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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: 303- Pod People

Movie: (1984) When some alien eggs hatch, it spells trouble for a pair of poachers, a vacationing singer and his entourage and an isolated family.

First shown: 6/15/91
Opening: J&tB are having an arts chautauqua
Invention exchange: After a brief scene from “An Officer and a Gentlemen,” Joel demonstrates his monster chord; while the Mads have invented a public domain karaoke machine
Host segment 1: J&tB record “Idiot Control Now” and it stinks!
Host segment 2: J&tB present New Age music from Some Guys in Space
Host segment 3: “You are magic, aren’t you, Trumpy?”
End: J&tB sing, “A Clown in the Sky”
Stinger: “It stinks!”
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (205 votes, average: 4.64 out of 5)

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• People adore this episode. In the ACEG it’s described as a “fan favorite.” But I gotta say this is number-one in my list of “sleeping pill” episodes. Don’t get me wrong: the riffing is great and the host segments are ALL winners (which is a rarity). But the movie just puts me to sleep. Maybe it’s all the fog and new agey music. I did make it through this viewing without dozing off, but I was getting pretty drowsy by the end.
• This movie was originally released in Spain as “Los Nuevos Extraterrestres.” For the American video release it was called “The Unearthling,” but you might also have seen it titled “Extra-Terrestrial Visitors,” “Tales Of Trumpy” or “The Return Of E.T.”
References.
• This episode was included in Rhino’s “The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection, Vol. 2.”
• Kevin croaks out the word “merchant” in the opening bit–they keep going.
• The blowed-up bots are the handywork of newly arrived Toolmaster Jef.
• Dr. F mentions the once-trendy clothing retail chain Chess King. They would be gone in four years.
• Frank addresses Jerry the Mole Person but we never see him.
• Despite the fact that the bots have just been badly blowed up, the regular bots walk into the theater a moment later. Joel covers by mumbling “Good thing we got those re-…um…those new heads on…”
• FVI used clips from a movie called “Galaxy Invader” for the titles. That movie would later be riffed by RiffTrax.
• The last time we had an episode with two songs was 202- THE SIDE HACKERS. We wouldn’t get another one until episode 521- SANTA CLAUS.
• Callback: “Puma? Puma!” (Ring of Terror)
• That’s makeup lady (and occasional writer) Faye Berkholder as the recording studio assistant in Deep 13, her one and only appearance on the show. A lot of people thought it was Bridget for a long time.
• Kevin sort of coughs/clears his throat at one point in the theater. They keep going.
• During the wall of keyboards sketch, Crow has a bit of sammich on his beak. Another nice touch from Jef. Also–Why is Joel staring down at the floor while he’s talking? Is he reading his lines?
• A lot of people had no idea about the origin of that voice Crow does when he does Trumpy. “He’s like a poh-tay-toe!” He’s doing a vague impression of The Elephant Man from the movie of the same name.
• Also, a lot people had no idea who McCloud was. Dennis Weaver, we hardly knew ye.
• That said, they ran the “Chief? McCloud!” bit right into the ground. A running gag is one thing, but sheesh.
• Vaguely dirty riff: “That trunk could come in handy for hard to reach places!”
• Goof: When Joel says “Trumpy, you can do STUPID things!” in the theater, he’s referencing a line by the little kid, Tommy, who says: “Trumpy, you can do magic things!” Unfortunately Joel does that riff about 10 minutes BEFORE the Tommy says the original line. Another example of what happens when you watch a movie five or six times in a week. You can lose track of when stuff happens.
• The house in this movie is MUCH bigger on the inside than it looks like on the outside. It appears to have three or four guest bedrooms and endless hallways (and a door to the outside in the bathroom off one of the bedrooms, though which evil Trumpy escapes after killing the girl in the shower). Is it a TARDIS house?
• Cast and crew roundup: The only person credited for this movie that has a credit in any other MSTed movie is, once again, scoremeister Karl Michael Demer, who was Film Ventures International’s go-to credits music guy.
• CreditsWatch: Unbelievable: After two episodes where it didn’t appear, “Special Guest Villians” (misspelled) returns. Starting with this episode and continuing through most of the season: “Host Segments Directed by Jim Mallon.” And an important first in this episode: “Toolmaster: Jef Maynard.” Mike and Kevin get the credit for “A Clown in the Sky.” Trace gets a solo Art Direction credit (no Joel, for the only time during his tenure at the show). A new credit appears: “Post Production Coordination.” It’s Alex (already listed as “Production Manager”) and Jann (already listed as “Production Coordinator”). Sheesh. Another new credit: “Prop Assistant.” This week it’s one Barb Oswald, who will get the gig in two more eps this season.
• Fave riff: “Hi! We’re the cast from ‘Straw Dogs’.” Honorable mention: “Hear that? Sounds like Norm Abrams being killed by a giant chicken.”

230 Replies to “Episode guide: 303- Pod People”

  1. Dan in WI says:

    Let me start off by summarizing this episode in two words. (gives the okay sign) It stinks.

    FVI switcheroo credits strike again. I recognize these credits though. It is from the “Galaxy Invader.” I’ve seen that film too hosted by Green Bay late night horror host Ned the Dead. The bots could have had just as much fun with Galaxy Invader as they did Pod People.

    As Sampo points out in his old and new comments I never knew who McCloud was. But that never stopped the Chief McCloud catchphrase from being an all time favorite amongst my circle of friends. I love this experiment.

    Joel opens up observing that “they are on” much like asteroid comments in 301. This time they aren’t opening a season though.

    I love the way Frank has his finger on the pulse of youth trends. “loud music, hula hoops, fax machines and karaoke.” That describes my youth to a T. But if I can be serious for a moment, is their public domain karaoke machine some sort of venting against obtaining movie rights? But it’s not like they’ve had any battles with Sandy Frank…yet.

    I love Joel’s lyrics to “Idiot Control Now.”

    The Mad’s reaction to the Trumpy can do magic host segment is just priceless.

    Favorite Riffs:
    Camera pans toward the Trumpy crash site which looks a bit like a cave. Joel “Looks like Yoda is home.”

    Joel as Tommy “Hey what gives, I’m on the milk carton”

    Crow as Molly after the first death “Come on, your breakfast is getting cold and she’s not getting any warmer.”

    Joel “Lot of carbon scoring on my droid.”

    Tom “He stepped in some Trumpy dumpy.”

    Tommy “I’m over here Mommy.” Crow “Talking to Billy Barty.”

       9 likes

  2. heretic23 says:

    I’ve seen The Galaxy Invader, so I was sort of confused when I watched Pod People. This must be the same guys who did the Cave Dwellers opening!

    Pod People is a perfect example of a movie written by committee. A committee armed with ET box office totals.

       2 likes

  3. Sitting Duck says:

    The movie can’t seem to figure out if it wants to be a slasher film or a feel-good E.T. rip-off. So it decides to be both. Alas, the combination proves to be a far cry from chocolate and peanut butter or Final Fantasy and Disney cartoons.

       7 likes

  4. Graboidz says:

    As a fan of 80’s horror in general, I would almost be tempted to watch this flick un-riffed?!? This ep gets five stars for simply putting Frank in the “Virgin” T-shirt! That is one of the only times I’ve laughed harder at a host segment than at anything said in the theater.

       6 likes

  5. Graboidz says:

    Sitting Duck – Final Fantasy and Disney mixed pretty well in “Kingdom Hearts”….just sayin’

       1 likes

  6. This was one of the first episodes I ever watched. my dad bought the episode on tape, and he hated it so much, he let me keep it. At this point, my vhs collection was limited to this movie, Mars Attacks, and a couple others. So, I watched this episode every time I got the chance. I have the episode on dvd now, but Every now and then I pop in the vhs, for nostalgia purposes. It’s one of those episodes where almost every line brings back memories of my youth ( wasted on watching tv and movies). For that reason, I have to love this episode.

       5 likes

  7. Larry says:

    5 out of 5. My first Joel episode, which I bought on Rhino VHS back in ’97 after a bit of an MST3K drought (we ended the cable package that included Sci-Fi – NOT by my choice). I hadn’t seen a ‘fresh’ episode since the summer, I was jonesing bad, and Pod People did not disappoint. LOVE this episode, and it’s held up just fine for me over the years. Chief/McCloud is still a recurring joke between my brother and me.

    As for it being my first Joel episode, it was kinda mind-blowing. I had seen Dr. F and heard Crow’s first voice through MST3K: TM (which I snagged off of Starz or some premium movie channel during a free preview weekend), but Joel and Frank were eye-opening for someone that had almost entirely known MST3K by the Sci-Fi era alone.

    So, yeah, this one holds a special place in my heart. Luckily, it’s a riot, too.

       4 likes

  8. bad wolf says:

    It’s both a sleeping pill AND a top episode. I can pay attention to the riffs and laugh my butt off or just leave it on and let the Wyndham Hill soundtrack lull me to sleep.

    I always wondered about Faye there. What kind of show has such attractive women working backstage and never works them into more sketches? Seriously, five ostensibly male characters, with one semi-female robot making infrequent appearances, voiced by a man.

       9 likes

  9. JoshWay says:

    My wife always wants to watch this episode because she remembers the crazy Trumpy scene, but she forgets what a long trudge the rest of the movie is. This was a favorite of mine after it first aired, but I really have trouble staying with it when I revisit it. Great riffing, though.

       4 likes

  10. Tork_110 says:

    Overrated! Actually, Sampo sums up my thoughts on the episode. It’s good, yet I just can’t get into it. The songs are both classics at least.

    IMDB says that the movie was originally a horror film, but then the producers insisted they throw in an E.T. element.

    The scene that stood out to me was the one where the surviving girl (the girlfriend of the singer?) is having a moment with the mom. They start talking about guys and the girl goes off about “Guys are only interested in THIS and THESE!” I may have the details wrong, but I’m sure this scene happened after the bodies were starting to pile up. Couldn’t her faux-feminism wait until the aliens were gone!?

    I bet Aram Fingal has nightmares about Trumpy.

       2 likes

  11. Joseph Nebus says:

    This was one of my first exposures to MST3K, through the syndicated hour. Unfortunately I could only watch the syndicated hour when I was home from grad school, and I wouldn’t be there successive weekends, so I only had the first half of this, Santa Claus Conquers The Martians, and some other episode I can’t name right now. When I finally got Comedy Central, my first attempt to watch an episode ended with the videotape stopping halfway through (I think there was a power blip). I felt somewhat conspired against regarding the second halves of episodes.

       2 likes

  12. GizmonicTemp says:

    There’s been talk of “Galaxy Invader”, and not to take away from “Pod People”, but Galaxy Invader is one of those movies that is INSULTINGLY bad. The amount of red-neckery makes “Giant Spider Invasion” invasion look like a Jane Austen movie.

    “Pod People” was one of the first shows I saw and has a very important “I know this show is for me” moment when Crow mentions that Tommy’s room looks like a Peter Gabriel video. I’m currently trying to score some Gabriel tickets when he comes to the Starlight Theater. :yes:

       3 likes

  13. ck says:

    Let’s put on the soundtrack and drift away on New Age
    music as WKRP disc jockey Venus Flytrap takes his
    children on a trip to the stars…(forget the actual intro).

       1 likes

  14. GizmonicTemp says:

    Joseph Nebus #12 – I know EXACLTY what you mean. “Manos” was the same way for me. The second half eluded me for YEARS until the DVD was available. I popped it in, and when the show DIDN’T end while they were searching for Debbie, my heart lept! It was WELL worth the wait!

       3 likes

  15. Loran Alan Davis says:

    Good episode, but all that stage fog…AARRGGHH!!

    loran1958@hotmail.com

       3 likes

  16. GizmonicTemp says:

    Tork_110 #10 – Sorry to hog the thread, but that scene always bothered me too. The girl you’re thinking of is the man-eater Tracy. Yes, it was typical campy horror/monster movie fare to have that kind of heart-to-heart amidst carnage, but Tracy seems to disapprove of men coveting her Toobular Boobulars, yet she’s constantly in heat looking for “a ranger or a bear to sleep with”! Hahahaha!

       3 likes

  17. Evil Trumpy killing people in there sleep: okay. Evil Trumpy killing people any other time: incredibly stupid. Nothing against little creatures trying to kill people, but need to threating, have weopans, or use tactics to overcome the major size diff. Evil Trumpy seems to lack Good Trumpy’s magic and just has the power of always fatal push. It just bugs me.

       2 likes

  18. toot-tootoot-toot says:

    I find the comments on this ep being overrated rather overrated. This has always been one of my all-time favorites and is just as fresh and hilarious for me now as it was the first time I watched it. 5/5 for sure!

       5 likes

  19. klisch says:

    Really well done episode. I liked how they needed more rooms to put all the dead bodies in. The crazy wacked out segment where Tom is dressed as Trumpy and the entire SOL goes haywire while that carnival music is being played is one of my favorite segments. Funny stuff. And Sampo saying this is his #1 sleeping pill episode. To each his own I guess. Four stars from me.

       2 likes

  20. Emily says:

    #16 You just reminded me of one of my favorite riffs in the movie. When she says “I’ll just have to find a ranger or a bear to sleep with,” you can just hear Tom going, “What are you SAYING?” in a quietly horrified voice. Not the most laugh-out-loud moment, perhaps, but I always find it so entertaining in its subtlety.

       5 likes

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

    Like Cave Dwellers, this was one of the first episodes available for purchase, possibly contributing to its popularity.

    #16: looking for “a ranger or a bear

    A rare?

    IMDB’s description of Galaxy Invader: “An alien is hunted by a gang of drunken hillbillies who saw him crash-land his spaceship.” So, pretty much the EXACT OPPOSITE of Pod People, then.

       2 likes

  22. Thomas K. Dye says:

    During the actual “Hear the Engines Roll Now” song, it really DOES sound like the curly-headed guy is singing “Flying over trout.” I’ve listened to that several times and can’t figure out what it’s supposed to be. I love Tom’s confused reaction to that, too, as well as to “wind in my eyes.” Really? “Wind in my eyes?”

    “Idiot Control Now” is one of those skits, like “rushing the Halloween season” from “Track of the Moon Beast”, that basically recreates the movie scene closely to point out how unbelievably lame it is. I love those; it’s like nothing more needs to be done other than some slight dialogue changes and it’s hilarious.

    And seriously… why would this kid who has JUST HATCHED the damn monster assume it would know who its mother was and where it came from? What the hell’s that about?

    And it seems like J&tB never figure out there are two Trumpys. They always act like the little kid’s Trumpy is the same as the one that’s gone on the murder spree, even at the end when we SEE the two aliens together. That always kind of annoys me when they riff on a mistaken premise so heavily.

       6 likes

  23. Johnny Ryde says:

    This was probably the first Joel episode I ever saw… certainly the first Joel I had on VHS. This — along with This Island Earth — I watched repeatedly for a while in the 90s for lack of any other episodes. As a result, I try not to watch it too often any more, just because I have so much of the thing memorized.

    “They parked next to a data-stream.”

    I could never tell if the Brains missed that there were two Trumpies at the end (a good and an evil Trumpy), or if they deliberately misunderstood for comedic purposes.

    I usually lose track of the characters once they start getting killed off, but two nights ago I actually managed to keep them straight in my head. The only people who survive are Tommy, Tommy’s mother, the singer “it stinks!” guy and the singer’s girlfriend. I don’t know how many viewings it took before I realized that the other young male character gets killed off when him and the old guy find the bodies in the cabin…

       2 likes

  24. Johnny Ryde says:

    Oh, and I think they missed an opportunity to bring back Faye Berkholder’s character in later episodes. It would have been a hoot to have this random mod lady standing in the background snapping her fingers during invention exchanges. (I’m only half joking on this.)

    Another thing… Despite watching this episode dozens of times, it was only about a year or so ago that I noticed that during the scene where they’re sitting around the camp-fire, the girl who isn’t in the band casually flips the bird to the girl sitting next to her. And no censoring by Comedy Central. ;>

    And something else that bugged me during my most recent viewing. The scene mentioned above where the one woman talks about how men are intimidated by her intelligence… What has she said or done that indicates she has any intelligence to intimidate anyone? I mean, I know the movie tries to have its tropes (roguish singer, the stand-up friend, the put-upon girlfriend, etc)… but virtually any line of dialog from any of the “teen” characters could be put in the mouth of any other teen character without being changed what-so-ever. I mean, I know the girl not in the band is supposed to be the dumb one… but what does she say or do that makes her dumber than the “smart” girl?

    Oh, and my favorite movie moment from my most recent viewing was that silliness near the beginning where the put-upon girlfriend says about her male friend “Why couldn’t I have fallen in love with him?” At which point the male immediately does a silly snapping of his fingers. I don’t know why, but it really cracked me up.

    “Yeah, it goes in my ear.”

       5 likes

  25. PrivateIron says:

    I don’t always like the “adult” riffts, but I love: Hey, leave the kid’s animals alone! (Apologies if that is not verbatim.)

       0 likes

  26. JimmyBruce says:

    Well done overall episode. Everything clicked. Movie was watchable, riffs were fantastic, charactors were easy to make fun of, and the host segments were top notch. A very foggy movie though.

       1 likes

  27. Fred Burroughs says:

    @Giztemp: Jane Austen– bravo, sir. or madam.

    Never could nail down what kind of Foreign-ness this movie is infected with. (until much internet research, which robbed me of MORE of my life). great episode though, they were firing on all cylinders, esp. helping us track through all the silly subplots (“What movie are we in, A B, or C, Oh , yes D for dumb…” ) I used to watch McCloud, but even I didn’t get exactly why they were shouting “Chief? McCloud!” every 2 minutes. I did enjoy the ” ‘Night, John-Boy” references though.

    The plot, though dragging throughout, is kind of fascinating: all the characters are reprehensible. The greedy slimy Poachers start to get killed when the arrogant and mean Rock Stars show up with their slutty moody Girlfriends, to the house with the mean ugly old Man and the dumb-as-a-post cute Kid. Alien buddy Trumpy, of course, kills at will — or is it his doppelganger? None of it is explained, and who survives the carnage? Mr no-talent RockStar, the most hateful of them all, shooting his shotgun at random in the house and the forest. Good thing there’s plenty of fog to cover up the stupidity.

    Fave: Tommy can you hear me? “Can you feel me near you?”
    I think they did Pinball Wizard jokes in other movies, but it must have been hard to restrain themselves from making more “Tommy” references.

       3 likes

  28. Admiral Kent says:

    For me, one of the funniest riffs in this episode is when the girl is attacked in the bathroom and her body is thrown against the glass door…causing Joel to simply intone “whoops” as though she tripped and face planted. It’s such a simple, understated riff, but cracks me up every time.

       1 likes

  29. dsman71 says:

    One of a few ET rip-offs…I found out that this was the Unearthling from John Stanley’s Creature Feature movie guide..
    This is a great episode…although the film can put you to sleep ( I totally agree with Sampo)
    I was so glad this was an easy to get title on DVD because it is a highly popular episode.and Trumpy can do magic things !
    I love the Trumpy Dumpy line..
    Joel’s Hair update – this episode he trimmed his hair on the sides and back..letting the bangs get longer where it would grow out until Daddy-O
    Joel’s Hiar
    Joel’s Knees
    Trumpy Dumpy
    Back for more therapy !! :-)

       2 likes

  30. Very possibly the first episode I saw, back when they were syndicated and showing in the middle of the night on local stations. So I love this one unusually. Looking at the previous comments, I see I’m not alone.

       2 likes

  31. Johnny Ryde says:

    Oh, and I always wondered if Crow’s “Movie D… for Dumb” line is a reference to the Robots of Death episode of Doctor Who…

    For me, one of the funniest riffs in this episode is when the girl is attacked in the bathroom and her body is thrown against the glass door…causing Joel to simply intone “whoops” as though she tripped and face planted. It’s such a simple, understated riff, but cracks me up every time.

    Ah, I always saw it a little differently. While her shadow races across the door, the old man has is gun raised as through to smash through the door using the back of the gun. The placement of the butt of the gun and her head makes it look like he accidentally hit her in the head with it.

    At least, that’s how I saw it… Your explanation works too. Funny moment regardless…

       1 likes

  32. Tom Carberry says:

    It Stinks!

    I think this sums up the quality of movies BBI has riffed over the years, and “Pod People” is no exception. For some reason I always managed to miss this one during its broadcast rotation. I finally saw it on a Saturday afternoon (while taping it). It has remained a favorite since. Favorite Lines:

    He’s stepped into some Trumpy Dumpy.
    What is he, an LA cop?
    I believed it when Alf went on a killing spree…
    Don’t start with me Martha (with Crow’s best Burton voice imitation)
    I like you Tommy, I kill you last (with Crow’s best Arnold S. voice)
    Geesh Tracy, stay away from the kid’s animals.
    Your breakfast is getting cold, and she’s not getting any warmer.
    I think they are going to have to put on an addition to stack up the bodies.
    I know what your thinking Tommy…Did Mom fire six shots or only five?
    Molly was a LRRP in ‘Nam and can track…

    Noteworthy was their observation that the “singer” looked like Greg Louganis (or Greg Brady of The Brady Bunch) and his friend looked like Andy Travis of WKRP–I think it was the hair and the tight pants.

       3 likes

  33. Just watched it again recently. Just an okay ep for my money. 2 1/2 stars.

       0 likes

  34. Mr. B(ob) says:

    One of the best, funniest episodes ever! An absolutely amazing and hilarious show from beginning to end. Between the jokes about Renaissance Festivals, the recreation of the pop group’s recording session and the unrelentingly hilarious riffs about the music, the behavior of the characters and the appearance of the monsters, it’s hard to get your breath. The host segments and the movie riffing are some of the best in an entire episode in the show’s history and the movie is mesmerizing in its silliness.

    A few favorite riffs and jokes:
    – Now hold it down till you get a recording contract from Windham Hill. (making fun of the simplistic electronic music)
    – Gypsy being the “late” backup singer in the recording session sketch, waaay later than the character in the film.
    – Bees on pie, burning rubber tires. (from the MST3K version of the song in the movie)
    – It stinks!
    – They’re getting pretty good at this. (about the characters stacking up the corpses)
    – Little winged potato. (for Trumpy as if he thinks all of Tommy’s pets are food)
    – Let me get the attachments, you can do the couch.
    – The tons of hilarious musical numbers by the cast in this one. Besides the two lengthy songs, there’s the Mads’ karaoke in the beginning and the parody of new age music sketch, as well as the “Trumpy you can do magic things!” sketch being set to the music from the film.
    – plus several lines already mentioned in the main topic posting at top.

    One question I’ve always had is about the Sprite soda product placement in the film. There’s a small sign on a wooden wall or barn door or something in the film that has the green Sprite logo on it. It’s isolated on this large area of wood with nothing else like it around, it’s not near a vending machine or restaurant or anything that supplies a premise for it being where it is in the film. It always seems odd and out of place every time I see it.

    ————————————–
    I don’t know how anyone can call this episode overrated, they don’t get any funnier than this and isn’t that the point of a comedy show?

    This is one of those episodes I’ve used to hook more than one new or casual fan to the show and turn them more into a full-fledged MSTie. And it works every time. If it was a “snoozefest”, I wouldn’t use it and it wouldn’t work. Yes, there are parts of the movie that are slow, but not to the point of distraction. I’ve never recommended this to anyone and had them complain about it being hard to watch or putting them to sleep like so many people do about, say, Manos.

       2 likes

  35. Edge says:

    A triumph of the human spirit! If this is not a 5 star episode, nothing is.

    “Smucker’s brand peroxide…”

       8 likes

  36. NoTrafficAccidents says:

    Favorite moment (outside of Idiot Control Now and Clown in the Sky):

    Tom: Joel, what are boobs?
    Joel: You know, like Jethro Bodine.
    Tom: Ohhhhh….

       6 likes

  37. MSTie says:

    I think this is one of the stupidest, funniest eps ever. I wouldn’t want to watch it every week but I love seeing it once a year or so.

    @12 — totally agree with you about the Peter Gabriel music video reference. I think I spit Pepsi when they said that.

       2 likes

  38. Eric says:

    Has anyone ever figured out who did the Morrissey-esque/sort of reggae song during the RV driving scene? I hate myself for liking it.

       2 likes

  39. senorpogo says:

    Great episode.

    I love the part where the two poachers are bickering and Leslie Nielsen retorts with, “Yeah? Well you’re a jerk.” Such a juvenile comeback.

    Faruk Alatan? I went to school with Faruk Alatan.

       3 likes

  40. Matthew Shine says:

    This is it. The motherload. The Alpha, The Omega.

    This is easily in my top 5 favorite episodes and has the honor of being the first episode I ever saw.
    Everything just works out so well, from the Public Domain Karaoke Machine to Clowns In The Sky.
    I nearly choked on my iced tea the first time I saw Joel’s recreation of Trumpy’s magic. Even when I watch it again for the 500th time, that scene still gets me.

    “I CAN’T BRING THEM DOWN. I DON’T KNOW HOW IT WORKS!”
    *Cue Stupid Trumpy Music*

    The riffing’s great too, with “Hear The Engines Roll Now” song, the Data Stream and Trumpy’s love of the theater, potatoes/food in general and doing evil/magic things being a highlight.

    *Gives A-OK sign*. IT STINKS.

       3 likes

  41. Johnny Ryde says:

    I love the part where the two poachers are bickering and Leslie Nielsen retorts with, “Yeah? Well you’re a jerk.” Such a juvenile comeback.

    Agreed. And the best thing about the line is that it doesn’t flow at all from the conversation:

    “She’s faster than I thought!”
    “Yeah? Well, you’re a jerk!”

    Cracks me up every time.

       2 likes

  42. senorpogo says:

    Forget to mention: I love the extremely bitter, inexplicably angry old uncle. “It’s a centipede! It’ll always be called a centipede!”

       3 likes

  43. Richard says:

    I have to admit that this is one of those episodes that I don’t really watch that often. It just takes so long to get going and it then spends that uptempo section just kind of wandering around. The main thing that I love about this episode is that it has one of my favorite inventions for the “Invention Exchange” – The Public Domain Karaoke Machine. I smile and laugh every time I hear Dr. F and Frank singing along in person or in my memory. :-D

       0 likes

  44. monoceros4 says:

    “I’ve laaaaughed with moooonsters, I’ve criiiied with moooonsters…” There’s a lot of singing in this episode, isn’t there? Tom Servo later supplies one of my favorite moments, with his bizarre lapse into Anthony Newley: “When the harlequin is on the bed / And the whiskey haze surrounds his head / William Holden’s coming over / And he’s got a fifth of–”

    Which reminds me that this movie, like the later Killer Shrews, reeks of alcohol. “What can I get you? Ouzo? Vodka? Sambuca? Pernod? &c. &c. &c.”

    I don’t like this episode quite as much as some of the other Season 3 episodes, although I can’t give a good reason why. Maybe all the Rosco fog obscures the riffing somewhat. Things always pick up when the focus of the movie switches to Trumpy and the moronic kid, who really brings out the best from Joel and the bots. “It’s called ‘evil’, kid!”

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  45. David J says:

    I’ve found some interesting trivia about this movie here and there. The guy who was making it was known for some incredibly stupid horror movies. This one was made even more stupid when the producers insisted he change it at the last minute to make it more like the recent blockbuster success, E.T. So it got renamed “Los Nuevos Extraterrestres” and the story then included a shoehorned in plotline about another alien being raised by a little kid. And the alien who was doing all the killing was at least slightly provoked each time. The screen-writer hated the changes, but keep in mind that even without the bizarre choice of trying to capitalize on the success of E.T., the movie still would have been pretty ridiculous.

    Some things that I didn’t realize for years about the movie: The dots that “Evil Trumpy” leaves on the foreheads of dead people are supposed to represent the constellation that “Good Trumpy” highlights on the star chart. I still have no idea why they were being left on victims’ foreheads though. Also, it was only on a very recent viewing that I realized the emphasis put on the awful band-leader decided not to shoot “Good Trumpy”. Apparently, despite him being an egotistical, womanizing jerk, he is the only character in the movie that ends up understanding Tommy’s love of the alien ant eater. Redemption? Not in my book.

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  46. GizmonicTemp says:

    Johnny Ryde #24 – Oh yeah!! I noticed that, perhaps, two years ago. Of the dozens of times I watched this ep, why did I miss it?! Speaking of uncensored things, there’s a similar “Did That Just Happen?” scene in Creeping Terror, when the two guys are fighting in at the dance, when a woman’s shirt get’s ripped off and her “lady lumps” are plainly visible. Wow!

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  47. Torgo's Pizza's on my speed dial says:

    Another one of my favorites. I taped this one off the MST Hour and showed it to my younger brothers (and myself) incessantly. We still spout lines from it every time we’re remotely in the vicinity of one another. (“You can do STUPID things” and the potato variations are probably the most used references.) Drives our spouses and parents to the brink of madness, sure, but it’s worth it!

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  48. WeatherServo9 says:

    To this day, my favorite one-man show of all time is Leslie Nielsen, Leslie Nielsen, Leslie Nielsen!

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  49. big61al says:

    Man i love this episode…i’ve got to get this out and rewatch it…

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  50. Charles says:

    This used to be one of my favorites, it’s died down a bit in recent years because I overwatched it and it does tend to drag in places. Plus, the damn fog! “Even the movie The Fog didn’t have this much fog.” It’s a bit damp and unpleasant to look at because of it. Sometimes I felt as if I was going to grow moss.

    I did find it hilarious with the desperate single woman, when she’s having that heart-to-heart with Tommy’s mom, how Tommy’s mom was basically reinforcing her view that she wasn’t an attractive woman, but she still “had good points”. “I’m ugly.” “Sure, but just remember you’re a good cook! That compensates for your ugliness!”

    I loved Trace’s Trumpy-as-the-Elephant-Man voice:
    “Oh, little potatoes!”

    “Like hell, more food!”
    “What *do* you like, Trumpy?”
    “Food, eating, the theater.”

    Every time I see rabbits I can’t help but thing “This potato’s got big ears.”

    And the kitten was cute too! A win all around.

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