|402 - The Giant Gila Monster|
|Air Date||June 13, 1992|
|MST3K Director||Jim Mallon|
|Movie Director||Ray Kellogg|
|Cast|| Don Sullivan|
|Preceded by||401 - Space Travelers|
|Followed by||403 - City Limits|
|“||Havah la gila, havaaaaah la gila!||”|
|— Joel, Crow & Tom (singing to tune of Hava Nagila)|
"I'm going to go listen to my cat scream."
When the son of a pushy Texas tycoon disappears while on a date, he makes it abundantly clear to the well-meaning sheriff that the lad must be found immediately or the lawman's job will be forfeit. Soon others are reported missing, one leaving a valise and some cigarettes behind. Chase Winstead, a young local tow truck driver, and his French girlfriend are drawn into the fray. There are teens with bathtub-shaped hot rods, famous DJ's found stone drunk in their cars, comedy-relief oldsters who race trains, and a giant gila monster. And the Lord said "laugh".
- This was one of two features produced by an independent company in Texas and meant for release as a double feature. The other feature was The Killer Shrews (1959). Unlike many such features produced in the South, these films received national distribution.
- Ken Knox, who plays disc jockey Horatio Alger "Steamroller" Smith, was a real disc jockey working at radio stations in Texas owned by Gordon McLendon, the uncredited executive producer of this film.
Prologue: Crow and Tom Servo are 'The Thing with Two Heads.' At first they hate it, but then they realize they’re "The Odd Couple 1999." But just when they begin to get into it, Joel nips it in the bud.
Segment One (Invention Exchange): Frank announces Dr. Clayton Forrester's death! It turns out Dr. F isn’t really dead, but very mad at Frank. Joel has a radio with a tuner that only picks up channels from old sitcoms and movies. The Mads demonstrate their Renaissance Festival punching bags.
Segment Two: Joel has turned a spare closet into a teen pavilion/barbershop as seen in the film. Crow and Tom keep calling Joel a "stupid jerk" instead of a "soda jerk" and being generally insulting. After they order a "Blue Floyd" (a drink made with ice cream, malted milk, and Barbicide) Joel becomes fed up with them and their antics. Then Gypsy shows up and the whole set falls down.
Segment Three: The crew celebrates the classic drunks, and Crow asks, "When did public intoxication stop being funny?", discussing drunks such as Crazy Guggenheim and Dean Martin. Then Joel and the bots act out vignettes of different types of drunks, which ends up turning into an after-school special.
Segment Four: "Servo on Cinema" looks at Ray Kellogg’s "Leg Up" blocking technique. Joel and Crow cannot resist butting in.
Segment Five: The rock group Hee-La rehearses until Crow asks, "Aren’t we just doing the same stuff we did when we were SpiDorr?" The first letter is from a little girl who thinks Crow’s name is 'Art.' The second letter says, "'Dear Joe and Bots: I just like the way Tom Serbo sings, my favorite robot is Crow, but Joe is funny too.' And it’s signed...TV’s Frank?!" Frank celebrates his short-lived victory in Deep 13 as Dr. F looks on in disgust.
Stinger: Drunken old Harris gags on sody pop at the soda shop
- The letter calling Crow "Art" references back to Jungle Goddess, specifically the "My White Goddess" sketch that referred to Crow as "Art Crow" at the end. That sketch and this letter later became the source of the running gag of Pearl Forrester constantly referring to Crow as "Art".
- This episode became infamous in the 1995-1996 period on Comedy Central, as a number of other episodes dropped out of the rotation due to movie rights issues. The movie in this episode is in public domain, which meant that CC could play it often without any kind of licensing costs.
- Michael J. Nelson is the radio announcer.
- This episode provides the origin of the “I sing whenever I sing whenever I sing” reference that would be made in many future episodes.
- John Carney appears at the end of the list of writers—he would not appear again.
- Bridget Jones is added to the list of writers for the remainder of the season.
- Joel and the Bots sing the “Wild Rebels” theme song.
- “Glenn is 50 feet tall.” (War of the Colossal Beast)
- “Hava la gila! Hava la gila!”
Refers to the song Hava Nagila.
- "I'm your boyfriend now! Blehlehlehlehleh..."
- “Bad movie? You’re soaking in it!”
Refers to a series of Palmolive dish detergent commercials featuring Madge the manicurist in which she reveals to her client that her (the client's) fingers have been inserted in said Palmolive. 
- "Hey here comes Sabrina and the Groovie Goolies!"
- Whenever "Old Man Harris" pulls up in his car; Joel and the bots start humming the theme to The Munsters
- "My little deuce coupe? You don't know what I got!"
Referring to the main lyrics of Little Deuce Coupe by The Beach Boys.
- "Is it safe!?"
Famous line uttered by Laurence Olivier's performance as "Szell the White Angel" from the movie Marathon Man.
- "Now let's go rent 'The Errand Boy.'"
The Errand Boy was a by-the-book goofball Jerry Lewis vehicle.
- "Tip-toe through the tulips!"
Refers to the 1926 song Tip-toe Through the Tulips which was later popularized in 1968 by the inimitable falsetto singer and ukulele player Tiny Tim.
- "NEW YORK CITY?!?" Servo: "Get the rope."
Refers to the Pace salsa commercials popular at the time, where the cowboy cook was using salsa from New York City and not "authentic" salsa.
- "Let's go do some crimes!"
A line from the movie Repo Man.
- "Go on home, they're waiting for you!"
A line spoken by Mr. Potter in It's A Wonderful Life, who Mr. Wheeler resembles, both in appearance and attitude.
- "What is this, The Misfits all of a sudden?
The Misfits was a 1961 film starring Clark Gable, Eli Wallach, Marilyn Monroe and Montgomery Clift. In the film, Wallach is a mechanic who is friends with a cowboy.
- "Hello, I'm Larry Miller." and later "Did I ever tell you about the six levels of drinking?"
Larry Miller is a successful comedian and actor. At the time, he resembled the young actor in question, though Miller has since lost a great deal of his hair. One of his most well-known routines described the Six Stages of a night of drinking. It can be seen here.
- "That's not right, picking up your mom and playing football with her! That's wrong! Crazy people!"
Joel is imitating comedian Kevin Meany, whose act often consisted of mimicking his mother over-reacting to some perceived danger.
- Commercially released on DVD by Rhino Entertainment in February 2008 as a "replacement" for Godzilla vs. Megalon in Volume 10 as part of The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Collection, Volume 10.2, a 4-DVD set with Swamp Diamonds, Teen-Age Strangler, and The Giant Spider Invasion. The episode was also released individually in February 2008 as a limited-time-offer for those who already bought Volume 10. Since Rhino lost the rights to release MST3K, Volume 10.2 is out-of-print, but is still widely available.
- A special feature on the DVD was a new sketch instructing viewers on how to dispose of their Godzilla vs. Megalon DVD (Referred to as "blah blah vs blah blah" by TV's Frank) in the box set and replace it with The Giant Gila Monster. The segment featured Joel Hodgson, Trace Beaulieu, and Frank Conniff reprising their roles from the series (in front of a green screen effect of the SOL Bridge and Deep 13). Frank provided the voice of Tom Servo. It is, to date, the last time Joel has appeared as his TV character.
|preceded by: Season 3||MST3K Season 4||followed by: Season 5|
|1992 - 1993|
|401||Space Travelers||1992-06-06||409||The Indestructible Man||1992-08-15||417||Crash of Moons||1992-11-28|
|402||The Giant Gila Monster||1992-06-13||410||Hercules Against the Moon Men||1992-08-22||418||Attack of the the Eye Creatures||1992-12-05|
|403||City Limits||1992-06-20||411||The Magic Sword||1992-08-29||419||The Rebel Set||1992-12-12|
|404||Teenagers from Outer Space||1992-06-27||412||Hercules and the Captive Women||1992-09-12||420||The Human Duplicators||1992-12-26|
|405||Being from Another Planet||1992-07-24||413||Manhunt in Space||1992-09-19||421||Monster A-Go Go||1993-01-09|
|406||Attack of the Giant Leeches||1992-07-18||414||Tormented||1992-09-26||422||The Day the Earth Froze||1993-01-16|
|407||The Killer Shrews||1992-07-25||415||The Beatniks||1992-11-25||423||Bride of the Monster||1993-01-23|
|408||Hercules Unchained||1992-08-01||416||Fire Maidens of Outer Space||1992-11-16||424||Manos: The Hands of Fate||1993-01-30|