Recap: Mystery Science Theater 3000 S 10 E 12 Squirm
Films watched: A Case of Spring Fever
(short) and Squirm
The MST3K treatment of Squirm provides examples of:
- Alternate Character Interpretation: According to Mike and the Bots, Mick isn't just interested in antiques as a hobby, he's obsessed with them.
- Bat Deduction: After Mick announces he thinks Roger's father is off the hook for the murders:
Mike: "I deduced that by not opening the door."
- Behind the Black: "Oh, I didn't see you."
- Brick Joke: "Sufficient springs!" and "No springs!"
- Deep South: A major source of their humor.
- Eye Scream: Mick suggests the worms did something to Roger's eyes.
Crow: "If Roger can see?" Do worms routinely blind people?
- Getting Crap Past the Radar:
"I just don't want you to be disappointed if he doesn't come."
Crow: Mother, that's private!
- I Know You're Not Southern!: Mike and Crow trying to shake Servo out of extreme Southern Belle-ness.
- It's a Wonderful Plot: In a spoof of the educational film "A Case of Spring Fever", Mikey the Mike Sprite tries to show the Bots the horror of a world without Mike. It backfires - Tom and Crow enjoy life without Mike quite a bit.
- Mike does care about his socks, though. "No Mike's socks!" (whistle)
- Lethal Chef: Pearl's recipe for pickles involves cucumbers and Windex. Bobo's Ape Hair is Exactly What It Says on the Tin, battered and fried.
- Subverted with Mike's electrically fried worms. The bots react with disgust as he tries one, but it turns out they are delicious.
- Much better than fresh worms.
- Noisy Nature: "Steven Tyler worm!"
- Odd Job Gods: Apparently there's a sprite dedicated to Mike (or possibly Mikes in general), and another to Mike's socks.
- Running Gag: "Mr. Beardsley?"
- Shout-Out: When Alma and Mick are at the dentist's office looking thorough the records to identify a skull, a worm crawls out of it. Tom comments "Come on down to the snout. We got a pinochle game going!" This is a reference to a line in an old school yard jump rope chant. "The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out, the worms play pinochle on your snout."
- Small Name, Big Ego: Lots of directors were upset that their films wound up on MST3K, but Jeff Lieberman was particularly miffed, even peppering his DVD commentary on Squirm with limp Take Thats at the show.
- Even more amusing, is he once wrote an angry e-mail for The Brains telling them how they were idiots for riffing his movie. That's bad enough, but he sent his e-mail to an MST3K fan site. The fans who received the e-mail had a field day with this.
- The man went on to write the screenplay of The NeverEnding Story III. 'Nuff said.
- Spoof Aesop: As the movie ends.
Servo: Please, folks, remember to worm your dog.
Mike: And if you do start a worm farm, do not raise flesh-eating, intelligent millipedes by mistake.
Crow: And if you have red hair, do not mate. Ever.
- That Cloud Looks Like: The patches on the rear of the sister's pants as she climbs through a window prompts them to point out that it looks like a face with a mustache.
- The Unsmile: "ANYWAY YOU CAN'T BOTHER ME TODAY BECAUSE I'M VERY HAPPY!"
- What Happened to the Mouse?:
Crow: Now, whatever happened with guy running around with a newspaper on his head in the rain? That was kind of a loose end.
Mike: Yeah, that went nowhere.
- The Worm That Walks: What becomes of Roger.
"Yes, I'm fully a worm now, but they let me keep my arms and legs."
The MST3K presentation of A Case Of Spring Fever has examples of:
- Brick Joke: Early on, Crow asks where Coily fits into God's plan. Later, as Gilbert won't shut up about springs.
Gilbert: Why, it's practically impossible to name a single thing in which some sort of spring isn't essential in one way or another. (looks up)
Crow: Oh look, God has a spring!
- Call Back, Running Gag: Coily was the inspiration for Willy the Wonderful Waffle Guy way back in Season 3; they'd been wanting to riff the short since back then and simply weren't able to get the rights until the show's final season. Also, references to Coily (along with his spring sound) are imitated in a host segment ("Mikey the Mike Sprite, they call me") and even a riff in the movie Squirm.
- Kevin even quotes the, "No springs!" after a goofy spring sound effect in the short "One Got Fat" released through Rifftrax.
- Disproportionate Retribution: Coily removing all springs from the world just because of what Gilbert said.
Mike: So, one clod says one thing and the whole world pays?
- Easily Forgiven: Coily reversing the wish.
Servo: So, Coily waited all eternity for this moment, and he backs down almost instantly?
- Evil Laugh: Coily's laugh comes off this way.
Servo: (as Coily) You'll be the first to die!
- Ending Fatigue: Discussed In-Universe, as the short keeps going after Coily reverses Gilbert's wish.
Servo: Shouldn't this be over?
- Indecisive Parody: Sort of. The first half of the short is teaching the main character how important springs are, but then the second half has him preaching non-stop about how important springs are to his friends, who are clearly annoyed by him.
- Odd Job Gods: Parodied when the trio invoke Mikey, the Mike sprite, and Mike's Socksy, the Mike's socks sprite.
- Technology Marches On: Hooke's Law notwithstanding, a decent number of the mentioned uses for springs have since been made obsolete thanks to computer technology, so the riffing lampshades it.
Servo: (as Gilbert) I'll show Coily. I'm gonna digitize everything.
- Even then, nature and many objects rely on the Law of Elasticity. Things would even more seriously fucked than even portrayed in the short if there were no Hooke's Law, starting with the human body. Squick.
- Unfortunate Names:
"Now you're gonna be the worm face!"