** Joel tries to do a ventriloquism act using Crow as his dummy. Crow thinks it’s weird so it falls apart after a bit. Crow tries to use Joel as his dummy but it also fails. Dr Forrester and Frank make nooses for Halloween costumes. Joel make a portable conch shell with headphones so you can listen to the ocean. Frank refuses to send the movie until Dr Forrester gives him that look.
First up is the short – Snow Thrills.
The thrills include speed skating, figure skating, ice yachting, dog sledding, a polar bear plunge, skiing, ski jumping, ice fishing, ski joring and bobsledding. Unfortunately none of them are very thrilling.
Now the movie.
A group of technicians, led by Dr. Paul Nelson, are monitoring their instruments. They are preparing for a satellite launch.
The scene shifts to an office where Dr. Tom Anderson is trying to convince the government to call off the satellite launch. He feels the launch will endanger the whole planet. He explains that aliens are monitoring the earth and will not take kindly to the launch. The officials inform him that it’s too late. The satellite was about to launch anyway. He leaves in a huff. The satellite is launched without any problems.
Later Tom is home having dinner with his wife Claire. Look whose there. It’s Paul and his wife Joan.
It’s three months after the launch and Paul is pretty happy with the way everything has gone so far. Tom is pretty happy himself and takes Paul into the other room to show him why. It’s man’s work so the women start to clean up from diner. Tom has a radio that he claims is picking up communications from Venus. Paul is interested but just then the phone rings. The satellite has disappeared and Paul (Peter Graves) has to get back to institute to help locate it.
** Joel and the bots have their own winter cavalcade of fun. They include Splating – a combination on speed skating and kick boxing. There is also ice fishing (where they fish for ice cubes), hockey ball, standing around on a frozen lake, badminton with a barbie doll frozen in a block of ice, cat snapping (breaking frozen cats in half) and frozen pole frenching.
Claire is upset with Tom. She knows what he is saying sounds nutty. Paul makes it back to the institute and finds out the satellite is back. No one is quite sure what happened.
That night, Tom goes to the radio and starts talking to his Venusian friend.
The voice just sounds like low tones that Tom can some how understand. It was the Venusian that messed with the satellite. Claire wakes up and urges Tom to not let his imagination get the better of him and get some sleep. Tom is sure the Venusian only wants to help the people of earth. Tom can’t go to bed but later he falls asleep on the couch.
The next day at the institute, the technicians are trying to bring the satellite back down to earth but it’s not working. While this is happening the Venusian has actually taken over the satellite and is try to land it but it crashes. Luckily he survived and contacts Tom. Tom is very excited but Claire is losing patiences with him. She heads into town hoping Tom will stop with this nonsense.
The Venusian is hiding in the woods. He wiggles his antenna or appendage or something and somehow causes all electrical power to stop working. Phones, machines, clocks, everything stops. Paul and Joan are driving back to the institute when their car stops working. They decide to walk to Tom’s house to see if he can help them.
Tom is talking to his alien pal. I guess his power isn’t out. He tells the Venusian the names of all the governmental people and scientists in the area, including Paul. Apparently the alien has some sort of control devices that he plans on using on them. Tom is really excited about this and wants to see one of them. Out in the woods, the little alien releases some bat like creatures. These must be the controlling devices.
In town everyone is in a panic trying to figure out what is going on. Tom walks into town and one of the towns folk attacks him. A police officer breaks it up. Tom (Lee Van Cleef) finds Claire and they head for his car.
Paul and Joan are still walking towards Tom’s house when they see one of the bat things from the alien. Not sure what it is, Paul does what any good scientist would do when he sees something unusual. He throws a rock at it. He misses and it flies away. They continue on with their walking.
Tom and Claire arrive home in his car. Tom explains to Claire that the Venusian stopped everything and only his stuff will still work since he has been helping the alien.
In town one of the bats finds its first victim. It bites a police officer on the neck.
He falls to the ground but then gets up and goes on his way.
Finally Paul and Joan make it to Tom’s place. He and Claire invite them in for some drinks. Tom tells them he knows why everything has stopped working.
Over at the institute, the power is out there just like everywhere else. General Pattick, who is in charge of the satellite tests, decided to walk to the nearest base to see what is going on over there. While walking through the woods, he gets bitten by a bat thing.
Paul is not sure of what to make of Tom and this Venusian character. Tom insist that everything will be great soon and everyone will realize how great Tom is. Despite all of Tom’s boasting, Paul is just not convinced this is any good. He and Joan decide to head home. Tom says he will take them in his car.
** Joel, Tom and Crow pretend they are having a dinner party. All they do is complain about the food and each other.
Claire is still annoyed with Tom but she says she will support him. Tom calls the alien and tells him he can follow his car to get Paul.
Meanwhile General Pattick comes back to the lab. He tells the couple of soldiers stationed there to pack up their gear and head out into the woods and look for anything suspicious. He then tells the technicians that the communist are the cause of all the problems.
He orders them to stay indoors. Of course he is being controlled by the alien.
Paul and Joan make it home. Despite the fact that they have no power also, Paul still doesn’t believe in Tom’s story. He thinks there must be some logical explanation for all this.
Everyone in town has been ordered to evacuate. Tom calls his Venusian pal to see what he can do next.
Paul decides to head back to the institute. He tells Joan to stay inside and he grabs a bike out of his garage. Just after he pedals away, one of the bat things swoops in on Joan.
The police officer is checking to see if everyone has left town. He stops at the towns newspaper office. The editor refuses to leave so the cop shoots him. Paul sees this and tries to intervene but the cop hits him over the head with the button of his gun and down goes Paul.
The policeman gets a message from the alien to let Paul go. Paul rides off on his bike.
Back at Tom’s place, he is telling Claire all about the controlling devices and how it will be so great and there will be no more fear and no more war and no more emotions and no more foolish stuff. He gives Claire a big kiss. Claire (Beverly Garland) reminds Tom that there will be no more love in this new world.
Paul makes it back to the institute and finds it closed. The general is there and offers to give Paul a ride to pick up his wife and take them to the military base. Paul puts his bike in the back of the general’s jeep but he suspects something is wrong.
He bonks the general over the head and takes off with his working jeep. He drives away and one of the bat things goes after him. He shoots at it with the general’s gun but misses and it flies away.
Paul ends up at Tom’s house and confronts him about everything. Tom admits to helping the Venusian. He explains there are eight more of them back on Venus and they are a dieing race. He again tries to convince Paul about how great it will all be and how all will be perfect but Paul knows bullshit when smells it. He vows to fight Tom and the aliens to his last breath. He hops in the jeep and drives away. Claire lays into Tom one more time about how stupid he is being. Tom still doesn’t see the light and warns the alien about Paul.
The jeep suddenly stops working, so Paul hops on the bike.
He makes it back home only to find that Joan (Sally Fraser) is now controlled by the alien. She releases one of the bats and leaves Paul to his fate. But Paul is a pretty savvy guy. He grabs a poker from the fire place and empales it. Just then his phone rings. It’s Tom. He convinces Paul into coming over to talk. The alien wants Tom to kill Paul because he is too dangerous.
Before he leaves, Paul has to take care of something. He shoots Joan.
** Crow and Tom want to know why do Peter Graves and James Arness have different last names. Joel explains it’s a Hollywood tradition and tells them about a few others. Then he talks about how some celebrities have the same last name. The three of them sing a song about it.
Claire asks Tom about the alien. Tom gives her a little background on him and tells her where he is hiding in the woods but this only makes Claire dislike the situation all the more.
Over at the institute, one of the technicians, Ellen, has just woke up and noticed the power is back on. She talks to the two other technicians to see what happened. They of course are under the aliens control so they kill Ellen.
Paul makes it to Tom’s place. Claire tries one last time to talk Tom out of killing Paul but it’s no use. He heads outside to meet Paul. Claire has had it. She gets on the radio and gives the Venusian a piece of her mind.
She also tells him she is going to kill him. As Paul and Tom head into the house, Claire slips out through the garage with a riffle and gets in Paul’s car.
Inside Paul lays into Tom about his traitorous dealings. He tells him the alien is just using him to get what he wants. Meanwhile Claire has made it to where the Venusian is hiding. She heads into the cave to search for it. Paul continues to reason with Tom. Just then Tom notices his riffle is gone. Claire finds the alien and fires at it but he is able to attack and kill her. Tom and Paul can hear the attack on his radio. Finally Paul snaps out of it. He and Paul hop in his car and drive off.
One of the soldiers stumbles across the Venusian and runs back to tell the others what he saw. They grab their gear and head for the cave.
Tom drops Paul off at the institute. He finds Ellen dead on the ground outside. Inside the general and the two technicians are discussing what the alien wants them to do.
Paul bursts in and shoots all three of them. He leaves the room not realizing the general is not dead. He jumps into a jeep to drive away.
Speaking of driving, Tom has driven out towards the cave but finds the police officer waiting. The officer fires a couple of shorts at him as Tom runs up the hill to hide. The army guys arrive at the cave. They head in with their bayonets ready. About this time Paul’s jeep stops working again so he starts hoofing it. Tom has equipped himself with some sort of flame device and is trying to work his way around the cop. The not dead general finds another jeep and heads off after Paul. Paul hears him coming and takes cover. As the general drives by Paul shoots and this time he gets him good. He commanders this jeep as well.
The troops find Venus man and open fire. Tom gets behind the officer and lights him on fire. He then steals his car. Back in the cave one on the soldiers charges at the Venusian but nothing seems to stop it. They retreat out of the cave and continue firing including using a bazooka but it continues after them.
Tom arrives and approaches his one time friend but now he is pissed. He shoots his flame thrower at it. With a dying gasp, the Venusian grabs Tom by the neck and kills him. Paul finally gets to the site. He then delivers a final summation about how man has to find perfection from with in.
** Joel and the bots are rewatching Peter Graves final scene again on a little tv while eating tv dinners. After reading a few letters we see that Frank and Dr Forrester are also watching the closing scene while eating.
Peter Graves appeared in over seventy films, television shows, and television movies. He is best know as Jim Phelps from Mission: Impossible. His older brother was James Arness. Graves died in 2010 at the age of 83
Lee Van Cleef appeared in 90 movies and over 100 television shows. His big break came after this movie when he starred with Clint Eastwood in Sergio Leone’s “For a Few Dollars More” and then ten years later in “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly”. He starred in many other Spaghetti Westerns as well. He died in 1989, at the age of 64.
Beverly Garland is best remembered as Barbara Harper Douglas, the woman who married widower Steve Douglas on My Three Sons. Later she played Stephanie Zimbalist’s mother on Remington Steele. She passed away in 2008 at 82 years old. Her family still owns the Beverly Garland Holiday Inn in North Hollywood that she and her late husband owned since the 1970s.
Sally Fraser is best know for low-budget science fiction movies from the 1950s including War of the Colossal Beast and Earth vs. the Spider. She retired from acting in the 1960s and now lives on a cattle ranch in Idaho.
I really like this episode. The riffs were excellent and the movie, though really dumb, was fun to watch. 5 out of 5