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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: 210- King Dinosaur (with short: “X Marks The Spot” )

Short: (1944) Careless New Jersey driver Joe Doakes finds himself in a heavenly courtroom, on trial for his vehicular misdeeds. His guardian angel is his only defense.
Movie: (1955) Two scientist couples are sent to investigate a mysterious new planet and are menaced by snakes, gators, giant bugs and other scary process shots.

First shown: 12/22/90
Opening: Joel reads some beat poetry
Invention exchange: A crushed Dr. F. declares that he, “the pocket scientist,” is his invention; Joel’s accidental invention is the “incredibly stinky sweat socks.”
Host segment 1: Crow asks: “Am I qualified?”
Host segment 2: J&tB introduce Joey the lemur
Host segment 3: Joel objects to the “Emotional Scientist” sketch
End: Crow and Tom complain about all the Lippert’s movies, Joel shows off his theramin, Tom reads a letter
Stinger: Gator wrestling aftermath
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (130 votes, average: 4.36 out of 5)

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• I want to begin by saying that I disavow all previous instances in which I described Joel’s goatee as “cheesy” and I maintain that a crazy person broke into my house when I wasn’t home and added the word to “cheesy” to my descriptions of Joel’s goatee, which at all times is manly and dignified. Now, on to business.
• This is a fun episode. Between the short, the goofy Lippert movie, Joey the lemur (he wasn’t a lemur) solid riffing and a some memorable host segments, there’s plenty to enjoy.
• This episode was included in Shout’s Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Vol XXIII. Incidentally, I did not steal the description of the movie that appears on the jacket of that episode. THEY borrowed MY description (see above), with my permission, of course. They said they just liked it.
• Joel’s entirely dignified and not at all cheesy goatee is gone — but Crow and Tom are wearing them in the opening bit. He is still wearing the pastel green jumpsuit from last week.
• Does anyone know whose poem Joel is reading in the opening? Google is silent.
• Sir Goofus von Drakesnot is a funny name.
• In the opening Dr. F. is seen working on an elevator. It would reappear a few other times.
• Joel finally provided an explanation to the “hat party” reference, one that had been bugging people for years. It has to do with magic conventions that he and his friends attended, which often had activities for wives of the magicians attending. One was a hat party, and the blurb for it asked: “Will yours be the grandest of all?” or something like that.
• Neither the “pocket scientist” nor the “incredibly stinky sweat socks” are actual inventions, but the former is a very nice illusion and the latter is a pretty funny prop. So I will let them slide. :-)
• With this episode we get our first real short, and it’s clear immediately that this works much better for the show than the serials they’d been using. This isn’t (I don’t think) a classroom short, unless it was something Traffic Court made you watch after you got too many moving violations.
• Crow’s inspirational speech in segment 1, including the brilliant, immortal words “Crush someone with an emotional word or an enigmatic look,” is one of the funniest segments of the season.
• Callback: “That was number 2!!” (Sidehackers)
• Yes, the gecko-Roman wrestling is the same footage from “One Million B.C.” we’ve seen before. Also, Bronson Canyon was used for some exterior shots, as was done in many other MSTed movies.
• “I’m a pan-dimensional being” is a “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” reference.
• One of the highlights of this episode is the series of riffs in which Joel, in a gravelly voice, says “Hi, I’m Satan!” every time a snake appears. As these bits go on, they wander into a whole Kraft cheese thing, climaxing with Tom offering a very strange recipe as announcer Ed Herlihy. Great stream-of-consciousness riffing.
• Segment two is, of course, the infamous “Joey the lemur” bit. Now, I like the “handmade” nature of the show as much as the next guy, but what the heck is going on with Joel? Was this planned? Did he just go off script for the heck of it? I have no idea what he’s saying half the time. In episode 611- LAST OF THE WILD HORSES they do a very funny parody of this bit, implying that even they were baffled by it.
• Segment two, in addition to being weird, is also out of order. The “lemur” hasn’t appeared in the movie yet. But it does seem like they are aware of it: Joel sort of backfills as they re-enter the theater.
• Great “Twin Peaks” reference: “The owl footage is not what it seems.”
• Over the years, many fans have noted that the “lemur” in this movie is actually a kinkajou.
• Segment three is sort of another “we’re trying to do a sketch but it’s not going well” sketch. It was “meta” before (most) people said “meta.”
• Naughty riff: “I’m gonna load up the steely dan.”
• The closing bit is also a bit “meta.” It’s only been a few episodes since Joel did a presentation using the “series of sketches” and/or a musical tribute. They’re already they’re making fun of it? Does this reflect a real situation in the writing room?
• The letter that Tom reads is notable. It’s, I think, the only time anybody on the show uttered the phrase “host segment.” Tom pretends not to know what they are (though they’re mentioned in the credits).
• Cast and Crew Roundup: They make a big deal about this being another movie by executive producer Robert Lippert, but they fail to notice a bigger menace–this is the first of EIGHT movies directed by Bert I. Gordon (he directed more MSTed movies than anybody else). Writer-producer Al Zimbalist also produced “Robot Monster.” Cinematographer Gordon Avil did sound direction for “Robot Monster.” Editors John Bushelman and Jack Cornall also worked on “Village of the Giants.” Special effects guy Howard A. Anderson also worked on “Women of the Prehistoric Planet,” “12 to the Moon,” “The Amazing Transparent Man” and “It Lives By Night.” Sound supervisor Rod Sutton also worked on “It Lives By Night,” “Hangar 18” and “Slime People.” Score composer Mischa Terr also worked on “The Unearthly,” “Bloodlust,” “The Violent Years” and “The Sinister Urge.” We’ll hear narrator Marvin Miller again in “The Day the Earth Froze” and “The Phantom Planet.”
• CreditsWatch: This Week’s Creative Pit Boss: Trace Beaulieu. “Villians” is still misspelled. Intern Nathan Molstad played Jerry the mole person. Additional music: Kevin Murphy, Michael J. Nelson.
• Fave riff from the short: “He said a silent prayer to Bongo, the god of gravity.” Honorable mention: “…but I did find him down by the waterfront dressed in a Spartan costume.”
• Favorite riff: “I’m Chirpy the mutant hellbeast, and I don’t like this film.” Honorable mention: “Relax?! There’s a bee the size of a moose over there and you want him to relax??” and “There is a margin for shame, however.”

86 Replies to “Episode guide: 210- King Dinosaur (with short: “X Marks The Spot” )”

  1. Dan in WI says:

    Joel and Tom leave the theater early with Crow all alone for the very end of the short.

    I love the way they react to the third Lippert film of the season. Sure later on we’d learn to fear the names Corman, Francis and Frank, but in season one it was Lippert. Plus Bert I. Gordon is also a part of this film.

    So that was the Joey the Lemur sketch. (First time I saw it.) It was rather average for the amount of legend it has taken on. But I’ll say this. The way Joel works that puppet I’m glad other people such as Kevin and Trace are working the bots! That was just weird.

    The bickering about callbacks in the theater is a cute little meta sort of thing. By the way is this the invention of the word callback?

    For my money this is the weakest of the Lippert films. The film itself is weak and the riffing is only fair.

    Favorite Riffs:
    Judge “You were born in New Jersey huh?” Tom “I thought I smelled something.”

    Guardian “Joe had two kids of his own at that school.” Crow “Yeah and if his wife ever found out.”

    Strapping on backpack: Crow “That’s quite a package.”

    Tom “They’re making pretty good time considering this is a Lippert film.”

    Joel as gator “Hi. I couldn’t help noticing your suitcase and your shoes.”

    Tom: “I think this film on the lake is better than the film we’re watching.”

       2 likes

  2. Sharktopus says:

    Some stray observations in no partcular order:

    Hooray for educational shorts! Y’know, I’m not surprised that even in the ’40s New Jersey was full of dangerously incompetent drivers. :-D

    Crow and Tom just happen to be sporting goatees when Joel’s shaved his off? Hmm…

    “Almost as soon as this show aired, fans were online talking about how the “lemur” is actually a kinkajou.” I don’t think I had ever even heard of the internet in 1990. I’m imagining the computer equivalent of two soup cans conected by a string. As they enter the theater after the (excrutiating) Joey the Lemur bit, Joel claims that he read about it in the film guide. We know that the Brains did in fact consult that practically Stone Age resource – maybe a film guide is responsible for misidentifying the kinkajou. Even in those days before Animal Planet, I want to believe at least one of the Brains would’ve known it wasn’t a lemur.

    Can someone identify the types of lizards featured on the island? I’m having trouble sorting out the scale, pardon the pun. There was an iguana wrestling an alligator (or possibly a caiman?), and then a gila monster, or maybe a bearded lizard, I think? I tried to focus on figuring that out rather than think about how they made the poor reptiles kill each other to make a crappy movie.

    Speaking of filmic crappiness, this isn’t the worst movie MST3k ever did, but it gets my vote for stupidest. No plot, dumb characters, bad science, just plain rock stupid all around. I love it. :-)

    Is it just me, or do the opening segments feel especially loose and off-the-cuff? In fact, this whole episode has a light and breezy feel, in spite of the tedious movie. Maybe it’s just the sea change from last week’s oppressive, stultifying Hellcats, but knowing that the Brains had just come back from a meeting with the Comedy Central execs, I get the feeling that maybe they’d just gotten word that the show was being renewed with a long-term contract. Maybe I’m thinking too much. One thing I’m sure of – I enjoy King Dinosaur about as much as much as I dislike The Hellcats, despite what I consider to be some especially weak host segments.

    Intern Jason Molstad in the part he was born to play, Jerry the Moleman. Once again, villians is misspelled in the credits. If you’re going to call attention with gag credits, at least double check the spelling.

    It’s difficult to imagine the writer’s room brainstorming that led from serpent/satan references to Kraft Foods, unless I’m missing some connection. And was that python growling? Oh, Bert I. Gordon, where would this show be without you?

       4 likes

  3. Sampo says:

    Sharktopus: Good point on the internet thing. I think I’m remembering a response to a rerun. I’ve changed the line.

       1 likes

  4. Stephen says:

    Crow’s “Am I Qualified?” speech is one of my favorite MST moments ever.

    For years my wife and I have been using “Joe Doakes” as a verb, meaning to cross an intersection diagonally, e.g., “There are no cars coming. Let’s Joe Doakes it.” It’s a very handy phrase.

       8 likes

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

    Put half a hot dog in your mouth, smear ketchup around your mouth, then spit out the hot dog screaming my tongue my tongue.

    Oh my I have been away from this one for too long. Sure we’ve been able to Meet Joe Dokes in the shorts compilation but I haven’t seen King Dino since broadcast, and there were parts I didn’t remember. So it was almost a new one to me when I watched the DAP earlier this week.

    This is a good episode. The replacement of the serials with short subjects is brilliant, and this one is plenty goofy ( what are those little fins on the top of the guardian angel’s mortarboard ? ) Plenty for our heroes to work with. The riffing on King Dino is down right manic at some points, and with cause, what a messed up movie.

    The Crow Monologue was OK, the ‘invention’ exchange was clearly slapped together, but fun enough I guess. Joey the Lemur. & The Scientist Sketch. I just don’t know.

    But despite my feeling that the host segs were weakish, I will give 4 stars for the first proper short and the hot dog gag, which had me in tears.

    I need some more of that medicine ( BLORT! )

    ( Sampo and Sharktopus: are you guys saying there was no internet in 1990 ? )

       2 likes

  6. Dan in WI says:

    Petite> I don’t think anybody is saying there was NO internet in 1990. It was just still a few years away from being in the hands of the masses at that point.

       2 likes

  7. Sampo says:

    I’m not a medium: No, just that there was little or no online MST3K fandom at that time. The first MST3K newsgroups were created in ’92, and the Prodigy message board was happening then too (maybe even as early as ’91), but I don’t think there was much of anything going on in ’90.

       1 likes

  8. Thomas K. Dye says:

    Short: One heck of a defense counsel, he seems to be trying very hard to get his client fried. Even when the client does something right, Mr. Former Boxer Angel takes all the credit for it.

    Joe Doakes is a very common character of the forties. The most common version was played by Robert Benchley:

    http://www.imdb.com/character/ch0040207/

    In each short Joe Doakes has to face some sort of sociological or some kind of technological terror.

    Re the movie: I think my favorite scene (and the one that should have been the stinger) is the idiot woman scientist ripping up the photograph of the giant lizard, saying “NO ONE WILL BELIEVE US ANYWAY!!” How did these people even put on their clothes in the morning?

       3 likes

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

    6 & 7. OK OK guys, that’s cool. just checking, thx.

    As for the poem, I have a strong feeling that it was written by Joel himself, or by someone else on staff or related to staff, it’s a ‘personal’ poem.

    But this is strictly a guess.

       1 likes

  10. Joseph Nebus says:

    I think it’s worth noting that at the time of X Marks The Spot‘s production, New Jersey had really pretty stiff auto inspection laws, to the point that pretty much nobody passed the first time through, and the inspections were every six months. These days they’ve gone to five years for new car purchases and biennial inspections thereafter, a sure sign of moral decay if I ever heard of it. I understand there are some banana republic states that don’t have any inspections, or any worth the name.

    “Joe Doakes” is a curious name, particularly to me, as Robert Benchley used it as his character name for a number of How To… shorts, and George O’Hanlon (the voice of George Jetson) made his famous series of Joe McDoakes So You Want To… shorts as well. Obviously there’s some kind of “John Doe” quality to the name, at least for a 1930s movie-colony purposes, and I’m curious how it got to X Marks The Spot. I’m a little disappointed The Brains didn’t pick up on the link, but given how in 1990-91 old shorts were watchable only by a concerted and substantial effort and holding the MGM Archive Librarian at gunpoint I can’t blame them for it.

    X Marks The Spot is a difficult short to watch with my father, because he remembers every single filming location except the Court of Traffic Heaven from his childhood and has anecdotes for every one of them.

       7 likes

  11. Dark Grandma of Death says:

    “Hey, look, it’s Woodstock! Three days of peace, love and stock footage!”

    What kind of scientists are these? There are the hysterical women who are always screaming, one of whom goes into a rage and tears up the photo of the giant lizard. There’s the cavalier way they pick up poor Joe (who I guess is left on the island to die). And then they go to explore, imperil themselves, and end up nuking the island, even though they escaped! Good one, guys!

       7 likes

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

    As also seen in “Once Upon a Honeymoon” and other shorts, Heaven certainly does a lot of micromanagement. Infinite resources, I guess.

    Anyone else wonder how a GHOST could feel exhaustion, let alone to the extent that he needed to close his eyes? Theologies vary, of course. ;-)

       6 likes

  13. Fred Burroughs says:

    This movie has the distinction of probably being the space-travel film with the least actual space-travel science in it. The astronauts are two swingin’ couples, that’s convenient, and after a few tests with a reel-to-reel, they just walk around a forest in their shorts. I do like their bomb, though.

    The thing I most remember about this movie is our male lead, and how many times he manhandles the women, He pushes them out of the way, yells at them, pulls them by the arm. (They are panicky and weeping, after all…wait, so are the men.) He’s ostensibly doing this for their own safety, but several times you see the poor actress bang her head on a rock or fall down bruised. I can’t help but wonder when I am watching if the director told him ‘Push her harder!’ or if this actor was just an inexplicably violent person all the time.

       9 likes

  14. Joseph Nebus says:

    The “collapsed sketches” they do this season struck me as an interesting phenomenon because, to turn the conversation back to myself where it must invariably belong, when I started writing MST3K fan fiction (in the last days of Comedy Central/early Sci-Fi runs, and so just hadn’t seen seasons 1 through 3, and not much of 4), I ran into a similar phenomenon.

    That is, after the first couple rounds of MiSTings, I started finding that I might have a decent starting point for a sketch and some idea what the characters might say, but not the faintest idea where an ending would go. (Endings are agonizingly hard things to find.) And it started looking awfully tempting to have the characters just throw up their hands and admit, they haven’t got anywhere to go with this and the premise is ridiculous and oh, look, it’s commercial sign. Used sparingly, it’s a good comic approach: from the length of the sketch the audience knows there has to be an ending sometime soon, and breaking the sketch has some surprise and shock value. For example, Hired: The Musical has a “we ran out of time” ending, but you’d never notice.

    This is hard to resist in almost any medium; see every single Saturday Night Live sketch that consists of the person being impersonated coming on-stage to meet the person impersonating them, which had an actual joke when it was Dana Carvey playing Dennis Miller and not before or since. But MST3K is probably really prone to this self-collapsing stunt since woven into the show’s genetic code is the idea of “we can’t believe the stuff we see on-screen, so here’s some jokes about it”, and making jokes about the jokes you’re making is a natural extension of it.

    In my experience, I grew less satisfied with these sketch-breaker endings because they felt too repetitive, and fussing over a premise until I found something with an ending turned out to pay off. I suspect, purely on my own imagination and the self-flattering illusion that I have any idea what writing for the show was like from my silly impersonation of it, that the Brains went through a similar evolution in these self-breaking sketches and then being more careful and judicious about breaking a sketch.

    For example, Crow’s “I’m A Velarian” sketch in Space Mutiny is even more a collapsed sketch than The Emotional Scientist, but it’s got so much substance to it that it doesn’t feel like the many collapsed sketches of season two.

    So, perhaps, perhaps, if my experience is not ridiculously misleading, that’s how we got so many collapsed sketches this season and not so many, or at least it didn’t feel like so many, later on.

       0 likes

  15. Brandon says:

    Sampo, hasn’t the term “Host Segment” been being used in the credits this whole time, as in “Host Segments directed by”?

    210- King Dinosaur, with short X Marks the Spot.

    Host Segments:
    Opening: Joel does beat poetry.
    Invention Exchange: Pocket Scientist; Sweaty Socks.
    Segment 1: Crow wonders if he’s qualified to judge other drivers.
    Segment 2: J&TB sing about Joey the Lemur
    Segment 3: “Emotional Scientist”.
    Ending: Explaining Lippert. Dr. F and frank go to a festival.
    Stinger: Guy falls down.

    Memorable riffs from Short:
    Servo: “Arthur Magee and Molly!”

    Servo: “That’s Mick Jagger’s cloud, stay off of it.”

    Joel: “God has kind of a crummy office.”
    Crow: “That’s because all the decorators are in hell.”

    Guardian Angel: “The hardest part about Joe was his speeding.”
    Servo: “Yeah, he was worse than Corey Feldman or Corey Haim.”

    Judge: “15 years…”
    Crow: “On a dead man’s chest.”

    Crow: “Oh, I wish I were dead… oh I am.”

    Memorable riffs from Movie:
    Servo: “Oh, so the announcer’s calling the shots now?”

    Servo: “Then, German airshows are performed. Hundreds are killed.”

    (woman holds chemical)
    Servo: “Drink it! Drink it!”

    Joel: “A new pope is selected. It’s cooky.”

    Crow: “Who brought the sandwiches?”
    Servo: “Sandwiches?”

    Woman: “That island…”
    Joel: “I hate it, it’s taunting me!”

    Woman: “What is it?”
    Crow: “IT’S AN IGUANA!!!”

    Fav. riff from Short:
    Joel: “Oh great, we’re stuck in space, and still have to do jury duty.”

    Fav. riff from Movie:
    *aligator approaches iguana*
    Joel: “They’re gonna fight over who tastes more like chicken.”

    Comments:
    -Uhh… Deep 13 has an elevator?

    -The Brains seem to really be slacking off in terms of inventions. In fact I’ve noticed a lot of Season 2 Invention Exchange segments seem to have these little “shortcuts”.

    -When Joel and Servo ditch Crow in the theater, Servo’s control rod under his hoverskirt can be seen.

    -I don’t think Joel was really “stoned” during the Lemur sketch, as others may claim, but I think he really had way too much coffee before shooting.

    -Joel continues the “snake/Satan” riffs that he started in Jungle Goddess

    -Funny that Joel refuses to do the “Emotional Scientist” bit, but he was willing to make an ass of himself with the Lemur bit.

    Best Segment: None of the segments are that good. But the Joey the Lemur sketch stands out the most, just for it’s sheer “WTF” status. Perhaps the segment wouldn’t have seemed so random, if the Brains had shot it as “Segment 3”, after the lemur/kinkajou actually appears in the film.
    Worst Segment: Hard to say, again because all the segments are bombs. I think I’ll just pick the closing segment. Although this is a great episode, the closing segment ends it on a low note.

    Overall: This is an episode, where only the theater segments make it a gem. Most of the segments are fast-forward moments. **1/2 stars. Marginally better than the previous episode… ACCORDING to Xerxes the Cat.

       1 likes

  16. Mr. B(ob) says:

    Oh, another great outing thanks to Robert Lippert with a little help from Mr. B.I.G. Fantastic episode.

    Short may be a misnomer for this short, it is a bit long for a short and somewhat tedious in spots, but the goofy plot and acting plus the great riffs still make for enjoyable viewing.

    One of my all-time favorite moments from the film is the flat faced fall and long tumble the guy who fights with the alligator takes. Seriously, it looks like it was meant to be funny it’s just so ridiculous visually. The endless shrieking of his female companion throughout the alligator wrestling makes it even funnier.

    I love the Joey the Lemur sketch and it’s a favorite around here with my family. The free-wheeling improv nature of some of the lines and their delivery makes it especially humorous. We love Joel’s meandering comments, but one of the favorite lines from the sketch belongs to Crow: “Joey the lemur, the kind of animal that would go to the bathroom anywhere.”

    “Relax?! There’s a bee the size of a moose over there and you want him to relax?” is also one of my favorite lines from this show. Also, “thanks for annihilating everything I know” and “what a stupid, pretentious, line”.

    The scientists do very little science on the interplanetary expedition. They complain a lot, reinforce stereotypes about women, make a lot of kissy face and then needlessly use a nuclear weapon on the planet’s wildlife for absolutely no good reason. It’s a gut-buster every time I see the female scientist tear up the photo of the “T-Rex”, their only scientific proof they saw the thing. What a startling vision of scientific “progress”.

    5 stars all the way for me. I find this episode hilarious pretty much from start to finish.

       3 likes

  17. Sampo says:

    Brandon–DOH! You are correct. I’ve rewritten the item.

       0 likes

  18. Fred Burroughs says:

    Thanks for the reminder about the “selecting the pope” quip! First time I saw this I didn’t notice, but after Rome did select a new pope, not being Catholic, I saw the black smoke released from the Vatican that signifies the election; and next time I had a good chuckle when I watched King Dinosaur and i got the joke.

       3 likes

  19. jjb3k says:

    This is my favorite episode of Season 2. The movie is pure ridiculousness, so the riffs come fast and funny. “Tell the bee I love him…”

    This episode also has more prime examples of the Brains’ mentality throughout much of Season 2 – being weird for the sake of weird. Like the aforementioned bit where Joel does his Satan snake voice and it turns into a Kraft commercial with Servo as a surreal Ed Herlihy. The “Bongo, the god of gravity” riff in the short is another good example of what I’m talking about. At this point in the season, the Brains were obsessed with non-sequiturs, and I don’t know if that was Frank’s influence or what, but Season 2 just explodes with riffs that are downright strange. I think it’s one of the Phantom Creeps shorts where Crow just randomly says something like “Now shave your head, tie femur bones around your waist, and dance naked in the moonlight!” Those kinds of riffs run rampant in Season 2, where they try to get a laugh not through observation, but by saying the most unusual thing they can think of.

    That mentality reaches its peak in the next episode, “First Spaceship on Venus”, where even the host segments are random and surreal. I’ll talk more about it next week.

       3 likes

  20. Tork_110 says:

    Every time I cross at an intersection I mentally draw the hypotenuse onto the road.

       2 likes

  21. Mela says:

    I got to see the short thanks to one of the shorts compilations, and it’s one of my favorites. Lines like “Yeah, he can’t be a witness” and “If we were talking mob murders, this thing’d be digital” still make me smile. This is the first I’ve realized that it was the first actual short on the show, and it’s amazing how strong the nonserial one-reelers were from out of the gate.

       3 likes

  22. Mike says:

    I believe the hat reference is from the children’s book, ” Go Dog, Go!”

       0 likes

  23. briizilla says:

    3 stars. The short is a classic, much better than “The Phantom Creeps”, but the movie is only average. I’ve got a soft spot for pretty much any giant critter movie, but trying to pass of lizards as dinosaurs bugs me to no end. Bert I Goron :giggle: is such a hack. There is almost no plot to be found in this thing. The ‘scientists’ show no desire to actually explore or research anything, they land and within a few hours are ready to head back to Earth. The one male scientist is a mysogonistic brute, casually pushing and yelling at the women every chance he can. Joey the lemur is adorable however and I’d like to keep one as a pet, but supposedly they can get kind of bitey. There are a few pretty dirty riffs in the feature, my favorite being when the two women scientists are laying next to each other Joel(i think) says “Bookends” to which one of the bots responds “and I’m the librarian”.
    The first time I ever saw the Joey the Lemur sketch I thought is was hilarious, now I just find it so strange. Was is thrown together at the last minute? Why is Joel vigorously banging the poor lemur puppet up and down on the desk? Was Joel stoned out of his mind and forgetting his lines?
    These are questions that keep me up at night….

       1 likes

  24. Cheapskate Crow says:

    I always thought the hat reference was to Alice in Wonderland. Favorite line: “You had your chance.” I don’t remember season 2 being this off the wall before but I haven’t seen many of these episodes in about 15 years. It’s amazing it took them this long to realize that they should use shorts instead of serials to fill time but I’m glad they did. I’d put this one in the good but not great category so 4 stars.

       0 likes

  25. Mr. B(ob) says:

    I read “Go, Dog, Go” dozens of times to my son when he was little and I don’t think the hat joke in this episode is referring to that.

       0 likes

  26. This Guy says:

    Sharktopus: The film guide, I imagine, was probably their way of hand-waving why they did a sketch based on the “lemur” even though it hadn’t been introduced in the movie yet. I’m not sure if that jibes with the order in which they wrote/recorded the host segments and movie segments, though.

       0 likes

  27. Spector says:

    This episode is one of those where the short was better than the main feature, which just isn’t a memorable flick for me. The only reason I remember the movie at all is because of Joel’s mad “Joey the Lemur” bit. Heck, sometimes I even had trouble remembering if “X Marks the Spot” appeared in the King Dinosaur episode or Lost Continent. Both films were just bland, despite the best efforts of Joel and the Bots. The short was hilarious, and more than makes up for the lame main feature. So, two stars for “King Dinosaur”, four stars for “X Marks the Spot.

       1 likes

  28. schippers says:

    Most tin-earred movie couplet ever: “Do you remember your chemistry?” “I know about the chemistry between us.” Ugh.

    The first time I heard the “Joey the Lemur” sketch (heard on my iPod, with no visuals at all), I was completely floored. It sounded like a complete bit of lunacy, but inspired and very funny. Oddly, when I WATCH the sketch, Joel’s spastic mannerisms seem to undercut the fun for me a little bit. Not sure why – perhaps because Joel was not, in general, a physically spastic performer on the show (physical, yes, what with all the interacting with the movies in the theater; spastic, no).

       2 likes

  29. schippers says:

    #9 and others – I, too, assume that the poem was written by Joel (or some other BB writer) to sound vaguely Beat-y, but also completely pompous, ridiculous, and nonsensical (oh, also like Beat poetry, heh).

       4 likes

  30. Sharktopus says:

    @ This Guy,

    I’m sure they only made the film guide comment to explain the telegraphed lemur sketch. (Although why they just didn’t just flop segments 2 and 3 is beyond my ken…) I just wonder if a film guide was in fact responsible for their assuming Joe was a lemur. I like to think of the Brains as wise and all-knowing. But then, maybe not everyone has the same extensive knowledge of South American raccoons as I do… :silly:

    Fun fact: Kinkajous (or “honeybears”) are fairly friendly to humans and can be kept as pets, as is shown on the movie, but they’re nocturnal. Then again, just because the sun is clearly shining in a Bert I. Gordon movie doesn’t mean it’s not night.

    Does Tom’s delivery of “Sandwiches?” remind anyone else of the Monty Python sketch with the narcotics cop planting evidence? “Oh! Oh! Look! A bag I found on the premises! … Sandwiches? Whatever did I give the wife?”

       2 likes

  31. ern2150 says:

    Eldermy or Un-eldermy?

       1 likes

  32. dungeonmaster11 says:

    I think I’ll paraphrase something I said a few months back about this episode. I’ve seen quite a few MST3K episodes since I started about two years ago (127, to be exact, and at least half of each season, sans Season 0), and that includes every Sandy Frank film, and I’ve seen this episode more than once, but the scientists in this movie are still some of the most despicable and stupid? main characters I’ve ever seen, even outdoing the nobs from Terror from the Year 5000. And THAT’S saying something.

       6 likes

  33. Raptorial Talon says:

    Someone up above asked about the kinds of reptiles in the film . . . there was of course the alligator (possibly caiman, but gators would be easier to acquire in the U.S. at that time), and then for lizards I seem to recall an iguana, a tegu (the mostly dark, white-blotched one), and maybe a chuckwalla and a few other smaller ones. It’s been a while since I saw it.

    And it sickens me. Watching lizards performing natural predatory or defensive behaviors in the wild is one thing. Forcing them to mutilate each other for people’s “entertainment” is reprehensible – I wouldn’t want to see a real dog-fight for entertainment, and this is no different. It makes parts of this episode hard to watch.

    Well, that, and the mind-numbing stupidity of the scientists who find DINOSAURS on ANOTHER PLANET and their first reaction is not, “dear god, this is the most important discovery in the history of mankind” but instead, “LET’S SEND ‘EM TO HELL!” They get away from any immediate danger and decide to incinerate the mind-blowing, irreplaceable scientific knowledge they WENT THERE TO STUDY.

    Dumbest. Plot. Ever.

    And of course, anyone with any appreciation at all for dinosaurs or other reptiles knows how beyond-hokey it is to point to a plain old tegu and say “Look, it’s a tyrannosaur!” It shatters suspension of disbelief in a way dumber than any cheap forced-perspective toys or rubber suits ever could.

    @#30 You mean South American *procyonids?*

    :b

    Kinkajous *are* remarkably primate-like because they live a similar lifestyle in a similar habitat, and started with the same basic anatomical equipment. So I can see where the average joe could mistake one for a lemur.

    And I hate to mention this, but there’s a small chance the kinkajou is actually an olingo. Pretty closely related, but not the same thing by any means. I do think it looks more kinkajou-ish, though, from what I remember . . .

       10 likes

  34. Gorn Captain says:

    #1 Is it possible Joel was doing the lemur puppet badly on purpose? He had plenty of puppet props in his standup act. He was fine with that talking fish puppet he used in Magic Voyage of Sinbad. And he also performed that monkey puppet on Tv Wheel.

    Has anybody ever asked Joel about it? He must have shared a comedy club stage with a bad ventriloquist act at least once…

    My Dad was on Compuserve as early as 1982, so I have no problem believing some early MSTies were gadding about somewhere online in 1990. ;)

       3 likes

  35. Sharktopus says:

    The first ten to twelve minutes of King Dinosaur remind me of the scene from Tim Burton’s Ed Wood where Ed visits the stock footage library: “I bet I could make an entire movie out of just this stock footage.”

    Huh. Apparently B.I.G. shot the movie over only three days. I would’ve guessed two. And the opening credits include “Featuring Little Joe the Honey Bear,” right as Crow enters the theater. “What is this?” “King Dinosaur. It’s a Lippert Film.” “AAAAAAAH!” “Yep yep, yep.” As I mentioned before, Joel and the Bots feel unusually loose and playful here, much more like the original “three guys watch a cheezy movie together” concept. I like it very much.

       3 likes

  36. Sharktopus says:

    “And it sickens me. Watching lizards performing natural predatory or defensive behaviors in the wild is one thing. Forcing them to mutilate each other for people’s “entertainment” is reprehensible – I wouldn’t want to see a real dog-fight for entertainment, and this is no different. It makes parts of this episode hard to watch.”

    Well said, Mr Talon. I agree whole-heartedly. The only thing keeping me from hating this film for it is that, if Daddy-O is correct, the reptile fighting footage was recycled from another movie. Not that it makes it okay to use it, but if somebody already made an iguana kill an alligator, at least they got a lot of use out of it. Imagine if they’d paired King Dinosaur with Catching Trouble? :cry:

       6 likes

  37. Favorite line from ‘X Marks The Spot:
    After viewing the highway accident death clock Crow says “Hey! If we were talking mob murders we’d be digital.”

       1 likes

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

    Sharktopus @30. Re Sandwiches. Agreed. I absolutely think it is a reference to the drug bust sketch from MPFC.

       2 likes

  39. Fart Bargo says:

    I’m with Fred @13 about the lead Dr Ralph Martin who seemed to delight in really roughing up the female crew, especially the screaming blonde. Blond guy is even worse, he decides to bring a nuclear bomb to blow up an island. 15 mins is plenty of time to paddle away from a nuclear blast?

    The short was excellent. Hapless Joe Doakes, Palooka Angel and THE COMMISSIONER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF MOTOR VEHICLE OF THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY is some star power in a short.

    As far as “Joe” is concerned, he was more human than the entire cast.

       5 likes

  40. wotunw5o says:

    @7
    lol, I remember a thousand years ago when MST got out of the second half of the “TV Shows (whatever it was)-Z”

       0 likes

  41. Actually didn’t Corman direct more movies featured on MST3K? I think he did at least 9, plus produced Night of the Blood Beast and one of his movies was featured in the home game (plus one Cinematic Titanic).

    Anyway, I haven’t seen this whole episode, just the short.

       0 likes

  42. EricJ says:

    @15 – Judge: “15 years…”
    Crow: “On a dead man’s chest.”

    Angel: “I was so upset with his behavior..”
    Joel: “…Why, I booted right in his front seat.”

    “Well, where’re your skates, boys?”

    “Just a cocktail or two…”
    “…POOIE!!”

       2 likes

  43. Raptorial Talon says:

    @36

    I already hate the movie (stupid, stupid plot), though I do need to see the episode again. Only watched it once – I can’t recall too much else besides the Lemur sketch and B.I.G. ol’ cinematic idiocy. Which usually doesn’t bother me this much, but *man.*

    Also, there is no way in hell an iguana would (in and of itself) kill an alligator of comparable mass. That would be like pitting a random hobo against Jackie Chan in full body armor. :\

       2 likes

  44. Sampo says:

    Smoothie: Corman directed six MSTed movies: 311-IT CONQUERED THE WORLD; 315-TEENAGE CAVEMAN; 317-VIKING WOMEN; 503-SWAMP DIAMONS; 511-GUNSLINGER and 806-THE UNDEAD. Seven if you count “The Day the World Ended.”

       2 likes

  45. Shark says:

    “Chirpy the mutant hellbeast” is my fave riff too. It is so random.

       2 likes

  46. Laura says:

    The short still gets to me no matter how many times I watch this episode. Not everyone in New Jersey drives like a complete maniac! Does anyone know exactly where in New Jersey this was filmed? It’s hard to tell. I still want to smack Joe upside his doughy head. And I always feel sorry for his guardian angel. Talk about a punishment! I do find it very entertaning with the riffing. Some of the New Jersey comments are spot on!

    Anyway, I have no problems with the movie (watching wise) or the host segments. It took several viewings of the Joey the Lemur segment to get what the heck Joel was smoking during that segment. I think it was a little too much caffiene that morning. The only part gets to me is the giant bee. I HATE bugs. I have a hard time watching it just for that reason.

    For those who care, the DMV is now called Motor Vehicle Commission. Still the same crap, just a different name.

       1 likes

  47. crowschmo says:

    Yes, Joe was, indeed, introduced as a honey bear in the credits. Awww.

    Squished Forrester was a neat little effect.

    I, too, liked the short better than the movie. Crow’s “Am I Qualified” speech is one of the funniest things they did. The first time I saw that, I cracked up.
    “Organize a bake sale…” :)

    I ran out of room on my old VHS tape when I recorded this many moons ago. I only got up to the part where the second pair of a-holes try to rescue the first pair in the cave. SCIENCE!

    So, I’ve NEVER seen the end of this one!

    Joey the Lemur sketch IS a tad bizarre. I always thought maybe they were getting punchy and tired after a day of shooting and reshooting, perhaps, and just started getting silly. It could be an in joke, and they are making fun of someone, or something they had seen. Or maybe someone told Joel he was getting a bit too weird and he went overboard on purpose just to screw with their heads and annoy them.

    Some fave lines:

    (Host segment)Joel: “Oh, man, they crushed you, didn’t they? It’s probably all hot and it hurts and stuff. Does this mean we get to do the invention exchange first?”

    Short:

    Crow: “If you kill yourselves here, we can’t kill them over there.”

    Servo: “It’s called parallel universe parking.”

    Joel: “Doakes? Let’s see…there’s Dickweed, Dope, Dumbsh–oh, here it is.”

    Joel: “He said a silent prayer to Bongo, the God of Gravity.”

    Joel: “That’s when he stepped into a wormhole and was transported to the 16th Century.”

    Crow: “Oh, I wish I were dead – oh, I am.”

    Joel: “Oh, that’s great – we’re stranded in space and we still have to pull jury duty.”

    Movie:

    Crow: “Oh, I’m filled with wonder – these titles have whisked me away to a magic land…”

    Crow: “And there, on the handle, was some stock footage of a hook.”

    Joel: “You know, Tom, if you’re looking for plausibility in this film, you won’t find it here, friend.”

    Amen, brother. :pain:

       5 likes

  48. Have never seen the ep but have seen the short. I love the line: “Are they going to mention how ugly that guy is?”

       1 likes

  49. Joseph Nebus says:

    @ Sharktopus says:

    I like to think of the Brains as wise and all-knowing. But then, maybe not everyone has the same extensive knowledge of South American raccoons as I do…

    They should have called in Coatimundi Man!

       11 likes

  50. Sharktopus says:

    So if X Marks The Spot was 1944, and Joe had been driving for 15 years, that means the Guardian Angel had committed his own substantial automotive sins prior to 1929. How recklessly must he have driven his Model A to deserve so severe a punishment?

       8 likes

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