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Featuring 10 episodes!
Special Feature(s): Commentary Track for Episodes 7, 8 & 9 featuring William Shatner
Top Customer Reviews
Why do I love this reality TV sendup so much? (1) William Shatner is a sweetheart. I thought he'd be snarky but instead he (like all of us viewers) falls hard for the people of Riverside, Iowa. (2) Yes, the show manipulates situations for shock value but there's no cruelty or exploitation of the locals who are taken in by the premise (3) William Shatner is the first to laugh at himself and the comedy of his life as Kirk... which gives us license to do so, too and (4) The show is FREAKING HILARIOUS. I live in a multi-story home. My husband works in an office three stories above the TV room. While I watched this show, he had to come down and ask me why in hell I was laughing so hard.
Most of the townsfolk seem only too happy to work on the production and indulge Shatner's eccentricities, which include eating off other people's plates, plugging his own brand of berets, and covering for another star's kleptomania. A younger local suspects very early on that this is a Reality TV gimmick, and he promptly disappears from the production.
Shatner is game throughout, bonding with the people of Riverside and displaying none of the aloofness that some of his Trek costars have accused him of. He befriends an older man named Don at the local diner (even consenting to having his forehead "blessed" by Don's good luck charm which is made from a raccoon's...anatomy). When they go to visit Don's wife's grave, Shatner, a widower himself, seems genuinely moved. During the course of his visit, the entourage gets the local townsfolk to open up and discuss their hopes and dreams. And when the hoax is revealed, most of the locals are relieved that it's a Reality TV stunt, because the "movie" they're working on is obviously horrible. Shatner nearly breaks down in tears as he presents gifts to his new friends, especially the local cue-card holder who is trying to adopt her grandchild.
There are parts midway through the series that drag a bit. On the whole, however, it's worth sticking with Invasion Iowa for the payoff. The final episode shows the finished movie, which is so incredibly bad it's hilarious.
There's a good deal of comedy in this, but as William Shatner pointed out in the commentary (which he does with 2 producers on 2 episodes) and in his book Up Till Now: The Autobiography, the original plan was to derive most of the humor from making the townspeople look foolish. But Shatner and others making the show decided that was too mean-spirited, so they decided instead to make THEMSELVES look foolish and thus make the show a spoof on Hollywood.Read more ›
I strongly recommend it.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This rating is only relevant for either Trekkies (that's me) or Bill Shatner fans (he has some from Boston Legal apparently). Read morePublished on February 27, 2014 by Susan Sutherland
This is probably the worst film Shatner ever made, Watching it is like watching paint dry. I live just a few miles from Riverside Iowa and even though I know quite a few people in... Read morePublished on February 18, 2014 by Harry Richard Lewis III
william shatner comes to riverside iowa to make a fake film but the relationship they have with the people turns into love as they give the stars in the movie money for their... Read morePublished on January 4, 2014 by edward mcleod