"So, the leading causes of accidents are joy, sex, and old age?"Film watched: The Amazing Transparent Man with the short The Days of Our YearsThe Days of Our Years and another short, Catching Trouble, are considered two of the more upsetting shorts ever shown on MST3K.
—Mike Nelson on The Days of Our Years
The MST3K presentation of The Amazing Transparent Man contains these tropes:
- Ambiguously Gay:Ted: Clay... you and Auntie McFrank... are you...?Forrester: (stiffening) Partners? [Uneasily] Yes, we're... [Frank re-enters with "breakfast"] AH! Aha!
- Acting for Two: Kevin Murphy is one half of the couple patronizing the bed and Deep 13 (his wife is played by Mary Jo Pehl). He is appropriately squicked out by Servo's antics ("Don't you give Mikey no matches!!!")... which he happens to voice.
- And Call Him George: Mikey's response upon being told he can't have matches is to grab Crow by the neck and insistently stroke down hard on his fur, then finally begin throttling him. (It evidently was a little too stressful on the Crow puppet, as its eyes accidentally pop out when the crew dashes for the theater.)
- Big Word Shout: SQUANTOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!note
- Brick Joke: 'Gentle pressure, see?'
- Disguised in Drag: "Auntie McFrank", bed-and-breakfast proprietress.
- Inherently Funny Words: Squanto: A Warrior's Tale. The only reason it could have possibly been used, because the film itself is a drama that earned mostly positive reviews (save Roger Ebert).
- Nightmare Fuel Station Attendant: Mike as "Mikey"
- Watch Mike closely: He never blinks in that single shot.
- Shout-Out: Tom and Mike's characters in the "local color" segment are at least inspired by George and Lenny. And Llama!Crow... poor Llama!Crow.
- Wholesome Crossdresser: "Auntie McFrank". Notable in this is the only time Frank allowed himself to be in drag on the show; he'd refused previous attempts.
The counter-depressing MST3K version of The Days of Our Years provides the following tropes:
- Black Comedy: Some of the riffs go into this territory like Mike's comment on the railroad worker's heart problems:Mike: Hey have a massive coronary on your own time.
- Comically Missing the Point: Mike misses the point of the Psalm at the start of the short, which is to pretty much enjoy your life while you have it.
- Continuity Nod: As the minister dispassionately narrates Joe's reckless driving:Minister: The others? They were along for the ride, whether they liked it or not. Liked it? They hated it.Mike: Flag on the moon.
- Don't Sneak Up On Me Like That: Crow casually ignores the warning of "gentle pressure" from the short and gets charcoaled by a startled Servo.
- Eye Scream: Worth repeating, because it's the only time Mike and the bots are disturbed when watching the short.Mike: You don't have to HOLD it there!
- Mind Screw: The minister at one point to Crow.Minister: Whenever I do I'm often reminded of things that happened to people who weren't even there (accidents).
Crow: Oh sure, I - HUH?!
- Repetitive Name:Minister: Yes, Joe was a pretty lucky guy. A good job as road electrical foreman, a wonderful girl who wanted nothing in the world more than to be Mrs. Joe.Mike: So his name is Joe Joe?
- Retirony: Jokingly alluded to in the riffing:Minister: If (George) could only hold out until retirement time.
Crow: It's at five o'clock today.
- Shout-Out: Plan 9 from Outer Space gets a couple.
- Sinister Minister: The Reverend, despite professing to love and care for all members of his flock, speaks with nothing but the utmost contempt for anyone who was killed horribly in an accident, blaming them for their own deaths. He also gets creepily involved in his congregation's lives while narrating; saying he was "flattered" to be part of someone else's fantasy really grosses out Mike and the bots.
- This Isn't Heaven: Alluded to during a dream sequence that films a couple making out through the flames of a fireplace.Tom: They're in Hell!
Servo: Reverend, I'm having a crisis of faith, what should I do?
Crow: Get safety goggles, my son.
Crow: Get safety goggles, my son.