#40. The Giant Gila Monster
40. The Giant
Gila Monster (1959) - Season 4, episode 402
"I just want to know if the Lord said it this many times in a row."
giant gila monster terrorizes a small town. Only the local
hot rod gang can stop it.
Characters randomly putting their knees up on things for no reason.
Boy, if you knew what was best for you, you'd get yer knee up.
My favorite riff:
Here you go. Get ready for one of my all-time
MST3k riffs. This is the line that first made me fall in love with
Mystery Science Theater 3000.
Chase comes home, and he sees that his little handicapped sister is
finally able to walk
"Look what I've got! I got leg braces!"
She tries to walk over to him, but her leg braces buckle, and she collapses.
Chase rushes over to comfort the poor little girl
Then, to cheer her up... he pulls out a ukulele
and he sings her a little song.
It's a sweet scene
Then, he wraps up his song, and we all say "awwwww'. It's a
nice little Disney family moment.
Then Joel pulls off the riff that instantly made me fall in love with
Mystery Science Theater.
"Uh, that's real nice, but it doesn't help my legs."
The Giant Gila Monster was the first episode of MST3k that I ever saw.
And because it was first, it will always hold a special place in
my heart. Because
you'll never have a love quite like your first.
In fact, speaking of firsts, I can still remember the
first riff from this episode that really made me laugh out loud.
happens towards the start of the movie. Chase and his friends are
driving up to investigate a crime scene. And as their
car pulls into frame, Joel and the Bots start singing the theme
from The Munsters.
DUM... DUM DUM DUM DUM DUM, DUM DUM DUM(it's hard to spell out, but you know the Munsters theme)
the first time I heard this riff, I instinctively laughed out loud.
Because if you know the Munsters, you'll know that
rod looks a LOT like the Munsters' family car.
Herman Munster with his car, without knee up
I saw that car drive into frame, and I heard the MST3k guys start
singing the Munsters song. And what was amazing about this was, THEY
MADE NO ATTEMPT AT ALL TO EXPLAIN WHY THEY WERE SINGING THAT SONG.
They didn't explain the joke at all, you just had to get it. And
it immediately struck me that wow, this show is going to be a little
bit different, isn't it?
And again, this was the moment that
made me take notice of Mystery Science Theater 3000. Because it was
right there and then that I
realized, this isn't going to be a TV show for everyone. You're going
have to KNOW YOUR SHIT to get all their little obscure comments and
jokes and side references. They're not going to make it easy for you.
And that's when I realized that this was going to be my type
of show. As the writers would famously say in one of their
interviews, "Not everyone is going to get the jokes. But the RIGHT
people will get the jokes."
I considered myself be the right type of people, so I guess... here we are.
"You know, a smart feller could put his knee up on such a thing."
The minute I saw that car, and I heard that
Munsters theme song, I knew this was going to be the show for me. And
fact that they did their little Munsters song at least three more times
during the movie didn't hurt, either. EVERY single time that car
into frame, they sing the Munsters song. It never gets old.
Between that, and the riff about the little girl's legs, yes. This is the episode that made me fall in love with
Mystery Science Theater.
Also, why do I look like Jan Hooks?
being said, I don't think The Giant Gila Monster is one the funniest
episodes overall. And the scenes where Joel imitates the gila
monster's voice are... let's face it... they're just kind of annoying.
They eventually get tedious and repetitive and dumb.
But hey, this was the episode
that introduced me to MST3k, so I will always have a special place
"And the Lord said DIE CHILDREN DIE!"
personal favorite things about this episode: I
love the fact that Chase lives in the heartland in the middle of
America, in the 1950s. Yet for some reason his girlfriend speaks
with a thick French accent. Really? Which part of Kansas did they speak
"Here, drink this. It'll make you feel American."