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The Magic Voyage of Sinbad

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505 - The Magic Voyage of Sinbad
Air Date August 14, 1993
MST3K Director Kevin Murphy
AKA Sadko
Movie Director Aleksandr Ptushko
Year 1953
Cast Sergei Stolyarov, Alla Larionova, Yelena Myshkova, B. Surovtsev
Preceded by 504 - Secret Agent Super Dragon
Followed by 506 - Eegah

“And stock up on socks! You know, you’re never gonna have this chance again!”

The Movie



The Magic Voyage of Sinbad

An oddly Russian Sinbad (Stolyarov) seeks to bring happiness to his people - first by trying to give money and goods to the poor, then by seeking out the Blue Bird of Happiness.[1] Sinbad never finds the bird of happiness, and when he returns home, he reveals the sappy moral of the story. Just like Dorothy from “The Wizard of Oz,” he has learned that happiness is found at home.


  • "Sadko" (the movie's original title) won the Silver Lion Award at the 1953 Venice Film Festival.
  • This movie's hero is obviously not Sinbad, and director Aleksandr Ptushko never intended him to be. But when this Soviet-financed film was released to American audiences, the lead character Sadko was given the name "Sinbad" in hopes of fooling American moms and dads, who (the American importers knew) would never allow their kids to see a movie made by commies.[1]
  • "Sadko” was based on an opera by Rimsky-Korsakov. It was adapted for the American screen by Francis Ford Coppola. To learn more about the epic hero, visit this site here.

The Episode

Host Segments


The 3rd Annual SOL-Tie Awards

Prologue: The 3rd annual SOL-tie awards are held. Crow T. Robot and Gypsy present the award for "Best Performance by a Red Gumball Machine-Looking Robot in a Funny Situation". It goes to Crow; Tom Servo calls a fix.

Segment One (Invention Exchange): The Bots discuss how it's really an honor just to be nominated, but not really. The Mads introduce the latest disturbing fashion trend: Chin-derwear for cleft chins. Joel & the Bots invent the Rat Pack chess set to honor "the closest thing royalty our great nation has yet produced". Explaining the rules is extremely complicated, but it's okay because Frank Sinatra can move "wherever the hell he wants to".


Rat Pack Chess

Segment Two: The Junior Jester Club cavorts, but realizes they may have to dissolve the chapter when they can't agree on a meeting date.

Segment Three: In a skit, Persia's bearded town council debates the Sinbad problem. The Honorable Mr. T. Robot keeps pointing out "he's not Sinbad", but the Honorable Mr. Servo wants Sinbad held for his disruptive ways. The Honorable Mr. Rosnibon wants more water.


The Junior Jester Club

Segment Four: After being inspired by the movie and sneaking out of the theater, Crow disappears. Joel and Servo search desperately over the ship before finding a note announcing Crow's life-long quest. They then receiving a radio transmission and find out isn't going so well; after launching himself out an airlock, Crow's thrusters are out of control and he keeps running into the Satellite of Love. Joel leaves an airlock open, hoping Crow can make his way back in.

Joel's channel cat puppet

Segment Five: The Bots, especially Gypsy, are amazed by Joel's channel cat puppet, but Crow and Tom drive themselves crazy coming up with complicated reasons for its existence. Joel sets the puppet down to read a letter. Frank meets Mr. Fistie.

Stinger: A creepy laughing horse.

Other Notes

Guest Stars


Obscure References

  • "It's fear of a short, red planet..."
A reference to the Public Enemy album "Fear of a Black Planet".
  • "O.C. and Stiggs are calling!"
O.C. and Stiggs was a 1987 movie based on two characters from a series of National Lampoon stories.
  • "...Kitty Kelley..."
Kitty Kelley was the author of several sensationalist biographies of questionable veracity, including a 1991 unauthorized biography claiming that First Lady Nancy Reagan had had a series of extramarital affairs with Frank Sinatra.
  • "...Sam Giancana..."
Sam Giancana was a Chicago mob boss.
  • "I saw 'The Magic Voyage of Brad Garrett'!"

At the time this episode first aired, comedian and actor Brad Garrett was primarily known for his work as a stand-up comic and voice actor. He has since become famous for his roles on the popular TV series "Everybody Loves Raymond" and "Til Death". The joke is derived from the fact that there is another popular comedian/actor named "Sinbad", who had had a career path similar to Garrett's.

  • "This is the most twisted version of Battle Chess I've ever seen!"

Battle Chess is a videogame that plays animated fight sequences when one piece captures another.

  • "Due east..." "Defeats Truman!"
Refers to the famous headline "Dewey Defeats Truman" that ran in the Chicago Tribune, incorrectly predicting that New York governor Thomas Dewey had defeated President Harry Truman in the 1948 Presidental elections.
  • "Romper, bomper, stomper boo..."

Tom is quoting the rhyming spell which ended each episode of the children's TV show Romper Room.

  • "That bear has Hammer pants on!"
The bottom of bear costume bears (no pun intended) a resemblence to the parachute pants worn by rapper MC Hammer.
  • "It's the Ozark Mountain Daredevils taking out the laundry."
The Ozark Mountain Daredevils were a 1970s Southern rock band known for their long hair and beards.
  • "They call me Mr. Tibbs."
They Call Me MISTER Tibbs! is the sequel to In the Heat of the Night, featuring Sidney Poitier's character. It was Poitier's most famous line from In the Heat of the Night.
  • "Howard Johnson is right!"
A quote from Blazing Saddles.
  • "It's Paul Winter!"
Paul Winter is a bearded jazz saxophonist, referencing the bearded fife player in the film.
  • "The two stages of Jackie Cooper...young and old."
Jackie Cooper was one of the Little Rascals. He later went on to have a successful career as an adult, most notably playing Perry White in the Superman films.
  • "...what condition their condition is in..."
Servo is paraphrasing the song "Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In)" by The First Edition.
  • "Jim Dandy to the rescue..."
Joel is quoting the Black Oak Arkansas song "Jim Dandy".
  • "Oh no, it's Siddhartha!" "Was that a Howard Hesseman reference? Rudolph Hess?"
Siddhartha was actually written by Hermann Hesse. Servo jokingly confuses him with actor Howard Hesseman and Nazi Rudolf Hess.
  • "Al Martino?"
Al Martino is a singer, as well as the actor who played Johnny Fontane in the The Godfather films.
  • "Next on "The Price is Right"...John Rhys-Davies, come on down!"
The Price is Right is an American TV game show in which contestants are chosen from the audience and invited to "come on down" to the stage to compete. Welsh actor John Rhys-Davies is heavily bearded like many men in the movie. At the time, he was probably best known for playing Sallah in two of the Indiana Jones films. Since this episode, his most famous role has been the dwarf Gimli in the Lord of the Rings films. Those films and Raiders of the Lost Ark were both later taken on by RiffTrax.
  • "What fresh hell is this?"
A quote usually attributed to poet Dorothy Parker when answering phone calls.
  • "Anthony!" "Here on the north side of Persia, it's Prince Spaghetti Day!"
A reference to an old commercial for the Prince Pasta Macaroni Company.
  • "If I could just do my opening joke...women be different from men you see..."
This is one of the comedy routines done by comedian Sinbad.
  • "I can't tell if that's a Magritte or a hole in the wall!"
A reference to surrealist painter Rene Magritte.
  • "It's 'Dance Party Persia'. Or Finland."
A reference to the TV show Dance Party USA.
  • "And I ran, I ran so far away..."
Cued by the flock of seagulls in the movie, the guys are singing the lyrics to the '80s classic "I Ran" by New Wave band A Flock of Seagulls.
  • "They look like the knights who say 'Ni!'."
Reference to the popular segment in the 1975 Python film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
  • "Now, where's that Pronto Pup stand?"
Pronto Pup claims to be the "original" corn dog. Stands can be often be found at fairs or tourist destinations in the U.S.
Another reference to Sinbad the comedian, who had a supporting role in the film Necessary Roughness.
  • "Hey, suddenly it's F-Troop!
F-Troop was a 1960's sitcom about a group of bumbling soldiers and Native Americans in the Wild West. The tune Joel and the Bots sing afterward is an "Indian" (as in southern Asia) version of the theme song.
  • "Let me present to you a sample...." "A sampo?"
A callback to The Day the Earth Froze.
  • "She's doing an Ed Grimley dance!"
Ed Grimley is one of Martin Short's characters from SCTV and Saturday Night Live. He would dance in a similar fashion after "playing the triangle".
  • "Look out Mr. Maxwell!" "I gotta go sleep with Luca Brasi."
Robert Maxwell was a British media tycoon who died in 1991 after falling (or jumping, or being pushed, according to some theories) off the deck of his yacht.
Luca Brasi is a character in The Godfather.  When he is killed, his bulletproof vest is wrapped around a fish and sent to the Corleones as a message:  "It means 'Luca Brasi sleeps with the fishes.' " Since this episode, Mike Nelson has told fans of RiffTrax that he would be interested in riffing this classic film.

Video Release



Commercially released on DVD by Shout Factory in March 2011. It was released as Volume 20 along with the episodes Project Moon Base, Master Ninja I, and Master Ninja II

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