humor

Episode 411

The Magic Sword

Joel fancies himself a character artist. He makes drawings of each of the bots but they are not impressed with the results.
For the invention exchange Joel and the bots make hat caddies for spring water bottles. The mads make bio hazard waste throw pillows.

The Magic Sword

Sybil, an elderly sorceress, is working around her little cottage and musing about what to do with her foster son George. His royal parents died in a plague. Seems George has fallen in love with the Princess Helene and spends most of his days daydreaming about her. He uses a magic pond to spy on the princess which is not creepy at all.
The princess is not particularly happy at the moment. Since she is a princess she has no say over whom she is to marry let alone being able to date. To try to feel better, she goes for a naked swim in the royal swimming pool. Afterwards an apparition of a woman appears and just like that she is kidnapped.
Luckily George just happen to be watching the whole thing in his magic pond, which is again is not creepy just fortuitous. He rushes in to tell Sybil what happened. Not quite believing him, Sybil checks with her magic mirror to get the 411. Sure enough it’s true.
At the palace, panic has set it in. They put the whole place on lock down until she is found. All of the sudden in walks the wizard Lodac. He tells them to call off the search as he has the princess in his castle.

The back story is that his daughter was put to death for witch craft when she was eighteen, so now that the princess has reached that age, Lodac has snatched her to feed her to his dragon in seven days time. Sir Branton, one of the king’s knights, declares that he will rescue the princess. Lodac warns him that he will not survive the journey as there will be all sorts of nasty stuff along the way. Lodac then turns into a bird and flies away.
George wants to go and rescue the princess but Sybil tells him that he isnt ready yet to face Lodac as his magic is way too powerful and George is too young. So he reminds him of how she found him when he was only 1 month old after his parents died. Seeing as how the foster parent system didn’t have as much red tape back then, she just raised him as her own for the past 20 years.
George is pretty bummed out about not being able to go, so Sybil tries to cheer him up. She shows him the gifts he will receive when he turns 21. They include a magical stallion, a impenetrable suit of clothing and a magic sword.

George is suitably impressed, but there’s more. He will also get 6 frozen knights that will follow his commands.
Sybil lets George handle the sword for a bit. He taps it on the ground and a secret doorway opens in the floor. It leads to a room that Sybil’s brother used to keep stuff in. Sybil and George head into the room but then George pulls a fast one. As soon as she is in the room he taps the sword on the ground closing the door and trapping Sybil. He tells her he will let her out after he rescues the princess.

## Break
## Joel has the bots dressed up like dogs and they do a commercial for Basil Rath-Bones

George presents himself to the king to get his approval to rescue Helene. Sir Branton dismisses George and company since he has already pledged to rescue the princess. George gives him a little sass and Brandon is ready for a fight. He draws his sword a takes a swing at George but when his blade hits George’s clothing, it breaks in half. The king is mucho impresionado and decides to let the love struck youngster and his rag tag team help in bringing back Helene (Anne Helm). Of course the one who rescues her gets to marry her as well. Remember the princess gets no say in all of this.
Speaking of the princess, she is placed in a dungeon in Lodac’s castle. There are two other princess in there already.

They both have been there for seven days already and know that feeding time is drawing near. Lodac and a couple of guards come in a take the girls away since their father would not pay the ransom. Helene asks Lodac what is her ransom. He tells he did not ask for one, he just felt like taking her. She knows her father will send an army to retrieve her. Not really, Lodac informs her, just one knight, Sir Branton. He also mentions that George and his knights are tagging along. Helene knows Branton but has no idea whom George is. Lodac (Basil Rathbone) uses some magic to show her where George is.
The company has reached the first of seven curses that Lodac has put in their path. It’s an ogre. George and the knights attack and are able to get a few spears jabbed into him. The ogre is still able to kill two of the knights however. George then rides around the brute as fast as possible. This causes the ogre to get dizzy and drop to his knees. George finishes him off with a sword to the chest.
Helene is very impressed and is sure George will come and rescue her. Lodac scoffs at her, then he reminds her there are six more curses to go.
Branton, George and the remaining knights reach the second curse, it’s a swamp.

There is so much fog that the group get partially separated. One of the knights falls in to the nasty bubbling swap water and it starts to pull him under. Grorge (Gary Lockwood) finds him and tries to pull him out but Branton sneaks up from behind and kicks George into the water.

## Break
## Joel and the bots put on a pageant based on the middle ages but Tom takes it way too seriously. He spouts on about despotism and serfdom which just annoys everyone. Crow swats him with his sword.

George is able to escape with the help of his magic sword but his compatriot is not so lucky. The rescuers continue on.
Back at the cottage, Sybil has finally figured out how to get herself out of the basement. She uses her magic mirror to check on George’s progress. He and Branton are having a little disagreement. Branton thinks he and George should continue on alone but the remaining three knights vow to stay the course.
The next morning, Branton sneaks away to a little cottage. Well guess who’s there? Lodac himself. Seems Branton has Lodac’s magic ring. The whole kidnapping of Helene was a deal the two had struck. Branton would get to rescue the princess in exchange for the ring. Lodac is growing impatient and wants the ring back now but Branton knows Lodac can’t harm him as long as he has the ring.
Just then, one of George’s knights happens upon the building. Lodac uses his magic and suddenly there is a fair maiden outside to distract the knight from investigating the hut. Just like that the two of them are having a roll in the hay. And just like that the maiden turns into a disgusting old hag.

She starts attacking the knight when George shows up. He uses his magic shield, which has a cross on it, to make the nasty looking lady disappear.
George and the knight go into the building and find Branton. They demand to know what he is doing there. He says he was doing a little scouting ahead and the buildings upper floor gives him a better vantage point.
Lodac realizes the George is using magic to evade the curses. He quickly figures out it’s Sybil that has been helping George. Lodac appears in Sybil’s magic mirror. He insults her looks and then her magic skills. He tells her he will kill George and then he jams her magic mirror so she can’t see what’s going on anymore.
Feeling rather insulted by Lodac, Sybil tries to whip up a potion to give George even more magical powers but she is way too rusty and accidentally strips George of all his magic.
Meanwhile Branton, George and the knights continue on. Two of the knights have gone ahead of the others to scout out the area. The temperature starts getting extremely hot. So hot in fact, that the two knights that went ahead get scorched to death. George and the only remaining knight notice that Branton isn’t even sweating. When confronted about it, Branton rides off with the other two right behind him.
Branton rides into a cave. The horses of George and the last knight refuse to go inside. On foot, George and the knight start searching for Branton. Suddenly he appears behind them. He spills the beans on working with Lodac and then leaves the cave. George starts to give chase but the cave entrance disappears trapping him and the knight inside.
George tries to use his magic sword to open the doorway but it doesn’t work. They start looking for an alternate way out. A bunch of ghost like figures start chasing them. The last knight gets overcome by the ghosts but as a result he is able to open the doorway, allowing George to escape. Now George is completely on his own. Of course Lodac and Branton saw the whole thing while looking in a magic fire place. Sure, why not.

## Break
## Crow starts singing a song about Kim Catrell but then mentions how he is over her and now it’s all about Estelle Winwood.

George makes his way to Lodac’s castle, walks right inside and finds Helene in the dungeon. She can hardly believe her eyes.

She and George start kissing, then begin heading for the exit. Quickly, they are captured by Lodac. Branton (Liam Sullivan) walks out and takes Helene who is suddenly quite smitten with him. Lodac reminds Branton to give him the ring. When he does, Helene turns into the old hag and Lodac turns his evil magic on Branton. With a flash Branton head is mounted on the wall. Then Helene appears next to Lodac. He orders his hench men to take her away and tie up George.
Sybil (Estelle Winwood) has not given up yet on helping George. She racks her brain trying to think of the correct spell. She decides to go to the castle and see if she can remember it when she gets there. She turns into a dove and flies off.
At the castle, Lodac take Helene to see George, whom he has strung up. He lets the young couple have a kiss before dragging Helene away. He has her tied up just outside the window where George is being held so he will have to watch the dragon devour her.
Meanwhile, a group of people that Lodac had shrunken down to miniature size decide they have had enough of Lodac. They escape from the cave they were held in, find George’s sword and sneak into his cell. They use the sword to cut George’s bindings. Now free, George takes the sword and heads to the rescue.
Lodac takes his position high above so he can watch the dragon make quick work of Helene. Uh oh, it’s a two headed dragon.

George gets his horse, grabs a nearby spear and rides into the dragon’s lair. And the battle is on.
Sybil flies up, turns her self back into a person and walks over to Lodac. He is feeling pretty cocky so he again mocks her. George is trying to hold back the dragon but it knocks him off his horse. Suddenly Sybil remembers the proper spell. She recites it and George has his magic back again. He takes care of the dragon in short order.
Lodac is stunned. While he is distracted, Sybil slips his magic ring off of his hand. Victorious, George releases Helene.
Lodac is not finished yet though. He proclaims that George may have gotten passed all six of the curses, to get this far, but he himself is the final curse and he doesn’t plan on losing. He causes a bunch flashes of lightning and talks really loud but Sybil transform her self into a panther and kills him.
Some time later, the king presides over the wedding of George and Helene and in attendance are all six of George’s knight buddies. Sybil used Lodac’s ring to bring them all back. The two love birds kiss as the movie ends.

## Tom is confused about how they were able to say curse words on TV. Joel explains the difference. The bots then think of a bunch of sort of curse words. Down in Deep 13, Frank seems to have been exposed to too much of the biohazard pillows as his head is now just a skull.

Cast

Basil Rathbone is best know for his fourteen portrayals of Sherlock Holmes in the 1940’s. He appeared in over 70 films throughout his career.

Estelle Winwood was am accomplished stage and film actor She acted well in to her 90’s, passing away in 1984 at the age of 101

Gary Lockwood played Lt Cmd Gary Mitchell in the Second Star Trek piolt episode and Frank Poole in 2001 a Space Odyssey.

Anne Helm is best know as the love interest of Elvis Presley in his 1962 film Follow That Dream.

Liam Sullivan played many villains through his career including Brother William, an LSD proponent, in Dragnet

Best Riffs

** Petticoat, Dungeon.

** [Mount your horses, gentlemen.]
We’re not THAT lonely!

** He deep-fried his sword! It’s got a crispy coating!

A fun episode with a movie that at least has a decent plot. 3 out of 5

humor

Episode 410

Hercules against the Moon Men

Tom and Crow have decided to run away from home and live on the other side of the ship. They get about 50 feet away when they change their minds and come back.
Frank and Dr Forrester remind Joel and the bots about The Lost Continent and the boring rock climbing scene. They then mention a sandstorm, which is some sort of reference to the upcoming film.
For the invention exchange Joel and bots have Super Freak Out. Frank and Dr Forrester’s invention is part of the film and “Deep Hurting”.

Hercules against the Moon Men

A voiceover explains a meteor struck the mountain of Samar causing it to erupt and burn everything around it. Giant monsters began to live on the mountain and terrorize the people of Samar, forcing them to offer their children as sacrifice.
This is followed by a confusing scene of not so young children being forced walk to the mountain. A door in the mountain opens and the children are shoved in.
Next an elder statesman, Gladius, pleads with Queen Samara to stop the sacrifices but she is having none of it.

He tells her of a man that can help them defeat the monsters but she sends him away.
Of course that man is Hercules. We see him riding a horse in search of something when a group of men attack him. Hercules has no trouble dispatching his attackers.
Back with the queen in her bed chamber, the winds starts blowing and it gets very dark. Suddenly a figure appears in her room.

It is Redolphis. He is the leader of the Moon Men that are the actual monsters on the mountain. It seems they came to earth on the meteor that hit the mountain earlier. They need the sacrifices to help revive their queen. In return for helping them, they will make Queen Samara the most power women in the world.
Next is a scene with Darix and the queen’s sister, Selene. The two are in love and wish to be married but they need to get the queen’s permission first.
Hercules is riding again when a young girl named Agar stops him. She helps him sneak into Samar. Hercules meets with Gladius and agrees to help the people of Samar defeat the monsters. The queen was spying on the conversation and vows to stop them. Hercules and Gladius try to slip out through a series of tunnels but Gladius is killed by a booby trap

and Hercules falls through a trap door. The pit he is in begins to fill with water.

** Break
** Joel is going to perform a booby trap illusion with a bunch of knives but the bots can’t stop saying booby. The trick works but Joel seems to have sprung a leak.

Hercules is able to escape the pit but then is attacked by an ape like creature. It’s no problem for Hercules as he tosses the creature around with ease. Agar helps Hercules out of the tunnel.
The queen is flabbergasted when she finds out Hercules (Alan Steel) has escaped. She vows to capture him and punish him for the problems he has caused her.
Selene asks her sister for permission to marry Darix.

The queen gives her consent but she knows Darix is part of the growing resistance movement. She tells Selene she needs Darix for a diplomatic mission and they can get married when he returns. She has no intention of letting Darix live to marry Selene.
Hercules and Agar locate the members of the resistance. They begin to hatch a plan to defeat the mountain monsters.
The next day, Darix says goodbye to Selene and heads off for his mission. Agar warns Selene that he may be heading into a trap but that she is sure that Hercules will help. I’m sure he has nothing else to do. Of course, the big guy agrees to help. Agar gives him a little kiss before he leaves.
The guards that were accompanying Darix turn on him. They shoot him with an arrow then start attacking him. Hercules shows up and beats the hell out them before whisking Darix away.

They find a local healer to nurse Darix back to health.

** Break
** Joel gives the bots upper body muscle implants. Crow decides to call himself Dax Tungsten. Tom has too much trouble coming up with a good name, so his body rejects the implants.

The healer warns Hercules to be careful with the queen. She has a special love potion that will make any man fall in love with her. Hercules gets ready to leave when a group of palace guards show up to take the man’s daughter to be sacrificed. Hercules fights them off but he knows more will come so he takes Darix and the healers family to a hiding place.

Agar finds them and tells Hercules that the guards have taken others to the mountain for sacrifice. Hercules to the rescue again.
He tracks down the group and attacks the guards but it turns out to be a trap. They throw a net over Hercules which for some reason he is unable to break free of.
While this is going on, the queen takes Selene with her to a cave to meet someone. It’s the moon men. They see their queen and then Redolphis appears. The moon queen looks just like Selene. It dawns on Selene that she is not getting out of there alive. She tries to make a run for it but Repolphis raises his hand and a bunch of giant rock monsters emerge from the cave walls.

Selene is easily captured then.
Redolphis explains that Selene will be sacrificed the next day when there will be a great planetary alignment and earth will no long support human life. Queen Samara will be spared, her beauty will last forever, and she will be as powerful as Redolphis but only if she kills Hercules.
Hercules is put in a large contraption with spikes designed crush him to death.

With the queen and Agar watching, Hercules is able to hold back the large plates long enough until the ropes brake and the whole thing falls apart. Time for plan B.
Samar has Hercules brought to her chamber. With the two of them alone she asks why doesn’t he kill her. He tells her he wants to stay with her.

Just to make sure Samar puts some of her love potion into a drink, but this isn’t Hercules’s first time around the block. When she is not looking he dumps out his drink then pretends the potion has taken effect.
The queen learns that Darix is still alive and decides to use Agar to locate him. Believing that Hercules is under her power, she decides to banish Agar from Samar knowing she will go to Agar. Her plan works perfectly as they capture Darix and Agar. She has them brought before her and Hercules. He recommends they be put to death by starvation.
Meanwhile, a small group of peasants and some of the army decide it time put an end to the queen. It’s time to storm the castle.
As night fall comes, Queen Samara tells Hercules about the moon men, and the whole plot. Now that he knows everything, Hercules drops the act. A stunned Samara is able to slip out a secret passage, so our hero has to do what a hero has to do. He beats the pulp out of everyone in his way and heads to the dungeon to free Agar and Darix.

** Break
** Tom and Crow mention how short the men’s skirts are compared to the women so they sing a song in praise of pants. Frank really likes the song.

After freeing the two from the dungeon, Hercules continues to beat up palace guards

while Darix and Agar join up with the rebels that have arrived at the palace.
A sandstorm begins as Samara makes it to the mountain and the moon men. Since she was unable to kill Hercules, Redolphis has her killed by the rock monsters
Hercules and the rebels all begin walking in the sandstorm to try and get to the mountain while Redolphis starts bleeding Selene so their queen can be revived.
The storm continues to rage on for a very long time and Hercules and the rebels just stumble around in it.
Eventually Hercules finds the door to the inside of the mountain. It proves to be very difficult to open. You might even say it takes a…… very concerted effort to open it.
The planet’s come in to alignment and the moon starts to move closer to the earth. This causes all sorts of geologic events, but the sandstorm and the pointless walking around by the rebels continues.
Hercules gets inside and runs into several of the rock monsters.

After fighting a few of them he realizes how tough it will be to kill them, he pushes a column in the cave over, causing a small cave-in that wipes them out.
He reaches Repolphis just as the moon queen starts coming to life. More pushing and crashing happens as Hercules rescues Selene.
With everyone safe and all the moon men killed, Hercules heads out of town with Agar joining him to search for more people in need.

** Joel and the bots discuss why Alan Steel replaced Steve Reeves in the Hercules movies. Crow start to develop a real smart ass attitude so Joel takes him away for an adjustment. Dr Forrester can’t understand why this movie didn’t finally break Joel and the bots will. Frank openly imagines what it would be like to be up with the bots in space but he isn’t sure how you go to the bathroom. Dr Forrester is not very happy with Frank.

Alan Steel was the body double for Steve Reeves in Hercules Unchained before taking over the role in several subsequent films.

** Best Riffs

** Ow ow ow Ouch ow Ow

** Squeaky Squeak

** It’s the Monsters of Rock Tour

This is a fun episode. The movie is a typical sword and sandal affair but at least Hercules doesn’t sleep through most of the film like he does in other additions of this collection.

3 out of 5.

humor

Episode 409

The Indestructible Man

Joel is a little freaked out. Tom sounds like Crow and Crow sounds like Tom. Even Gypsy and Magic Voice voices have switched. Turns out Tom and Crow were just pulling a prank on Joel. Frank and Dr Forrester are entertaining celebrities. Well at least the say they are since you can’t see any of them. For the invention exchange they have invented nothing. Well at least nothing they can show anybody. Joel and the bots invention is novels on the back of cereal boxes.

First up another chapter of Undersea Kingdom.

When we last saw our intrepid explorers in episode 406, Crash and Billy were trapped at the top of a cliff that the robots were destroying. Well they weren’t all that trapped after all as they just jump down the back of the cliff to get away. They retrieve Diana and the Professor and make their escape. Before long a group of white robe soldiers intercept them. Figuring they are agents of Unga Khan they take them prisoner.

The Indestructible Man

A voice over by Detective Dick Chasen starts things off. He explains how this is all about Charles “Butcher” Benton (Lon Chaney, Jr.) and his being put to death the next day. Benton is in his cell talking to his attorney, Paul Lowe. He believes his attorney double crossed him along with his co-defendants, Squeamy Ellis and Joe Marcelli. Benton has hidden his share of the money they stole and won’t tell anyone where it is. Despite his impending death he tells the attorney he will kill him and the other two.

The next day Chasen is in his office when Capt. John Lauder comes to see him. With Butcher being put to death he his closing the case and reassigning Chasen to something else. Chasen is sure there is more to the story and vows to keep working on it on his own time. Chasen goes to see Eva Martin, a local dancer and a friend of Benton’s. He figures he will ask her one last time about the stolen money but she insists she had no idea where it’s at. She leaves her dressing room to go perform.

Chasen leaves but then sees Marcelli go into her dressing room. When Eva finishes she meets Marcelli. They hear on the radio about the Butcher being executed soon. This makes Eva (Marian Carr) very sad and she retrieves a letter Benton sent her with instructions to open it upon his death.

Just then she is forced to go back onstage for one final number. Marcelli opens the letter when she leaves and finds a map of the sewer system with an X on it. He takes the map and puts $50 in the evelope before Eva can return.

** Break

** Joel and the bots put on a parade of the Undersea Kingdom.

That evening, after Benton has been put to death, Dr. Bradshaw, a biochemist, is in need of a dead body for some cancer research. Sure enough his assistant (Joe Flynn) is able to get Benton’s body for the experiments. They make a few preparations then zap his body with a great jolt of electricity, as any self-respecting researchers would. This gets Benton’s heart and lungs working again. Next thing you know he’s up and moving around but he is unable to talk. He is also a little ticked off about being dead. He starts tearing up the office but Dr Bradshaw is able to get him to sit down.

Bradshaw tries to get a blood sample from him but the needle is unable to pierce his skin.

Benton realizes he is indestructible and chokes both Bradshaw and his assistant to death at the same time, then leaves the office.

Chasen decides to pay a visit to Eva and convinces her to grab a bite to eat. They go to a drive up hamburger joint and start chatting it up. Chasen (Casey Adams) tells her how he became a cop and Eva explains how she came to know Benton and got her job at the burlesque house. Afterwards Chasen takes her home.

Meanwhile Squeamy meets with Lowe, who has a safe cracking job for him if Squeamy can stay off the booze long enough.

** Break

** Joel and the bots talk about what they would do if the were indestructible. Each idea seems to be rather painful unless you were indestructible.

Benton wonders through the woods until he comes to a road. He steals a car which gets the police involved.

They set up road blocks and eventually he encounters one. Being indestructible and all, he just gets out and beats up the officers in spite of receiving several gunshots. He continues on driving towards Los Angeles and his chance for revenge.

Chasen and the rest of his department are put on 24 hour duty, figuring this new maniac is headed their way.

Benton makes it to LA and heads straight for Eva. She of course is stunned to see him. He’s pretty mad when he realizes the map is not in the envelope he left for her. He storms away with plans to look for his former partners. Eva calls the police, then calls Squeamy to warn him. Of course no one believes her but she leaves a message for Chasen anyway.

Eventually Chasen gets the message and heads to the dancehall to talk to Eva but she has left to try and warn Squeamy. Benton gets to Squeamy first but he skedaddles down the fire escape. Benton starts to leave when suddenly Marcelli shows up. Benton throws him down a flight of stairs.

Next he goes looking for Lowe. Benton gets to Lowe’s office but he is not there. Someone else shows up though, Squeamy. Benton throws him off the fifth floor balcony.

By now the police have figured out about the doctor and his experiments and also how Benton’s body never made it to the morgue. More reports of people being thrown to their death come into the police. They are getting desperate to stop him now.

** Break

** Joel tries to do the close-up camera shot that the movie uses of Lon Chaney’s face. Of course, Tom and Crow get in the way.

Lowe (Ross Elliott) figures out he is next, so he punches a police officer to get himself arrested, that way Benton can’t get him if he is in jail. Instead, Chasen and Capt Lauder decide to let him go with hopes that he will be so scared he will tell them all about the previous robbery they committed with Benton. Sure enough it works, as Lowe starts singing like a canary. He also tells them how Benton uses the sewer system to hide from the police.

Using this information, the police stake out manhole covers in the city waiting for Benton to show himself. Chasen, Capt Lauder and several officers head into the sewer to hunt down the Butcher.

They bring a flamethrower and a bazooka to try a finish him off.

Benton makes it to the stash of money he hid in the sewer system just before he is spotted by the police. They fire a bazooka round at him and it hits him square in the gut. Being indestructible, it just bounces off, but it does hurt him. He hurries away but runs into another group of officers and they turn the flamethrower on him. Now badly scorched, Benton climbs up through a man hole that leads inside an electrical substation. He’s followed closely by the police.

Struggling to see because the flames damaged his vision, Benton ends up on a crane, which he accidentally activates. With the police watching, the crane rolls into one of the high tension power lines zapping Benton with a lethal dose of electricity, putting an end to his rampage.

The next day, Chasen finishes up his report on the case. He gets his boss to give him some time off so he goes a picks up Eva and takes her for hamburgers again. After all of the excitement of the last few days, Eva is not sure what to do next with her life. Chasen took care of that. He tells her he got her fired from her job. When she asks why he tells her being his wife is going to take up too much of her time. Eva says yes as the movie closes.

** The bots make Joel sign a contract that he will not make an more cop and donut jokes ever again. Down in Deep 13 a couple of cops just happen to be there. They concur about the donut jokes being hackneyed.

They then give Dr Forrester and Frank a citation for their party being too loud.

Lon Chaney, Jr. Is best know for his numerous roles in horror films like The Wolf Man, The Ghost of Frankenstein as well as several mummy movies.

Casey Adams appeared in many television shoes and movies from the 1940’s through the 1970’s. His best know roll was that of Ray Cutler in the 1953 film Niagara

Marian Carr had a small uncredited role in It’s a Wonderful Life.

Ross Elliott is best know for his roll as the sheriff in the TV series The Virginian.

Joe Flynn is best know as Captain Binghamton from McHale’s Navy and his numerous roles in Disney movies.

## Best Riffs

## Alright Talk!!!

##”Who in their right mind would believe a man came back from the dead?” “Uh, millions of Christians.”

## Clang, clang, clang went the trolley… -Plod, plod, plod went the plot

I liked this episode. The movie is really dull but it a fun film noir with some great riffs. 3 out of 5

humor

Episode 408

Hercules Unchained

It’s annual wash and wax day on the SOL. Joel loves this day but Tom and Crow don’t. Afterwards Tom really likes being all squeaky clean but Crow is still really upset.
The Mads invention is decorator roaches. They had some help catching roaches from an exterminator who just happens to be Steve Reeves. 

Joel and the bots invention is the Steve-a-meter. It checks if your ideas have already been thought of by Steve Allen. Frank and Dr Forrester get into a fight so Steve Reeves has to send the movie.

Hercules Unchained

A Greek ship rows ashore at Attica. Hercules has returned with his new wife, Iole. They are headed to Thebes, accompanied by a young man named Ulysses. They load up a wagon with supplies and gifts from the crew and ride away.
Along the way a group of soldiers ride past the wagon heading towards Thebes. This puzzles Hercules so he chases after them. Ulysses tells him he should slow down. Hercules (Steve Reeves) not only slows down, he decides to take a nap in the back of the wagon, letting Ulysses do the driving for a while. Iole sings a little tune while Hercules drifts off.
Down the road a ways, they run into the gigantic Antaeus. He will not let them pass through without some sort of payment. He threatens to take the horses and any valuables they have. Iole tries to get Hercules to wake up and help them but he refuses. Antaeus goes to the back of the wagon and tells him he is going to take Iole  with him. Hercules doesn’t seem to care until Antaeus touches him. Hercules jumps from the wagon and they begin fighting. 

As expected, Hercules wins the battle.
They ride on a little further and it starts to rain. They find a grove of trees surrounding a cave and head in to get out of the rain. There are a few soldiers there and when they go inside, Hercules spots a familiar face. It Oedipus, the ruler of Thebes, or at least he was. Seems his sons, Polynices and Eteocles, forced the old man to give up the throne and the two of were supposed to share it. After one year Eteocles was due to let Polynices be the leader but has refused to follow their agreement. Hercules will go to Thebes and convince Eteocles to honor the bargain.

** Break
** Gypsy has built a Greek style set for Joel and the bots. She comes out dress as the ideal Helenistic woman and begins to sing and play the harp. Joel and the bots aren’t sure what to make of it.

The next day, Hercules leaves Iole at his home while he and Ulysses head into Thebes with a parchment scroll from Polynices to give to his brother. Along the route the big guy starts getting hungry so they stop at another small cave and Ulysses goes to hunt a pheasant. Hercules gets a drink of water from a spring flowing out of a rock. Unfortunately, it is the waters of forgetfulness. 

After a moment Hercules starts getting dizzy and the horses get spooked and run off.
Meanwhile Ulysses has bagged them a meal. Suddenly the horses go running past. Alarmed by this, he heads back to the cave but not before dropping the ever important scroll.
Dazed and confused, Hercules starts hearing a woman singing. Ulysses makes it back to Hercules but he can’t hear any of the singing. Hercules looks for the voice but eventually he passes out. A group of soldiers shows up and take Hercules and Ulysses, who is pretending to be deaf and mute, prisoner. The soldiers take them to Queen Omphale of Lydia.
Omphale has a little game she is running. She uses the waters of forgetfulness to capture unsuspecting men and have them fall in love with her. When she tires of them she has them killed and gets a new one.
Hercules awakens and can’t remember a thing. Omphale (Sylvia Lopez) tells him he is the king and her husband. Hercules thinks the whole idea is pretty sweet and instantly finds Omphale very attractive.
Back outside of Thebes, Iole is getting anxious. It’s been three days and no word from Hercules yet.
Meanwhile Hercules is really enjoying himself. Ulysses is giving him a massage and serving girls are giving him food. Ulysses notices they are giving him some of the Waters of Forgetfulness. He spills the water and gets him some non tainted water.

 Ulysses breaks his act and tells Hercules his real name. He also tells him about Iole and the mission to Thebes. Hercules doesn’t believe him. Just then Omphale comes in and the conversation stops and Ulysses goes back into character.

** Break
** Joel and the bots try some of the Waters of Forgetfulness as well as the Carrot Shake of Pretentiousness, the DQ Blizzard of Loneliness, the Fruit Stripe Gum of Stability, and the Green Bean & French Onion Casserole of Happiness.

Iole tried to find Hercules, but Eteocles’s men found her and brought her to him. Eteocles figures that she and Hercules are plotting against him with his brother. He has her arrested and threatens to arrest anyone plotting against him. 
The next day Ulysses is giving Hercules another message. He keeps him from drinking from the bad water. He also tells him about how Omphale kills off her lovers when she tires of them. Hercules is starting to remember but is still not sure if Ulysses is telling the truth.
Later he is making out with Omphale when they are notified that a group of sailors from Ithaca have arrived and are seeking shelter for a few days. Hercules is really annoyed by this but Omphale most go and great them. She takes notice of one of the younger crewmen and starts looking at him as a replacement for Hercules.
Speaking of the devil, Hercules comes barging in demanding that Omphale return to him for some more fun stuff. Several of the men from Ithaca recognize Hercules. He doesn’t recognize them so they drop it.

Polynices has grown tired of waiting. He figures Hercules is working with his brother  so he decides to attack the city and take the throne. Of course Eteocles is preparing to defend it.
Over in Lydia, Omphale is messing around with her new friend but he is no dummy and has figured out what she is up to. Just then Hercules comes in and he has regained his memory. Omphale agrees to let Hercules leave with the rest of the Ithaca sailors but then changes her mind and orders her men to kill them. Time for Hercules to do some damage. He starts lifting heavy objects and throwing them at the soldiers. He and the rest of the Greeks are able to escape to their ship and sail away. Omphale, who was really in love with Hercules, is so distraught at his leaving that she kills herself.

** Break
** The bots try to get Joel to explain what Hercules and Omphale are doing after they snuggle and kiss. Joel is a little uncomfortable and tells them he is her live in dentist but the bots ain’t buying it.

Polynices and his men arrive at the main gate of Thebes but Eteocles has a surprise for them. He has several women captives that he has accused of being loyal to Polynices killed in front of them.

 He also says he is going to feed Iole to the tigers if Hercules tries to save her. Polynices and his men back away from the fight.
Hercules finally makes it back to Thebes and sees what Eteocles has done. He decides to sneak into Thebes to rescue Iole. The men from Ithaca agree to help. Meanwhile Eteocles sends Polynices a note. He challenges him to a duel to settle who the ruler of Thebes should be.
Herc and the boys make it inside Thebes. He gets trapped in an arena and a group of tigers are set loose to have a herculean meal but the big guy survives with barely a scratch.
Polynices and Eteocles meet just outside the main gate of Thebes.

 The two heels do battle with Polynices striking Eteocles first. Eteocles fights back and kills his brother. The victorious Eteocles celebrates but then falls over dead from his wound.
The remaining soldiers begin fighting for control of the city. Many are killed before peace finally wins our. Hercules finds Iole and the Theben’s choose a new leader.

** Joel and the bots are trying to figure out why the Hercules movies were made. Gypsy, Crow and Joel have some elaborate theories but Tom claims it was just because they were cheap to make. The Mads ask Steve Reeves his opinion and he seems to agree with Tom.

Steve Reeves: After a body building career Reeves predominantly worked as an actor in Italy portraying Hercules, Goliath and other muscular characters

Sylvia Lopez started as a model before switching to acting. She died in 1959 at the age of 26, soon after finishing this film, from leukemia.

Sylva Koscina had an extensive film career in Italy but is best know to American audiences for her portrayal of Iole in this film and the preceding Hercules film. 

## Best Riffs 

## It’s the newest sport—grandpa dunking.

## He’s getting the bends.

## Is he turtle waxing him?

The first part of the movie is good. There’s stuff happening with Herc and there is some kind of story going on. Then it grinds to a halt from there. Good episode though. 3 out of 5.