Friday, November 22, 2013
Day Three Hundred and Twenty-six - MST3K: The Beginning of the End, "Yay! More Riffs on Netflix!"
Well, wait. Actually, it isn't that hard to imagine Peter Graves in a giant grasshopper movie in the 50's. After all, his Airplane co-star Leslie Nielsen was similarly in another 50's era B-movie scifi classic: Forbidden Planet.
Still, I think Leslie got the better end of the deal... and Graves more than made up for this drek during his tenure as Mr.Phelps on the Mission:Impossible series. Cheese, to be sure, but classy cheese.
Anyways, The Beginning of the End has Graves staring as a bug scientist who is assisting a deaf-mute plant scientist in growing overly large strawberries and tomatoes in the hopes of ending world hunger. Sure, you can't eat their efforts yet, what with the fact that they're fertilized with radioactive manure (no, seriously), but they have high hopes for the future... if it wasn't for the fact that some of the locusts that fed off of the giant plants are themselves muting and turning into giant, town-destroying people eaters!
RUN! It's the INVASION OF THE GIANT GRASSHOPPERS! Somebody find those industrious ants to hurry along the coming of winter and freeze the evil, lazy grasshoppers out! No pity food for you this year, slacker!
It's sad... I had such high hopes for the intrepid female reporter lead, but she takes a side-seat to Peter Graves' scientist role almost the moment he shows up twenty minutes into the film. What's the point of setting up an independent, smart, adventurous woman if you're just going to foist her off in favor of a stereotyped dominant male? It's depressing how easily they fall for each other, embracing tenderly whenever things look grim in the last half hour in between moments of bravado and SCIENCE on behalf of Graves.
This is an early Mike episode and you can tell that he's still trying to find his way around his main host duties. Still, even his weak start is better than most of Joel's best, but that's a matter of opinion and taste. I'm sure there are plenty of Joel fans who think I have none of those, so there you go.
While it's not the best episode of MST3k, it's not terrible. I'd certainly watch it over Doctor Who (and DID). By the by, happy early 50th anniversary, Doc. Maybe I'll watch you again tomorrow and finish up that Cybermen two-parter from yesterday.
Until tomorrow, Potatoes~