|502 - Hercules|
|Air Date||July 17, 1993|
|MST3K Director||Kevin Murphy|
|Movie Director||Pietro Francisci|
|Cast||Steve Reeves, Sylva Koscina, Fabrizio Mioni|
|Preceded by||501 - Warrior of the Lost World|
|Followed by||503 - Swamp Diamonds|
|“||“Do you have a reservation for Hercules? It might be under Heracles…”||”|
Reeves, a former Mr. Universe from Montana, plays the strong man from mythology in this mélange of characters and events from a variety of distinct ancient Greek myths. Hercules arrives in the kingdom of Iolcus and promptly falls in love with the king’s daughter Iole. Herc must solve the mystery of who killed Iole’s uncle, while trying to teach Iole’s brother Iphitus how to act like a man. The demigod endures a couple of ordeals, defeats the Cretan Bull, fights the famed Nemean lion, etc. Iphitus gets killed by the lion, but it's OK, because he was a jerk. Later Herc helps Iole’s cousin Jason (of “and the Argonauts” fame) in his quest for the Golden Fleece. It turns out Iole’s father was involved in the conspiracy to kill her uncle. And the proof is written in blood on the Golden Fleece. Jason claims his place as rightful king of Iolcus.
- Hercules began an avalanche of Italian costume spectaculars with scantily clothed women and armies of musclemen, prompted mainly by American distributor Joseph E. Levine. With Hercules, Levine created saturation booking - the practice of distributing the film in as many theaters in the country as possible, with huge TV, radio, and newspaper ad campaigns. Levine's strategy was very successful at the box office and caused an influx of muscleman films and costume dramas from foreign countries. 
- Highlights from the 'real' "When Hercules met Iole" myth: Herc wins Iole’s hand in an archery contest, but her dad refuses to let her go away with the demigod. So Hercules kills Iole's father. Later (in a fit of Hera-induced madness), Herc throws Iole’s brother Iphitus from the city walls, killing him. Still later, the oracle at Delphi tells Hercules that he has to be sold into slavery so he can rid himself of his periodic madness. So Herc is sold to Queen Omphale (seen in Hercules Unchained) and serves her for 1 - 3 years. Then he returns to Iole’s hometown and takes her as his wife.
- Hercules Unchained is the sequel to this movie, though it appeared on MST3K in the previous season (as Experiment #408).
Prologue: It's Casual Day on the SOL, so the crew wings the opening. It's a rather subdued affair.
Segment One (Invention Exchange): The Mads interrupt the awkward silence of Casual Day. Dr. F has created the cellular desk to live his job. He gives Frank a performance review that doesn't look too good. Joel and the Bots come up with Instant Karma; pour contents into a bowl, add water, and enjoy your reward or punishment.
Segment Two: Crow wonders about the ancient Greeks and their constellations. Servo creates new constellations updated to modern tastes such as the Ham Sandwich, the New Christy Minstrels, and Guernica. Crow creates another one in response: a pencil.
Segment Five: Crow and Servo discuss the advantages of having Amazon women on the ship. Joel tries to clear up the Bots misconceptions until some visit by minivan on the Hexfield Viewscreen. Frank takes control of the cellular desk and mocks Dr. F.
Stinger: "He’s like something out of a bad dream!"
- "Give 'Em Hell, Blank!"
- "He's the Finder of Lost Loves!"
For the second episode in a row, a riff during the opening minutes references the series Finder of Lost Loves. In this case, Hercules director Pietro Francisci is confused with both James Franciscus and Tony Franciosa, recalling the running gag from Space Travelers.
- "I love my dead Greek son!"
A spoof of the line "I love my dead gay son!" from the movie Heathers.
- "Rip Torn, ladies and gentlemen!"
Rip Torn is a veteran actor and comedian. Somewhat ironically a few years after this episode came out he appeared in the Disney take on the Hercules myth as Zeus, and was one of several actors from Greek mythology-related media sought out for a role in the God of War series of video games.
- "Now, don’t you kids get drunk and go swimming under the dock . . . Help! I’m drunk and I’m swimming under the dock!"
A riff on a common trope from the TV show Baywatch, in which the David Hasselhoff character's son Hobie was always getting himself into trouble despite his father's warnings.
- "She's an Ellen Jamesian!"
In The World According to Garp, a girl named Ellen James is attacked and has her tongue cut out to prevent her from speaking her attacker's name. A group of women (calling themselves the Ellen Jamesians) cut out their own tongues in a show of solidarity with her.
- "It's the Andrea Dworkin Memorial Cemetery."
Andrea Dworkin was a radical feminist, most famous for arguing that in a patriarchal society, it is virtually impossible for a women to willingly consent to sex.
Commercially released on DVD by Shout! Factory in March 2015 as part of Mystery Science Theater 3000 - XXXII, a 4-DVD set along with Space Travelers, Radar Secret Service, and San Francisco International.
|preceded by: Season 4||MST3K Season 5||followed by: Season 6|
|1993 - 1994|
|501||Warrior of the Lost World||1993-07-24||509||The Girl in Lovers Lane||1993-09-18||517||Beginning of the End||1993-11-25|
|502||Hercules||1993-07-17||510||The Painted Hills||1993-09-26||518||The Atomic Brain||1993-12-04|
|504||Secret Agent Super Dragon||1993-08-07||512||Mitchell||1993-10-23||520||Radar Secret Service||1993-12-18|
|505||The Magic Voyage of Sinbad||1993-08-14||513||The Brain That Wouldn't Die||1993-10-30||521||Santa Claus||1993-12-24|
|506||Eegah||1993-08-28||514||Teen-Age Strangler||1993-11-07||522||Teen-Age Crime Wave||1994-01-15|
|507||I Accuse My Parents||1993-09-04||515||The Wild Wild World of Batwoman||1993-11-13||523||Village of the Giants||1994-01-22|
|508||Operation Double 007||1993-09-11||516||Alien from L.A.||1993-11-20||524||12 to the Moon||1994-02-05|