Fanficisode: Host segment discussion

Post your ideas, storyboards, written dissertations and such on whatever host segments you think should be included now and in the future. Some host segments are film specific, but other ideas can be fleshed out here if you desire.

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Here are my storyboards for a potential pre-credits/post-credits intro skit:

[Opening Credits]


Well done. you’ve done a man’s job, sir.

I’m still not quite sure what to do for Host segment 1, 2, and 4 but I’ve got the scattered inklings about what to do about Host Segment 3, which would be a philosophical discussion about whether this movie actually has a monster.

Crow kicks things off by asking if Cave Torgo is supposed to be the monster, and when Tom asked “what makes him think this movie has a monster?” Crow responds that this sort of film, where four unwilling explorers find themselves thrust by the hand of destiny into a strange and foreboding realm full of excitement and danger beyond their wildest imagination… Always has a monster. Usually by now, they’d have encountered a giant dinosaur, a prehistoric centipede, or a tribe of beautiful cave women, or even a couple of friggin’ mole men.

But with the movie more than half over, our net sum result so far is 13 seconds of lizard footage and a guy who looks like Andy Rooney dressed as a troll doll. Crow just doesn’t get it.

Jonah then theorizes that perhaps the the monster is meant to be metaphorical
(I haven’t quite susses this bit out yet)

Then Tom posits that the monster is existential.
(this bit either)

And then they wonder if maybe the monster is moralistic… Your own expectation that there should be a monster… is the monster.

Simply by wishing that our explorers would encounter something interesting along their journey, and at some point be forced to encounter an obstacle that places them in jeopardy, or causes at least one of their number to embark on even one of the stages of Campbell’s Hero’s Journey, we, by way of our own innate bloodlust and wish to see others placed in peril for our own amusement… become the monster of the movie ourselves!

At this point, Max gets in on the action with an “Oh man, that is so deep!” and exposits on the subject a little bit more.

Then Kinga walks by, rolls her eyes, and says: Look, I’ll spell it out for you… Jerry Warren realized he could write off his scuba diving holiday as a business expense if he rented a klieg light and forced four D-list actors to traipse through Colossal Caves for a couple of hours, because he knew he could pad out the rest of the film with stock footage, and get Carradine onboard for the price of a bottle of scotch. Comprende?

The SOL crew, stand there for a few scrunching their heads in contemplation, then Crow, who started this whole mess breaks the silence, by excitedly saying “well that makes sense too!” and then they start briefly discussing the philosophical implications of Jerry Warren being a cheapskate, but get interrupted by Movie Sign and forced back into the theater.

If there are any philosophy majors on here who want to chime in and give me some good talking points on the philosophical implications of a monster movie without a monster, I’m all ears.

So many monsters that aren’t monsters. This argument could go on for some time. Be careful it doesn’t get dull - dazzle them with concepts.

  • Man vs. Environment. The ocean is the monster! Specifically, the phantom layer (cue creepy theremin music).
  • Mallard Wyman’s ego, materialized into the bell, a modern-day Frankenstein’s monster of yester-year.
  • The four divers (symbolizing mankind) were the monsters the whole time, destroying the new frontier with their very presence.
  • The meta-monster is Jerry Warren.

That list goes on, doesn’t it?

I might as well post a summary of what I’ve been thinking about for the host segments.

Intro segment: Crow and Servo play “strip” poker for each other’s parts. After Joel takes an interest, they come up with an idea how he, a human, can join them - by betting his clothing instead!

Click here for my draft of the Intro Segment script

(Tom and Crow play cards; Tom is missing his globe, and Crow his net and one arm)

[Joel] Hey, little helpers, what’s up?

[Crow] We’re playing poker.

[Tom] Strip poker.

[Joel] That’s… wha? (stops and watches them for a second)

[Crow] I’ve got three pairs.

[Tom] Mine spell SEIZE if you read them upside-down.

[Crow] I win!

[Tom] Aaaah! Fine, just grab an arm there.

[Crow] I’m going to have you stripped down to nothing, Servo! All your bits are belong to us!

[Tom] Never! So long as I still wield my titanium exhaust skirt!

[Joel] So this is strip poker? You’re playing for each other’s parts?

[Crow] Well… yeah, what else could we play for?

[Tom] He’s just jealous because his parts don’t detach.

[Crow] Ha! He can’t play with us, he’s too human!

[Joel] Sure, guys, that’s fine, just remember to clean up after yourselves.

[Tom] You know, he actually does have parts that come off. I mean, they’re not parts of him per se, but he always has them attached.

[Crow] Like peripherals! Sure, if my net counts, so does Joel’s.

[Tom] Agreed. Joel, we would like to invite you to compete in the most manly of monarchy-inspired card games. We know you can’t dismantle yourself, but we will accept pieces of your uniform in lieu.

[Joel] No can do, you jokers, it looks like Sergeant Hainer’s activated the bad signal. (hits the button)

Host segment 2: The SOL is visited by the Wyman brothers in their newest invention: The space bell! The open-ended space craft sparks a flurry of incredulous questions from Joel and the bots. “The Earth has air, and it doesn’t escape.” “But that’s because of gravity!” “Exactly, we use the same principle!” Mallard’s muse is revealed to be Tinkerbell, explaining his bell fixation and his ability to power inventions with belief. No draft.

Host segment 4: Crow produces a slew of PhDs to earn respect, and his ego swells bigger and bigger with thoughts of ruling the lesser beings. (Ties into my last movie riff, but it’s all changeable.)

Click here for my draft of the Host segment 4 script

[Joel] Watcha got there, Crow?

[Crow] These are my PhDs.

[Joel] How’d you get all those?

[Crow] Remote study, from the Rock’em Sock’em Cloud College. And the first PhD I got was in Speed PhDing, so the rest came easy.

[Joel] Sure, but what are they all for?

[Crow] No one respects you without a doctorate. You’re just some regular Joe, legs-in-his-pants, garden-variety doofus. No better than a beast of burden, greasing the wheels of progress with your blood, sweat and tears. (certificate roll falls) Oh, could you grab that for me?

[Joel] Got it. (picks up the roll and returns it)

[Crow] See? And just yesterday you told me to pick something up myself. But not now, not ever again. Now I’ll be the one not picking up things. Because I am too dignified and important to soil myself in such a menial way.

[Joel] It was your own oil can.

[Crow] No, I won’t need it anymore. I will be oiled by the lesser beings while I divert my superior mental faculties to more monumental issues, like chapter sixty-three of Earth Vs. Soup.

[Joel] Look, Crow…

[Crow] Doctor Crow.

[Joel] Look, Doctor Crow, do you really think that’s how these work?

[Crow] Watch. Hey, Servo.

[Tom] (walking by) Yeah?

[Crow] Kneel before me.

[Tom] No knees, sorry. (walks off)

[Crow] …That was just a technicality. Plus these will be a lot more powerful when I have them mounted in their frames, each one at a precise angle to focus all their powers up me in my Doctor Throne.

[Joel] A throne? Like for a king?

[Crow] Well, they’re not all PhDs. There are some decrees and holy writs in here, too. I’ll let you know the full title, but for now, we’ll start out small.

[Joel] And you think these are going to make people respect you? (reaches for the flashing button)

[Crow] How could they not?

[Dr Forrester] So, you made it through another one, Dumb & Dumber & Dumbest.

[Crow] That’s Doctor Dumb to you!

[Joel] Hey, this isn’t a degree, it’s a fan letter. Do you want want me to read this?

[Crow] …You may.

Right, so here’s my submission for consideration for Host Segment 3 (which occurs shortly after the bit where Cave Torgo creepily pervs on Lauri and Craig’s romantic embrace):

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Okay…. You know how I said months ago it would be awesome if we could do a musical number?

I haven’t given a single thought to host segments for months and months, and honestly it’s so far down the list of things we would ever be able to pull off that we shouldn’t even be wasting breath talking about it at this point.

But for some unknown reason this morning as I was standing in the shower I got the smatterings of a three-part 1950’s acapella doo-wop number rattling through my head called “You and Me in a Cave Under The Sea”

I’ve got bits and pieces that I’m still putting it together, but I think it would have to go in slot number 2 right after the four explorers decide to bed down for the night. It might also possibly work in slot 3, but 2 seems better in terms of pairing the song to events that just happened in the movie.

I’ll post final lyrics if and when I get it finished, but I’m excited because it’s the sort of musical number that even people who aren’t particularly skilled singers can sort of talk their way through and it requires zero instrumentation. (Though you could add some if you wanted to)

Also it could be done by any variation of host and bots as long as at least two of them can sort of sing bass. It also just feels like a MST3K song to me.

You and Me In a Cave Under the Sea
(an acapella 1950’s doo-wop song for human and robot)

As the theater doors close, the bridge set is dark with single round spotlight trained on the center door. There’s an old 50’s style standing mic on the console at Tom Servo’s height. The side walls may have some of that sparkly hanging tinsel used as stage dressing.
Crow (or Crow substitute depending on production) and host emerge from left and right side of frame wearing smooth and shiny red or silver lined suit jackets ala The Flamingos or The Five Satins. Crow’s hair net is slicked back. They assume the staggered doo-wop singers pose moving back and forth in time. (Note if we’re counting new cast, this line-up could also include Growler, M. Waverly, or GPC)

Then Tom rolls in from screen right to handle the crooning. Note that Crow or Host will need to be able to rotate in and handle a verse while Tom rotates back into one of the backup singer positions similar to how the brain guys did “When I Held Your Brain In My Arms”


Backing chorus beat:
Buh-buh-buh-dum…Buh-dum… Buh-dum, Buh-dum, Buh-dum
Buh-buh-buh-dum…Buh-dum… Buh-dum, Buh-dum, Buh-dum (Repeat)

Backing chorus:
You and me in a cave under the sea
You and me in a cave under the sea (Repeat)
(Note: this could possibly be altered with slight variations? ex: “you and me in a marine catastrophe” if we can think up enough “ee” rhymes that fit the meter)

It happened just last night
Our future was oh so bright.
A quick romantic trip
to ocean floor by candle light.

But then the cable snapped
and my plans turned to crap.
60 fathoms down,
stuck in a cave without a map.

(Switch over to Crow)

It appears that in hindsight,
our bell wasn’t so watertight. (note: to scan, pronounce it wuzzint)
In retrospect I suppose that might…
(embarrased) have been a slight oversight.

(Back to Tom)

As we plunged out of sight,
you held my hand so tight.
Then slapped me hard, so I’d
know everything would be alriiight. (Try to hit a high note on the “i” if possible)

In this world so petrified
it could be mid July.
It’s hard to tell, I tried
but I don’t care, you’re by my side.

(Switch to Host)

Living like troglodytes
among the stalagmites.
This really is (nodding)
quite the plight.

I’m trying to be polite,
So don’t think me uptight,
I’m no suburbanite,
but guys, we’re missing taco night!

(Back to Tom)

We’re running out of air,
as I’m sure you’re well aware.
We might as well prepare…
(choking up) We haven’t got a prayer.

(Possible host speaking line)
Host (staggering drunkenly forward):
Baby, maybe it’s the nitrogen narcosis talkin’
But you’re the only girl I see. (Losing focus and slurring words while kind of squinting and reaching forward)
Actually I’m seein’… 'bout five of you… right now…
But that just makes you…. five… fuh… five times as pretty.
(he stumbles back)

(Back to Tom)
I’m sure that we’ll scrape by.
It’s me you should untiiie. (again, try to hit a high note on the “i”)
And eat this other guy (Head gestures towards host)
Please carve me off a thigh… yummmm.

(Crow swings into high, giving it his all, but is about to go off the rails. Tom will continue doing the chorus in the back, uninterrupted throughout this. If we have Growler, M. Waverly and GPC, they can start wandering away one by one once Crow has his breakdown.)

And if to my surprise,
we should somehow survive.
I’m gonna take a drive,
out to find the guy

who built this bathysphere.
I’m gonna box his ears.
Then make him disappear
in little bits, off the nearest pier!

Crow (speaking):
And then I’m going to snag on him and give him an Indian rub, and make him cry…
[Host stops singing, Tom continues with the chorus, oblivious.]

Crow (continued):
And then I’ll make HIM watch an hour and a half of silent scuba diving vacation footage! And see how HE likes it. And he’ll say “no, no, please stop!” but it won’t stop. It just keeps going and going… and just when you think you’re finally past it, and maybe some cool cave stuff is gonna happen, noooooo… they have to swim all the way back to the diving bell.

Host: Crow?

Crow (continuing): And why? To pick up a couple of pointy sticks and a compass that doesn’t even work.

Host: Crow! Are you finished?

Crow (defiantly): No.

Host (like a mom): Can you be finished… for me?

Crow (cowed): Okay. (he turns away. No more singing for Crow.)

Host: Okay. Do you uh… want to finish the song?
[Tom is still doing the chorus, solo, but is getting bored and starts making it a little funky.]

Crow: No… I think I just wanna lie down. (he wanders off out of shot)

[Tom ramps up the funky.]

Tom: Uhhh. Break it down now. You and me. In a cave. Under the sea. I said

[Host watches Crow leave, glances awkwardly at camera)

Host: Oh. Okay then… well… (calling after him) Good effort. Nice vocal harmonies. We’ll just uh… call you when it’s time to…

[Tom has one last line to get really funky, and possibly start scatting, beat-boxing, or some other vamp]

[Movie Sign]

Host: …Movie Sign!


Excellent work there! It’s a crime keeping these ideas tied down to a computer screen, a crime I say!