After Mystery Science Theater 3000
) moved to the Sci-Fi Channel
in 1997, the network asked the creative team behind the show, Best Brains
, to create a thirty minute special in which Mike Nelson
, Tom Servo
, and Crow T. Robot
reviewed the summer blockbuster
s of the year. This special is the result and provides a rare look at the MST3K
ing on modern films.
The show begins as Mike and Crow are awakened one night by sounds of screaming and explosions. Finding Tom missing, they begin searching the Satellite of Love to find out if he's in trouble. Crow finds him in the theater moments before he goes on the air with his special review of summer movies. After singing a rousing theme song (lyrics below), we get down to business.
The first movie up at bat is The Fifth Element. The trailer is riffed upon, as well as an interview with Bruce Willis and a brief scene in which Willis's character encounters Milla Jovovitch's character for the first time. Then we get a look at the hallucinogenic magic of director Luc Besson as the bots comment on an interview with the Frenchman. Watch for the moment where Tom Servo misinterprets Besson's pronunciation of "aspirin" as "assbrain".
Mike shows up in the theater next (and is mistaken by Tom as Star Trek: The Next Generation cast member Jonathan Frakes), and he's just in time to get a took at Steven Speilberg's The Lost World. The gang watches the trailer of the movie, followed by some behind the scenes footage and the Steven Speilberg trademark scenes of people looking.
Just as the Men in Black trailer starts up Professor Bobo arrives. He was sent by the Lawgiver to find out where Mike and the bots had gone. He drops his movie snacks, including molasses and individually wrapped M&Ms, all over the floor of the theater and continually asks questions and makes weak riffs about the trailer until Tom kicks him out. Mike and the bots watch some behind the scenes footage of the film, although they are mostly silent during this clip.
When Observer (also sent by Pearl Forrester) shows up, Tom invites him to offer his thoughts on the Jodie Foster film Contact. The gang watches the trailer, but then Pearl herself shows up and demands that her fiancee's movie, Batman and Robin, go up on the screen. When Tom threatens to skip the movie, Pearl picks him up and throws him against the wall. Batman and Robin then lights up the screen as the gang watch two clips from the film and a behind the scenes look at director Joel Schumacher flirting with actress Alicia Silverstone in a most creepy way. Mike declares this clip the most horrifying bit of film he's ever seen, which means of course that we have to see it again.
At this point Pearl demands more footage of her boyfriend, George Clooney, and Crow responds by puting up footage of Luc Besson, the old guy from The Lost World, a Men in Black alien, and other characters previously seen in the special. Pearl chases everyone from the theater in rage, and Tom returns just in time to say goodbye and conclude the show. Professor Bobo comes back in the theater just in time to suggest that next time the gang should review more quality movies, such as King Kong, Monkeyshines: An Experiment in Fear, The Barefoot Executive, and other films that feature gorillas.
This special originally ran in primetime on the Sci-Fi Channel, however as it began to rerun it was moved to ungodly hours of late at night and early in the morning. However, the response to the special was so great the the network commissioned two more specials, The Second Annual Mystery Science Theater 3000 Summer Blockbuster Review and an Academy Awards preview show in 1998.
THE 1997 SUMMER BLOCKBUSTER REVIEW SONG
Tom: Tom Servo presents the first annual Mystery Science Theater Summer Blockbuster Review! Hit it, Cambot!
Tom (singing): Oh it's a special with stars, and a bunch of flying cars, it's a summer blockbuster review!
Crow (spoken): Wow!
Tom: It's got monsters in rubber, and actors who blubber, and lots of naked ladies, too!
Crow(spoken): Really? Will we see fine cigars?
Crow(spoken): And muscle-headed stars?
Tom(spoken): You bet! (Singing) And action up the old wazoo!
Crow(spoken): All right!
Tom(in rhythm): Just because it's kind of relevant, we'll ballyhoo Fifth Element
Crow: Protect your sacroiliac, when we review the Men In Black!
Tom: They're terrorizing little girls, thats Steven Speilberg's Lost World!
Crow: And Jodie Foster takes Contact, so she won't sneeze in, uh, Contact...
Tom: And heads'll be a-throbbin' when we hit Batman And Robiiiiiiin!
Crow (soft): Okay
Tom (spoken): Big finish!
Tom and Crow: On the, Myst-ry Science Theater Summer Block Bus-ter Revieeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeew!
Watching the special