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1901: Ted Husing, narrator for the short CATCHING TROUBLE, seen in episode 315- TEENAGE CAVEMAN.
1923: Gaia Romanini, who did the costumes for the movie “Operation Kid Brother,” seen in episode 508- OPERATION DOUBLE 007.
1935: Willie Pastrano, who played Banjo in the movie in episode 207- WILD REBELS.
1935: Johnny Byrne, who was one of the screenwriters of the “Space: 1999” episodes “The Metamorph” and “Space Warp” seen in the movie in episode K10- COSMIC PRINCESS.
1939: Ulla Stromstedt, who played Katrina Corelli, a.k.a. “the creepy girl” in episode 204- CATALINA CAPER.
1940: Bruce Lee, who was mentioned in a host segment in episode 422- THE DAY THE EARTH FROZE.
1945: Barbara Anderson, who played Carla Stanley in the movie in episode K13- SST: DEATH FLIGHT.*
1958: Juliet Avola, who handled video and was post-production coodrinator for the movie in episode 110- ROBOT HOLOCAUST.*
1964: Rebecca Ferratti, who played Talena in the movie in episode 519- OUTLAW.*
1978: Susan Shaw (age 49), who played Hestia in the movie in episode 416- FIRE MAIDENS FROM OUTER SPACE.
1979: Dorothy Love (age 74), who played Helen in the movie in episode 704- THE INCREDIBLE MELTING MAN.
1984: Cliff Wenger Jr. (age unknown), special effects assistant for the movie in episode K16- CITY ON FIRE.
1987: Richard Rubin (age 75), who did the props for the movies in episodes 406- ATTACK OF THE GIANT LEECHES and 607- BLOODLUST.
1988: John Carradine (age 82), who played Prof. Charles Conway in the movie in episode 320- THE UNEARTHLY and crooned “Night Train to Mundo Fine” in the movie in episode 619- RED ZONE CUBA.
1991: George Edwards (age 67), producer for the movie in episode 104- WOMEN OF THE PREHISTORIC PLANET.
1994: John Conwell (age 72), who was in charge of talent for the movie in episode 608- CODE NAME: DIAMOND HEAD.
1997: Nello Pazzafini (age 63), who played Wallon in the movie in episode 301- CAVE DWELLERS, Gunk in the movie in episode 605- COLOSSUS AND THE HEADHUNTERS and Frank in the movie “Il Raggio Infernale,” seen in episode 620- DANGER!! DEATH RAY.
1999: Robert F. Shugrue (age 62), editor of the episodes of TV’s “Gemini Man” seen in episode 814- RIDING WITH DEATH.
2005: Jacques Gallo (age 81), who played Sir Dennis in the movie in episode 411- THE MAGIC SWORD.
1988: episode K03- STAR FORCE: FUGITIVE ALIEN II first shown.
1582: William Shakespeare, author of the play turned into the movie in episode 1009- HAMLET, married Ann Hathaway.
Movie: (1964) Determined to bring Christmas to their home planet, Martians kidnap Santa Claus.
First shown: 12/21/91 Opening: Crow and Tom are looking at Christmas catalogs Invention exchange: The Mads demonstrate their wish squisher; J&tB offer up their own misfit toys Host segment 1: J&tB sing: “A Patrick Swayze Christmas” Host segment 2: J&tB look over tapes of cheesy Christmas specials Host segment 3: J&tB read their Christmas essays End: Caroling, stocking time, Joel reads a letter, meanwhile in Deep 13, the Mads are also exchanging gifts Stinger: Bad martian’s derisive laughter (147 votes, average: 4.61 out of 5)
• This one is a genuine classic, and for a lot of MSTies it’s as much a part of the holiday season as “White Christmas” or “It’s A Wonderful Life.” All the host segments are gems. The riffing is solid throughout. It’s also another one I have almost completely memorized. But as good as it is, as much fun as it is, as much as “A Patrick Swayze Christmas” has become a yuletide tradition, well, I’ll just say it: Both the RiffTrax and Cinematic Titanic riffs are funnier. That said, this one’s guaranteed to get you in the holiday spirit.
• This episode was included in Rhino’s “Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Essentials.”
• This episode was the one they were working on when a crew from Comedy Central arrived at the studios to shoot footage for the documentary “This is MST3K.” Unfortunately, that led to several misunderstandings among some fans. MSTies had been told that bots painted black were used in the theater sequences, but in the special we could see that the regular bots were being used. “What gives?” a lot of fans asked at the time. The answer: The regular bots had been altered slightly with Christmas additions, and so those were used in the theater, this one time, for continuity’s sake, rather than the usual black bots. It’s just unfortunate that cameras were there to capture it.
• The invention exchange segment starts very abruptly, directly in Deep 13 rather than having the usual SOL intro. Were they just hurrying for time?
• What is a “video cassette cartridge game”? Frank seems to think kids would like to get one…
• Why isn’t the tree in the background in Deep 13 decorated?
• The image above was the best one I could get for this movie, because this version has no title card. The version you can download at Archive.org also has no title card. For a while I thought this was the only print available, but the RiffTrax and Cinematic Titanic versions DO have the title card. So, a much cleaner version exists.
• There are a LOT of then-current topical references in this one: C. Everett Koop … “Twin Peaks” … the Thomas hearings … “Gates has been confirmed” … the notion that Drew Barrymore is a little kid … Eric Heiden … Donna Rice … and the first of several references to long forgotten commercial character, “Bonnie, your Time/Life operator.”
• At one point Servo says to Droppo: “You’re the Gilligan of your time.” Um, sorry, Servo, but this movie and “Gilligan’s Island” both came out in the same year.
• Callbacks: “Puma?” (Ring of Terror) “…the Robot Holocaust…”
• Right before they start singing “A Patrick Swayze Christmas.” Joel says “Paul…” Apparently that was meant to be a David Letterman impression, but almost NOBODY got it.
• That’s Mike on the keyboards.
• Note the reference to “suggestive refueling sequences”–we’d get more in season 6.
• In segment 2, Joel seems to “reading” the undersides of unpackaged VHS tapes. What could possibly be written there? They couldn’t have taken two minutes to fabricate little packages? Oh, and Burl Ives has since died.
• Frank’s present has little Shadowrama tape on it.
• The movie reportedly was filmed in some abandoned airplane hangars near the Roosevelt Field Mall in Long Island, New York.
• About Pia. For those who don’t get the “Golden Globe” reference, in 1982 Pia Zadora, who as a child played little Girmar, stunned Hollywood when she won a Golden Globe in the “best new female star” category for her bland performance in a terrible little movie called “Butterfly.” Hollywood whispers had it that her rich husband, many decades her senior, bought her the nomination and award through much publicity — and possibly other methods. Hollywood cringed again when she and her husband bought the former estate of movie legends Mary Pickford and Douglas Fairbanks Sr. and she promptly started gutting and modernizing the historic home. That said, Pia does appear to be moderately talented, and apparently has a self-deprecating sense of humor, as shown in when she accepted roles in the movies “Hairspray” and “Voyage of the Rock Aliens.” As Joel says in the Cinematic Titanic riff, “You know, I remember thinking that the fact that Pia Zadora was in this was hilarious, but now I can’t remember why.”
• Cast and crew roundup: Executive producer Joseph E. Levine was also responsible for “Hercules” and “Hercules Unchained.” Makeup artist George Fiala also worked on “The Brain That Wouldn’t Die.”
• CreditsWatch: For some reason, this episode has a whole herd of “additional contributing writers”: Lynn-Anne Freise, Tom Wedor, Craig Tollifson, Bob Schrad and Christopher Whiting, whoever they are. It should be no surprise that the music and lyrics for “A Patrick Swayze Christmas” were written by “Road House” aficionado Michael J. Nelson. Trace and Frank are still “guest villians” and Dr. F’s last name is still spelled “Forrestor.”
• Fave riff: “Tonight I’m a space pirate! Permission to come aboard!” Honorable mention: Martian: “Crush him!” Tom Servo (robot voice): “You were adopted!”
1881: Robert Strange, who played Prof. Blaine in the movie in episode 103- THE MAD MONSTER.
1888: Ford Beebe, director of season two serial THE PHANTOM CREEPS.
1913: Bill Baldwin Sr., who played an announcer in the movie in episode 517- BEGINNING OF THE END.
1913: Larry Germain, hair stylist for the movies in episodes 615- KITTEN WITH A WHIP and 802- THE LEECH WOMAN.
1917: Adele Jergens, who played Lila in the movie in episode 520- RADAR SECRET SERVICE and the floozy Ruby in THE DAY THE WORLD ENDED (riffed by fans in Sci-fi Channel’s “MST3K: The Home Game”).
1921: J. William Hayes, executive producer of the movie in episode 419- THE REBEL SET.
1921: Thomas Felleghy, who played the “elegant reporter” in the movie in episode 705- ESCAPE 2000.*
1927: John Carter, who played a flight surgeon in the movie in episode 401- SPACE TRAVELERS.
1927: William Hughes, who played a bombsite control officer in the movie in episode 309- THE AMAZING COLOSSAL MAN.
1933: Robert Goulet, who was mentioned in a host segment in episode 308- GAMERA VS. GAOS.
1951: Don White, foley recording mixer for the movie in episode K16- CITY ON FIRE.*
1963: Edwin B. Willis (age 70), set designer for the movie in episode 510- THE PAINTED HILLS.
1978: Ford Beebe (age 90). Died on his birthday.
1992: Joby Blanshard (age 73), who played Smith in the movie in episode 111- MOON ZERO TWO.
2002: Stanley Black (age 89), score composer for the movie in episode 101- THE CRAWLING EYE.
2013: Tony Musante (age 77, who was mentioned in a host segment in episode 305- STRANDED IN SPACE.
1992: episode 416- FIRE MAIDENS OF OUTER SPACE first shown.
1994: episode 616- RACKET GIRLS (with the short ARE YOU READY FOR MARRIAGE?) first shown.
1959: The movie in episode 521- SANTA CLAUS premieres in Mexico, its country of origin.
1965: The movie in episode 302- GAMERA has its premiere in Japan, its country of origin.
Joel has posted another update. The big news is the announcement that Felicia Day will play the new Mad, Dr. Forrester’s daughter, and that comedians Hampton Yount and Baron Vaughn will provide the voices of Crow and Tom Servo, respectively.
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