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Mike Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett reflect on MST3K's final broadcast.

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Episode guide: 906- The Space Children (with short: ‘Century 21 Calling’)

0906s

Short: (1962) A couple of clean-cut kids tour the phone company exhibit at the Seattle’s World’s Fair.
Movie: (1958) The children of rocket technicians come under the control of a mind-controlling blob.

First shown: 6/13/98
Opening: Tom has a kissing booth
Intro: Pearl attempts to take over the worked through officing
Host segment 1: Mike’s the kid from the short! Bonk!
Host segment 2: M&tB have a model rocket; but Pearl has a space program
Host segment 3: Crow lashes out with Jackie Coogan fashions
End: The peace loving blob visits; Pearl’s space program has a problem
Stinger: Dead Professor
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (230 votes, average: 4.01 out of 5)

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• There’s much more good news than bad with this one — a short, some funny segments, great riffing, TV sitcom stars galore — that I can forgive the drab little movie at the center of it all, and a foulup by the Brains.
• This episode is not on DVD and, according to Shout, never will be.
• Paul’s observations are here.
• The opening is light and fun. Mike’s delivery of the line “A kissing booth? WHAT FOR?” is hilarious.
• That’s Patrick as “Lacks” the phone guy.
• The officing sketch goes on a little long, but you can tell Mary Jo is into it. She’s written about “officing” experiences in some of her short stories, so she knows whereof she parodies.
• This was the first short of the Sci-Fi era. There was much rejoicing among fans.
• Short producer Jerry Fairbanks made other shorts for Ma Bell, including ‘Once Upon a Honeymoon.’ Fairbanks was nominated for two Oscars and won one.
• Sharon Lawrence was born in 1961, so that is definitely not her in the short. But wow, it sure looks just like her.
• Naughty riff: Singer: “You’re seeing it all…” Crow: “…at the Annie Sprinkle show…”
• I like how Tom leans over to tell us one more thing as Mike carries him out at the end of the short.
• Segment 1 is one of those “here’s a bit that’s not funny” bits. Again, a little wry for my tastes, but any segment where somebody gets hit by that big clown hammer is okay by me.
• It may not be quite as bad as not recognizing the “Battlestar Galactica” spaceships in “Space Mutiny,” but a lot of fans were stunned that the Brains failed to recognize (or at least comment on) Raymond Bailey, who played Milburn Drysdale on TV’s “Beverly Hillbillies.” Were they too busy coming up with bald jokes (there had to have been dozens) to notice?
• Segment 2 is just really, really funny. Mary Jo really channels Trace in this one and it works brilliantly.
• Nerdy reference that was obscure then and is about to enter the general public’s consciousness: Smaug.
• Second reference this season to St. Blaise, patron saint of ailments of the throat.
• Segment 3 is very reminiscent of seasons 2 or 3, and actually it works pretty well.
• Then-current reference: Let’s get in line for Beanie Babies.
• Behind the scenes: Fans, glum after the announcement a few weeks ago that “the back nine” would not be picked up, were cheered up slightly on June 4, about a week before this episode debuted, when it was announced that Sci-Fi Channel had renewed the channel for season 10 (though privately cast and crew members were all saying that it looked like the last one).
• Cast and crew roundup: Producer William Alland also did “Revenge of the Creature,” “The Mole People,” “The Deadly Mantis” and “This Island Earth.” Director Jack Arnold also did “Revenge of the Creature” and “This Island Earth.” Scriptwriter Bernard C. Schoenfeld also worked on “The Magic Sword.” Cinematographer Ernest Laszlo also worked on “Tormented.” Process photography guy Farciot Edouart also did “Village of the Giants,” as did makeup guy Wally Westmore and sound recorder Charles Grenzbach.
In front of the camera, Peggy Webber was also in “The Screaming Skull,” Johnny Crawford was also in “Village of the Giants.” Russell Johnson was also in “This Island Earth. Vera Marshe was also in “Tormented.” Eilene Janssen was also in “Beginning of the End.”
• CreditsWatch: Directed by Kevin. Dan Breyer begins a three-episode stint as both intern and grip (they must have really liked him). Additional music written and performed by Michael J. Nelson.
• Fave riff from the short: “How do animals learn? Well, as long as they learn to taste good…”
• Fave riff from feature: “Hang on. Niels Bohr’s using the toaster.” Honorable mention: “Go find out what he put on his job application under ‘Do you drink a lot?'”

143 Replies to “Episode guide: 906- The Space Children (with short: ‘Century 21 Calling’)”

  1. snowdog
    Ignored
    says:

    Strange bit of irony: when the Professor is found dead in his chair, the neighbor lady says something to the effect that it was bound to happen because of his lifestyle. One of the bots quips, “Yeah, his sitting was getting way out of control!” Now, of course, we know that too much sitting can, indeed, kill you.

       1 likes

  2. thequietman
    Ignored
    says:

    This is one that didn’t get much attention from me at the time it was in the Sci Fi rotation (other than the fantastic short), but it’s one I’d love to see again on DVD.

    There’s one riff that hasn’t been mentioned yet, though, that is the one that sticks in my head from this episode.

    [During the opening scene as mother tells here precocious kids to be quiet]
    Crow: Kids, quit trying to form a bond with us! We HAD you! Isn’t that enough?

    It seems to sum up the whole movie and perhaps the entire late 1950s with all it’s angst and ennui. Think about it, won’t we?

       5 likes

  3. fireballil
    Ignored
    says:

    I have a couple of theories as to why there were no BH riffs. One is that they were too caught up in writing riffs(not necessarily bald ones) to notice who was on the screen. Another is that they wanted to avoid the more obvious ones like the Battlestar Galactica ones in Space Mutiny. Of course, there is another one, that they didn’t want Servo to yell ‘JEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEED!!!!!!!!!!!‘ every 10 minutes. :smirk:

       2 likes

  4. Depressing Aunt
    Ignored
    says:

    The short is terrific. Love when the spokeswoman is saying (paraphrase) “Have you ever been worried about missing a call when you’re at a friend’s house?” and Tom quietly mutters “No” twice. And that’s only one of what seems like tons of great quips.

    As for the movie. “Is there no man on this earth who has the wisdom and innocence of a child?” BARF to that line, I say! Also, the kids in this movie make Kenny look sweet natured and well-adjusted. It’s just a sleepy little movie for me, not unlike “Phantom Planet.” At least we have this:

    Crow: Let’s talk lingerie. Coogan gets coquettish in this gauzy baby doll with frilly peek-a-boo panty.

    Crow: Here’s the ultra-dignified Mr. Coogan getting a teensy bit *naughty* in this French-cut thong singlet.

       0 likes

  5. codename zirconium head
    Ignored
    says:

    “der fuhrer will like that!”

       0 likes

  6. pondoscp
    Ignored
    says:

    Like I mentioned before, for me 905 and 906 are highlights of Season 9. This is another fun, light, riff of an episode, and I enjoy it more each time I watch it. This was also the very last episode I saw, after having seen all the others, KTMA included.

       1 likes

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

    I think the filmmakers intended the alien to come across not a mere blob but as a Giant Disembodied Brain. So we’ve got a whole “intellect may destroy humanity unless intellect can rescue it instead” subtext. Or not.

    Of course, of the guys had seen the alien as a brain, the show might have been overloaded with jokes about brains throughout SF history, which is a pretty wide field.

    “They’re Fester and the Brain
    Fester and the Brain
    One is a genius…”

    Which reminds me, they didn’t try very hard with the Uncle Fester jokes, did they? Not even one “I’ll shoot ’em in the back!” ?

       1 likes

  8. MWH1980
    Ignored
    says:

    Kevin Murphy going all “Cat Stevens” still cracks me up.

       1 likes

  9. Sansabark
    Ignored
    says:

    Off topic, but what do you think of vol. 29? Coming March 25.

    Untamed Youth
    Hercules And The Captive Women
    The Thing That Couldn’t Die
    The Pumaman

       0 likes

  10. JeremyR
    Ignored
    says:

    I remember seeing that short, but I have absolutely no memory of ever seeing the movie of this episode.

       0 likes

  11. SOLDaria
    Ignored
    says:

    I don’t get the complaints about not spotting Mr. Drysdale. I grew up with repeats of Beverly Hillbillies and I didn’t recognize it was him, and I’m pretty good about that stuff.

       2 likes

  12. jjb3k
    Ignored
    says:

    This is another underrated classic in my book. I put it on a lot, and it always makes me laugh like crazy. Big dumb sci-fi movies from the ’50s have always been MST3K’s bread and butter, and this one is so earnest in its dumbness.

    Someone above asked if this was the first time the opening sketch was directly related to the experiment itself. Not quite – “Attack of the Giant Leeches” and “Zombie Nightmare” both do something similar. This one’s got nothing on the intercom sketch from “Racket Girls”, but it’s still a fun little bit. Patrick does a great walk-on as Lacks.

    “Oh, these monorail designers, they have a one-track mind!”
    “…Why do you lash out like that?”
    I like all the creative ways the Brains reacted to their own bad puns over the years. :D

    “Here, you’re a geek, why don’t you bite the head off this bird?” Mike and the bots are ruthless with this short. I haven’t heard riffing this dark since “Uncle Jim’s Dairy Farm”. “Hi, Grandma!” “Where’s my money?” always makes me bust up laughing. Great host segment, too.

    The movie gets off to a great start, with some of the best-riffed opening credits ever. I always, always lose it at “All And, all the time.”

    Yay, Peggy Webber! If Malcolm Atterbury was Depressing Dad, then she’s Depressing Wife, no question about it. We’ll see her again in “The Screaming Skull”, and she’s just as mopey and ineffectual there. Mike and the bots get miles of riffs out of her passive-aggressive hatred of things like science and sand. (“Let’s see, what else can I hate?”)

    “Quit trying to form a bond with us! We had you, isn’t that enough?” This riff tends to pop into my head a lot whenever I see apathetic parents at my local Walmart.

    One of the kids is Johnny Crawford, a.k.a. Mark McCain from “The Rifleman” (and also Horsey from “Village of the Giants” – remember, the dope who gets a free breast ride from Joy Harmon?) They don’t do a lot of Rifleman riffs aside from the occasional “Paw!”, but that’s only because there’s so many other kids to make fun of in this bunch, from the all-knowing and inexplicably Welsh-accented Bud to the tall lanky one who’s “too old for this group.” Crow sums it up best: “Remind me to never be a child.”

    “…Oh, don’t turn it on!” is one of my favorite closing lines to a host segment ever. And the way charred smoldering Mike just pitches backwards without a word :D

    “I can’t stop! There’s no brakes!”
    “Next time, get a truck with brakes!”

    The riffing in this one keeps delivering one sucker-punch to my funnybone after another. “Sir! Ha ha ha ha ha, sir!”, “I can…peaches, preserves, what?”, “Johnson…” “Caught in zipper.” It never lets up!

    Lighten up, Mike. Servo does a great Cat Stevens. :)

    Castle Forrester blowing up is kind of a dumb note to end on, but what the hell, it doesn’t subtract from the great riffing on display here. A fine episode indeed.

       2 likes

  13. Watch-out-for-Snakes
    Ignored
    says:

    An average episode. As I said up at #80 three (almost 4) years ago, this one has a good short (hey, a short! It’s been awhile..) and the well-dressed Mr. Coogan. Other than that. . . .eh. The Host Segments aren’t very good; the segs with the Mads are perfect examples of the Sci-Fi years not living up to the CC years (as far as Host Segments go). The Coogan fashion show in HS#3 is the best bit, if just for introducing the phrase “crocheted banana warmer” to my ears.

    RIFFS:

    short:

    Servo: “C’mon, lets go grope that Eskimo.”

    Crow: “Did Leni Riefenstahl direct this?”

    movie: “Hello Grandma.”
    Crow: “Where’s my money?”


    movie:

    Servo: “Music by Rick Wakeman here.”

    movie: “Mom, listen.” “Listen to what?”
    Servo: “It’s Brian Eno, mom.”

    Mike: “We’re the Children of the Damned you’ve been hearing about.”

    Crow: “Puked on the BlueBook.”

    Crow: “Hey guys we got a new third base.”

    Servo: “Don’t make me leave my bike in the driveway.”

    Mike: “Phone the devil?”
    Crow: “That’s what I heard.”

    Crow: “Hello, Devil’s office.”

    Crow: “If your area’s not clear, see your doctor.”

    Crow: “Earth vs. nougat.”


    The Space Children reminds me of those early Season 8 episodes,
    but it’s better than most of those.

    3/5

       2 likes

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

    #72 (so it’s an old post, so what)
    “the blob does have to resort to killing people, so you get the feeling these aliens aren’t divine”

    Without being a TOTAL jerk about it, I’d have to say that really isn’t at all conclusive, sorry. Compared to Egypt 13th Century BCE, Project: Thunderer got off easy.

    ===

    #112

    The “Village” guy who got a “ride” was [nick]named “Horsey”? By Bert I. Gordon standards, that’s positively brilliant. ;-)

    ===

    I came across the info that Fester/Hank’s daughter Eadie also played the little Ellinson girl in “Them,” where she set the tone of the film with her classic monologue:

    “*T*H*E*M*!”

    Seems to me like that would’ve been worth at least one or two riffs. Oh well.

    That little girl went on to be, among other things, Robbie Douglas’s love interest in an episode of “My Three Sons.” Blows your mind, don’t it.

    Y’know, when you think about it (“So Don’t Think About It.”), what kind of traumatized reaction to the sight of your parents being torn apart by giant ants is THAT, anyway? You don’t react to inconceivable aberrations beyond your comprehension shattering your life by shouting “[It’s] Them!” That implies a pre-existing familiarity with the aberrations. Oh, again, well.

    Random trivia point, what kind of broken-headed doll was that she was carrying, anyway? Anybody know? Thanks.

       1 likes

  15. Cornjob
    Ignored
    says:

    I always figured that since the little girl didn’t have a word for “giant ant” her mind substituted “Them” instead of “those things” or “the monsters”. She was in shock too. Maybe that put her off her grammar. Great movie. Possibly the best giant bug movie of its’ time.

       1 likes

  16. Cornjob
    Ignored
    says:

    There were two little known sequels to Them! called These! and Those! Plus a rustic remake called Them Thar!

    The Space Children has an almost Annikan Skywalkeresque dislike of sand in it. The “Call the Devil” bit always cracks me up. Is that protocol? How is calling the Devil going to help? Doesn’t that usually make things worse?

    I kinda like the shades of The Day the Earth Stood Still in this movie. Even though the misdirect of making it look like the holy blob was evil until it was revealed to be a peacemaker at the very end comes across as a bit awkward and contrived. Not a terrible movie. Not great, but the good monster is a nice take on the invader from space genre, and compared to Manos, or Monster-a-Go-Go Space Children is almost Shakespearean. The little girl from Them is a plus. Was she ever in a Twilight Zone? She should’ve been.

       3 likes

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

    According to the IMDB, she appeared in episodes of 25 different TV series, starting at age 7, but not Twilight Zone, no.

    Per Wikipedia, she’s still alive at age 68, so even if the Kid Actor Syndrome (I don’t know if that’s the “formal” term for the downward spiral so many child/teen actors seem to end up on, but I’m sure everyone knows what I mean) was prevalent in the 1950s and 1960s, she evidently dodged it.

       2 likes

  18. Mike Flugennock
    Ignored
    says:

    pearliemae says:
    February 25, 2010 at 8:42 am

    …The kids in this one who keep showing up in restricted areas – hey, they’re just acting like Japanese children.

    I think it’s important to remember one big difference, here: the kids in Space Children had super powers — given to them by the glowing alien rock — which enabled them to zombify any adults when the need arose, so they could just waltz in and out of the installation… as opposed to the gaggle of kids in Invasion Of The Neptune Men who accomplished the same thing with nothing but sheer naked chutzpah.

       4 likes

  19. docskippy
    Ignored
    says:

    Look, all I can say is, keep the Space Children away from Alabama.

    Thank you, I’ll be here all week!

       3 likes

  20. goalieboy82
    Ignored
    says:

    docskippy:
    Look, all I can say is, keep the Space Children away from Alabama.

    Thank you, I’ll be here all week!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LoDse9WV9po

       2 likes

  21. thequietman
    Ignored
    says:

    Okay kids, we’ve seen the ocean now it’s back to Iowa!

    This is a palate cleanser of a movie, but a great short and host segments. Enjoyable, with a few big laughs, always a good time.

    I would like to address something else:

    “• This episode is not on DVD and, according to Shout, never will be.”

    Statements like this seem needlessly pessimistic to me. Yes, it’s not going to be on DVD anytime soon, because another company currently holds the distribution rights. However, at the beginning of the Shout! era, how many other episodes were considered unreleasable? So join me in patiently waiting. I’ll be on the corner of Van and Cleave…

    Fave riff from the short:
    “From a telephone a hundred miles away…”
    Tell your mistress you can’t get away from your wife!

       3 likes

  22. Sitting Duck
    Ignored
    says:

    The Space Children passes the Bechdel Test. Mrs. Brewster and Mrs. Johnson exchange general pleasantries. Also, Mrs. Johnson begs Eadie to reject the Holy Blob’s commands, who in turn refuses to comply.

    The host segment where Mike mimics the Aryan spazz is probably as meh as a host segment can get.

    Jackie Coogan in shorts is an unpleasant sight.

    Boozy Stepdad must have the same warping powers as the Beast of Yucca Flats, the way the distance between him and Tim during the beach chase kept dramatically changing.

    Regarding the hullabaloo over the genre restrictions Sci Fi insisted on, I’m indifferent. I find the episodes featuring movies from outside the SF/fantasy/horror genres to be among my least favorites (though there are a few I like).

    Overall, this film looked as if it were trying to be profound, much like This Island Earth. Also like This Island Earth, it fell a bit short in its ambitions.

    klisch:
    This must be one of them obscure episodes because to be honest with you, I have never heard of this one before until right now. I know I’m a big fan of the show but now I’m questioning myself because of this.

    Don’t feel too bad about it, since the episode hasn’t gotten a home video release and looks like it never will.

    mikek: About Jackie Coogan, what the hell happened. I’ve seen him that Charlie Chaplin movie.How the hell did a cute little kid like that turn into the bald, lumpy, tiny shorts and womany robe wearing man we see in The Space Children?

    Some people just don’t age well. Consider Queen Victoria. Most people, upon hearing the name, picture the overweight, almost toad-like middle-aged woman seen in the photographs. However, in her younger days, she was actually quite attractive.

    Mike “ex-genius” Kelley:
    Ah, I’m late to this party for various reasons, but it occurred to me that the reason there were no Beverly Hillbilly jokes was because, without his wig, Raymond didn’t look like Mr. Drysdale.

    Similarly, it’s no surprise there weren’t any Doctor Who riffs in The Land That Time Forgot. Even if there had been a Classic Who fan on the writing staff, Anthony Ainley doesn’t really look much like the Master without the goatee.

    Favorite riffs

    These monorail designers have a one track mind.

    I’m driving the monorail drunk. So what?

    Well I’m glad to know that the future has constant organ music.

    Hey, we’re young and perky. Get the hell out of our way!

    “Hello, dear. I was just talking to Sarah.”
    But I left her hanging. I love doing that.

    Soon, you’ll have all your friends hanging up on you and dreading your calls.

    How do you like it when the lawn piddles on you?

    Don’t examine your soul. Just get speed dialing!

    Darlene was arraigned in Superior Court, County of Los Angeles.

    Okay, we’ve seen the ocean. Now let’s head back to Iowa.

    And if me and the kids aren’t there when you get back, just accept it.

    Lord of the Flies action figures!

    General, at this point in time, I am scared.

    The pilot for Baywatch was very different from the series.

    I can’t believe they left without their spazz.

    He’s going to use his coconut-powers spanking machine on me!

    He knows about your embezzling. Does that mean anything to you?

    Kids, it’s laying eggs in my chest. Is that normal?

    “Don’t cry, Mom.”
    But I’ve got thirty cases of Shmirnov I don’t know what to do with.

    He has real screen absence.

    I can get Cousin It to drive you later.
    And the editor comes to the writer’s rescue.

    “Hello, Dad.”
    Hello Agent X-3… I mean, son.

    “That brakes are gone! The steering wheel is gone!”
    And the cigarette light is broken.

    “What happened?”
    Well ultimately, I think you’re a spazz, Earl.

    “What’s the matter, Hank? What happened?”
    I just saw myself in the mirror.

    I’m trying to solve a crisis, and all you do is smoke and criticize.

    Sometimes, when you’re bald, random thoughts bombard your head and just worm their way in.

    “A man of science is like a deep sea diver. He mustn’t be afraid to walk down where it’s dark and frightening in the hopes of scooping up a handful of truth.”
    I think I just got the bends from that analogy.

    Would you mind having some sort of expression while I’m talking? It would make me feel better.

    A movie can’t have too many grey, talky scenes.

    Someone here to see Grandma Blob?

    “Clear the area.”
    And if your area’s not clear, see your doctor.

    At least we got powdered orange drink out of all this hoo hah.

    Well, that didn’t work, men. Let’s hunt for sand dollars.

    “You mean the warheads in Moscow and Prague and London, they’re all useless?”
    “Yes.”
    But they overlooked Canada, and Canada takes over the world!

    Wait ’til he’s out of sight. Then load up Thunderer Number Two.

       1 likes

  23. jay
    Ignored
    says:

    Was it the angst (you gotta love those guttural German words) of working on a massive weapon of death that made all the grownups so dark? And “The Professor”. Oh My. A very wise little raisin of a woman once commented, “Alcohol makes men mean; mean and lazy.” For a movie that professes to have an uplifting peace message this one sure seems mean and lazy.

    PS – I think Queen Elizabeth is a perfectly nice looking woman and I scoff at your toad comment. Don’t make me slap you with a large fish.

       2 likes

  24. goalieboy82
    Ignored
    says:

    jay:
    Was it the angst (you gotta love those guttural German words) of working on a massive weapon of death that made all the grownups so dark?And “The Professor”.Oh My.A very wise little raisin of a woman once commented, “Alcohol makes men mean; mean and lazy.” For a movie that professes to have an uplifting peace message this one sure seems mean and lazy.

    PS –I think Queen Elizabeth is a perfectly nice looking woman and I scoff at your toad comment.Don’t make me slap you with a large fish.

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-royals-anniversary/going-strong-after-70-years-uks-queen-elizabeth-and-prince-philip-celebrate-platinum-anniversary-idUSKBN1DF0M5
    you are right about that.

       1 likes

  25. KidFlash
    Ignored
    says:

    Not-Sharon Lawrence in the short is an actress by the name of Carol Christensen, if you were wondering.

    I was watching The Three Stooges In Orbit (shot perhaps around the time of the short) recently, and was stunned to see she was playing the role of The Kooky Scientist’s Cute Daughter. Same hairdo and all.

       2 likes

  26. Johnny Drama
    Ignored
    says:

    klisch:
    This must be one of them obscure episodes because to be honest with you, I have never heard of this one before until right now. I know I’m a big fan of the show but now I’m questioning myself because of this.

    This is one of my favorite episode of Season 9. I’ve always got the impression that if this episode was officially released, it may get a lot more love. Same goes for the other 11 unreleased episodes (as of the time of this writing.).
    It’s not the greatest episode ever, or even close. But for me, this episode is very comfortable, reminiscent of season 2.
    It was also the last episode of the original series I saw.

       0 likes

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

    Finnias Jones:
    Jackie Coogan’s flamboyant wardrobe (but not the sketch based on it, although I do like Crow’s mid-segment exhortation: “No, no we can’t, Mike. I’m hurting, I’ve got to lash out, and we’re gonna see this thing through ’til the end.”).

    “If Crow gonna suffer, EVERYBODY gonna suffer!”

    Dave:
    About “21st Century Calling:” that World’s Fair was a serious deal.

    Yeah? So how come Johnny wasn’t…at the Fair?

    mikek:
    It makes no sense for Pearl to set up a phone system like that when she already has perfect visual and audio communication with the SOL.

    Pearl’s a mad scientist. She does mad things. Because she’s mad. Mad, I tell you.

    MiqelDotCom:
    I found the biblical references in the film kinda interesting, it’s the planetary salvation by angels-as-aliens theme but with the angels as mind-controlling glowing blobs who kill anyone who gets in their way.

    So, aside from the glowing blobs part, fairly true to biblical accounts, then…

    Watch-out-for-Snakes:
    Servo:“C’mon, lets go grope that Eskimo.”

    It’s “Inuit,” actually.

    While mocking the short’s political incorrectness, the Brains were themselves politically incorrect. Gad, the irony…

       3 likes

  28. Michael Kuzmanovski
    Ignored
    says:

    Damn shame this one can’t be on DVD. Even when it was on the Sci-Fi Channel it eluded me. I watched it when the episode premiered, but I didn’t record it then. After the show was cancelled I was taping every episode that was rerun. I did tape a The Space Children, but I missed part of it. A few years later I bought a good taped copy and then a DVD-R of The Space Children.

    What is the deal with this one? Stubborn rights holders or just lack of interest in putting out a regular DVD of the movie?

       0 likes

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

    I’m not sure what would’ve been a good “Mr. Drysdale riff” other than the “Jethro wants to be a rock star” riff, anyway. I don’t remember him having an actual catchphrase as such. At least Uncle Fester had (as noted) “I’ll shoot him in the back!”

    BTW, although no one asked, in the 1960s TV series, Fester was Morticia’s uncle; this was clearly stated in the flashbacks in the two-parter “Morticia’s Romance” (yes, dialogue in earlier episodes claimed that he was an Addams by heritage but that could have been meant figuratively and IMHO flashbacks top dialogue, anyway).

    Any other incarnation of Fester is not Jackie Coogan and thus irrelevant to consideration here. Besides, I prefer the 1960s Addams Family. ;-)

    swh1939:
    Yes, Raymond Bailey wore a toupee during the entire run of The Beverly Hillbillies, but he didn’t wear it in this film.He went back and forth freely.He did two Twilight Zone episodes; one with and one without his toupee.

    Per the IMDB, he was in three episodes:

    Escape Clause
    Back There
    From Agnes: With Love

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  30. The Original EricJ
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    touches no one’s life, then leaves:
    It’s “Inuit,” actually.
    While mocking the short’s political incorrectness, the Brains were themselves politically incorrect. Gad, the irony…

    It’s the rule of the shock comic–Political incorrectness is always the OTHER guy’s fault.
    (You can call someone a drunken beer-swilling slob whose arteries will explode, but how dare that same person express an outdated insensitive social belief!!) ;)

    touches no one’s life, then leaves:
    BTW, although no one asked, in the 1960s TV series, Fester was Morticia’s uncle; this was clearly stated in the flashbacks in the two-parter “Morticia’s Romance” (yes, dialogue in earlier episodes claimed that he was an Addams by heritage but that could have been meant figuratively and IMHO flashbacks top dialogue, anyway).
    Any other incarnation of Fester is not Jackie Coogan and thus irrelevant to consideration here. Besides, I prefer the 1960s Addams Family. ;-)

    The Coogan-related fan temptation to spin off a 60’s TV-vs-80’s movie Addams Family discussion (or Lisa “Wednesday” Loring’s theory that “Addams was the Marx Bros., while the Munsters were the Stooges”) is great, but I will manfully avoid the temptation.
    Let’s just say that Fester being Morticia’s uncle (not Gomez’s brother) was one of the other minor things the Raul Julia movie got wrong for the essential things it got right.

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  31. Sitting Duck
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    jay:
    PS –I think Queen Elizabeth is a perfectly nice looking woman and I scoff at your toad comment.Don’t make me slap you with a large fish.

    The hell? I said Queen Victoria, not Elizabeth. Have a look and see if you change your mind. I’ll admit toad-like is a bit harsh, but not entirely unjustified.

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  32. Colossus Prime
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    touches no one’s life, then leaves:

    Any other incarnation of Fester is not Jackie Coogan and thus irrelevant to consideration here. Besides, I prefer the 1960s Addams Family. ;-)

    Well, there is lots of evidence that Jackie Coogan lynched an innocent man, so at least for me that goes a ways into how high that pedestal sits.

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  33. jay
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    says:

    Sitting Duck: The hell? I said Queen Victoria, not Elizabeth. Have a look and see if you change your mind. I’ll admit toad-like is a bit harsh, but not entirely unjustified.

    By Golly, you did say Victoria. Good thing since I already grilled the big fish that was set aside for slapping. Bear in mind that Queen Victoria spent her life burdened with a multitude of petticoats, a necessity considering the sun never set on her empire, and that kind of load would wear anybody down!

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  34. Ray Dunakin
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    says:

    My favorite riff from the movie is when one of the kids is caught inside the military base, and the bigwig says, “Sergeant, take him out.” I think it was Tom who replied in a shocked voice as the sergeant, “Sir???!!”

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  35. touches no one's life, then leaves
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    Tork_110:
    I think this movie makes a great compare/contrast with another Cold War MST3k episode, Rocket Attack USA.Basically it’s “When will the MADness end!?Can’t we listen to the children and just get along?” vs “That’s why we GOT TO CRUSH THEM!”

    However, Hank “upsetting shorts” Johnson went even further than Rocket Attack by suggesting that the USA PRE-EMPTIVELY bomb the USSR. “There stands the Thunderer, and what are we waiting for…?”

    Just in case we missed his point, Brewster tries to refute him by noting that the USA has never STARTED a war, indicating that that’s exactly what Hank wants to do. And he seems so jolly, too…

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

    Cabbage Patch Elvis:
    Is it just me, or is “Thunderer” an odd-sounding word?

    It’s been in use in various capacities for well over two hundred years (at the very least) so, yes, it may very well be just you. ;-)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thunderer

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  37. touches no one's life, then leaves
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    Mike “ex-genius” Kelley:
    If they were going to try and touch on BH they would have had to do something along the lines of “Granny, I think that hair tonic you gave me backfired!”.

    Fortunately, the poultice she gave him in Episode #38, “Hair-Raising Holiday,” October 2, 1963, made it all grow back. ;-)

    Miss Mary:
    Whenever I serve hot dogs, I always say “Intestines stuffed with nitrates and pig snouts!”

    You rarely have the same guests over twice, I’m guessing. ;-)

    jjb3k:
    They don’t do a lot of Rifleman riffs aside from the occasional “Paw!”

    Perhaps ironically, it never occurred to me that those were Rifleman riffs since AFAIK I’ve never seen a single episode of Rifleman. I thought those were Opie Taylor riffs because the kid kind of looked like Opie Taylor. Shrug.

    jjb3k:
    from the all-knowing and inexplicably Welsh-accented Bud

    Aside from the fact that I, like any number of other people, wouldn’t (and apparently didn’t) recognize a Welsh accent if I heard one, maybe Bud was born and spent his early childhood in Wales. The government sends its employees and their families all over the place. Really, the things, you people, balk, et cetera. ;-)

    Cornjob:
    The “Call the Devil” bit always cracks me up. Is that protocol? How is calling the Devil going to help? Doesn’t that usually make things worse?

    “Enh, better get The Devil on the horn now that Heaven’s Holy Blob is involved…”

    Mike Flugennock:
    I think it’s important to remember one big difference, here: the kids in Space Children had super powers — given to them by the glowing alien rock — which enabled them to zombify any adults when the need arose, so they could just waltz in and out of the installation… as opposed to the gaggle of kids in Invasion Of The Neptune Men who accomplished the same thing with nothing but sheer naked chutzpah.

    And yet Japanese children nevertheless, just like the Space Children, seemed to have some sort of collective hive-mind. It’s almost like the Space Brains got cracking in Japan years earlier. Makes you think, don’t it? Or not.

    However, I’m unsure that it’s appropriate to use the words “kids” “chutzpah” and “naked” in the same sentence…

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  38. Speedy B.
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    “Ren & Stimpy music!”

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  39. Cornjob
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    Is calling the Devil standard operating procedure for vehicle breakdowns in the army? It seems like overkill. And how did they get the Devil’s phone number anyway? Is his number listed or do they have a contract with him for vehicle maintenance? Does The Devil attend to road repair personally, or does he send Asmodeus out with some jumper cables and a lug wrench?

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  40. Cornjob
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    I was looking up the names of different angels and categories of celestial beings recently, and I didn’t notice where the Holy Blob belongs in the angelic hierarchy.

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

    Cornjob:
    I was looking up the names of different angels and categories of celestial beings recently, and I didn’t notice where the Holy Blob belongs in the angelic hierarchy.

    That might be because riffs notwithstanding, it wasn’t a BLOB, it was a BRAIN.

    ;-)

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  42. jay
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    touches no one’s life, then leaves: That might be because riffs notwithstanding, it wasn’t a BLOB, it was a BRAIN.

    ;-)

    It was actually a holy blob/brain made entirely out of celestial spaghetti. May his noodly appendages keep us all safe from other blobs with their tiny hands on nuclear bombs. Can I get a pasta amen?

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  43. Brad Filippone
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    I’m getting the impression that I’m one of the few people who actually liked the movie. Rather bland, I admit, but the plot was quite good. Although as a lifelong Gilligan’s Island fan, I certainly felt part of it was a bit disturbing.

    And at the beginning of the short, how many people got “The Simpsons” monorail song stuck in his or her head?

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