Wednesday, March 28, 2012

MST3K: Episode 408 - Hercules Unchained

I'm watching all of the Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes in order. More about that here and here.

Episode 408: Hercules Unchained

First aired: Comedy Central on 1 August 1992
Availability: iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Amazon (Volume 7), Rhino (Volume 7/out of print), Best Brains (Volume 7)

"... which translates into big sweaty guys pushing girls around."
This is an episode that I had seen one time, but didn't really care for. It sort of grew on me, though.

I have the Volume 7 DVD pack and the iTunes download, but have only watched this episode a couple of times. The iTunes version, by the way, has the chapter markers where they need to be. I wish they did that with all their MST3K episodes.

I love the Steve-O-Meter skit in the Invention Exchange. Word is that when Steve Allen saw a tape of the skit, he loved it and let the MST3K crew know.

The plot of the film doesn't exactly follow the Hercules mythology. It's like Michael Moore or Oliver Stone made a documentary: 80% is just plain wrong and the other 20% isn't quite right.
I'm not a fan of any movie where the leading man's chest is bigger than the leading lady's...... although Sylvia Lopez does her best to make up for it.
In a mixture of The Seven Against Thebes (Aeschylus), Oedipus at Colonus (Sophocles), and the story of Hercules and Queen Omphale, the film has Hercules getting back from a trip with Jason and the Argonauts, then goeing to settle a dispute over who gets to rule Thebes. Along the way, he loses his memory and is held as willing captive of Queen Omphale of Lydia. He escapes and saves his wife, who was going to be fed to tigers or something. The disputed rulers of Thebes kill each other and somebody else gets elected. The end.
Steve Reeves (Michael J. Nelson) pays a visit.For the first time in Season Four, Dr. Forrester's name is spelled correctly.
There is no Hot Japanese She-Villain, since it's not a Japanese movie. On the other hand, French actress Sylvia Lopez plays a Hot Greek She-Villain in this Italian move, which is fine by me. She died the year this film was first released (1959).
The Steve-O-MeterGypsy sings!
Lot of good things about this episode, including the Steve-O-Meter and Gypsy singing her song. It shows that you can not care much for an episode the first time you see it, but love it on later viewings.

Well, I can.


  1. It is entirely thanks to MST3K that I finally understood the line from Rocky Horror:

    "We could take in an old Steve Reeves movie"

  2. There's a whole lot of Rocky Horror I never got. I get more of it now than I used to. And I'm not sure that's a good thing.


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