rate it a 5 and one of my top 25 episodes.

       1 likes

  15. Rich
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    It is dark and dreary, but it stimulates my senses in a way Hamlet did not. It’s the dummy, sometimes cute, sometimes evil, the lady with her rumproast hanging out, the superlative “Debbie” thing.

       0 likes

  16. Mike
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    says:

    Through 115 posts, I have not yet noticed the one riff that I remember every week. Being a regular watcher of “This Week”, with George Devildollpolis, (who looks incredibly like Hugo), I am forever brought back to this episode. I’m not sure whether it makes me like it better, or not.

       1 likes

  17. MC
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    says:

    @111 – I forgot the Braves hat too. That made me very happy, tho it was completely random!

    Man, I love this ep. I got amused this morning thinking of the long shot of Hugo when Mike is making the “contented dummy sigh” sound.

       0 likes

  18. DamonD
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    I’ve seen people before really down on this one, great to see that isn’t so much the case here!

    I come back to this one quite a lot! While the grim, ugly nature does make it drag at times, there’s a lot of inspired lunacy here.

    And I think it even deserves a little credit…I find some of it quite creepy, mainly due to the Halliday’s bitter, abusive Vorelli and that resonating soundless gong kind of noise used during his stage act. Kind of unsettling.

    “Drink the blood of the VIRGIN!”
    “Did someone just paw my puppet!”
    “Memories…” *thud* *thud* “…from the corners of my mind…” *thud*

    And Crow doing that little pissed-off reaction for Hugo during the fight. “C’mere!”

       2 likes

  19. robot rump!
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    says:

    you know, you take away most of the actors/actresses except for Maryann and butt lady, the dreary london scenery and most of the premise and this movies not that bad.

       4 likes

  20. BIG61AL
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    Butt lady! I love this episode!

       1 likes

  21. Yipe Striper
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    i’m just gonna say it… this movie was sticky to watch, but the twist at the ending where Vorelli ends up in the doll is great. I imagine it was one of those movies I’d watch as a kid and be really freaked out.

    “Not only ham, but you can’t have any luncheon meats…”

       2 likes

  22. Sitting Duck
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    Devil Doll passes the Bechdel Test. Marianne has brief non-male conversations with Magda and Aunt Eva.

    While I’m not as hard on the Roman Times sketches some folks are, I will admit the pants party HS was kind of weak.

    I couldn’t quite make out what the neck label on Mike’s beer said. Mega-something-or-other Slammer. The main label says Nanite Lager.

    When Pitch calls Mike Max von Sydow, was he referring to his role in The Exorcist or The Greatest Story Ever Told?

    Speaking of which, the two host segments with Pitch were hilarious. However, can anyone recall if there were other instances of a Comedy Central era character appearing during the Sci Fi era, or was this a unique occurrence?

    You got to wonder why Vorelli’s act is so popular. Maybe it comes across differently in the original short story.

    For the record, that backwards poster at the pub says Wrestling Midgets.

    @ #53: That was Servo who was hawking the window’s specs, not Crow.

    @ #81 and #104: It’s Revue, not Review. Just check the main menu on the Devil Doll DVD.

    Favorite riffs:

    I think we just saw the movie’s car chase.

    So how many hours have rotary phones added to movies over the years?

    Wouldn’t be more fun to pretend that he’s a chicken?

    If we don’t get a volunteer, you’re all gonna have to see my can.

    The Puppet Haters’ Club will be right back.

    “That dummy is fascinating.”
    So is his puppet.

    Meanwhile, at StifleJoyCo.

    Well that scene’s going nowhere. Let’s try this one.

    Everyone thrill as I get my own onion dip.

    So does this qualify as getting lucky for either of them?

    Nurse, I died yesterday. Do you have any advice?

    We now switch live to LeerCam.

    And Northwest stops to pick up more surly flight attendants.

    And snuff cabaret is born.

    “I was not even on the stage when it happened.”
    I vas in Austria.

    Look familiar, Mike? Girls leaving you for ventriloquists.

    Ha ha! That is a wooden chair and all finished wooden products are my bretheren and they will protect me.

    Beanie Babies don’t get this kind of power.

       4 likes

  23. Dan in WI
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    It’s not laugh out loud funny but I like the non sequitur that is the drunken dorm blow out (w/window) segment. Bill really plays this one great. And being a big fan of the greatest pitching rotation of our lifetime, I love his Atlanta Braves cap. Fun stuff.

    Even the pants party is a nice non sequitur.

    While I like the British costumes (especially Crow’s teeth) I have to agree the stout ale segment carries a very thin joke way too far.

    Bill’s Crow does an excellent job dealing with Pitch. The nonchalance he puts into it sells it perfectly. I don’t think that is something Trace could have done. It makes me glad we had two different takes on Crow over the years.

    This episode is just not up my alley. The movie is a bit too dark and weird that the riffing just doesn’t help it much. I can’t say I completely understand this phenomenon. Manos was dark and yet I love that one. Oh well. If you are on the other side of Sampo’s Theorem for this episode then God bless you.

    Favorite Riffs:
    Mark on phone “May I speak to Marianne?” While holding for a bit, Mike “Are you still thinking about whether I can talk to Marianne?”

    Vorelli “And this time you die.” Crow as Mercedes “At that time there were some warning signs.”

    Marianne tells Mark she is going away with Vorelli. Crow “Look familiar Mike? Girls leaving you for ventriloquists.”

       2 likes

  24. robot rump!
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    says:

    sooo… what exactly was Vorelli’s master plan supposed to be AFTER he crammed Hugo’s soul into the dummy (not Fred Sanford’s son)? Hope that eventually an ineffectual American tool would bring his hot um..female acquaintance? to a random show and then hyp-mo-tize her into yet ANOTHER dummy, kill her and take her inheritence?

       0 likes

  25. Tom Carberry
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    says:

    Playing the Great Vorelli was Bryant Haliday. Bryant Haliday was born in Rhode Island on April 7, 1928 and spent time in an English Benedictine monastery. Entering Harvard to study international law, he became involved with a group of students who were interested in putting on plays. He caught the acting bug and abruptly gave up law to become a man of the theater. They bought an abandoned church, converted it into the Brattle Theatre (Haliday called the Cambridge, Massachusetts, landmark “an unashamed imitation of the Bristol Old Vic”) and produced 64 plays, joining the cast of over 50. He later opened a small movie revival house and began hunting in Europe for film acquisitions; picking up the rights to classics like The Seventh Seal (1957) and I Vitelloni (1953). Haliday and partner Cyrus Harvey founded Janus Films. Haliday was also a movie actor, turning up most regularly in the horror thrillers of his producer friend Richard Gordon (Devil Doll (1964), Voodoo Blood Death (1965), The Projected Man (1966)), among others). Late in life he lived in France, where he worked as a producer, writer and actor in Paris theater and on French TV. He died July 28, 1996 in Paris France. He liked Horror films and is quoted as saying, “I’d walk miles for the hubble, bubble and toil of a good horror movie, or to watch Vincent Price stirring cauldrons of horror, or to observe a well-fanged Christopher Lee on the prowl for blood. I love to see black horses and coaches galloping through the night and all that traditional stuff. The more traditional it is, the better I like it.”

    Favorite Lines:

    [Vorelli/Bryant Haliday] The Red Devil Paint Mascot is doing alright for himself.
    Why is he carrying Al Pacino?
    [Dummy] George Stephanopoulos has really sunk low.
    I’ve seen Baptists who can dance better than this.
    He carries his sawdust right in his hips.
    [Marianne/Yvonne Romaine] She’s already had a torrid affair with Jerry Mahoney.
    Hugo’s got a John Agar smile.
    So, his act is to get up and bicker with his doll?
    What a complexion. Let me guess, you use Murphy’s Oil soap, right?
    [Dr. Keisling/Frances de Wolff] Martin Scorsese is Mr. French in the Exorcist. Ever think of mowing your eyebrows?
    [Magda’s cheeks] I see a bad moon rising.
    Mortimer Snerd in Fatal Attraction.
    And Northwest stops to pick up more surly flight attendants.
    Hugo the Dummy was arraigned in Superior Court, County of Los Angeles. In a moment the results of that trial.

    Final Thought: BBI really had the hate on for Northwest Airlines. I give this one 3 out of 5 stars.

       7 likes

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

    I’m pretty sure he was just making it up as he went along.

    “Hypnotism? In this day and age?!” Uh, yeah, that’s right, doc. Why not?

    So Vorelli studied in Tibet, hm? Maybe he was an alumnus of the same lamasery (that’s an actual word, y’know) as Quintus Ratcliff from “The Undead.”

    Nobody’s commented on the parallels between “Devil Doll” and “She-Creature” yet, perhaps because they’re too obvious:

    (1) Protagonist who doesn’t really accomplish anything
    (2) Oily hypnotist guy with Italian name as villain
    (3) Murder by magical proxy
    (4) Inexplicably popular act
    (5) Villain trying to work his way into high society (Vorelli via Marianne, Lombardi via Chapel)

    And probably more that aren’t occurring to me at the moment.

       3 likes

  27. Of no account
    Ignored
    says:

    You think YOU liked this episode? Wait till you see ME like this episode!

    Actually, not one of my top episodes, but a great one nonetheless! The darkness of the movie can’t bring down the silliness of the plot. Except for that hypno-rape thing… that was uncomfortable. But it does go to show just how villainous people with fake beards are.

    I understand Vorelli having the beard, but why a fake one? Why not just grow one? Maybe so he could make a quick getaway if needed, and be nearly unrecognizable? Or maybe he’s just one of those people who can’t grow a full beard?

    I think his plan was as follows: Gain ultimate power over the human soul, transfer bland souls into bland dummies, conquer vaudeville, then conquer Earth. Seems an obvious 4 step process, to me.

    The ending host segment with Crow as Vorelli, Mike as Hugo, and Tom as a be-legged toaster strudel, just goes to show how delightfully and inexplicably INSANE MST3K really is. I love it!

       5 likes

  28. Luther Heggs aka Number 6
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    says:

    I would much rather watch DEVIL DOLL – mystied version or regular – than to ever suffer through Avatar again, I can tell you that.

    That strangely illuminated moment when Vorelli ordered Hugo to walk… that was something on the order of very bizarre cinema… as if it created a Lynchesque wormhole intersection with Eraserhead. It was easily just as disturbing as the dummy in Dead of Night.

    I would like to see Mike order Crow to walk and stand in similar lighting on stage at a fan convention. That would be nice and disturbing. Maybe have B. Lustmord in the background working the gong.

    When Crow did so, with no apparent human assistance, it would separate the men from the boys in the audience.

    Pretty much a madhouse full of squealing boys, I think.

    The absolute best thing about DEVIL DOLL and MST3K is the fact that puppet robots are riffing on a vent doll/puppet.

    Oh, and I much prefer the vent’s full-figured assistant over the skinny Jennifer Aniston types any day of the week.

    In fact, Aniston somewhat resembles a ventriloquist dummy in her stature and straight physique. If you look closely, on some of her interviews, you will see the near invisible vertical lines where her mouth does the Howdy Doody thing. She even smirks in a very ventriloquist dummy manner. You’ll see what I mean when you watch her next.

    You’ll see. You’ll see. You’re becoming very sleepy. Very sleepy.

       5 likes

  29. Dan in WI
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    says:

    Of no account says:
    September 26, 2013 at 11:21 am
    I think his plan was as follows: Gain ultimate power over the human soul, transfer bland souls into bland dummies, conquer vaudeville, then conquer Earth. Seems an obvious 4 step process, to me.

    Actually I believe that was Dr. Forrester’s original plan until he abandoned it in favor of bad movie watching.

       2 likes

  30. snowdog
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    says:

    Not one of the best of season 8, but fun nonetheless. “Devil Doll” was my pick in one of the Weekend Discussion threads about which MSTed films could probably be remade into a good movie. It drags at times, but there’s a real creepiness here that I don’t get from many modern horror films. I think the last one was “Mulholland Drive”.

    The bots wore a lot of costumes in this one. And Mike’s makeup as Hugo was truly disturbing.

    Good not great. 3 Stars.

       2 likes

  31. thequietman
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    says:

    Never posted here before, though I’ve been a lurker for a long time.

    Here’s my two cents about Vorelli’s beard: it’s a disguise so no one will realize he’s the same magician who killed a man onstage in Berlin in 1949. Granted, it doesn’t explain why he couldn’t just GROW a beard, but still…

    On another note, did this get a legitimate unriffed release? The clips used in the documentary for the SHOUT! release looked like they were filmed yesterday, plus the credits were different.

       7 likes

  32. JohnnyRyde
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    says:

    The name Vorelli reminds me of the fake Italian-sounding names that they used to give Chico Marx to play, so I’m always thinking of the Marx Brothers when I see this.

    I watched this when it first aired but it wasn’t one of my favorites. I didn’t see it again until the DVD release, at which time I was able to appreciate it more.

    The fake beard thing has been discussed already, but it’s one of my favorite subtle WTF moments from a MST3k film. The movie doesn’t draw attention to it, or revisit it. Hilariously bizarre.

    The hypnotism portion of Vorelli’s act is bizarre too. Getting the lady to dance is borderline expected (although fairly tame judging by the one hypnotism show I’ve seen). But why would an audience be interested in the guy-thinking-he’s-being-executed thing? Imagine being in the crowd…. Guy gets on stage. Looks scared for a few minutes. Then stops looking scared. Applause?

    And Vorelli’s plan from what I could gather was to become a respected entertainer. Get his way into high society. Arrange to meet a wealthy woman. Hypnotize her into marrying him. Then arrange for an accident so that he inherits all her wealth. Not a bad plan, but very slow moving. And presumably a genuine hypnotist (who can seriously override someone’s mind) could do much better much faster.

    The plan I couldn’t figure out was Haywood Floyd’s… I re-watched this over the last two days and I couldn’t keep track of whether he’s a reporter or a cop. He is a reporter, but what story is he working on? That a stage magician/hypnotist may not have been on the up and up is hardly earth-shattering news. His newspaper gives him no other assignments? They fly him to Berlin on the recommendation of a talking puppet? How much money did this newspaper spend to crack the story about an ordinary-seeming entertainer?

    That said, this is a decent creepy horror movie. It reminds me of some other sci-fi/fantasy movies/TV episodes of the time. Having one or two actors who also appeared in other sci-fi/fantasy (2001, Doctor Who) helps too. Riffing is good and I like the host segments too. Good, but not great. A pleasant episode.

       4 likes

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

    #132
    In the pub scene with the “midgets” sign, the reporter muses about precisely this point, noting how he’s used up (paraphrasing) “a lot of time and expense for an article about a charlatan, a third-rate phony…if they [the editors] don’t fire me after this fiasco, they’re as crazy as I am.”

    His assignment was simply to do a story on Vorelli, a new celebrity entertainer.

    He decided to approach it from the angle of the remarkable dummy (who then visited him in his room, which couldn’t fail to increase his interest).

    Then Marianne’s illness “made it personal” (so to speak), hence his willingness to fly to Berlin to find out anything he can about Vorelli. At that point he wasn’t thinking about the story, he was thinking about Marianne.

    When he gets back, Marianne’s well again (meaning the trip to Berlin served no real purpose)…and supposedly in love with Vorelli. So he decides the heck with Hugo the walking dummy, the heck with Vorelli’s murdered assistant, any article about Vorelli now would involve his new fiancee, Marianne, NOT a story Mark wants to tell. So he goes back to square one and tells himself Vorelli’s a phony, nobody worth writing about, nobody worth researching. Being drunk in a pub certainly doesn’t improve his outlook.

    So he goes to (drunkenly?) confront Vorelli, only to find Hugo in Vorelli’s body and Vorelli as the dummy. Sounds like a whole new story to me…

       4 likes

  34. "Hotcha!"
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    says:

    4 years later and no ones’ mentioned two of my favorite riffs:

    GV: “You’re about to be executed by a soldier…”
    Mike: “…So you might as well go along with my little act.”

    Crow: “Sorry I’m so sweaty. I was choking the puppet. No, wait!”

       4 likes

  35. JohnnyRyde
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    says:

    touches no one’s life, then leaves, #133:

    Ah, thanks! So the movie does acknowledge that oddity after all… I’m going to agree with the comment earlier that this film (more than most other experiments) could have been quite good with a larger budget or a different production crew…

       1 likes

  36. Raptorial Talon
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    The British pub scene isn’t one of the better parts of the episode, but the silly British mannerisms are fun. I crack up at Crow’s intonation on “boiled kidneys and whipped madcow!” every time. So there’s more than one joke in that segment.

    The movie is slightly dark (visually as much as conceptually), and a bit slow at points, but the episode delivers many, many classic and highly usable lines. DEBBIE!

    Also, this has my candidate for the creepiest riff in the entire series run: Mike (as Vorelli) slowly saying “I bet someone sent me a birthday clown . . .”

    Although “DRINK THE BLOOD OF THE VIRGIN!” is a strong contender as well, albeit more lighthearted in its delivery.

       1 likes

  37. Depressing Aunt
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    I like the four British episodes of the Sci-Fi years. It’s the way the guys get a lot of mileage out of the culture and vernacular. And as a Texan, I enjoy hearing British accents. I remember the first time I saw this episode–when I saw the apparently furious Vorelli sitting several feet away from the oversized dummy in the backseat of that car, well…I liked it immediately.

    Anybody else like to think that Mercedes and Hans became a couple? (I want those two crazy kids to be happy.)

    As a tribute to “Devil Doll” I’d like to go to the nearest Subway; before the sandwich artist even asks me what I want I will blandly say “Ah, ham. I love it.” Then I’ll just wander out of the place.

       0 likes

  38. Rich
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    Oh jesus! Pure coincidence- I started to watch this today. I may or may not resume it.

       0 likes

  39. Watch-out-for-Snakes
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    says:

    This is a pretty good episode, its got some things I like, but overall Devil Doll is a good-not-great episode. The movie a little too drab for me, and I find the Britishness of it all to be boredom inducing, despite the film’s occasional dip into creepy Lynchian territory.

    The frat (window) party opening segment is fun, but the best is Crow’s intoxicated and impassioned plea of “DEBBIE!” over and over and also the “I punched a window out for you, baby. You got to take me back. I did it for Debbie! I’m driving over there..” Crow’s look in this whole skit is great, from his x-ed out eyes to his wrapped up bloodied hand (or claw, I guess) to his Atlanta Braves baseball hat (the hat for douchey frat guys of the 90s). ‘Debbie’ is just such a fun name to howl and yell. Try it sometime. You’ll find it is true.

    I also liked Paul appearance’s as Pitch in HS#1 and #3 where he’s selling devil dolls and swapping souls, respectively. Paul is, of course, really good as Pitch (always nice to see him pop up. Is this Pitch’s last appearance?) but these scenes (and the closing segment with Mike-O in the cage) are really owned by Crow. As others have mentioned above, by this point in Season 8, Bill had really come into strong command of the Crow character, especially in the puppetry, and this is a very strong Crow episode.

    The weakest points are (again) the Roman Times sketches (which are just not funny) and also HS#2 with the British pub, which goes a long way for me just to stare at Crow’s British-teeth.


    RIFFS:

    Servo: “Sold Out? Must of ran out of “Cancelled” stickers..”

    Crow: “He’s dying out there, I’ll go out and flash a cheek.”

    Servo: “So his act is to get up and bicker with his doll?”

    movie: “Yes.”
    Crow: “My favorite band is YES.”

    Servo: “It really helps her to have old guys come in and look at her.”

    Vorelli waves hand,
    Mike: “Trails . .man.”

    Mike: “I’m disciplining my puppet.”


    The mind/body swap ending of Devil Doll reminds me of the ending to SCANNERS.
    Anybody else?


    Like I said, a good-not-great episode

    Devil Doll gets 3 out of 5 hams,

    :devil: :devil: :devil:

       5 likes

  40. JohnnyRyde
    Ignored
    says:

    Someone mentioned this earlier, but I don’t see any follow-up… Was this the only instance of a recurring character from the Comedy Central/Channel years showing up in a Sci-Fi Channel episode?

       1 likes

  41. mstgator
    Ignored
    says:

    Favorite riff: “Did he live?” Those three words crack me up every time.

       4 likes

  42. Savvy
    Ignored
    says:

    Movie Notes!
    -When I go to college, if I ever go to a frat party, I will make sure there’s a window.
    -It seems like BBI has a thing for pants. They had “Hike Up Your Pants”, “Praises of Pants”, and now, the roman gods and goddesses chanting “Pants!” Just an observation.
    -Would it freak you out if a puppet like Hugo walked on it’s own? Not too sure what I would think. I guess it has to be a certain type of puppet. The ‘bots wouldn’t freak me out the slightest bit. They’re cute.
    -In the words of Tom Servo, “So his act is to get up and bicker with his doll”. It’s true, though. Vorelli has way, WAY too much time on his hands.
    -I’ve always liked the Pitch the Devil segments. Paul is perfect.
    -I don’t know why so many seem to hate on the Roman Times host segments. I love ’em!

       1 likes

  43. VeryDisturbing
    Ignored
    says:

    “I think someone ordered a birthday clown…”

       1 likes

  44. mstgator
    Ignored
    says:

    #142: -I’ve always liked the Pitch the Devil segments. Paul is perfect.

    Pitch perfect?

       5 likes

  45. Angie Schultz
    Ignored
    says:

    “Do you, Chatty Cathy, take Hugo to be your lawfully wedded doll, to Pledge and Behold, to finish and to Endust?” That’s genius, right there.

       3 likes

  46. Sitting Duck
    Ignored
    says:

    @ #142: Just make sure it’s an Anderson Window.

       2 likes

  47. Ryan
    Ignored
    says:

    Enjoyable episode, some great host segments. Crow is hilarious ranting on about DEBBIE, but my favorite bit is Tom mentioning that Crow “carefully unpacked” the window before punching it in.

       4 likes

  48. codename zirconium head
    Ignored
    says:

    and crow doesn’t even KNOW a Debbie!

       3 likes

  49. JC
    Ignored
    says:

    “I am about to suggest to this man that his life is in danger. That he may die at any moment.”
    “Your life is in danger and you may die at any moment. THANK YOU!!!”

       7 likes

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

    One of my favorites:
    “You’ll never win. You’ll always lose.”
    “You’re Harold Stassen.”

    Were there any Child’s Play/Chuckie riffs? It seems so obvious.

    Maybe TOO obvious, I suppose.

    Now that I think about it, I’m not sure MST3K has ever used riffs involving ANY slasher movies: Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, not one of them. I could easily be wrong, of course.

    There have also been several movies and two Twilight Zone episodes about animated ventriloquist’s dummies. We can’t very well say those were too “obscure” for Mike and the Bots to riff on, so maybe they just weren’t familiar with them. After all, nobody knows *everything*.

    “Yes, go on.”
    “Uh, did I stop?”

       3 likes

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