Allegedly Ed Wood’s most costly brainchild, Bride of the Monster (1955) bounced in and out of production. Rolling in 54, stretching into 55, ballooning to $70,000, Bride was somewhat profitable but Wood oversold his shares to where he saw little of it. Lugosi collected a grand on his last speaking role and much of the making of Bride is chronicled in Ed Wood (1994). Crow’s Dreams, The Tough Love Seat, Microwave Faith Popcorn, Hired! Part I, Hired! The Musical, Tater Tots and Olive Loaf. “Bram Stoker’s Bride of the Monster”, “Mr. Wood’s Wardrobe by… Mrs. Wood”, “I went home with you?” “Tor Johnson” or “Harvey B. Dunn”?
Fun fact: Bride of the Monster was the first MST3K episode I ever saw on IFC 2 years ago during mid-January. I fell in love with the show once I saw Joel and the bots for the first time.
I love this one and it’s near the top of my favorites list. I mean, it’s Ed Wood at his… best? I’ve watched it plenty of times without riffs, but the riffing makes it even more fun. Throw in the first half of Hired! and the phenomenon that is the Hired! Musical and you’ve got something really special.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go tamper in god’s domain.
(tampering in God’s domain!! -skawrk!- )
And it’s got hunky Officer Friendly in the torn shirt. So that’s nice, too.
and I thought I was the only one who ever found something genuinely erotic in an Ed Wood movie!
Definitely the top episode of Season 4.
Fun Fact: Maurice Seiderman, who was makeup artist for Bride of the Monster, was also the personal makeup artist for Orson Welles. This is probably the closest Wood ever got into contact with Welles.
Love the hell out of this one. Easy top 10 episode placement for me.
Perfect film to receive the MST3K treatment. I always say that the best MST3K episodes are the ones that give them the most material to bounce off of, and with Ed Wood at the helm, all the overwrought acting and technical blunders offer up a feast for the riffers to dine upon.
The terribly edited ending sequence, Harvey B. Dunn’s presence, the octopus, the fight with Bela’s body double, it all adds up to a spectacular viewing experience.
PLUS, there’s that first half of Hired!, which is just a hoot, and it gives us just enough of Darth Sidious Dad right at the end. PLUS it inspires the classic Hired!: The Musical host segment, so double applause for that.
As for the other host segments, that opening host segment is a scream with Crow’s subconscious, not to mention the Mads’ invention of the Tough Love Seat. The Microwave Faith Popcorn invention might not have aged quite as well because I didn’t really know enough about Faith Popcorn to appreciate that fully, but whatever, we can roll with it.
AND we’ve got the return of Willy the Waffle AND that thoroughly amazing closing host segment where Cambot helps the gang re-edit the end of the movie.
According to the Master List of Turkey Day Episodes, this was featured only once in the MST3K Turkey Day festivities back in 1993, and that’s a shame. I’d love to see it make the rounds once again!
Willy the Waffle Returns Defending Advertising.
Gosh, they really wanted to riff A Case of Spring Fever for the longest time, didn’t they?
Evidently. It was such a fit for the show they were bursting at the seams. Literally.
Yeah, this shows Ed’s reputation isn’t as deserved as he is given. I even feel, even taking the unique view that Wood had on the porn industry into account, The Sinister Urge wasn’t that bad either. No masterpiece and deserving on the show, but not something that should qualify Wood as “worst ever”.
The unique flavor of Woods Acting boosted his bad movie cred. His manic energy and childish themes helped. Once MST3K broadened the awful movie canvas with Harold P. Warren, Arch Hall Sr, and Coleman Francis Ed diminished in the eyes of critics. He is a celebrity of the pre-MST film culture and his private life fuels his legacy as much as his pictures. His incompetence resonates but his flicks are a blast.
I think most of us know that there are far worse directors out there (waves a hand at the rest of the MST3k catalogue). His stuff is bad, but enjoyably bad, and at least shows an awareness of how movies are supposed to work. I’d watch most of it unriffed and still have a good time. I think TV’s Frank said it best, “Ed Wood may not have had the talent of an artist, he may not have had the skills of an artist, but he had the soul of an artist.”
Ed Wood’s worst director reputation originated from the Medved Brothers book The Fifty Worst Films. Curiously, Wood doesn’t get so much as a passing mention. However, the final page is a ballot where readers were encouraged to send in their votes for what they considered to be the worst films. The results were presented in The Golden Turkey Awards, where Plan 9 from Outer Space edged out Exorcist 2: Heretical Boogaloo. The Medveds observed how it was considerably older than the other movies in the Top Ten, with the next oldest being Airport 1975 (which actually came out in 1974).
“Tampered in God’s domain” or scampered in God’s Rogaine as Bridget and Mary Jo say on the intro to this if you buy the episode on RiffTrax (like I did).
I’d love to see either the new MST crew or RiffTrax do a Bela Lugosi double feature with Bride of the Monster and either Plan 9 or Voodoo Man around Halloween. The movies are only around an hour long.
That is such a Bridget and Mary Jo line! It’s almost a shame to use it in an intro and not a full riff.
And welcome to the forums!
There’s a lot to love about this episode (Ed Wood) but I think my favorite bit is at the end. Cambot is going to “re-edit” the movie, so Joel and the Bots obligingly act out the scene with the Doctor’s bizarre facial contortions and subsequent felling by the Indiana Jones-style papier-mâché “boulder,” which then delivers him to the fatal clutches of the atomic (?) octopus. It’s a short sequence, but just so well done. Joel’s expressions are brilliantly ridiculous. The part where they all “fall over” slowly while flailing always gets me. And, of course, “he tampered in God’s domain,” which is a lot of fun to intone gravely after random life events.
And the last clip of Harvey B. Dunn walking away in disappointment (?) is hilarious as hell.
I love the idea of Cambot getting involved in the action, too.
ALWAYS loved it when we got some take on “Tampered in God’s domain” on the show. I thought it was neat how they worked it into the Netflix era a little bit!
Also, welcome to the forums!