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Sampo & Erhardt

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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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Visit mst3k.com, the official site of Best Brains, Inc. and Mystery Science Theater 3000.

And be sure to visit Cinematic Titanic by Joel Hodgson and other original MST3K cast members.

And don't forget about rifftrax.com, the place to download DVD commentaries by Michael J. Nelson.

And check out the official web site of Joel Hodgson.

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This Date in MSTory

BORN TODAY
1903: Richard Fantl, editor for the season four serial UNDERSEA KINGDOM.
1914: Josep Mullendore, orchestrator for the movie in episode 109- PROJECT MOON BASE.
1915: Rodney Bell, who appeared in the movie in episode 509- THE GIRL IN LOVERS LANE.
1943: Ron Elliott, songwriter and lead guitarist of The Beau Brummels, who performed a couple of songs in the movie in episode 523- VILLAGE OF THE GIANTS.*

DIED TODAY
1971: Raymond Hatton (age 84), who played Gasspon in the season four serial UNDERSEA KINGDOM and old Pete in THE DAY THE WORLD ENDED (riffed by fans in Sci-fi Channel’s “MST3K: The Home Game”).
1973: Andrei Abrikosov (age 66), who played Prince Vladimir in the movie in episode 617- THE SWORD AND THE DRAGON.
1996: makeup artist Harry Thomas (age 87), whose work can be seen in the movies in episodes 103- THE MAD MONSTER, 109- PROJECT MOON BASE, 320- THE UNEARTHLY, 423- BRIDE OF THE MONSTER, 602- INVASION U.S.A., 616- RACKET GIRLS, 618- HIGH SCHOOL BIG SHOT and 701- NIGHT OF THE BLOOD BEAST.
1997: Jay A. Morley Jr. (age 79), costumer for the movies in episodes 801- REVENGE OF THE CREATURE, 803- THE MOLE PEOPLE and 804- THE DEADLY MANTIS.
2013: Gianni Ferrio (age 88), musical score composer for the movie “Il Raggio Infernale,” seen in episode 620- DANGER!! DEATH RAY.

EVENTS
1995: Michael Blodgett, who played Bob Draper in the movie in episode 204- CATALINA CAPER, married actress Meredith Baxter.
1997: RHINO HOME VIDEO releases episode 507- I ACCUSE MY PARENTS, 619- RED ZONE CUBA and 518- THE ATOMIC BRAIN on VHS.


This Date in MSTory is written and compiled by Steve Finley, Chris Cornell and Brian Henry. Copyright © 2014 All rights reserved. Please do not reproduce This Date in MSTory items in any form without express written permission from the authors.
* = According to the IMBD this person is alive. If you can supply evidence that he or she has died, and when, please let us know.
** = If this appears next to a birthday, the IMDB indicates that the person has died, but the IMDB does not have a full death date (probably just a month and year or just the year he or she died). If you can give us the exact date (with some sort of proof we can check), please let us know.
** = If this appears next to a death date, the IMDB does not have this person’s full birthday. If you can provide it (with some sort of proof we can check), please let us know.

Volume XXXI — The Unboxing

And now, for your dining and dancing pleasure, live from the Hotel Sheetz in downtown Plunketville, we present Vol. XXXI: The Unboxing.

The coasters are kewl.

Now Available from RiffTrax…

I’m a little late with this one…

HawkTheSlayer_Web

I’ll admit it. This was one of my favorite cheesy movies back when it was a cable staple. View a sample or download it here.

Weekend Discussion Thread: Best Eps for a Halloween Marathon

Alert regular Sue has another good one:

It seems impossible, but I can’t find that you’ve had a “Best/Worst Episodes for a Halloween Marathon” WDT. I won’t chime in with my choices just yet, as I’d like to think about it a little longer. “Worst” would be eps that are supposed to be scary but aren’t, or have other qualities that make them less-than-ideal for Halloween.

I’m going to go with “Ring of Terror” and “Zombie Nightmare” as a one-Joel/one-Mike double feature.

What’s your pick?

Keep those ideas coming!

Episode guide: K21- The ‘Legend of Dinosaurs’

Movie: (1977) A plesiosaur is discovered living in a lake near Mount Fuji, then volcanic activity awakens still more prehistoric creatures.

First shown: 5/28/89
Opening: The Mads come up with clues to support the “Joel is Dead” rumor they want to start. Joel is dubious
Host segment 1: Joel demonstrates the way special effects can be used to make a person look really small
Host segment 2: J&TB put on a sitcom, complete with laugh track, canned applause and pointless catchphrases
Host segment 3: Joel uses his model lizard, which breathes real fire, to demonstrate monster special effects
End: What are you going to do on hiatus?
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (63 votes, average: 3.79 out of 5)
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• This was the final KTMA episode, though the last host segment makes it clear that the Brains expected to return to KTMA after a summer break. Fortunately for them (and us), they had a larger destiny in store for them.
• Host segments 1 and 3 were apparently aired in the wrong order: in host segment 1, Joel refers to their “earlier” segment … it’s pretty obvious he’s referring to host segment 3. Oops.
• The model in segment 3 would be re-used as an invention exchange in episode 103- MAD MONSTER.
• Segment 2 appears on the MST3K Scrapbook tape.
• It has been fascinating to watch these and to watch the concept of MST3K grow and coalese. But, as many of you have said, I doubt that I will come back to watch any of these episodes for pleasure.
• That said, as several folks said in the comments, the riffing in this one is pretty solid and pretty much as good as anything we’re about to get in season one coming up.
• For one thing, by this time they were routinely previewing the movie and pre-writing jokes, even though they weren’t willing to admit it yet. Example: At one point in this episode, Joel repeats a line of dialog along with a character in the movie. Tom (Josh apparently tweaking Joel for doing so) asks: “Have you seen this before, Joel?” Joel replies: “It’s something I learned in camp.”
References.
• Callback: “The Two Eyes of Su-Maru.”
• It’s both depressing and somehow fitting that the final movie is yet another confusing Sandy Frank outing (and maybe the most disjointed one yet). It makes you wonder why they came back and did a lot of these movies again. That’s a lot of pain to take.
• This is one of the rougher tapes from the KTMA era, making the viewing experience even more exasperating.
• I want to note again, as I did earlier: Not once, not a SINGLE TIME in any of these episodes, did anybody EVER use the word “Gizmonic.” Joel once told me that, in the KTMA episodes, The Mads are transmitting from their lab in Gizmonic Institute. And that makes sense. After all, in the next episode, (the first of season one) we learn that The Mads have fled Gizmonic Institute to Deep 13. But now it’s pretty clear that’s a notion that came after the fact.
• All this time, we have listed this movie as “Legend of the Dinosaur,” when the title card actually reads “The ‘Legend of Dinosaurs’” (including those quotation marks). My DVD also calls it by the wrong name. The IMDB, on the other hand, gives its full title in English as “The Legend of Dinosaurs and Monster Birds” (“Kyôryuu: Kaichô no densetsu” in Japanese).
• I wonder where that retouched “Abbey Road” album cover is. That would be a great collector’s item.
• The kid in segment 1 is listed in the credits as Ralph Smith. Wonder where he is now.
• The giant hand in that segment would be used again.
• One thing that was particular to the KTMA shows, I think, was that when something truly horrific happened on screen, Tom Servo would deliver his trademark phrase: “Oh, golly!”
• In segment 3, Joel handles a tiny replica of a Kentury Fried Chicken store. That little model would later be incorporated into the “Big G Burger” scene seen during commercial bumpers for several seasons.
• It was a cool evening in the Twin Cities on Memorial Day weekend: 74 degrees, 73 an hour later.
• At one point somebody says: “Watch out for overly sensitive producers!” Huh?
• There’s a very strange moment in the riffing, when Joel says, “Finish the job, man! Open the tank!” Then he seems to realize that he’s said something wrong. He tries to correct it. He gets as far as “I meant to say ‘Open the…’ ” before all three riffers collapse into laughter. Servo declares that Joel has “snapped a twig,” but I have no idea why.
• In this episode we get our first set of renaissance fair jokes, including a “huzzah!” They would return in season three’s “Pod People” and then become a running gag throughout the series.
• Cast and Crew Roundup: Other than Sandy Frank, nobody involved in this movie was involved in any other MSTed movie.
• CreditsWatch: Special Guests: Ralph Smith & Ralph’s Mom.
• Fave riff: Servo: “YBS?” Joel: “People seem to accept it!” Honorable mention: “We haven’t heard from her.”
Next week we will begin season one, and before anybody asks, we will, as always, being doing them in episode number order, meaning that episode 104 will be the fourth one we do, even though it was the last one produced that season. We’ll hash that out when we get there.

RIP Robert Orrison and Gary McLarty

Orrison imgres Rancho Cordova, Calif.–Two veteran, retired Hollywood stuntmen (and, occasionally, actors), Robert Orrison and Gary McLarty, were killed in a traffic accident here Oct. 11. Orrison was 86. McLarty was 73. Both appeared in the movie featured in episode 512- MITCHELL, a movie in which several stuntmen were cast in small roles. MSTies will remember them as “Mistretta Hood #1″ and “Mistretta Hood #2″, respectively.
According to the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Department, the two men were traveling in a blue Chevy truck when they made a U-turn causing a white Jeep Cherokee to slam into their vehicle. Both men were pronounced dead at the scene. The occupants of the Jeep Cherokee were transported to a local hospital for medical treatment.
Orrision was a stunt performer and background actor on Star Trek: The Original Series, having minor roles in three second-season episodes. He also performed stunts for television’s “The Dukes of Hazzard” and for such films as “The Wild Bunch” (1969), “Smokey and the Bandit” (1977), “Die Hard 2″ (1990), “Speed” (1994), “Stargate” (1994) and “The Wedding Planner” (2001).
McLarty’s career was not without controversy. He is known for his work on “The Blues Brothers” (1980), “Jurassic Park” (1993) and “Beverly Hills Cop” (1984). McLarty drove the motorcycle up the frat house stairs in the movie “Animal House,” and doubled as “The Fonz” for motorcycle scenes on the “Happy Days” television series.
However, on July 23, 1982, McLarty was in the helicopter, as a stunt coordinator, when actor Vic Morrow and two children died in an accident on a “Twilight Zone” movie set. The helicopter was hovering about 24 feet above them when pyrotechnic explosions damaged the chopper causing it to crash on top of the three actors.
McLarty also testified against his long-time friend Robert Blake when Blake was accused of killing his wife. But, Blake’s defense team successfully undermined the his credibility, introducing evidence of mental illness, drug addiction, etc. Blake was acquitted.

Thanks to Duane for the heads up.

‘The Great Pumpkin’ Meets RiffTrax

The folks at Mashable.com set this up.

Joel and Trace Join Cast of Yahoo TV Series

Yahoo TV announced today that Joel and Trace will be cast members on its upcoming series “Other Space,” produced by Paul Fieg (“Freaks and Geeks”).

In the not-to-distant future, 2015 B.C., Mystery Science Theater 3000 fans are in for a treat: original MST 3K host Joel Hodgson and co-star Trace Beaulieu will be back on the small screen. Production has begun on Other Space, the new half-hour comedy from Paul Feig (Bridesmaids, Freaks and Geeks) about a group of space explorers—including bickering siblings, burned-out veterans and, of course, robots—in the 22nd century. “I’m thrilled to be cast with my old buddy Trace Beaulieu in the new comedy sci fi series Other Space,” Hodgson tells Yahoo TV. “I also think fans of MST3K will be very interested in this new work that mastermind Paul Feig and his cast and crew have cooked up for Yahoo.”

In an exclusive video message from the set of Other Space (below), Beaulieu tells Yahoo TV about his Other Space character, a robot named Art. The cast also includes Karan Soni (Safety Not Guaranteed), Eugene Cordero(House of Lies), Milana Vayntrub (Silicon Valley), Neil Casey (Broad City, The League), and Bess Rous (Murder in the First).

Variety’s story is here.

You’ll know more when we do.

We’re Back!

Some dickweeds hacked our site. And our web host was, shall we say, less than speedy in allowing us to resolve the situation. But we’re back to fulfill all of your MST3k info needs!

Federico Boido, RIP

boyd ROME — We have several reports that actor and stuntman Federico Boido, who worked using several aliases including Rick Boido, Rico Boido, Rich Boyd and Rick Boyd, died here Oct. 7. He was either 74 or 76, depending on which of two equally cited birthdates is correct. MSTies will remember him as Valmont’s henchman in the movie in episode 1013- DIABOLIK.

More info when we get it.

Thanks to Duane for the heads up.