#29. Fugitive Alien

29. Fugitive Alien (1978) - Season 3, episode 310

"No one can beat me at snap-zooms! I was in Time of the Apes!"

Plot:  A trained space assassin goes rogue and joins a flight crew of Earthlings.
Famous for: "He triiiiiiiiied to kill me with a forklift!"

"Eat fork, buddy!"

My favorite riff:  I feel bad picking the forklift scene as my favorite riff, because it's so predictable, but I mean... that scene really did become iconic for a reason. If you went back to 1993 in a time machine, or 1994, or 1995, or whatever, and you polled MST3k fans from that era, and you asked them for their all-time favorite MST3k scene... I have no doubt that "Fugitive Alien - Rocky tries to kill Ken with a forklift" would have probably been the most popular answer. At the very least, it would have been the most popular scene from anything that aired prior to Manos.

Combine THAT goofy scene with the memorable song that Joel and the Bots made up about it (and they keep singing, all the way through Fugitive Alien 2), and of course here you have it. One of the most famous riffs in MST3k history. And easily one of their most popular running jokes of all time.

Aside from that, I also love the running Beatles joke that every time someone mentions the character Rita, Joel and the Bots will instantly follow it with "Meter maid." I mean, that's just fun nerd humor.

"Rita! Meter maid!"

Comments:  Fugitive Alien is without question one of the most popular episodes of MST3k, and I would say is one of the three outstanding episodes from the first three seasons. I know I've mentioned it before (probably in my Amazing Colossal Man writeup), but in my opinion, the big episodes from the first three seasons are this one, The Amazing Colossal Man, and then Gamera vs. Guiron (which we'll be talking about in a bit.)  

I wouldn't say that the riffing is all that amazing in Fugitive Alien. I mean, it's funny, but there will be better riffing that comes later down the road. No, what this episode has going for it is that the movie itself is just FUN. It's fun, and it's goofy as all hell, and you would probably laugh at it even if you were watching it unriffed.  

Sometimes the jokes practically write themselves. Joel and the Bots barely even have to say anything.

"When Josie and the Pussycats go bad."

"Presser? AIR PRESSER??"

Tammy: Captain! It's for you!
Joel: Fisher Price phone, sir.

Fugitive Alien isn't actually a movie, by the way. It's just three episodes of an old Japanese TV show from the 70s called "Star Wolf."  

When the Japanese production company wanted to bring it to America, they just took three episodes of Star Wolf, they spliced them together with the barest semblance of a storyline, and voila, there you go, it was repackaged as a movie. Then the MST3k guys got their hands it, and it became one of their early signature episodes.  

And despite the fact that I don't think the riffing in this episode is especially outstanding, I have always loved the running gag they come up with that every single character in the movie is apparently named "Ken." If you don't remember Fugitive Alien for the forklift song, you'll definitely remember it for all of the Ken jokes.

To me, Ken(s) was/were the heart of the episode.

"Ken thirty-three, go left! Ken sixteen and eighteen, flank him!"

Even though I think there was funnier riffing later in the show, this will always be one of my top thirty episodes. If only because I have seen it so many god damn times over the years, and because it is one of those episodes like to I use when I introduce someone new to the show. In fact, for YEARS, this was my go-to episode when I wanted to turn someone new into an MST3k fan.  

Because of that, I will always have nothing but respect for Ken and Captain Ken and their Kenlings.

"Between Ken and Ken lies... Obsession."

Trivia:  MST3k also riffed Fugitive Alien 2 (aka three more episodes of the TV show "Star Wolf"). And some would argue that episode is even better than Fugitive Alien. After all, that one has most of the fun callbacks and the fun songs. But I'm trying not to include sequels or franchises on this countdown, I'm trying to include as many different types of episodes as I can. So please just consider this a joint entry for both Fugitive Alien 1 and 2.

They're pretty much the exact same (fun) thing, and they're both awesome.

"Space speed?"

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