Episode 603: The Dead Talk Back
First aired: Comedy Central on 31 July 1994
Availability: Amazon (Volume 8), Rhino (Volume 8/out of print), Best Brains (Volume 8)
|No they don't.|
See? Now you don't have to watch the movie. You can, but you don't have to.
Unless you really want to. This piece of cinematic sludge is available on DVD if you want it. Or, if you absolutely can't wait, you can watch it online right now.
But you don't. Trust me on this.
If you want to see it, I do recommend the MST3K version because, well, misery loves company. You'll be miserable. But, you'll have company in the form of Mike & the Bots. You'll need them.
|Dr. Creepy wants to talk to dead people.|
It would fit as an episode of the The X-Files or Fringe or something. Some TV show that has a supernatural element to it, but could just as easily have a non-supernatural explanation to a mystery.
This movie tries to set itself up as a supernatural film. The whole idea of talking to the dead, after all, isn't reality-based. But, at the end of the movie, the whole supernatural element is part of a ruse to get the killer to confess.
Dr. Creepy is trying to build a radio to talk to the dead using razor blades and wine glasses, but he's not nuts because he has helped the police solve murders before, so when a girl is killed exactly when the narrator says she'll be killed, no one suspects the narrator, but instead focus on the resident of the boarding house where the girl lived, along with Dr. Creepy and a bunch of other creepies who agree to a seance to talk to the dead girl, and after a false start, it goes well enough that the dead girl talks back, causing the killer to confess that he didn't really killer her, but he did because it was all a trap, although Dr. Creepy still thinks he can talk to the dead one day, and everybody lives happily ever after, except the killer, who gets hauled off to jail, and the dead girl. The end.
|M&tB are "The Dead." Get it? Crow plays a Jerry Garcia-length solo that goes on and on...||... and on and on and on ....|
Well, except the people who watched the movie.
Okay, I enjoyed it. Not the movie, but Mike & the Bots riffing the movie. The movie wasn't very good. But, like I said, it could have made a decent episode of a TV show. With some work.
|I'll buy whatever she's selling.|
Put it this way: if they remade the short today, it'd be a lot cheesier. The lady dressed as the wizard isn't over the top. Today, somebody would insist on a Harry Potter or Gandalf or something. And that would be a heckuva lot cheesier than this short.
Though the short isn't quite goofy, they do have some fun with it. The movie is more riffable, and they do riff it good. And the Host Segments are okay. The Jerry Garcia-like solo that Crow embarked upon was cute. The fire drill was worth a chuckle. And the call-in radio program, "The Dead Talk Back," was cute. Winston Churchill was right about the Bills, by the way.
While no one part of the episode was great, this is one of those instances where the sum is greater than the parts. I liked the overall package better than any one piece of it. It just worked for me.
The only drawback is actually my DVD. There's a problem with it. The image flickers several times. And, it's not the film they're watching, it's the episode. It happens during Host Segments, too. I only have it on commercial DVD -- it was never released on VHS -- so I can't say if all videos of it are that way. It's watchable, and only happens a handful of times, but it is irritating.
Still, an enjoyable episode.