Wednesday, August 15, 2012

MST3K: Episode 816 - Prince of Space

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

Episode 816: Prince of Space

First aired: Sci-Fi Channel on 16 August 1997
Availability: Amazon (Volume 7/out of print), Rhino (Volume 7/out of print), Best Brains (Volume 7)

Weapons are powerless against him.
Ah, another one of the classics.

Now, I'm not a big fan of the Japanese horror movies or the Japanese science fiction movies. I've previously expressed how much I didn't care for the Gamera movies. The Japanese sci-fi movies, though, I haven't talked much about.

When I was younger, I thought they were kinds cheesy and cheap.

Now, keep in mind that the giant ant, spider, and grasshopper movies were just fine for me. But, the Japanese sci-fi movies just weren't something I cared for. The main thing was the whole exaggerated hand and arm movements when the heroes or villains would talk. Often, they'd wear masks and you couldn't see there faces, or at least, their mouths. So, they'd exaggerate their hand/arm movements.

Our hero.
Kinda silly, I thought.

This movie wasn't one of those kind. The hero and villains -- at least, the main hero and the main villain -- had visible, or mostly visible, faces. So, they didn't exaggerate as much with the arm and hand movements.

On the other hand, I don't remember ever seeing Prince of Space as a child. First time I saw it was as part of the MST3K universe. So, maybe that contributed to why it didn't give me the same adverse reaction as the other Japanese sci-fi or horror movies.

Our villain.
But then, I don't remember seeing Gamera as a child -- I saw some other Big Japanese Monster films and didn't care for them -- so my not liking that came as an adult.

While this movie is a bit silly, like all the Japanese sci-fi movies of the time, it didn't repel me like the others.

Having said that, it's a bad film. But a watchably bad film.

A bunch of baddies from the planet Krankor invade earth, but are driven away by Prince of Space (their weapons are powerless against him), who's really a shoeshine boy, kinda like Underdog but without all the fleas, but the Krankor Baddies sneak back to try again when Prince of Space isn't looking, and discover that Shoeshine Boy is really Prince of Space, but Prince of Space foils them again because their weapons are powerless against him, but then they kidnap some scientists and decide to shoot them all out into space, but Prince of Space flies to Krankor's base, fights the giant Ferengi, and rescues everybody since the Krankor Baddies are unable to stop him because their weapons are powerless against him. The end.

The giant Ferengi-looking monster is ready to pump ... you up!
Silly film. Never explained why Shoeshine Boy had a space ship and fancy space duds to wear. Never explained exactly why the Krankor weapons were powerless against him, although they did point out a time or two that the Krankor weapons were powerless against him.

Like I said, silly film, but whatchably so. The Host Segments were a little weird. They had Pearl and her crew, along with the Satellite of Love, go through a wormhole. Mike becomes a robot, the Satellite of Love becomes a lovely landscape, and, in one of the best Host Segments ever, time shifts for Mike & the Bots.

That first Host Segment in the wormhole has three conversations going on at the same time, but in different timelines. So, one asks a question, and the other answers a question that hasn't been asked yet, then that question is asked, but the third timeline person chips in, and ... okay, it was funny. Leave it at that.

This episode? I like it very much!

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