Release Date(s)Various (July 28, 2015)
- Film/Program Grade: B+
- Video Grade: B-
- Audio Grade: B-
- Extras Grade: B+
- Overall Grade: B+
WE’VE GOT MOVIE SIGN!!!
Here we are again with Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Shout! Factory’s Volume XXXIII DVD set. These boxed sets are released tri-annually with some nice extras and better quality episodes than what you might find floating around online or on bootlegs. The price is kind of steep, but if you’re a fan of the show, you know that these sets are definitely worth picking up.
I’ve gone into a good amount of detail about MST3K and my love for it in my review of the movie, so I won’t bother getting into that. We’ll keep things short and sweet and just cover the set itself. With this release, you get the following four episodes: Daddy-O (Season 3, Episode 7), Earth Vs. The Spider (Season 3, Episode 13), Teen-Age Crime Wave (Season 5, Episode 22), and Agent For H.A.R.M. (Season 8, Episode 15).
The episodes in these boxed sets usually feature two hosted by Joel and two hosted by Mike, which is a good balance. The quality of each episode varies, with some episodes being better than others. Daddy-O is another in a long line of 1950’s rocking and hot-rodding movies with not much else to it than that. Earth Vs. The Spider is perfect giant monster fodder for the crew of the S.O.L. to sink their respective satirical zing into. Teen-Age Crime Wave is basically a low-rent Blackboard Jungle, of which there were many during its era. Agent For H.A.R.M. is a 1960’s British spy extravaganza, and is also a bit unique in that it’s never previously been available on home video in any form, let alone with MST3K (as of this writing).
As far as image and sound quality, everything is sourced from the original master tapes, which were on video. The episodes look generally good, especially in the latter years of the show, with an occasional minor green band or video-source anomaly here or there. Unfortunately, there are no subtitles. Short of Shout! Factory putting some extra money into producing these sets in high definition, these are definitely a major step up from circulating bootlegs of the show.
As for the extras, you get a few from disc to disc, most of them newly-produced just for this set. For Daddy-O, there’s the Beatnik Blues: Investigating Daddy-O featurette and a set of MST Hour Wraps. For Earth Vs. The Spider, you get The Movie Has Legs: Looking Back at Earth Vs. The Spider featurette and more MST Hour Wraps. For Teen-Age Crime Wave, there’s the Film It Again, Sam: The Katzman Chronicles documentary, the Tommy Cook: From Jungle Boy to Teenage Jungle interview, and the movie’s theatrical trailer. And for Agent For H.A.R.M., there’s the Peter Mark Richman: In H.A.R.M.’s Way interview. Also included (as is standard with all of the MST3K boxed sets) are 4 paper insert reproductions of the artwork from each DVD in the set.
All in all, this is another solid boxed set release of MST3K from the good folks at Shout! Factory. If you’re a fan, you’ll definitely want to pick it up. Now push the button, Frank.
- Tim Salmons