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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: 821- Time Chasers

Movie: (1990) A small-town inventor builds a time machine, only to see it misused by a greedy corporation.

First shown: 11/22/97
Opening: Mike explains what’s happened since the last show, but Tom just needs him to say “Lost in Space”
Intro: Mike & Pearl have a nice chat
Host segment 1: Tom sends Crow back in time to convince Mike the dude to stop taking temp jobs
Host segment 2: Crow succeeds and, returning to the SOL, finds Mike’s big brother Eddie in Mike’s place, and learns that Mike’s new future was worse than the old one
Host segment 3: Having seen the future, Crow returns to the past to keep Crow from performing his mission
End: Mike refuses to say what needs to be said, and, during another nice chat, Pearl points out a troubling detail
Stinger: “Matt, it’s time for you decide if you’re gonna be one of my team players or not”

• Another very strong episode, with great host segments (now that the Roman Times stuff has mercifully ended), a baffling movie, great riffing and a guest star of sorts in the theater.
• Paul’s take is here.
• This episode appeared on Rhino’s (and now Shout’s) “Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection, Vol. 5.”
• Two notable things Mike’s surly, pun-hating older brother Eddie does: most notably he does two theater segments. Also, he pauses to grab a smoke at one point. It’s a very memorable turn for Mike.
• There was something very satisfying about Mike’s two little chats with Pearl.
• This episode got internet fans talking about the number of Crows that are out there — remember you also need to count the one that went back in time in episode 807- TERROR FROM THE YEAR 5000.
• Patrick gives his most powerful performance yet as the cheese factory worker. “Dude!”
• Tom’s “Nicknicknicknicknick” is a Firesign Theatre reference. We don’t hear them as much anymore.
• Nice callback to the old days with Mike’s reference to “chinderwear,” an invention exchange in episode 505- MAGIC VOYAGE OF SINBAD.
• Cast and Crew Roundup: None.
• CreditsWatch: Produced by Kevin. Directed by Mike. An intern named Scott Bowman worked on this and only this episode.
• Fave line: “I’m gonna buy some Liva-snaps and a hosta!” Honorable mention: “Oh, he’s like poo, alright.”

216 Replies to “Episode guide: 821- Time Chasers”

  1. Wampa Joe says:

    I wonder if Mike and the bots, now living in an apartment together, ever ran across the spare Crow running around Wisconsin. Hell, with all the spare Servos around, Joel could have his own set of bots again.

    This is right behind Space Mutiny (and probably neck and neck with Prince of Space) in my list of favorite MST3K episodes. This was the absolute peak of the show right here, the Sci-Fi Era naysayers be damned. As Thomas K. Dye and Seamus pointed out above, the riffs now had an acidic bite the show always lacked before (thanks in large part to the influence that Bill brought to the writing room and on-screen) and that’s how I prefer my MST3K (your mileage may vary). The latter half of season 8 really feels like watching a movie with your quick-witted buddies.

    What really helps this episode is that Time Chasers is not a bad movie. In fact, it’s admirable how decent it actually is with what little they had to work with. However, not being bad doesn’t equal not being mockable.


  2. Wampa Joe says:

    I’d also like to say how well-done the host segments were in this episode, and I wish they wouldn’t had abandoned the “knocking about space” premise in the next season. People decry Sci-Fi’s horrible “story mandate,” but Castle Forrester always felt like a bland substitute for Deep 13 (and then they resorted to falling back on Pearl becoming a mad scientist and performing wacky experiments each week).

    This episode, they’re in space, and the host segments, while born out of the movie, all create a standalone story arc. They do the same thing with the next episode. I really enjoy the happy medium: You’ve still got this spirit of adventure, but you’re not shoehorning new settings (like taking the show to Ancient Rome for no reason).


  3. It took me a couple of viewings to fully enjoy this episode, mainly because it’s the follow-up to Space Mutiny.

    * Time paradoxes and plot holes abound in this movie. Just like the railing kill drinking game that was suggested for Space Mutiny, a good drinking game for Time Chasers would be to take a drink for every time paradox that’s been created.
    * I’d go into detail on the time paradoxes, but the day isn’t long enough.
    * I’m going to throw out another plug for The Spoony One, simply because he’s wearing a Castleton T-shirt in this review: It’s fairly obvious that all three of those guys in the video are MST fans.
    * Favorite riffs:
    “Yeah, there’s Mrs. Kruschev sweeping the driveway.” – Mike
    “I left my keys at the Manchu Wok of the future!”
    “I’ll walk back to the past.” – Servo
    “They’re running out of alt!” – Servo
    “And their miffnots are going down!” – Eddie

    Host Segments:
    * If Crow hadn’t returned from 1985 and kept his copy there, he would have triggered a chain reaction of Crows, causing creation of infinite mass and thus eventually destroying the universe. Mike needs that child lock for the time machine well before Hobgoblins.
    * Favorite line: “Oh, hey, Mike! I despise you and all you stand for and you’ll never escape-! He’s a good kid.”


  4. Keith says:

    Don’t forget they mention “some guy’s” broken Crow in whatever episode had that hail storm sketch in the prologue.


  5. Cabbage Patch Elvis says:

    Me want to rate this episode.


  6. Alex says:

    ‘Who am I kidding I didn’t go to Castleton’

    I like how he just doesn’t wear glasses anymore and now he’s tougher, just like in bigger movies where they did stuff like that.


  7. Kenneth Morgan says:

    OK, this movie isn’t all that great, but there are whole seasons of “Doctor Who” that are less credible than the Commodore 64/light plane-inspired time paradoxes featured here. “Time Chasers” is not without a certain charm.

    I agree that the host segments are great, with Mike doing a fine job as Eddie. And, unless I’m mistaken, it’s the first time in quite a while that Joel was referred to.


  8. Wampa Joe says:

    Yeah, this is the first time Joel is mentioned in the Sci-Fi years (before it would become a regular occurrence in Season 10).

    It makes you wonder about the alternate timeline though. Was Eddie a more deliberate destroyer of worlds?


  9. snowdog says:

    I liked Eddie a lot. I wish they had used him again for another ep.


  10. Sean says:

    “You guys see the game last night…? I mean, LIBERTY!!”


  11. Tim says:

    “I’ll walk to the past…”


  12. ck says:

    Perhaps 1985 Crow worked hard (after all, the cheese ain’t gonna cut itself) and then used his knowledge of the vast Wisconsin cheese industry to expand and buy out GenCorp. Then in the 1990s he merged with up and coming ConGypsCo to become a Midwestern silicone valley competitor.

    Could this looming colossas be the real reason why Bill Gates is dialing down his involvement in Microsoft? Hmmmm? :???:


  13. Luther Strickland says:

    “The throaty roar of a K-car.”

    “I’m a naked robot and even I know you don’t mix plaids.”

    I have probably seen this episode more than any other. My youngest son got into MST3K watching this episode over and over again. He was particularly fond of the “Bob Evil” character and the clown mirrors in the mezzanine office/library circulation desk.

    “I’ve got a whole building fulla people here.”

    “The track meet is starting and starting and starting.”


  14. Robert Denby says:

    “So in the future kids become gay agents?”


  15. Finnias Jones says:

    This is one of the best. The movie is good, the riffing is sharp, and the host segments are probably my favorites ever.

    Mike really shines in his three roles as the current “Mike Nelson”, his dim-bulb younger self, and bad-boy brother Eddie. Mary Jo was never better as Pearl as seen in her van-side chats with Mike, with Bobo’s sleeping sounds and Brain-Guy’s awkward newsbreak during the movie’s credits adding hilarious understated backing to the comedic proceedings. Even the closing credits with Patrick and Crow spitting out sunflower seed shells (?) are amusing.

    Kevin Murphy displays his prodigious vocal prowess many times in this episode. In addition to quoting numerous songs by War, Janis Ian, The Fixx, Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” and “Walking on Broken Glass” by Annie Lennox, Tom Servo’s soft-rock medley includes these three tunes:
    “Lost in Love” by Air Supply, “Arthur’s Theme (Best That You Can Do)” by Christopher Cross, and the Eagles “The Best of My Love”.

    Some of my favorite riffs:
    Servo: You’ve got mail… pattern baldness
    Crow, as Nick: Search… celebrities… nude… Cameron Diaz.
    Servo: He’s fighting Michael Franks! (singer of the infamous lite-jazz classic “Popsicle Toes”)
    Mike, as Lisa (stunned after the first demonstration of the time travel device, with Pink Boy behind her): Oh, I’m spent…

    And one of my all-time favorite MST3K riffs EVER, Crow says (@00:52:44):
    The movie really heightens the lack of interest in the film.

    I’ll also add that the Rhino DVD of this in Vol. 5 looks really sharp. Never thought it was too dark as someone above noted.

    P.S. I hope the creators of this film still own the rights to the story as it is ripe for a big budget remake. Happy New Year, you Castleton snobs!


  16. norgavue says:

    I’d say this is one of my favorite episodes. The movie is bad but still watchable in that kinda independent kind of way that lets you know that they did what they can with what they got. The host segments are great. The bit between mike and pearl is great and sandwiched between the bots going as far for a bit. The time travel/eddie bits are good and him going in the theater was an odd but nice change of pace. I like how in that little reality tom begins taking the brunt of anothers anger and jokes when normally it’s crow that gets it; although he gets his too. Now for riffs there are too many good ones but a few stick into my mind. The “bob evil” bit we still use today and my friend mike launches into “for castleton!!!!” My personal favorite was when nick tells lisa that he will bring her back sometime and crow remarks “ah man here we go”


  17. continuing legend says:

    This was my first episode ever. It will forever hold a special place in my heart just for that, but it also just happens to be a great episode.

    “He’s trying to get honey, like Pooh!” “Oh, he’s like poo all right” is one of my favorite lines.


  18. Warren says:

    This one’s fairly enjoyable-and where is that sequel I heard they were going to make? About the spare Crow-I don’t think there should be a spare Crow in 1985 for this reason. Crow #1 uses a time machine to go back and talk to Mike to get him into rock ‘n’ roll full time. Crow #1 gets back into the time machine and returns to the alternate (Eddie) future. To keep Mike from dying on stage, Crow #2 goes back to tell himself (#1) to keep Mike at the temp job. So, each Crow has a different corresponding time machine. Crow #2 returns and sees the proper future with Mike on the SOL. Crow #1 should STILL have his own corresponding time machine. So…the timeline is restored but there is a TANGENT timeline that Crow has memories of. Does that make sense? I’m saying MAKE ME DINNER.


  19. Warren says:

    Each Crow had a different corresponding time machine, so when Crow #2 returned to the restored future, Crow #1 still had his own time machine and should’ve made it back. If Crow #1 never makes it back, Crow #2 can’t exist and the timeline can’t be restored. It seems like the writers thought that Crow #2 returning to the future would remove both time machines from 1985. Anyway, this was one of the better movies shown on the SOL and I’d watch the sequel if they ever make it. I heard there was going to be one. “ARRR, Sixteen men on a dead Dodge Dart”


  20. Warren says:

    Oh wait, my first attempt actually got posted? My computer was acting up so I thought my text disappeared-so 3 posts it is then!


  21. H says:

    A good one, if not more confusing than usual (which is saying something sometimes). Still, it’s a lot of fun. Movie’s stupid, but that works for them. Host segments are good, lots of kudos to Mike for his dramatic turn here.

    Oh, and happy new year. Anybody else watching the Twilight Zone marathon?


  22. Wampa Joe says:

    Another contribution this episode has made to my life: Whenever I go to Martin’s (which is a real grocery chain on the east coast), I can’t help but say “wat’ up?”

    I never successfully pick up any women in the produce aisle though. Maybe next time I’ll wear my Castleton shirt.


  23. Finnias Jones says:

    re. comment 70:
    Wait, are you Warren #1 or Warren #2?

    I’m not a big time-travel/sci-fi nut, so I may be wrong, but this is how I see it:

    Our present-day Crow (#1), on a Mike-based SOL, uses a time machine (the same one from Terror from the Year 5000, right?) to try to change the past and help out Mike. He gives the dullard a pep talk then jumps back to the future. Crow #1 finds the SOL now captained by Eddie, then goes back to the past to revise it yet again. This act renders the Crow he finds already in the cheese factory a tangent Crow (now #2, complete w/ his own time machine and alternate universe). “Man was I a jerk a half-hour ago…” Coming back to “the present”, Crow #1 finds the SOL back to normal.

    This second Crow should properly belong to the Eddie-based timeline, but the closing credits suggest that Crow #2 did not return to the SOL but elected to stay on Earth to cut the cheese…


  24. Luther Strickland says:

    As to Crow’s time travel. Repeat to yourself it’s just a show. You should really just relax….

    And watch the adventures of the AVERAGE PEOPLE with Gena Rowlands arriving for her temp shift.


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

    What exactly DOES Mike “stand for,” anyway?

    Well, if for “stand for” you read “put up with” — as in “I will not stand for this” — I guess he “stands for” a heck of a lot…

    Re how the Time Transport could be a weapon: It could be used to go back in time and alter the course of a battle. It could be used to go back in time and alter the course of ANYTHING (The Star Trek: Voyager two-parter “Year of Hell” is built around this concept.). Entire nations could just VANISH; what better weapon could there be?

    The past could be changed every day to whatever Gencorp wanted, and maybe people would remember the “old” past — we have no way of knowing since the movie didn’t really cover that — and be unable to cope with the “new” past, their entire lives rewritten…or never having existed at all.

    As in the X-Files episode, “Synchrony,” it could create “A world without history, without hope. Where anyone can know everything that will ever happen.” If everything could change around you at any given moment, what would be the point of ANYTHING except basic survival, as in Future #2?

    Like Robertson IIRC said to Nick toward the end, the only way out of it would be to go far back into the past…back far enough that no one would bother going back any further to change anything.

    “It never would have affected you…”


  26. Clu Gulager says:

    A great episode. Pretty much all of my favorite riffs have been mentioned. However, I have to say (although it doesn’t contain a whole lot of wit or “acidic bite”) I love when Mike does his initial George Woodard impersonation- “I got a whole building here of people…” It needs to be heard to be appreciated, but it gets belly laughs from me every time.

    #71- Nope, it’s the Bugs Bunny marathon for me.


  27. Kilroy says:

    I love this episode so much. The whole thing is great, especially the “Oh, he’s like poo all right” exchange.

    My other big favorites:

    “What would MacGuyver do?”
    Eddie: Get cancelled.

    And when Nick is easily punched back out of the plane by Bob Evil while tring to stop his escape, followed by Crow’s “And it’s all over!”

    I agree with the comments about this film being pretty watchable on its own. There’s an exchange that I love between the cop and the medical examiner on the scene of the plane that crashed with the dead Lisa in it. I’m paraphrasing, but:

    “Can you tell how old the victim was?”

    “Can you tell how stale bread is after it’s been toasted?”

    I love it. That ME is so tired of the cop. There’s backstory that needs filing in.


  28. ck says:

    Well, about Crow #2, since it’s already been observed “It’s just a show I should really just relax”, it does seem that Crow #2 is in 1985 cheese coop land at the end of the episode, BUT he does have a time machine and so can gad about in time and space (sure hope he doesn’t get LOST there), so I favor his traveling to just after Diabolique and working with ConGypsCo.

    Speaking of spares…so what happened to TS’s choir members and two grandmas? Did they survive the crash. :smile: That apartment
    could get very crowded. Agh! And what about Tom’s fabled underwear collection? Surely intended for donation to the Smithsonian.


  29. Omega2010 says:

    I feel this episode is also memorable for the fact the cast and crew turned out to be big fans of MST3K. After the flak the Brains got from Sandy Frank and other filmmakers who got riffed on the show, I’m sure the Brains (as Mike mentions on his DVD intro) were quite glad to get a movie made by fans for once (wasn’t there a story of fans offering their own bad movies for the show to riff?). Also I recall reading that the reaction at the Time Chasers reunion was quite positive and that some people only got mad after a lot of booze was consumed (though the guys do get harsher on the film as it progressed).


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

    That conversation was between Lisa and the cop. Lisa’s the one who asked how old the victim was, because she was trying to find out if it was the skydiving grandmother. So the cop was just engaging in “Law & Order” style crime-scene sarcasm. Not very well, I suppose, but that IS what he was doing. The cabbie also had that little extra bit of business (“ACTING!!!”). Maybe those two actors made extra investments for prolonged speaking roles or something.

    BTW, I don’t know if it’s common knowledge or not, but the movie’s original title was “Tangents.” And that apparently WASN’T Lisa Kudrow, it was Vicky A. Bourn, Producer Peter Beckwith’s girlfriend, in her only screen appearance. Per Daddy-O’s Drive-In Dirt, anyway. As I’m sure has been noticed, the Associate Producers included Peter L. Beckwith Sr. and Barbara A. Beckwith, whom one might guess were the producer’s parents.

    Before seeing this movie, I had never heard of Michael Medved (of “He threw Michael Medved at them!” fame). Now whenever I come across references to Medved, he is forever to me “Pinkboy.”

    Seems kind of unfair about Matt getting fired at the end. I mean, not only had Matt, at that point, not done ANYTHING, but no version of him in the movie really did much super-evil. What’s the moral there, that if you’re not prepared to commit murder to get ahead in business, you should get fired? Oh well.

    All of Tom’s duplicates were blown up in the final episode. I suppose that includes his “grandmothers.” I just wonder what happened to Cambot and Magic Voice. Plus that little bug thing that always scampered across the corridor when the guys entered and exited the theater. I mean, what WAS that, anyway?

    Maybe the Nanites rescued/rebuilt everyone and everything.


  31. Kilroy says:

    Thanks. I figured I was getting it wrong going by memory, especially since I only had my memory to go on.

    It would’ve made good L&O style quippage, had not the actor sounded so damn pissed off.


  32. Spector says:

    Not on the same level as “Space Mutiny” but it’s definitely right up there amongst the best of Season 8, and I really enjoyed the host segments in this one where Crow goes back in time to try to change Mike’s future, and Mike’s “brother” Eddie taking his place on the SOL. Funny stuff!


  33. Matt D. says:

    “Cause in Time Chasers, they don’t take American Express.”


  34. crowschmo says:

    Hey, an episode I have. :smile:

    I like this episode. I thought it was funnier the first few times I saw it, but I still laugh some when I see it.

    And when they’re going down the streets of Rutland, I can say, “Seen it!”

    I’ve seen those re-enactors, too. :mrgreen: There’s a famous battlefield where they do this little bit of re-enacting, the name of which escapes me. (I guess I can look it up). I’m sure that’s where they were filming that part. I remember there distinctly BEING a field.

    My aunt saw them filming this when they were in the back alleyways there, from her office window, and she knows the director and his parents – I mean, producers.

    Another thing about Crow – if Crow #2 goes back and convinces his idiot #1 self NOT to talk Mike out of the temp jobs, and it works, there would be no reason for Crow #2 to go back in the first place. So, here’s where your head should explode. :shock: And it wasn’t Crow #2 that stayed behind in 1985, you see that he clearly goes back to the present, calling his 30-minute ago self a jerk, leaving Crow #1 to do the convincing of Mike…eh, skip it.

    Loved the host segments, which I normally hate in the Sci-Fi era. The Lost in Space thing at the beginning was a little lame, however. I even liked the front-porch like exchange between Mike and Pearl, and I’m usually not too fond of Pearl. I like the little “Wash Me” that is written on a dirty Widowmaker.

    The movie:

    It’s pretty good for a group of indie filmmakers on a low budget. I don’t think I could sit through it unriffed, though.

    About that cabbie: Okay. An ACTOR, who’s from NEW YORK gets a job as a cabbie in…Rutland? GREAT career choice. :roll: Makes perfect sense. That’s where all the roles are, after all. Perhaps he’s a history buff and ended up in a field somewhere. :wink:

    “Sure, I’m an unappealing actor in a bad movie – SURE.”

    “Sorry, I killed you Gary, nothing personal.”

    “He’s making up physics as he goes along.”

    “E.L. Fudge remains in critical condition.”

    Good stuff.


  35. Jane Dobson says:

    “For Castleton!!”


  36. crowschmo says:

    An episode I have. :smile:

    I like this episode. I thought it was funnier the first few times I saw it, but I still laugh at this.

    And as they go down the streets of Rutland, I can say: “SEEN it!”
    I saw those re-enactors, too. They do that in a famous battlefield; the name escapes me at the moment.

    I liked the host segments, even though I don’t normally like the Sci-Fi ones. I even liked the little front-porch type exchange between Mike and Pearl, even though I’m usually not fond of Pearl (again, must reiterate – I DO like Mary Jo). Liked the little “Wash Me” written on a dirty Widowmaker.

    About Crow: It was actually Crow #1 who stayed behind in 1985, as clearly Crow #2 says of his 30-minute ago self what a jerk he was, and goes back to the present (or whatever time-line the SOL is at this point, they are in time and space and who knows where or when they actually are). And if Crow #2 goes back to tell Crow #1 to NOT convince Mike to stop his temp jobs, and it works, Crow #2 wouldn’t have had to go back in the first place, and here’s where your head explodes. :shock:

    As for Eddie: Now, really, would Gypsy have tolerated such a person?

    The movie:

    Pretty good for a bunch of people doing an indie film on a small budget. Don’t think I could have sat through it without the riffing, though.

    The cabbie: Okay. An ACTOR. Who’s from NEW YORK. Moves to…Rutland? GREAT career move. :roll: Perhaps he was a history buff and ended up in a field somewhere… :wink:

    “Sure, I’m an unappealing actor in a bad movie – SURE.”

    “Sorry I killed you, Gary – nothing personal.”

    “He’s making up physics as he goes along.”

    “E.L. Fudge remains in critical condition.”

    “You had the misfortune of running into ME – I’m a life-wrecking idiot.”

    Good stuff.


  37. crowschmo says:

    My posts don’t seem to be going through. I wonder if they’re just not showing up on my end. I might look tomorrow, and I’ll have two up here (now three).



  38. crowschmo says:

    That one went up, but my reviews didn’t. WEIRD. :shock:


  39. Raptorial Talon says:

    I really hate time travel plots, so this film is hard to watch, but it’s a pretty solid episode.

    As for the Crow problem . . . let me introduce the concept that Eddie would have either never found, or never permitted access to, the time machine as Mike did, being as untrusting and self-absorbed as he was – and also that, like Servo, alt-Crow’s personality would be browbeaten and otherwise very different. That would mean Crow #1 would never have gone back in the first place, certainly not in the form we see him in 1985. In fact, since “true” Crow would never have come into contact with Mike in the first place, he’d never be motivated to go back and try to save him, thus never reaching a cause to initiate this chain of events to begin with.

    And then the universe imploded.

    Time travel like this would work better as causality-tracking alternate-universe travel. Sort of. But you can see why Im not into it.


  40. kt says:

    #34- I think that the supermarket lady and the skydiving grandmother are the same lady. She looks like the waitress from the 50’s diner. I think they put way too much blush on the waitress girl and tried to pass her off as an old lady. Maybe I’m wrong; check it out because it really looks like that to me.


  41. Wampa Joe says:

    There are different time travel rules in nearly every fictional universe. MST3K’s seems to offer the following scenario, which is close to Back To The Future’s philosphy:

    When you travel in time, you can alter the present without creating an alternate universe. You merely overwrite what had come before, so Universe A physically becomes Universe B. However, your time-traveling self from Universe A will remain in the past, in order for the new present to have occurred. When Universe B’s (presumably) browbeaten Crow first went back in time during Host Segment 1 (which we never saw, since we were still in Universe A), he simply blinked out of existence or merged with Crow A. That’s why Crow maintained the memories of Universe A when he went back to the present and wound up in Universe B. However, when he went back in the past thirty minutes later, an earlier version of himself, Crow A, was still there. By telling him to bug off and then returning to the present (which was now Universe A once again), he severed the first Crow’s connection to any future, rendering that version an anomaly to work at cheese factories with Patrick.

    Which begs the question: If Mike stayed at the cheese factory before moving to a new temp job, why does he have no memories of Crow?


  42. Finnias Jones says:

    Thanks to post #71. I started watching the Twilight Zone Marathon on SYFY sometime last night and have had it on all day today. So great. Finally saw the episode TV”s Frank quoted in his memorable “I’m the god! I’m the god!” speech.

    This is the longest I’ve stayed on this channel in years. Maybe someday Shout! can make a deal to revive the MST3K Turkey-day tradition.

    And Wampa Joe @#89: your time travel explanation just broke my mind. But I like it.


  43. Chris says:

    I really enjoy this episode. I tend to call Space Mutiny, Time Chasers and Overdrawn at the Memory Bank the Season 8 trilogy of awesome.

    These three stand out as some of my favorite in the series.

    Regarding Time Chasers, I tend to steer away from Time Travel plots, but I find myself enjoying this one. I’ve bought it on DVD, and can actually stomach the un-MST’d version. It’s not a great movie, by any stretch of the imagination. But, to me, it’s watchable.

    #89 – “If Mike stayed at the cheese factory before moving to a new temp job, why does he have no memories of Crow?”

    I would see this along the same lines of why Marty’s mom had no memory of him. Do you remember everyone you worked with ten years ago? I know I don’t. Even if I see them on the street, I might have a hint of familiarity. But, I have no clue who they are or why I should know them.


  44. Uncle Beeel says:

    And it’s not going to go well if you know what I mean.


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

    >>>Which begs the question: If Mike stayed at the cheese factory before moving to a new temp job, why does he have no memories of Crow?

    From “Laserblast,” Crow: “You do a lot of ‘wacky tobaccy,’ Mike? A lot of ‘Mary Jane’? ‘Jokey-Smokey’?”



  46. mikek says:

    I think this episode still fits into MST3K continuity. Here’s a little timeline.

    1. High school Mike: Is part of the swing choir as a freshman/sophmore. Not being mechanically inclined, he fails at both wood shop and auto shop.He later ditches that and continues working with a few others guys, who later become part of his band. He would also have had at least one part-time job during this time.

    2. Cheese factory Mike: Out of high school, Mike joins his older brother Eddie in temp work. After a couple of years, Mike realizes that he wants something better. Keeping the temp work as a way to earn money, Mike attends a community college.

    3. Community college Mike: Mike’s band breaks up. Mike shaves the mustache, gets a haircut and decides to study English literature. It is here that he tries his hand at theater work. He stars in a few college productions of musicals, like Anything Goes. He actually gets into a public university for one year.

    4. University Mike: He parties, takes a part time job at a nearby TGIFriday’s, and eventually gets expelled for making a baking soda bomb. He goes back to temp work.

    5. Temp Mike: Odd jobs here and there eventually bring Mike to Deep 13. The rest is MST3K history.


  47. I’ll have a scotch with a time chaser.


  48. The Bolem says:

    I’ll repeat my nomination of “The Trilogy…OF THE FUTURE!”, as the collective name for the last 3 of season 8.

    I agree that the movie itself is enjoyable because the people behind it, well…cared. They just did care. They made the most of what limited resources they had, and gave it their best shot. And they had the simple decency not to credit H.G. Wells with anything, although they could have justified it far better than the makers of Riding With Death.

    Not that there aren’t a gajillion plotholes and paradoxes waiting to happen. So, leaving several handguns and an uzzi, bodies riddled with their modern bullets, oh, and THE WRECKAGE OF A SMALL PLANE in 1777 isn’t going to have any sort of effect on history? Hell, if Jefferson and Franklin found that, they could’ve started the industrial revolution before England, and once Eli Whitney was on the scene…

    Then again, they probably just hauled it to “Area 14”, were it was forgotten under what would become Miskatonic University. Or maybe I should’ve referenced ‘National Treasure’ instead of Lovecraft.

    Also, after Nick gets shot down upon arriving a few weeks in the past, he pulls out a handgun and shoots back at J.K.’s plane…but where did that gun come from? I don’t recall them establishing Nick being armed, so my guess is the two fishermen who hauled him out just happened to have it laying in their boat in plain sight. I haven’t seen TC uncut, so please correct me if any of this is explained.

    They did release the special edition DVD, right? And what happened with that “NICK of Time” sequel?

    But it took a friend to point out the biggest plot-hole of all, a full fledged movie-killer that I’m surprised no one has mentioned as I type this. Nick’s whole reason for alligning himself with EvilCo. was that he needed money. Well, as Pink Boy pointed out just before trying to walk back to the past from the 2040’s, all he had to do was open a bank account a hundred years ago (or to be safe, sometime after 1929), and come back to the present to withdraw his millions in interest. Surely anyone capable of inventing the Time Transport would have thought of this, and realized it would likely cause negligible side effects compared to letting control of this technology slip into unfamiliar hands, so every bad thing that happened in the movie should have VERY easily been prevented by Nick showing a shred of common sense, making him truly the worst hero in any MSTed movie, for reasons totally unrelated to his appearance.

    The fellow who made this observation claimed to be a conniseur (-sewer?) of time-travel movies, claiming that almost all of them are terrible, but Time Chasers lowered the bar. He backed himself up when I showed it to him too: immediately after Nick tells Lisa, “I have a better idea”, he burst out, “Oh, don’t tell me they’re gonna’ do something stupid like go on a date in the past!”, at which I had to admit he was better than I at calling those sort of things. I’m only good at calling what cop-out’s about to be dubbed into a bastardized anime.

    But seriously, I love this one. It always makes me nostalgic for strolling through video rental stores in the ’90s, since I’d have been lucky to stumble across an obscure no-budget movie this good. And thanks to the ‘bots, hearing “Walkin’ On Broken Glass” always makes me nostalgic for when I first saw the SciFi eps in college. It takes me right to that one secret, cozy corner of the ’90s that honestly didn’t suck.

    Favorite riff, perhaps because it reminds me of the beloved “Carl” riff in Riding With Death:
    “HAH! You didn’t count on the ASSISTANT-Janitor!”

    Runner-up: “Yes, you’ve had the misfortune of running into ME; I’m a life-wrecking idiot…”
    (I always thought Nick saying “At least he didn’t kill ya’ this time”, was supposed to imply that because J.K. was inherently Bob-Evil, he would have eventually killed Pink Boy anyway; not that I concur with that logic. More likely his position in Gencorp was so low he was better off leaving them for greener pastures anyway.)

    Oh, and the name “GenCorp” likely points to a producer being a fan of ‘Jurassic Park’, the book that is, wherein it’s stated clearly that Hammond’s company is called “InGen”. The plane chasing Nick down the tree was clearly ripped off from the book, not the other way around as Crow (?) observed.

    For that matter, just what the hell was that show Nick was watching before the GenCorp commercial came on? Right after Servo says, “The X-Files goes to Dublin”, it sounds like an announcer calls it “Ten Minutes”. Any Vermontonites here know?

    Oh, and my favorite Eddie riff is: “Yeah, nothin’ draws in readers like those ‘Dead Grandma’ pictures.”
    A textbook example of playing off a throwaway line that sounds fine until you think about it for a second.

    Perhaps the initial reaction of the producers at that premier party is testament to MST3K gradually getting meaner towards its movies since they first became fans…but it still wasn’t as mean as it COULD have easily been. In the finale, as Nick and JKR grapple for the controls, you can clearly see telephone poles and all manner of 20th century buildings whizzing by out the windows, yet I didn’t notice it until about my dozenth viewing because no jokes are made at its expense. Now, waaaaay back in the days of the Cave Dwellers, that sort of think helped make a final host segment, but whereas that movie was helmed by a man best known for hastily reediting soft-core porn into other types of exploitation at the last minute, this movie, with it’s humble origins, did not have the budget to correct that problem, so they just let it be something for fans to draw their own laughs from on future viewings, rather than kicking them in another vulnerable spot, and that was quite nice of them.

    Much like, “I don’t drive”, one of those golden moments where whether you’re laughing with or at the movie, it just plain didn’t need any help from the Brains. They could absolutely not have picked a better, stronger experiment to sandwich between Space Mutiny and Overdrawn at the Memory Bank. Five stars…as soon as Sampo gets around to firing that thingy up.


  49. mikek says:

    I think the makers of Time Chasers do deserve some respect for being totally original, in their production that is. Sure, it’s another time travel movie, but at least they didn’t lift footage from other source, unlike Space Mutiny. Is Time Chasers low-budget? Yes? Cheap? Yes. Crappy? No.

    I’m going to guess and say that the show Nick was watching, Ten Minutes, was something the director made prior to Time Chasers. It could have been a student film of his or something like that.

    The real problem with the “deposit money in a bank of the past” idea is that you need period money. I guess the old style dollars that were used for the past 50 years could work, but it’s still a gamble. What if the bills are too different from those at the time you decide to deposit the money?

    That’s why Doc Brown had that case of period correct cash in Back to the Future Part II.


  50. ck says:

    Having period correct cash to use to invest in the past is a problem.Something like Admiral Kirk using McCoy’s eyeglass gift in Star Trek IV would be a possible way around it, or some form of gold.


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