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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: 507- I Accuse My Parents (with short: ‘The Truck Farmer’)

Short: (1954) A look at the then-new techniques that enabled farmers to rush produce to market.
Movie: (1944) Ruined by — but in astonishing denial about — his boozy, carousing parents, a neglected essay-contest-winning young man gets involved with gangsters.

First shown: 9/4/93
Opening: Tom Servo is naked!
Invention exchange: The Mads present cake ‘n’ shake, and Frank bakes the exotic dancer right into the recipe; J&tB demonstrate the junk drawer organizer
Host segment 1: Joel analyzes the bots’ art therapy projects
Host segment 2: J&tB reenact the night club scene from the movie
Host segment 3: J&tB analyze troubled Jimmy from the movie
End: The bots try to reenact the cafe scene from movie to scam a hamburger, Joel reads a letter, the Mads are digging out Rodney
Stinger: “What? What’s so funny?”
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (115 votes, average: 4.86 out of 5)

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• Another in a string of wonderful episodes. The movie is a little bland, but the riffing is great. And, you know, I begin to suspect that, for any given episode you can sort of tell whether the movie held their interest and sparked a lot of discussions and ideas or whether their minds were wandering, based on how much the host segments have to do with the movie. You can tell they were really following the movie this time. I watched this on a big screen (with Joel sitting next to me) a few years ago and the audience was simply roaring with laughter all the way through.
• Early versions of the Rhino packaging of this episode had a small goof. It lists the episode number as 424. It got fixed in later printings.
• Great line: “How many times have you gone rootin’ through your junk drawer muttering to yourself ‘Where’d I put that gun?’” Toward the end of the movie, our hero roots through the junk drawer in the hall table of his parents’ house, looking for a gun. Think that moment may have been the inspiration for this host segment?
• Now, duck news! Here’s Hugh McQuacken! They do the “quacking” gag five times, and it gets funnier each time. For those who don’t get it (and I remember that every time this show aired, a number of people would post questions online asking, “Why were they quacking?”), look at the wall of the hallway outside the door.
• The short would be incredibly depressing if not for the riffing. As it is, it’s still a LITTLE depressing.
• Sam Newfield did NOT direct “Jungle Goddess” as Joel says when his credit appears. He DID, however, direct the movies in episodes 103- The Mad Monster, 208- Lost Continent and 520- Radar Secret Service. He also directed the infamous “Terror of the Tiny Town,” the all-midget Western. Again, this was the era when you couldn’t just look stuff up on the then-fledgling, Usenet-based IMDB. What could have led them to have made that mistake? I’ll bet it has something to do with the use of the phrase “hamburger sammich with French-fried potatoes,” which is used in this movie and in “Jungle Goddess.”
• In the previous episode Crow was shattered. This week Tom gets painted. They really started doing stuff to the bots in this period.
• Then somewhat current reference: Joe Bolster. Joel is an admirer.
• Host segment 1 is, um, quirky, and only vaguely movie-related. Peggy Cass is an odd element.
• Segment 2 is a riot, especially Joel’s takes to the camera. I think it works so well because it comes IMMEDIATELY after the actual movie sequence. Nice to see Gypsy was willing to go along. Also, listen for another “wha happa!”
• I love the PA announcements J&tB do during the second song. “Cheese fries are up!”
• Another VERY movie-focused sketch in segment 3, and very funny.
• Obscure reference: the religious TV show “Insight.” I remember watching that a little, but to me they always felt like defanged “Twilight Zone” episodes.
• Some people wondered why Anne Blythe’s name is written on the tank. I suspect they’re just trying for World War II authenticity.
• I remember that somebody in the AOL MSTie forum – or it might have been on RATMM – had an idea for a MSTie cookbook. My submission was a hamburger sammich with French-fried potato garnish, complete with handgun on the side and a required trip to church every Sunday.
• That’s Brad Keeley as Rodney in his first on-camera role.
• Cast and crew roundup: As noted above: director Sam Newfield also directed “Mad Monster,” “Lost Continent” and “Radar Secret Service.” Special effects (?!) guy Ray Mercer also worked on “Lost Continent,” “Radar Secret Service,” “Last of the Wild Horses,” “The Sinister Urge” and “The Beast of Yucca Flats. Art director Paul Palmentola also worked on “Teen-Age Crime Wave.” Set designer Harry Reif also worked on “Radar Secret Service.” “Women of the Prehistoric Planet” and “The She-Creature” and was assistant director of “Gunslinger.”
In front of the camera, super-hottie Mary Beth Hughes was also in “Last of the Wild Horses.” Edward Earle was also in “The She-Creature.”
• CreditsWatch: Host segments directed by Trace Beaulieu.
• Fave riff from the short: “Texans!” Honorable mention: “A pre-teen is put to work; her beauty will soon fade.”
• Fave riff: How do ya like my swingin’ church, son? Honorable mention: o/` I knew I’d go from rags to riches… o/`

169 Replies to “Episode guide: 507- I Accuse My Parents (with short: ‘The Truck Farmer’)”

  1. The goof is they’ve mixed up Jimmy’s father with Charlie Blake. (They DO look kind of alike.) As a result, Jimmy’s father seems to have the hots for his future daughter-in-law. ;)

       0 likes

  2. jerry says:

    Son, it’s been two weeks and you haven’t touched your hamburger…

       5 likes

  3. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    ( RDVDPE : wrong episode number right ? )

    bland ? gosh I think the movie is phenom. So tawdry, so cheap… what a world this boy lives in. He’s 17 maybe 18, he’s dating a woman in her mid-twenties who in turn is seeing a man old enough to be all of their fathers. The drinking, the vaguely implied sex, that hot friend of mom’s putting the moves on Jimmy. It’s glorious !

    The ‘are you happy skit’ is some of their finest work. Art therapy, not so much.

    Nice call on Insight…. in fact as a non-believer I found Insight a heck of a lot creepier than Twilight Zone. Like Davey & Goliath channelling Edgar Allen Poe.

    Word on Shorts : If we ignore the serials, Shorts work because of their intensity of purpose. They are short sharp shots of MESSAGE MESSAGE MESSAGE. They are so nakedly biased that they can’t help but be the creepiest / funniest targets. Bow down before the Truck Farnmer !

       9 likes

  4. Kenneth Morgan says:

    Am I the only one who actually liked the songs in this one? They just seemed like good-natured, more-or-less typical movie songs for this period. Not great, but enjoyable.

    The riffing is great for this one, particularly the way they keep adding to JImmy’s lies. And I thought the 2nd & 3rd host segments were among the season’s (maybe even the series) best. And did anyone who made the Truck Farmer short actually notice the stalled train when mentioning “high-speed rail transportation”?

    One last question: I remember Joe Bolster and Nick Bakay from “Sports Monster”. Who was the third guy in the team?

       5 likes

  5. GizmonicTemp says:

    I always thought they put Jimmy’s father on the cover on purpose since he and Kitty were both major influences in Jimmy’s life.

    Is it just me, or when Jimmy gets to Al’s restaurant doesn’t each and every riff just kill you? I LOVE it!!

    I have a movie question. When the judge passes sentence on Jimmy and “suspends” his 5 year prison term, doesn’t that mean he still has to serve 5 years in prison at some point in the near future? Doesn’t seem like a happy ending to me.

    My full review is here.

       2 likes

  6. GizmonicTemp says:

    The songs were cool. “Happy in Your Work” (insert “Bridge of River Kwai” comment here) was good, but I’m not sure about the “kiss-way to the promised land”.

    And as a guy, I must say that Mary Beth Hughes was quite the female specimen! (When the movie was made. I’m not sure about now. [Yes, I know she’s dead]).

    Speaking of that, Sampo, how about a weekend discussion thread on “Hottest Leading Babe”?

       2 likes

  7. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    ( oops, wrong DVD packaging error. That’ll teach me to rely on my ever-deteriorating memory )

       0 likes

  8. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    re GizmonicTemp #5 good question….

    Suspended sentence
    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    A suspended sentence is a legal construct. Unless a minimum punishment is prescribed by law, the court has the power to suspend the passing of sentence (generally for a period of three years) and place the offender on probation. It is the passing of the sentence, not the sentence itself, that is being suspended. This means that if the person is convicted of another offence during the period when the passing of sentence had been suspended, then the person may be sentenced for the original offence.

    Suspended sentence is necessary for probation, but in cases where the penalty is recorded as suspended sentence it is often given to mitigate the effect of the penalty. It is common practice for judges to hand down a suspended sentence to first-time offenders who have committed a minor crime, and for prosecutors to recommend a suspended sentence as part of a plea bargain.

    In Canada, a suspended sentence still results in a criminal record even though it is possible that no time is served or other penalty incurred.

    In some states of the USA, such as Pennsylvania, suspended sentences have not been authorized by the legislature and are therefore illegal. Com. v. Hamilton, 488 A.2d 277 (Pa. Super. 1985); 42 Pa CSA s. 9721.

    Some jurisdictions allow for suspended sentences to be imposed even for fairly serious crimes. An example is the use of suspended death sentences in China, where an offender receives what might appear to be a reletively lenient sentence, but will automatically be executed if subsequently convicted of any other crime. This is used as a way to offer offenders with no previous criminal record a second chance, but with very serious consequences if they fail to reform.

       6 likes

  9. Kenneth Morgan says:

    Oh, one other question:

    Recently, I saw an actual Junk Drawer Organizer on sale at Wal-Mart. I noticed the company that makes it is based in Minneapolis. Does Joel get a piece of the profits from this thing?

       6 likes

  10. pumafan says:

    I too find this particular experiment charming. From the quack-quack (like an MST easter egg) to Jimmy’s triumph in the essay (gee, the whole town’s talking about it, and ‘hey I won the ‘get the crap kicked out of you’ contest!). A good MST to introduce newbies to, doncha think?

    And as far as MST inventions that took root — check out the Wiffle Shoes, otherwise known as Crocs (ugh).

       6 likes

  11. Sitting Duck says:

    Favorite riff from the short: “Stupid trees! Gawd I hate ’em.” Maybe it’s just me, but it seems as if Crow always gets the best ones.

    Near the end of the short, Joel says something to the effect of, “Has anyone actually seen a truck?” There was the one which the farmhands were loading carrots on.

       3 likes

  12. Dyne says:

    This is my favorite episode of the Joel era, most especially because I love running gags more than anything and every single one they do in this episode is done especially well:
    -Accusing/suspecting the parents
    -Jimmy’s winning the essay contest
    -Jimmy’s eternal shoe salesman career
    -Quackin’ at the door
    -LIAR! LIAR! LIAR!
    -Every day being Jimmy’s birthday
    -People being happy with their work
    -Jimmy’s ever-expanding lies
    And so on. While most of these don’t run through the whole episode, they still work. For the Mike era, Night of the Blood Beast is the best in terms of running gags just because they do all of the “Steve” stuff so well (which is very surprising, actually).

       6 likes

  13. happy says:

    Good funny episode..Mary Beth Hughes was in a good amount of other low budget good movies like the Great Flamarian and a few others in the classic era..

       1 likes

  14. M "And If I Was In My Underwear And You Were On The Trapeze" Sipher says:

    Oh yeah, this is easily a “Top 5” episode for me, one to show someone new. It fires on all cylinders. The opening skit could have been kinda saccharine and unfunny, then Crow opens his yap. (“You’ll get beat up ‘cuz you’re a freak!” is delivered so cheerfully and matter-of-factly. My father nearly hurt himself laughing at that line when he caught it passing by on the first airing.) The breakdown of Jimmy mental issues. The short is rapid-fire, the movie is just good enough to hold interest, but just blitheringly stupid enough to provide plenty of material.

    Medium #3… not just vaguely-implied sex. Vaguely-implied swinger sex! Mom and dad were snuggled up to other folks at that party! Woo! Also… on the drinking. It’s implied that Jimmy actually drinks (we dfon’t actually see him imbibe, do we?), and yes, he’s 17 or 18 tops. Everybody offers him booze. It is perhaps a failing of the film (who’d-a-thunk it?) that I’m not sure if this is considered “normal” for the era.

    Speaking of failings, I can’t help but compare this one to another Parental Failure film to grace MST, Ed Wood’s The Violent Years. And I have to say, despite Ed Wood’s staggering incompetence, Years did do something more realistic than Parents… in that Paula’s situation is actully dimly more believable than Jimmy’s. Sure, she’s just pure evil right out of the womb while her parents, while distracted, sure seem to try and love her and each other as best they can and then are told they’re worse than Hitler… and then there’s the patently ridiculous Communism angle…

    … um… I had a point… Oh yeah!

    Paula’s just robbing gas stations and terrorizing young couples. As far as teenager troubles go… well, pretty believeable. (Forgiving the male rape scene. I mean, that does happen, but…) And then there’s tragedy and bad things happen, including a three-hour long manifester by the judge.

    Jimmy… he coincidentally lands a super-hot girlfriend (yes, she is easy on the eyes!) who instantly falls in love with him (well, his lies), and she happens to be dating the biggest most successful mobster in town, who happens to think “I’ll use the boy” and gives him gobs of money even though he’s already doing well financially. And he happens to try and rob the burger joint of a meatfaced angel and he happens to be able to get out of all the bad stuff he was too stupid to realize he was in and there’s a great big happy ending and everything’s okay. A happy ending in a cautionary tale? What the HELL?

       7 likes

  15. Besides being in “Last of the Wild Horses,” Mary Beth Hughes was also in one of the Three Stooges’ then-rare feature films, “Rockin’ in the Rockies.” I remember watching it and thinking “That lady looks familiar…”

    Speaking of the Stooges, George Lloyd (“Did you know the role of Al Frazier was coveted at that time?”) was also a supporting player in some Stooge films, most notably “Crime on their Hands.” (You can’t miss that voice.) He also had a role in Laurel and Hardy’s “The Dancing Masters,” playing alongside Robert Mitchum, of all people.

    Anyway, I love this episode, with the crew’s references to “the Superman set” and “that Hal Roach music”. I agree, the songs are kind of fun in that kooky sort of way, especially “Are You Happy In Your Work?” (Joel: “Don’t sing this to me on a Monday!)

    What’s interesting to note is that Mary Beth Hughes gets top billing over the nominal lead, Robert Lowell. I think it’s because she was the biggest “star” poverty row outfit PRC could afford, and even she was pretty C-list. I do agree, she’s easy on the eyes and pretty in that forties sort of way.

    I wish they’d done more thirties-forties pseudo-noir stuff. It’s all so ham-handed and goofy that it almost mocks itself. The only other one they did that I can think of is “The Brute Man (1944)”.

       3 likes

  16. underwoc says:

    This episode is always a pick-me-up for me. I love the kind of rosy innocence that covers most movies from the 1940’s – even when their as dark as this on is. “hee hee. She’s drunk!”

    I hope nobody else has the urge to compare/contrast this film with J.D. Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye. Something about kids and nightclubs…

    Oh, and Mary Beth Hughes was definitely gorgeous, and a much better actress than her resume would indicate. She was in The Ox-Bow Incident, which is one of the best westerns ever. Odd that you can connect it to Terror of Tiny Town so easily…

       2 likes

  17. lou stoolz says:

    One simple thing in this experiment puts me on the floor every time…when the chick is getting up to sing in the farm-themed night club (?!) and just as she begins she does this jerky, jaunty little head movement, accompanied by Crow’s perfectly timed “Eeeeeee!” Hilarious!

       1 likes

  18. GizmonicTemp says:

    Not a Medium #8 – I see. Thanks. But who knows? Now that Jimmy has tasted the thrill of the crime, he may set out on a new dark path.

    pumafan #10 – It took me FOREVER to realize why Crow was quacking! Just a testament to the attention to detail the Brains had.

    Also, I’m compiling a list of religious oriented riffs, so if anyone catches one, let me have ’em!

    Jimmy – “Sir, I don’t understand the Holy spirit. Is it a bird?”

       3 likes

  19. Hamdingers says:

    If I had to pick a favorite episode, this would be it. I even like the movie itself in it’s own goofy way.

    Great gateway episode for non-Misties I have found.

    One thing bothers me though – in the end Jimmy is remanded into the custody of… HIS PARENTS?? Then what was the point?

    “Like my hat? I made it!”

       3 likes

  20. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    Agreed. Excellent bunny slope episode.

       3 likes

  21. SIRHAMHAT says:

    I loves this episode and I’m glad to see such positive reaction from everyone else! The scene where Jimmy is dreaming of the episode when his Mom comes in drunk is hilarious. And the fact that Crow does the same joke twice, kills me.
    Silly Girl: “Tee hee, she’s drunk!”
    Crow: “Its funny!”

    That’s just good comedy, friends!

    Speaking of Joe Bolster, I used to LOVE Sports Monster! Watching it and MST3k back to back made my entire weekend worth living. Dear Lord, I would have jumped into the path of a moving train had I not had my weekends of Comedy Central shows! Comedy Central was so much better back then… Kids in the Hall, SCTV, Monty Python, and so many other great shows. I get teary-eyed just thinking about it.

    Anyhow… Joe Bolster mostly writes, and I saw him about a year ago doing stand-up when he opened up for Brian Reagan. He is still really funny.

    This episode gets 7.3 stars from me! My highest rating!

       4 likes

  22. instereo says:

    Best riff: “I know how toast works.”
    Also: “I knew this would come up.” “So I’ve prepared a song!”
    And also: “Eleanor Roosevelt’s PISSED!!”

       3 likes

  23. MikeK says:

    I love this episode. I find that the disclaimer at the end of the movie, about how the film will be shown to troops overseas, presumably during WWII, makes the movie better. Who the hell needs serious drama after you’ve shot people and seen your fellow soldiers get blown up? I also wonder if any of the soldiers did some riffing of their own while watching the movie. That movie had to be really corny, even by 1940s standards.

       3 likes

  24. Sampo says:

    “I’m Not a Medium” correctly stated the goof: The packaging says this is “show 424.” (Although Thomas K. Dye’s guess is a good one, which I hadn’t noticed.)

    Kenneth Morgan: D’oh I forgot to talk about the songs. They may be one of the most notable things about the movie, since they were written by the Oscar-winning team of Jay Livingston and Ray Evans.They won Best Original Song three times: in 1948 for the song “Buttons and Bows” (written for the movie “The Paleface”), in 1950 for “Mona Lisa” (written for the movie “Captain Carey”) and in 1956 for the classic “Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Que Sera, Sera)” (for the movie “The Man Who Knew Too Much”). The duo also wrote popular TV themes for shows including “Bonanza” and “Mr. Ed.” They may be best known for the popular Christmas song “Silver Bells.”

    And yes, Mary Beth Hughes (she’ll turn up again next season in “Last of the Wild Horses”) is hot, hot, hot. I also kinda like Florence Johnson, who plays the rather forward family friend Shirley .

       5 likes

  25. Ang says:

    This is one of my all time faves and the first episode I had on a real store bought tape. Now when I hear the Fats Domino’s song “I’m Walking”, I have to sing it the MST way:

    ‘I’m walking, yes indeed, I’m talking, I accuse my parents!’

    The skit with Gypsy singing ‘Are You Happy in Your Work?” gets me every time too. The best part though is when they cut over to Joel in that blonde wig that’s on crooked and he’s got a moustache drawn on and he’s trying to look suave – I bust out laughing!!! :lol:

    One of the best riffs is when Mary Beth is singing in the Hee-Haw like night club and there’s a break in the song and they say ‘all skate, now all skate’ – love it!!!!

       6 likes

  26. adoptadog says:

    A very solid episode. The movie definitely has some creepy overtones.

    Dyne #12, I agree, I love the running gags, and this had some of the best, especially the extra lies they supply Jimmy with:

    “And of course I was the last one out of Saigon….Did I mention I’m an Olympic champion?…I synthesized animal protein in my lab today….I’m waiting for a call from the President so I couldn’t dance anyway….I went and liberated France while you were dancing….So then my mom says to Roosevelt and Churchill, she says ‘What about some kind of lend-lease program?'”

    My favorite riff: “So, Jimmy, do you like your kneecaps?”

       9 likes

  27. RCFagnan says:

    Easily in my top 3 (along with Jack Frost and Monster-A-Go-Go), the riffing, the host segements, everything is just spot-on. Season 5 at its best, I think.

       2 likes

  28. Skenderberg says:

    In response to #11: The migrant workers of The Truck Farmer are loading carrots into something, possibly a truck. But, since they’re out in the middle of a field, it could just as easily be a trailer attached to a tractor. Since they never explicitly show us what kind of vehicle it is, I have to agree with Joel. There are no trucks in The Truck Farmer.

    I Accuse My Parents is a wretched, nonsensical, wrong-headed film with fantastic riffing, two elements that combine to make it a medium-funny experience for me. My favorite part is when Joel and the ‘Bots attempt to explain Jimmy’s fall from grace in terms of plot elements, but end up concluding that our protagonist is simply phenomenally stupid.

       2 likes

  29. BebopKate says:

    I love this episode. Jimmy’s lies just grow to comical proportions that make me want to reach through the TV and smack him in the forehead. The jokes are just fantastic. Almost every one gets at least a chuckle out of me, especially when anyone speaks as a character in the movie, and especially when that character is Jimmy. And as I’ve noted before (and others above me), this is a great episode to introduce the show to someone.

    I do have to add I’m with Joel and his confusion over who Shirley is exactly. Mom’s friend? Wacky neighbor? Dad’s mistress? Excuse to have another cute girl in the movie?

    Best line for me: “I wish my peers would get out of my head…I’m trying to get some sleep!”

       1 likes

  30. R.A. Roth says:

    It says Episode 424, which is of course Manos. As for other Rhino goofs: ever notice that there are movies during which Mike was the host but the silhouette on the menu screen is that of Joel? Seems that to Rhino, Joel and Mike were interchangeable as spare tires or extras on the Manos set.

    Randy

       2 likes

  31. MikeK says:

    Oh yeah. Rhino would also put Joel and bots on the back cover when it’s actually a Mike episode, and vice versa.

       2 likes

  32. Professor Gunther says:

    As a singer, Mary Beth Hughes might not have been up to the level of a Jo Stafford, but she was pretty good all the same. (And she was WAY BETTER than JIM Stafford, IMO.)

    The cool things have been–and will be–said. I just want to say that I LOVE this episode. Everything clicks.

    “Scotch in fridge, love Mom.” :lol: (I might not have gotten that exactly right, but it’s funny.)

       2 likes

  33. I'm not a medium, I'm a petite says:

    very cool Sampo ( #24 ), thx. I guess my brain is slightly less swiss cheesy than I thought.

    Three cheers and a firecracker for me !!

       1 likes

  34. The Bolem says:

    I had a friend in college who said this was his favorite experiment, and it’s probably my fave in the non-scifi/fantasy category (that is, excluding Red Zone Cuba as unclassifiable). The story SEEMS cute and well-rounded at a glance, but apply a drop of analysis and the moral about negligent parenting being the culprit is as nonsensical as the lessons Moral Orel’s dad spews out at the end of each episode (That’s Adult Swim’s dark, morbid spoof of Davey and Goliath).
    So, all wrongdoing can be blamed on one’s parents, rather than the perpetrator, hmmm? Recently showed it to someone who remarkably, commented IMMEDIATELY before segment 3: “Y’know, so far, his parents haven’t really had anything to do with the story”, which I guess goes to show how well timed all of the host segments were.

    Fave Riff: During the hitch-hiking montage, “Ehh, those damn trains never do stop…” was just perfectly timed with the dissolve.

    Runner-Up: The judge’s final speech, “Not that YOUR boy would be quite so thick-headed as Jimmy”

       5 likes

  35. Samuel says:

    Wasn’t this Joel’s favorite episode?

       1 likes

  36. H says:

    A very good episode for me. The last segment has been my favorite in the whole series for a while. First Joel doesn’t get it, then he plays along, and when the bots leave disappointed, he pulls out the hamburger sammich with french fried potato garnish. It’s oblivious Joel, playing along Joel and sneaky Joel all in one sketch. And Rodney doing his dancing for Dr. F is (warning: pun coming) the icing on the cake.
    I liked the short. It didn’t tell me much but it did it in a grand way. The movie was alright, one of those teen gone wrong movies gone wrong.

       3 likes

  37. Spector says:

    Long time reader, first time commenter. For me this episode is the gold standard, the best of the best, and the one I’ve used to introduce newbies (of which there are lots here in Canada)to this wonderful treasure of a show. Hilarious from start to finish , no dragging or slow bits, just razor-sharp riffing throughout. And the Truck Farmer short is also my second favorite (next to the champ, “Mr B. Natural”) and I’ve never understood why that one wasn’t on any of the shorts compilations. ‘Hail, Truck Farmer!”

       6 likes

  38. jon says:

    I love this episode. The inventions are great, the riffs are great, etc.

    Also, it bears repeating that Jimmy is really, really stupid. Possibly the dumbest character in any movie they riffed on, excluding Tor Johnson.

       3 likes

  39. Joseph Nebus says:

    There are trucks seen in The Truck Farmer — look early on, for example, as Crow riffs “Let’s take you back to the days when DDT was safe!”, and then right after that as the brains admire how good and tempting everything looks on the salad bar. And then Hank stacks the carrots as fast as they can, which are then taken in for interrogation.

    However, the “truck” in “truck farming” doesn’t refer to the method of transportation, but rather to indicate that the food grown there is meant for sale in markets. The term `truck farm’ goes back to the 1780s, and the word `truck’ comes from the middle French `troque’, meaning `barter’. The word `truck’ meaning the kind of vehicle derives from the Greek `trochos’, meaning `wheel’, and the two words come together because this the English language and we must use words in the most confusing fashion possible.

       8 likes

  40. Kouban says:

    re: #39, the only other time I’ve heard “truck” used with that meaning was in the Dr. Seuss story “The Sneetches,” in which one of the lines is “We’ll have no truck whatever with the plain-bellied sort.”

       2 likes

  41. MikeK says:

    MST3K always had references to the movie Patton. The final segment in this episode has my favorite.

    “Joel you magnificent bastard! I read you’re menu!”

       5 likes

  42. GizmonicTemp says:

    Sampo & Not a Medium – Interesting, because my printing of the DVD has the correct episode number on back. But I have noticed that at least one other single DVD box has the show number incorrect.

       0 likes

  43. Hamdingers says:

    Goes to show you that good or bad, right or wrong: if it exists there is a webpage for it:

    http://marybethhughes.blogspot.com/

    Can’t argue with that one though. As girls in MSTs go, she’s pretty cute.

       0 likes

  44. MST3Kelly says:

    this one is also one of my favorites, and seems to get funnier with each subsequent viewing.
    the short contains great riffing on the destruction of nature and the ‘joys’ of migrant farm working. ‘don’t see many trees like this anymore- well, down it goes!’ says Crow as a small forested area is destroyed by a tree-smashing device. close-up of a pretty young girl working on the vegetables, Joel intones grimly ‘her beauty will soon fade.’ I also love at the end of the short when Tom Servo gives voice to cartoon ‘Eastern’ warbling yells, and Joel turns to look at him in the dark, as if surprised by Tom’s outburst.
    the movie itself is one of the best from a very different time. I love the 40’s and their fashions and decor. the wacky ‘theme’ nightclubs are awesome. the blamed parent’s giant house, decorated with miles of knick-knacks- apparently, they rule the movie’s world- the parade of tawdry characters, the most disturbing of who [whom?] are poor Jimmy’s parents. what a pair! they detest each other, party endlessly, and hurl money at their son to keep from having to bother with him. I love the scene when the poker-playing father instructs the fellow to tell his son he’s not there. ‘he says he’s not here.’ wow! mom is so busy with the bottle and the mysterious Jack Taylor that she barely has time to embarrass the poor kid [though he snarls himself in his own infinite litany of lies.]
    the shoe-trying-on scene is a masterpiece of romantic fumbling. ‘I like your underwear’ ‘are we married now?’ sweet, and cute, and sad.
    I love the songs- I often find myself humming them. I love the recreated nightclub scene on the SOL, especially watching Gypsy clunk around in her big black bow and sparkly dress, and ‘lip-sync’ so convincingly. I always lose it when one of the Tom Servos pops up behind, dressed as a chef, and trots purposefully off screen. this scene looks like it took a lot of time and careful blocking to make, and it is one of the reasons why I really love this show. their generosity in their hard work in this skit and countless others [which make me happy] shows.
    the gravelly-voiced chef is hysterical. I love when Crow adds ‘and ME’ in his crumpled baritone as the chef ticks off the amenities he is so willing to share with Jimmy.
    oh! and the mobster in the closet! love his muffled riff-dialogue, especially ‘hey, where’d you get these golf clubs!?’
    a sweet and funny episode. no, crime and lying do not pay [or do they?!] well done. and I agree a good choice for a newbie.

       7 likes

  45. Hamdingers says:

    http://marybethhughes.blogspot.com/

    Ah, the internet.

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  46. gg says:

    I ‘second’ (or ‘twentieth’) all those who consider this one of their all-time favorite episodes. The episodes that work the best for me are those which have a really badly conceived ‘hero’ whose faults are pounded on again and again by J&TB, e.g. Jimmy in IAMP and Arch Hall, Jr. in Eegah!

    I had great fun introducing my family to this episode. After getting my sister to watch it and getting “Are You Happy?” stuck in her head, I would leave the song on her answering machine to repeat the horror!

    Fave riff: “I was abused as a zygote!”

       3 likes

  47. crowschmo says:

    “Are you groovin’, in your koo-koo work..”

    I like this episode, too. One of my fav riffs, other than ones already mentioned, is Joel saying something to the effect of, “Man, this kid made more money today than I did all through high school.”

    “I’m stupid, yes, indeed, I’m stupid…”

       3 likes

  48. Omega says:

    I seem to remember reading somewhere that Paul Chaplin had a crush on both Mr. B Natural and Jimmy’s Mom. Now while this led Kevin Murphy to question Paul’s sanity, I have to agree with Paul on this.

    I love it when the Brains did something to the robots. One thing I noticed is that every time that happened, Joel would walk in and say “THE HELL?” or some variation. I think this was especially noticeable in Season 5.

       2 likes

  49. C.L. says:

    “Jack Taylor’s got a great place!”

       2 likes

  50. fireballil says:

    I’d vote this five stars if the vote thing was working. The short had one of my favorite riffs: Narrator: “Here in southern Texas, we have an additional problem.” Crow: “Texans!” No offense to anyone from Texas. :wink:

    The whole third segment didn’t have the feel of “venting”, it felt to me like they were genuinely trying to get to the root of Jimmy’s problem: that he’s stupid. It seemed very gentle and kind, though I did think that Tom did let it slip once.

    A semi-obscure reference: When the movie’s title appears, Crow says, “The John Bradshaw Story!” Had to go to Wikipedia to find out he was responsible for the phrase “dysfunctional family” among others.

    Another semi-obscure reference: Seeing a crop duster in the short, Joel says, “Charley Varrick is employed.” This is a reference to the Walter Matthau movie where he plays a crop duster who stumbles onto a Mob operation.

    They really hammered the essay contest thing through the movie. I was afraid they’d run that into the ground by the end.

       5 likes

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