11 March 2007

MST3K (810)

810 - The Giant Spider Invasion - I'd be tickled to be able to make a movie like this someday. This is strong praise, considering how much I hate Bill Rebane's first movie, Monster A-Go Go. Need a scientist's lab set? Talk to the local high school. Need actors? Talk to the local rednecks. Need a giant spider? Glue some legs on a Volkswagon Beetle and drive it around. Yep, this is exactly how to make a fun-bad movie. The fact that it was shot just across the lake in familiar Wisconsin is just icing on an eight-legged cake to me.

Now this is the MST3K I like to see. The riffing is incredibly funny and merciless. "A showered person! Thank God!" Being filmed in the head writer's home state, being the first non-1950s movie for the entire year, being filled with a cast of gross characters; all of these things probably re-energized the crew working to make this funny. "Mr. Kester, all your tests are positive." Ah, it felt good to belt out some loud laughs for the first time since last season.

The entertaining riffing exposed a flaw in the Sci-Fi-mandated host segment storylines. What I really wanted from the host segments were some Pod People-style references to the movie to compliment the theater segments. I wanted to see Mike dress as his countryman, the disgusting, back brace-wearing farmer, and do a scene with the bots dressed as spiders. Perhaps a reunion of Spy-Dor (with a replacement lead singer, of course) would have been in order? We last saw them in a host segment from a very similar movie. I'm sure Mike could've written a great song to sing about the characters in this film.

Instead, we had a load of Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978) goings-on going on. I wasn't really interested. I did enjoy watching the highly caffeinated Crow -- who was trying to stay awake to avoid being replaced by a pod -- nearly have a heart attack. I also liked the fact the Mike really did hit Crow in the face during the final segment, spinning his eye case completely around. The way he tried to fix it when Crow got back up suggests this was a slight oops that was left in. Those are always fun. One segment placed the movie into the continuity of the TV show for the first time ever. In it, Mike and Crow try to determine which of two Servos is the real one. The one who describes his underwear collection -- last and only seen during M01 -- wins.

"Basted with sun-brewed mayonnaise." (9/10)

film d. Bill Rebane (1975)
mst d. Kevin Murphy (31 May 1997)