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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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Weekend Discussion Thread: Movies that Symbolized their Decade

Alert reader “Son of Peanut” suggests:

I’m watching “Avalanche” as I write this and thinking about how this might be the most stereotypically “’70s-ish” of all the ’70s movies the show has riffed. The hair, clothes, decor, music, setting, story – all creating a time capsule of the era, at least for me.
What other MST3K movies define their decades for you?

I’m gonna go with “The Brute Man” for the ’40s, since the Creeper is clearly a metaphor for Hitler…

What’s your pick?

Episode guide: 1105- The Beast of Hollow Mountain

Movie: (1956) An American cowboy living in Mexico discovers his cattle are being eaten by something, and eventually he finds out what it is.

Opening: Painting day on the SOL
Invention exchange: Jonah has the Disco Cannon; Kinga asks “What if the Titanic had hot water?”
Segment 1: Tom and Crow describe their ideal monster movies
Segment 2: Tom unveils his new fashion line, “The style of Hollow Mountain”
Segment 3: Tom and Crow are festival creatures making Jonah and the Mads increasingly distraught
Closing: How movies would be improved if characters were eaten by dinosaurs
Stinger: Sarita speaks softly and throws a big stick
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (36 votes, average: 3.89 out of 5)

• This one was pretty good. I laughed a lot. The movie is one of those incredibly stupid but watchable bits of nonsense and the riffing and host segments are generally where they should be. The festival creatures sketch is a riot.
• Callbacks: “Watch out for snakes!” (Eegah!), “This is where the fish lives” (The Touch of Satan).
• Speaking of callbacks, what about “milling about”—a phrase used during season one to describe a Mexican town? Did Joel resurrect that one?
• Many many years ago, in the early days of the web, I stumbled upon a homemade site that celebrated (a little too much, it seemed to me) movie characters caught in quicksand. I forget if this one was included, but it should have been.
• Crow makes a reference to “special parts.”
• I love the running gag of Margaritathe maid dashing off to see her favorite TV show
• Crow sings a version of the theme song. Tom says “Meta!!”
• Cast and crew roundup: Co-director Edward Nassau supervised the dinosaur sequences in “The Lost Continent.” Producer Edward Nassour was animation supervisor on that movie as well. Willis O’Brien, who did design work, worked on “The Black Scorpion.” Writer Willis H. O’Brien was supervisor of special effects for “The Black Scorpion.” Margarito Luna was a crane operator for “The Black Scorpion.” Composer Raul Lavista was musical director on “Samson vs. the Vampire Women. Visual effects artist Jack Rabin was special photographic effects creator for “The Saga of the Viking Women,” “Rocketship X-M” and “Invasion USA.”
In front of the camera, Mario Navarro, Pascual Garcia Pena, Roberto Contreras were in “The Black Scorpion.” Guillermo Hernandez was in “The Robot vs. The Aztec Mummy” and “Samson vs the Vampire Women.” Margarito Luna was in “Samson vs the Vampire Women.”
• Fave riff: “Has anyone seen my accent” Honorable mention: “I mind! Get this gringo off me!”

Weekend Discussion Thread: Second best MST Info Source

Alert reader Perry writes:

We all know Satellite News is number 1, but what’s your second-favorite MST-related source? Web site, pressed dead tree, jungle drum network, it’s all fair game.

We love the premise of this, here on our 21st birthday. Have at it!

A New Riff from RiffTrax…

A “Just the Jokes” release. You provide the movie, RiffTrax provides the commentary. Get it here.

Episode guide: 1104- Avalanche

Movie: (1978) Vacationers at a winter resort struggle to survive after an avalanche hits.

Opening: Crow and Tom are working on their “Mad Bots” script
Invention exchange: Ardy in Moon 14 has some concerns; J&tB have the mouth vacuum; the Mads have the Don La Font-aine 3000
Segment 1: Crow and Tom are impressed with Rock Hudson’s romantic moves. Jonah tries to talk them down
Segment 2: As J&tB play Marco Polo, Neville La Roy visits and he and Kinga sing “Our Love Is on Wings (You Can’t See)”
Segment 3: J&TB decry deliberately stupid hybrid B-movies
Closing: Night club singer Gypsy sings a wintry medly
Stinger: Collateral avalanche damage
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (73 votes, average: 4.34 out of 5)

• Several new things in this ep: Joel as Ardy in Moon 14 (other than saying “movie in the hole!”) and the first mention of Kingachrome.
• Movie thoughts: Did Rock and Mia just assume there would be chemistry and not even try to create it? Also interesting and vaguely related: J&tB carefully avoided any riffs on Rock’s, um, lifestyle.
• Jonah’s invention triggered my gag reflex.
• Steve Franken in two out of the first four movies? What are the odds?
• In the theater, Crow and Tom control drones which carefully block the naughty bits of a naked lady, similar to the umbrella bit in episode 403- CITY LIMITS.
• Also in the theater J&tB produce cymbals.
• As the helicopter flies in, they do a M*A*S*H-style description of the movie, one that is taken WORD FOR WORD from the synopsis in the IMDB. I know because I also stole MY synopsis, above, from there, but I rewrote mine a little.
• Neil Patrick Harris pops up out of the blue in a sort of “Dr. Horrible” reunion with Felicia Day. The lyrics by Joel, Elliott Kalan and Robert Lopez. The music is by Robert Lopez, arranged and produced by Stephen Oremus.
• Interesting “Simpsons” reference: “Feels like I’m wearing’ nothin’ at all! Nothin’s at all!” How many Simpsons references were on MST3K, even though “The Simpsons” referenced MST3K several times?
• The credits do not say who wrote Gypsy’s song, so I am guessing it was another great song from Paul and Storm.
• What sort of musical instrument in Jonah playing during Gypsy’s song?
• The TripAdvisor bit is very funny.
• Callback: “We want to hear California Lady!” (Track of the Moon Beast).
• Phrases from the legacy show: “Commercial sign,” “He died as he lived…” and “You look at it, I’m bitter.”
• Cast and crew round-up: As noted, Steve Franken was also in “The Time Travelers.” Stuntman Freddie Hice also did stunts for “Alien from LA.” Behind the camera, producer Paul Rapp was assistant director on “High School Big Shot.” Producer Roger Corman’s other riffed films include “Gunslinger,” “It Conquered the World,” “The Undead,” “Viking Women,” “Teenage Cave Man,” “Swamp Diamonds” and “The Sword and the Dragon.” Editor Larry Bock also edited “Final Justice,” in which he also had a cameo as a drunk. Production designer Sharon Compton was an actress in “Wizards of the Lost Kingdom II.” Special effects artist Roger George also did special effects on “The Human Duplicators” and “The Amazing Transparent Man.” Script supervisor Sandy King also supervised the script for “The Incredible Melting Man.”
• Fave riff: “1978, you have so many crimes to answer for.” Honorable mention: “o/` Rock rock rock rock rock ’n’ roll search team. o/`”