Movie: (1966) A report of drugged chewing gum in Michigan sends a suave super agent to Amsterdam to investigate a sinister crime organization.
First shown: 8/7/93
Opening: Crow and Tom build a robot, who soon becomes annoying
Invention exchange: Frank demonstrates virtual comedy until Dr. F. programs in a few hecklers, J&tB demonstrate micro-golf
Host segment 1: Joel, Crow and Tom are a jazz trio playing the “Secret Agent Super Dragon” theme
Host segment 2: J&tB read through Crow’s latest screenplay: “The Spy Who Hugged Me”
Host segment 3: J&tB discuss spy movie post-kill puns
End: Dr. F.’s holds a super-villain conference call
Stinger: Jumping the Super Dragon, with xylophone accompaniment
Okay, as Crow notes, the only way around it is through it…
• I don’t watch this one often, but when I do, it always surprises me all over again. It’s really a solid episode. The host segments were clever and topical, and the riffing, while not brilliant, is very good. My biggest gripe is the awful awful condition of the print.
• This episode is on Rhino’s Vol. 12.
• Last time around I asked if Minsky the robot is an actual vintage toy, and if that is what it really says. Our commenters said yes and yes.
• Tom invokes “WKRP in Cincinnati” with the mention of “Chy-chy Rodragueez.”
• Callbacks: “I killed that fat barkeep.” (The Beatniks) Also: “Any talent to declare?” (Warrior of the Lost World), a mention of Ward E (Stranded in Space), “…but there was no monster” (Monster A-Go-Go).
• Joel wears his glasses in segment 2, which tells me he’s actually reading his lines off that script.
• Then current: “Herb from Burger King.” Also: “I ate the last Frusen Gladje.”
• Naughty riff: “We’ll be covering you from behind.” Crow: “You’ve been in prison too long.”
• Plot question–why did the bad guys choose a college town in Michigan to test their drug, when it’s fairly clear all their operations are in Europe? I don’t think the movie ever says.
• Frank is great in the ending segment, humming: ” …I sing whenever I sing…” and doing the exact minimum required to assist Dr. F. “Eagerly.”
• A very small cast and crew roundup: Set designer Arrigo Equini also worked on “Danger! Death Ray.” In front of the camera, Marisa Mell was also in “Danger: Diabolik,” Fernand Lamas was also in “Hercules Unchained” and Benito Stefanelli was also in “The Pumaman.”
• Creditswatch: Host segments directed by Trace Beaulieu. Clayton James does hair and makeup for the last time in season 5.
• Fave riff: “Emo, avec lute.” Honorable mention: “Remind your engineers to use coasters on me.”