Episode 106: The Crawling Hand
First aired: The Comedy Channel on 16 December 1989
Availability: Amazon DVD, Rhino (out of print), MST3KVideos.com
This was the first episode to open with the doors closing on the "Spaghetti Ball" logo and the backwards trip down the hallway. The first four faded out then faded in on the Mad Scientists in Deep 13. This show, though, began the standard of the doors closing and Joel appearing before the Mad Scientists.
|Joel in the opening segment. And in his house robe.|
It looks like that they realized that, despite the Mads controlling things, the stars are actually Joel & the Bots. Although, again, as in the previous episode, the Bots are not in the opening and are already in the theater when Joel enters.
This is also the first episode with an actual separate introduction rather than a combined Intro/Invention Exchange. Joel uses the time to explain the premise to people who weren't paying attention during the opening theme song.
It is also the first appearance of the Magic Voice, which counts down the time to "Commercial Sign."
The retreads continue. J&tB do the "Joel wants to play" routine from Episode K14 - Might Jack.
|Joel wants to play, the Bots don't (KTMA)||Joel wants to play, the Bots don't (Cable)|
|Giant hand prop (KTMA)||Giant hand prop (Cable)|
The movie was okay. The crew ripped Alan Hale, Jr. mercilessly, which I thought was a shame. He played the serious role just fine, I thought. I'd have preferred if they had continued the Gilligan's Island references, rather than insult his acting. Alan Hale, Jr. appeared in hundreds of TV shows and movies other than Gilligan's Island, in both comedic and serious roles, playing good guys and villains. He was a character actor, and, I thought, a darn good one. The Skipper may have been the role for which he was best known, but it didn't showcase his talent.
Having said that, he did appear in stinkers like The Crawling Hand, so he is fair game. I just thought they had too much mean. Alan Hale, Jr. died 17 days after this episode first aired. Now who feels bad?
One bit I noticed and particularly enjoyed was when the teen lead in the movie, Paul (Rod Lauren), speaks into a microphone and Crow's comment makes Joel laugh. That makes it seem more like a bunch of friends sitting around the screen, making fun of a movie. Which, it was.