Experiment K05: Gamera

Mystery Science Theater 3000: The KTMA SeasonMST3K Story: It’s Christmastime, so Joel has decided to carbon-freeze Crow and use him as a Christmas tree because he’s the most “spindly”. He also contemplates using Servo as a “Frosty the Snowman”. After a caller (whose message gets a Punky Brewster background) asks who cuts Joel’s hair, the credits roll early so Joel can point out that it’s “Mr. Crow of Beverly Hills”. Later, Joel takes another call, then does a poll on movie colorization. Joel also gets calls from competing coalitions, each supporting different giant monsters. A review of the previous movie proves inconclusive. At episode’s close, Joel shows Gypsy how Crow was frozen, followed by a discussion of the Holiday season and a rendition of “O Tanenbot”.

Gamera Story: A scientific expedition to the Arctic led by Dr. Hidaka is disrupted by a dogfight that leads to an airplane crash. The explosion awakens Gamera, a giant monster turtle. Meanwhile, a young boy named Kenny is in trouble in school and at home because of his obsession with turtles. Forced to release his pet turtle to the wild, he comes upon Gamera and feels a kinship with the giant turtle. The humans try many different means of destroying Gamera without success. Kenny, who believes Gamera is good, eventually convinces them to use “Z Plan”, in which Gamera is trapped in a rocket and blasted into space. “Z Plan” is a success and Gamera is peacefully removed from the Earth.

MST3K segments written by Joel Hodgson, Trace Beaulieu, Josh Weinstein, Jim Mallon & Kevin Murphy
MST3K segments directed by Vince Rodriguez
Gamera written by Nisan Takahashi (as Fumi Takahashi)
Gamera directed by Noriaki Yuasa
Gamera music by Tadashi Yamauchi

MST3K Guest Cast: none

Gamera Cast: Eiji Funakoshi (Hidaka), Bokuzen Hidari (Old Man), Harumi Kiritachi (Kyoke), Yoshio Kitahara (Sakurai), Michiko Sugata (Nobuyo), Jun Hamamura (Dr. Murase), Junichiro Yamashita (Ayagi), Yoshiro Uchida (Toshio), Koji Fujiyama (Engineer)

LogBook entry by Philip R. Frey

Notes: Trace Beaulieu missed the recording of this episode, so Crow is voiced by Josh Weinstein during the flashback to his freezing, despite the end credit to the contrary.

Although Servo and Gypsy (and a frozen Crow) are in the host segments, Joel riffs the movie by himself.

One of Joel’s callers clearly says “breathe fire and shit”, but the on-screen text reads “breathe fire and ship.” (I’m not sure who they thought they were kidding.)

Eiji Funakoshi also appeared in the film MSTied in episode #K08 – Gamera vs. Guiron (re-used in #312).

Yoshiro Kitahara also appeared in the films MSTied in episodes #K04 – Gamera vs. Barugon and #K06 – Gamera vs. Gaos (re-used in #304 & #308, respectively).

Koji Fujiyama also appeared in the films MSTied in episodes #K04 – Gamera vs. Barugon, #K06 – Gamera vs. Gaos and #K07 – Gamera vs. Zigra (re-used in #304, #308 & #316, respectively).

Director Noriaki Yuasa directed all of the Gamera films used on MST3K except Gamera vs. Barugon.

Screenwriter Nisan Takahashi wrote all of the Gamera films used on MST3K.

Tadashi Yamauchi’s music can also be heard in the film MSTied in episode #K06 – Gamera vs. Gaos (re-used in #308).

This film was re-used in #302 – Gamera.

There is an alternate version of Gamera, entitled Gammera the Invincible, that features inserts with American actors, similar to the use of Raymond Burr in the 1954 American release Godzilla: King of the Monsters.

Notable Riffs: “This is no time to order lunch!”
“To find a turtle, you’ve got to think like a turtle.”

Gamera original release date: 1965, as Daikaijû Gamera