Friday, July 27, 2012

MST3K: Episode 803 - The Mole People

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

Episode 803: The Mole People

First aired: Sci-Fi Channel on 15 February 1997
Availability: fan copy

"These are the people who make that nice Mexican sauce!""
This episode seemed to set the tone for the rest of the series. Well, to me, anyway.

This is the first episode where Mike seemed to be more assertive with the Bots. He seemed less confused by their actions, but seemed impatient for them to get to the point of whatever silliness they were up to.

Since the character first appeared on the Satellite of Love, he was learning his way around. He relied on the Bots to clue him in on things. Servo and Crow would get away with some stuff, or hide their ignorance of things by spouting pure BS, and Mike would accept it.

"Do you guys know Data?"
With this episode, Mike seems a little tired of their silliness -- particularly with Crow's -- because he's more of an equal.

It makes sense, kinda. At the end of Season Seven, Servo and Crow had been in space seven years, while Mike had been there 2½. The Bots had been there nearly three times as long.

After returning from the edge of the universe, the Bots had been in space 535 years, and Mike 531. Not so great a difference at that scale.

Mike is frustrated with the Bots.
From my memory of the Sci-Fi years of MST3K, Mike was an equal. This seems to be the episode where it was first apparent.

Right off the bat, Mike is a little frustrated with Crow's antics, and takes physical action against him. It wouldn't be the last time.

The Apes are still sending movies to the crew, as descreed by The Lawgiver (Pearl). I really don't recall how long that lasts. I recall them having a visit to ancient Rome, or a planet based on ancient Rome, or something, as part of the whole "in her rocket ship she hunts them all across the univers" thing.

Ward Cleaver wields a sword.
I'm not sure why I don't recall that much about the Ape shows' Host Segments, but recall the movies they riffed. It may be like I mentioned previously, that I didn't always wait for a commercial to take a break. The leaving the theater was the beginning of the break for me around this time. It wasn't always like that. I recall many things from Host Segments from the Comedy Central years, but not much about them so far this season.

Now, there is a benefit to my not having recalled much about the Host Segments. When something really funny happens, I'm experiencing it as if it's the first time. So, instead of, "oh, yeah, that's funny" it's more of, "hey, that's funny!"

Pearl plays with her new boy-toy.
In this episode, the ending of the final Host Segment, where Pearl realizes she does have use for former Minnesota Vikings running back Robert Smith -- he plays Pearl's gift, Howard -- is hilarious.

Oh, well, on to the movie.

Some English professor explains crackpot theories about civilizations living inside the earth, and then we get a movie about a civilization living inside the earth, which our protagonists, John Agar, Ward Cleaver, and the hotel clerk from Mayberry, go looking underground for stuff and get kidnapped by the Mole People and taken to Albinoland or something, where John Agar gets all horny for the not-as-white-as-the-others girl, all the while the albinos think they are gods because they have a flashlight, except for Alfred the Butler, who realizes they're just men with a hint of color to their skin, and they end up escaping, except for the not-as-pasty-white girl who dies. The end.

A fun episode. At least, I was able to watch it in one sitting, which is more than I can say about the previous episode.

That's not to say, "well, it was better than the last one," though that is true. I did enjoy this one, and I don't mean relative to another one. This one was fun.

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