“IT’S PARENTS DAY AT ATTICA.”
Blink. Blink! Blink! Blink!
Another Undersea Kingdom chapter that primarily consists of recapping. Pretty much the only new plot development is that our heroes get captured by one of the Atlantean factions. Seeing as how it hasn’t made any sense so far and we won’t be seeing any more chapters, I don’t see any reason to care one way or the other.
As for the feature, it stars horror legend Lon Chaney Jr., whose career was in serious decline at that point. While never quite as hard up as Bela Lugosi, he did have similar experiences with substance abuse. There are some who argue that his alcoholism has been exaggerated in the retelling. Perhaps that is the case. But there’s no question that he looks like crap in this movie. Though he was about 50 at the time it was shot, his appearance is of a man at least ten years older.
Going off on a tangent, it’s surprising that the Brains didn’t try to score a Universal Classic Monsters hat trick by tackling a movie starring Boris Karloff. After all, he’s had his share of riffworthy stinkers (Die, Monster, Die! and The Crimson Cult come to mind). Perhaps it’s because Karloff’s career never fell to the same depths as those of Lugosi and Chaney.
But back to the feature. Chaney’s character is robber/murderer “Butcher” Benton, who has an appointment with the San Quentin gas chamber thanks to his partners squealing on him on the advice of a crooked lawyer and vows that he’ll make them pay. His corpse is dubiously acquired by a mad scientist testing his theories of using electrification to treat cancer or something like that. One of the more notable aspects of this scene is that the lackey is portrayed by Joe Flynn, best known as Captain Binghamton on McHale’s Navy (and whom Joel and the Bots immediately recognize). Of course, the electricity revives him and makes him super strong and resilient to most forms of damage. After whacking his benefactors, he goes down to L.A. to fulfill his vow.
The best way to describe the movie is if you crossed a 1950s police procedural with a slasher flick. This means there are a lot of cop and donut jokes in the riffing, mostly from Joel. As a result, in the concluding host segment, the Bots have him sign a legal document forbidding any more cop and donut jokes ever. Others host segments of note include the discussion of what you would do if you were indestructible and the cereal novel invention. They overlooked a couple of possibilities there, such as Kurt Vonnegut’s Breakfast of Champions on Wheaties and John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath on Raisin Bran.
Which is too bad, because he was so lively in Catalina Caper.
Time for the disclaimer: these were the pre-Internet days, never mind pre-IMDb. Occasional mistakes like that were made.
“ELECTRIC MONKEY BARS. GREAT IDEA.”
(Lisping) “I’M THE SCARIEST CLOWN IN THE CIRCUS!!!”
Personally, I’m fine with that one. The fact that they keep riffing him in Del Moore’s voice livens this episode up considerably.
Oh, I love this episode so much! Watching it again right now. It was either this or The Giant Gila Monster that was my first episode of the show.
Can’t forget: Vy Russell co-wrote this and The Atomic Brain aka Monstrosity. Her partner for both was Sue Dwiggins aka Sue Bradford.
Also, I really don’t think Casey Adams rises to the height of non-acting that Lance Fuller did. At least Adams isn’t mumbling and ducking out of scenes. It’s a stock character, but he does all right with it. I personally would have a tough time keeping a straight face if I had to introduce myself to people as “Dick Chasin.” lol
Poor Gypsy sneezing from that giant pepper shaker…