|“||I am TORgo. I take CARE of the PLACE when the MAster is AWay.||”|
|— Torgo's opening lines.|
|Played by||John Reynolds (movie), Michael J. Nelson (guest)|
|First appearance||424 - Manos: The Hands of Fate|
|Last appearance||624 - Samson vs. the Vampire Women|
|Character type||Movie, Guest|
Torgo, played by John Reynolds, is a character from from the film Manos: The Hands of Fate who also became a cult character on the series Mystery Science Theater 3000. A satyr in a Confederate-style Civil War uniform, he serves as the guardian and caretaker for The Master and his wives. He is easily recognized by his "big knees", a staff topped with a stylized hand, his four-note repeating theme music, and his weird, halting speech patterns.
The Film Torgo
In the film, Torgo attempts to prevent a lost family looking for their vacation destination from stopping at the lodge of the Master. Finally relenting, he falls for the wife of the family and intends to keep her from the polygamous Master to be his own bride. When the Master awakens and finds out that Torgo has coveted both his own wives and the visiting woman he intends to make into another wife, he hypnotises Torgo and brings him into his tomb. There, Torgo is "tormented" by the Master's wives in a scene that looks more like he is being massaged to death before the Master severs and lights Torgo's hand on fire. Torgo, in agony, flees the tomb, never to been seen again.
At the end of the Manos episode, Torgo (played by Michael J. Nelson on the show) delivered a pizza to Dr. Forrester and TV's Frank. In spite of being two hours late, the pizza, Frank disturbingly notes, is still warm. Alas, Torgo has left their drinks in the car, and it takes him until Operation Double 007, eight episodes later, to deliver them to Deep 13.
He next appeared in Village of the Giants, hired to replace Frank after Dr. F unceremoniously made Frank fire himself. Although Torgo appears to be the perfect replacement and henchman, Frank manages to get his job back when he tricks Torgo into doing something unsavory to Dr. F, and Forrester kicks out Torgo in a fit of rage. Torgo also makes a quick appearance in San Francisco International, when he brings down the party that has built up around Mike's Urkel impression by noting that he doesn't really think Urkel is that funny. Torgo appears next in DANGER: Death Ray!, when TV's Frank has become a high-powered agent, and Torgo is one of his clients.
Torgo's final appearance came in Samson vs. the Vampire Women when he appears as the holy Torgo the White, a parody of Gandalf the White from The Lord of the Rings, to finally take the long-suffering TV's Frank to Second Banana Heaven.
- In 2013, RiffTrax did a live riffing of a remastered copy of Manos, which was later released on Video On Demand in 2013.
- In August of 2014, RiffTrax noted in their VOD riff of Dinosaurus that one of the main bearded characters resembled Torgo and continued to refer to him by that name throughout the rest of the riff.
- Torgo: I am Torgo. I take care of the place while the Master is away.
- Torgo: There is no way out of here. It'll be dark soon. There is no way out of here.
- Torgo: The Master wants you, but he can't have you! I want you!
- Maggie: Stop that talk this instant, do you hear!
- Torgo: He wants you, but he can't have you!
- Torgo: (to the First Wife) You, you're the worst! You were his first wife! He doesn't want you anymore, and now even I don't want you!
- Torgo: Large sausage and mushroom, thin crust?
- TV's Frank: That's us.
- Torgo: The total is $14.50, please...Do you have anything smaller, I only carry $20 in change?
- Torgo: Thank you very much sir, let me just get your complimentary crazy bread... (starts to pull it from his pants)
- The Mads: NO! No, no that's okay.
- TV's Frank: Hey, what about our pop?
- Torgo: I left it in the...car, I'll be right back...
- Dr. Forrester: (groans) Until next time, Joel...push the...button, Frank...
- TV's Frank: (eating) Say, you know it's been two hours but it's still kinda warm!
(The Mads look at each other, then spit out the pizza)
- Torgo: They always do that...