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Poachers, cottagers and singers get more then they bargained for when a bloodthirsty alien goes on the rampage. A boy befriends one of the creatures, but is it too late to stop the carnage?

Your experiment today is called Pod People. It has nothing to do with pods... it has nothing to do with people... it has everything to do with hurting.
  — Forrester introduces the experiment


303 - Pod People
0303
Air Date June 15, 1991
MST3K Director Jim Mallon
Turkey Day(s) November 29, 1991, 8pm
AKA Los Nuevos Extraterrestres;
Tales of Trumpy;
The New Extraterrestrials;
Extra-Terrestrial Visitors;
The Return of ET;
The Unearthling
Movie Director Juan Piquer Simon
Year 1983
Cast William Anton, Oscar Martin, Frank Brana
Preceded by 302 - Gamera
Followed by 304 - Gamera vs Barugon

The Movie

Synopsis

A trio of poachers travel deep into an incredibly foggy forest, searching for game. Unfortunately for one of them, he instead stumbles across a poorly-lit cave (whom Joel and the bots mistake for Hell, Yoda's swamp, blindness, and a jar of Smucker's Raspberry Preserve), filled with huge eggs. Smashing them, he irritates an unknown creature ("It's the Easter Bunny and boy is he mad!"-Joel), who quickly kills him. Angered, the creature begins to go on a destructive rampage. To add to the terror, a group of unappealing young people takes a break from recording nightmarish music (Lyrics provided by Mrs. Johnson's kindergarden class - Crow) to travel by RV to the area for a camping trip.

Meanwhile, Tommy, a little boy with an oddly dubbed voice and a lot of pets, finds the lone survivor of the egg-related carnage in the cave and decides to bring it home. It hatches, and the creature, whom Tommy names Trumpy ("I prefer Milky Bear"- Crow), is born and eats lots of food. Meanwhile, the other alien bumbles through the forest until she finds the band, and pushes a groupie off a small cliff. Critically injured, the other band members take her to Tommy's house, where she eventually dies from her injuries. In Tommy's room, Trumpy demonstrates his ability to do "magic things", and creates a wacky stop-motion extravangza ("Oh great, now we're in Gumby"-Joel) with his eyes.

Other people travel to a ranger station in an attempt to use the radio, but they find the other alien and the corpse of a poacher. One of them is felled by the vicious five-foot high monster but the other escapes. Unfortunately for him, the alien gets back to the house faster and attacks another band member in the RV. ("Looks like she found Trumpy!" -Joel) Tommy witnesses the event through his telescope and believes that Trumpy is responsible for the muderous mayhem. Everyone decides it's safer to stay in the cabin for the night, but the evil extraterrestrial follows them inside and kills another band member when she takes a shower.

Tommy unsuccessfully tries to sneak Trumpy out of the house, but he's caught by his mother, who grabs a rifle and tries to shoot his alien pal. He and Trumpy flee into the foggy woods, and everybody else pursues him.

Trumpy and his mom finally meet one another before she's gunned down. ("Huh, a self-burying monster."-Crow) Tommy, being a jerk, leaves him in the woods and goes back home with his mother and the only surviving band member before the credits roll.

Information

This was originally intended as a low-budget horror movie about an evil alien on the prowl. However, in order to cash on the success of E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), the producers demanded script changes at the last minute, by adding elements of the said film by including a child along with adding another, more lovable and cute alien to serve as a playmate (hence one alternate title for the movie, Extra Terrestrial Visitors). The film's Director Juan Piquer Simón was not satisfied with the final result. [1]

Pod People was released by Film Ventures International, and as with most FVI films uses footage from a completely unrelated movie as background for the opening credits. In this case, the footage shown during the movie's opening credits was taken from the 1985 film Galaxy Invader, which would later be tackled by Mike, Kevin, and Bill as a Rifftrax Video On Demand feature.

The Episode

Host Segments

Prologue: Crow does a segment from his one-man show, "Robot on the Run", and Tom does the intro to his own show.

Invention Exchange (Segment One): Joel demonstrates a new guitar chord that blows up in his face, while the Mads wail along with their new Public Domain Karoke Machine.

Pod People host segment
Gunman6Added by Gunman6

Segment Two: Joel and the Bots sing their own version of the song from the movie, "Idiot Control Now". While the Mads like it, Joel declares that "It stinks!"

Segment Three: Joel teaches Crow about creating new age music, leading to a new segment, "Music From Some Guys in Space".

Segment Four: Trumpy's magic causes mayhem on the SOL, confusing the Mads and thrilling Joel.

Segment Five: As Joel and the bots pack up, they conclude the show with the beautiful "Clowns in the Sky", but the Mads don't like it.

Stinger: "It stinks!"

Other Notes

Guest Stars

Studio Assistant: Faye Burkholder (uncredited)

Big Dipper

The Big Dipper prominently burned onto the foreheads of the victims makes sense only if you're from Earth. If you're from the Big Dipper--the putative home of Trumpy and his homicidal older brother--the Big Dipper doesn't look like a Big Dipper.

Obscure References

It Stinks- The Mads
"It Stinks!"
Gunman6Added by Gunman6
  • "Pod People got no reason to live" -Joel.

A reference to the 1977 Randy Newman song Short People.[2]

  • "Pod People isn't that Nia Peeples brother?" -Tom.

Nia Peeples [3] is a singer and actress.

  • "Mayo..." -Joel. "Don't you do it! Don't you do it! I got nowhere else to go!" -Servo, during invention exchange.

From the movie An Officer and a Gentleman. Richard Gere is the one who says "Don't you do it! I got nowhere else to go!" Zack Mayo is Richard Gere's name in the movie. Louis Gossett's character is trying to get Mayo to give him his DOR (dropped on request).

  • "Chief!?" "McCloud!?"

This comes from an old '70s mystery show called McCloud starring Dennis Weaver as a cowboy-hat-wearing detective. It was part of the NBC Sunday Mystery Movie shows that were referenced several times in seasons 2 and 3.

  • "Now, to find a herd of cattle to drain dry"

Possibly a reference to the blood sucking urban legend, El Chupacabra. (Which some people believe is an alien.).

  • "She's in shatters" "This town's in tatters."

Reference to the Rolling Stones song 'Shattered'.

  • "Tonight, on 'Music from the Hearts of Space'..."

Music from the Hearts of Space is a syndicated radio show that focuses on New Age music.

  • "And remember: No wire hangers!" -Tom Servo when the mother puts the child to bed.

Servo references the movie Mommie Dearest.

  • "Football practice!"

"Football practice!" comes from the horror movie Shocker according to the MST catch-phrase catalog.

  • "These are cola nuts. These are uncola nuts."

A reference to a long-running 7-Up advertising campaign, in which the non-carbonated lemon-lime flavored beverage identified itself as "the un-cola".

  • "Daktari..."

Daktari was a 1960s TV series about a veterinarian working in Africa.

  • "They're gonna die in that Samurai jeep anyway."

The Suzuki Samurai was a compact SUV that drastically declined in popularity after a Consumer Reports article suggested that it was dangerously prone to rollovers.

  • "Get me, I'm Lionel Ritchie!"

A reference to the song Dancing on the Ceiling. (Trumpy's supposed to be standing on the ceiling when this line's heard)

  • "Potatoes", etc. -Crow

Crow is imitating John Hurt's voice as Joseph Merrick in The Elephant Man.

  • "Whoa, it's the Iron Maiden dude!"

A reference to Eddie the Head, the mascot of the heavy metal band Iron Maiden, to whom The Galaxy Invader bears a strong resemblance.

  • "I like you, Tommy. I'll kill you last". -Servo, as Trumpy.

This is a reference to the Arnold Schwarzenegger movie Commando, when he, in the role of John Matrix, tells Sully, the weaselly former Special Forces soldier, "You're a funny guy, Sully. I like you. That's why I'm going to kill you last". Later he tells Sully, "I lied," just before killing him.

  • "He seeks him here. He seeks him there. He seeks that rascal everywhere.", -Crow

Crow is spoofing a line by Sir Percy Blakeney, a character from The Scarlet Pimpernel.

  • "I know what you're thinking Tommy. Did Mom fire 6 shots or only 5?" -Crow after Tommy helps Trumpy escape.

Crow paraphrases Clint Eastwood as Harry Callahan in Dirty Harry.

  • "Boldly backing away from where no man has gone before" -Servo, as Joel & the Bots watch a star field swiftly receding

Paraphrase of Star Trek: The Original Series intro, "To boldly go where no man has gone before". Just after this, they start humming the ST:TOS theme, then switch to the Steve Miller Band's "Swing Town" (which has the same first 2 notes).

  • "Come on and dance" -Servo

A line from "Swing Town"

  • "I'm Curly Neal..." -Joel (pretending to balance the earth on his finger.)

Curly Neal was a member of the Harlem Globetrotters. Fancy dribbling was his trademark.

  • "That guy's gonna get his Presidential Physical Fitness Award" -Joel.

This is a reference to a program started by President Lyndon Johnson [4] to promote activity in school children.

  • "She's zestfully dead."

Said as Evil Trumpy kills a band member in the shower, a reference to the old Zest soap commercial.

  • "So people are being methodically killed off by the Banana Splits."

The Banana Splits was a children's variety show running from 1968-1970. The Banana Splits themselves were a group of anthropomorphic animals that vaguely resemble Trumpy and his mother.

  • "Oh, it's Laura Palmer."

A reference to the cult TV series Twin Peaks, which initially focused on the murder of a teenage girl named Laura Palmer.

  • Trumpy...Trumpezoid...The Trumpmonster." - Crow

Crow is imitating Richard Laymer, a character played by Rob Schneider on Saturday Night Live.

  • (Tommy!) Can you hear me?

A line from The Who rock opera Tommy.

Video Release

  • Commerically released on VHS by Rhino Entertainment in October 1996.
  • Commerically released on DVD by Rhino in Feburary 2003 as part of The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection: Volume 2, a 4-DVD set with Cave Dwellers, Angels Revenge and Shorts Volume 1.

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