Mystery Science Theater 3000: Volume XXXVIII
DVD | Box Set
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Riffer extraordinaire Mike Nelson hosts all four episodes in this 38th collection of episodes from the beloved comedy series Mystery Science Theater 3000, but the true theme here is diversity. Proving to the world that no single genre is immune to cheez, and that our hilarious heroes aboard the Satellite of Love are equal opportunity critics, we present the worst in Cold War drama, Sword and Sandals, Juvenile Delinquents and Monsters. Any investment portfolio manager who advises that diversifying risk is good way to minimize damage clearly hasnt watched enough MST3K. Behold an incredible melting pot of cinemas multicultural genres, and you will understand that in the world of cheezy movies, there is nowhere to hide.
Colossus And The Headhunters
High School Big Shot
Track Of The Moon Beast
Top customer reviews
-- Colossus and the Headhunters (605)
-- High School Big Shot (618)
-- Track of the Moon Beast (1007)
Three episodes from Season Six, one from Season Ten.
Unlike most earlier volumes, which coupled two Joel episodes with two Mike episodes,
this new box is all-Mike.
This is not an editorial decision by the people at Shout.
Rather, it reflects the fact that they are running out of previously unreleased episodes that are not tied up in legal difficulties.
Even so, Volume XXXVIII is not scraping the bottom-of-the-barrel:
Season Six was an especially strong one (the last season teaming TV's Frank with Dr. Clayton Forrester).
One bonus feature included with this set is especially revealing:
"Mike, By Joel" - Joel Hodgson talks about Mike Nelson, his successor on the Satellite of Love.
Joel originally had a different succession in mind:
His character would be hit by a "Sex Ray from Outer Space" and transformed into a woman (Joelle?),
to be played by writer Bridget Jones (Mrs. Mike Nelson).
She was best known on MST3K for playing Nuveena "Girl of the Future", Mr. B Natural, and Empress Flavia.
176 TOTAL EPISODES OF MST3K (originally broadcast on Comedy Central or the Sci-Fi Channel)
- 131 episodes are on Shout Video
-- 30 episodes previously on Rhino are currently out-of-print (gradually reappearing on Shout)
-- 15 episodes have never been released on DVD
I hope some of them will appear in future volumes, but I am an incurable optimist:
201 - Rocketship X-M
212 - Godzilla vs. Megalon*
213 - Godzilla vs. the Sea Monster
309 - The Amazing Colossal Man
311 - It Conquered the World
416 - Fire Maidens of Outer Space
418 - Attack of the The Eye Creatures
601 - Girls Town
623 - The Amazing Transparent Man
807 - Terror from the Year 5000
809 - I Was a Teenage Werewolf
905 - The Deadly Bees
906 - The Space Children
913 - Quest of the Delta Knights
1013 - Diabolik = SERIES FINALE, SATELLITE OF LOVE CRASHES BACK TO EARTH
* Episode 212 "Godzilla vs. Megalon" was briefly available in Volume 10, but a lawsuit caused it to be withdrawn and replaced with a different film (402 "The Giant Gila Monster")
-- Joel Hodgson = 86 Episodes (101-512, Seasons 1-5a)
-- Mike Nelson= 91 Episodes (512-1013, Seasons 5b-10)
MAD SCIENTISTS ("Mads")
-- Dr. Clayton Forrester = 128 Episodes (101-706, Seasons 1-7)
-- Pearl Forrester = 48 Episodes (801-1013, Seasons 8-10)
[but her first appearance was in Episode 607 and she was a supporting character in Season Seven]
-- Dr. Laurence Erhardt = 13 Episodes (101-113)
-- TV's Frank = 109 Episodes (201-624)
-- Pearl Forrester = 6 Episodes (701-706)
-- Professor Bobo = 48 Episodes (801-1013)
-- Brain Guy (Observer) = 44 Episodes (805-1013)
OCD compels me to put things in logical order.
The thirty-eight MST3K volumes (four films per volume) are a special challenge.
A jumble of early and late shows.
Volumes XIII-XXXVIII: Each episode is in an individual DVD case, so you have the option of re-arranging the episodes in broadcast order (the host segments have ongoing story arcs).
Volumes I-XII are four-disc DVD cases, but single-episode DVD covers are available.
See Comment One (dated January 12, 2017) following this review.
Click on "sort by Oldest".
I have prepared a list of all 176 episodes in broadcast order, keyed to the Volume Number each episode is in.
See Comment One (dated January 12, 2017) following this review.
Click on "Sort by Oldest"
(for alphabetical order see Comment Two, dated January 12, 2017)
PHOTO 1 = Dr. Clayton Forrester with Dr. Lawrence Erhardt (season 1)
PHOTO 2 = Dr. Clayton Forrester with TV's Frank (seasons 2-6)
PHOTO 3 = Dr. Clayton Forrester with Pearl Forrester (season 7)
PHOTO 4 = Pearl Forrester with Professor Bobo and Brain Guy (seasons 8-10)
PHOTO 5 = Joel Robinson with robot friends (seasons 1-5a
PHOTO 6 = Mike Nelson with robot friends (seasons 5b-10)
INVASION USA - a terrible "red scare" type film that imagines the horror of a communist lead invasion on US soil. It is filled with scads of WWII stock footage and explains it all away with a line or two about how the communists are all disguised as American soldiers. The entire invasion is framed by a conversation between various people at a New York bar. Fairly entertaining movie, as the sets and "Russians" are so cheap and badly done its laughable. Some of the stock footage can be a tad uncomfortable since they seem to be using actual "carpet bombing civilian cities" footage. Mike and co. are in good form all the way through, with a big shout out to the short preceding the movie, A DATE WITH YOUR FAMILY, which is an absolute scream. Bonus material includes the original theatrical trailer for the movie and a brief documentary about the films producer, Albert Zugsmith, who made a career as a producer out of the success of this picture, went on to work with Orson Welles in "Touch of Evil" then produced tons of low brow exploitation pics (including MST classic "Girls Town").
HIGH SCHOOL BIG SHOT - A pseudo rip-off of Kubrick's "The Killing," HIGH SCHOOL BIG SHOT concerns a rather put upon brainy outcast high schooler being manipulated into crime by the resident high school slut. He gets a job, over hears about a heroin delivery, decides to steal it to provide a rich life for the girlfriend he doesn't realize is playing him, things get complicated fast and it all ends badly for everyone. Its a cheap and rather dark little picture, but thanks to really believable acting by Tom Pittman as the lead, its honestly not that bad a movie. Mike and co. do another great job (season 6 was really strong, start to finish) and many laughs are had, even if the movie can be dour. It's preceded by the short OUT OF THIS WORLD where an angel and a devil in a heavenly office suite get overly wrapped up in the sales performance of a bread salesman. Its as weird as it sounds, and the gang gets good mileage out of it (including a screamingly funny host segment after the short). Extras include the original theatrical trailer and the full, un-riffed version of the film.
COLOSSUS AND THE HEADHUNTERS - A really low budget sword and sandals movie where a people led by an ersatz Hercules named Maciste (aka "Cheesesteak") has their island sink into the ocean because of a volcano or something and then they all get mixed up with an evil queen and some other standard peplum movie crap. This one differentiates itself from all the other Hercules flicks MST did by having an obviously lower budget and a shocking amount of visible buttcheeks among pretty much the entire cast (don't get too excited guys, there's only like two girls and about 4000 men in the cast). The riffing is, again, very strong and the crazy battle scenes, a really stupid dance scene and some peplum tropes being undone by the low budget (constant railing kills off a rope bridge aren't as exciting when the bridge is only about six feet above the water) make for lots of laughs. My wife in particular was cracking up at this one. She loves the other Hercules episodes too so if they're among your fav episodes, you'll dig this one too. Extras include a talking-head segment with Joel about his thoughts on Mike Nelson, how he came into the show, and his eventual role in hosting. Its okay. I like the guy plenty, but Joel always seems so overly serious and kind of pretentious about his show these days, compared to the rest of the cast who have often been enjoyably self effacing about MST being a "cow town puppet show." As is true of the last few interviews he's done for these sets, Joel is super serious and occasionally seems to be re-framing his own past when talking about MST. No big deal, as he can do what he likes with his legacy but his attitude makes a light and funny show seem a lot less fun when he talks about it like its this grand, pure, work of art.
TRACK OF THE MOON BEAST - An archeologist gets hit in the head with a small meteorite and turns into a rampaging kill monster when the moon is out. His Native American friend, Johnny Longbow, and his girlfriend of around 24 hours try to help him and local law enforcement get to the bottom of it. This flick has a great 70's grindhouse vibe and was rerun tons of times on the SciFi network. Despite the films somewhat dull pacing, its actually a pretty funny episode. The movie has enough weird stuff going on (the weird mask prank and overlong explanation, the "California Lady" band scene, Johnny's stew conversation) to give Mike and co. plenty of riffing fuel and they do a good job. Extras include an amusing interview with the female lead who goes through the films basic history, her thoughts about how bad it was, and its interesting release history (never made it to theaters, showed up on home video over a decade later) and has a great sense of humor regarding it being featured on MST3k (good for her, as the gang are NOT easy on her character). Its a nice feature.
All in all a really great set of very enjoyable episodes. None of these four are in my top 20, but I would describe them all as above average entries in the MST cannon. Worth picking up even if you're brand new to the show, as its a good mix of movie genres and all four episodes are good fun.