Your movie for today's experiment makes even me sick—and I liked Morgan Stewart's Coming Home.
- Dr. Forrester

The Short[]

Junior Rodeo Daredevils



When old timer Billy Slater finds two children pulling a prank on his horses, he conscripts them to create a "Junior Rodeo". Most of the town shows up and watches children get thrown around by bulls while the narrator advises them that "That ground is awful hard!".


The Movie[]

Main article: The Killer Shrews (film)


A boat captain arrives to resupply a research facility on a remote island. He discovers that the scientists have developed a strain of giant shrews that consume all flesh and secrete a poison. As the ravenous beasts become a greater threat, the survivors must use every resource available to them to escape.

The Episode[]

Host Segments[]


Hyper Frank

Prologue: Joel decides to give the Bots a pick me up and hands out cool gifts. Gypsy gets a Little Mermaid Ariel Bathtime Set, Tom gets a Junior Dragster Indoor Funnycar by Marx, and Crow gets dress slacks from J.C. Penney, perfect for job interviews. Crow is deeply disappointed.

Invention Exchange (Segment One): As Tom tunes his new race car and consoles Crow that he'd rather have a pair of slacks too, down in Deep 13 the Mads prepare to cleave the Earth in two. Only Joel's invention of Jim Henson's Edgar Winter Babies saves the planet.


Tom's new race car

Segment Two: Joel vapor-locks as he does an aggressively folksy impression of Will Rogers and ends up quoting a wide variety of notable persons. Tom and Crow provide ambience.

Segment Three: The Bots sing the commercial for their new Killer Shrew board game, but the actual game seems like more a chance for them to vent over the shortcomings of the movie.

Segment Four: Joel and the Bots invent the Killer Shrew drink, which is insanely heavy on sugary items. Joel has a small taste, and goes into shock. When they send it down, Frank serves as the test subject, and goes insanely hyper.


Joel as Will Rogers

Closing (Segment Five): The Bots dressed as shrews attack Joel, who has just enough time to describe his symptoms and read a letter before the poison kills him. Down in Deep 13, Frank is feeling the effects of too much Killer Shrew drink, but nothing a good ipecac won't fix.

Stinger: Dr. Craigis explaining that "Any unusual experiment can produce unusual results."

MST3K Cast[]


  • Ipecacs reappear. They had previously been mentioned in Episode 315.
  • Crow's sensible brown pants would appear in several subsequent episodes.
  • The Killer Shrew drink sketch is similar to the "Alaskan Polar Bear Heater" scene from the 1963 film The Nutty Professor, with similar results regarding what happens when it is drunk.
  • The invention segment by the Mads is regarded by the writers and fans as possibly the most ominous ever.
  • Tom Servo's hands return to being white, after three episodes as Caucasian flesh-toned (since Experiment #403).
  • Gypsy's lips return to being gray after being black from Experiment #322 to Experiment #406.
  • This episode aired fourth during Turkey Day '94.


  • Joel says “we will be-ack” and “MST3 viewers.”
  • Crow attributes the saying "It's not over til it's over" to Casey Stengel. It is actually a quote from Yogi Berra.

Obscure References[]

  • "That's the Gom Jabbar!"
A reference to the Gom Jabbar box test in Frank Herbert's science-fiction novel Dune.
  • "'You know,' he told Bobby and Mike, 'If I like the girl, who cares what I like?'"
A paraphrase of lyrics present in the pop song "Cool It Nowby New Edition.
  • "C'mon, Quaker Oats for you, it's the right thing to do!"
A reference to a series of Quaker oatmeal commercials featuring Wilford Brimley.
  • "Hey kids, you ever read The Ox-Bow Incident?"
The Ox-Bow Incident is a Western novel in which three innocent men are accused of cattle rustling and lynched. It was adapted as a film in 1943 with a cast that included Mary Beth Hughes and Rondo Hatton.
  • "Animals vill be bred und SLAUGHTERED!"
A line spoken by the title character in Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.
  • "Maybe rodeos are the opiate of the masses!"
Servo is paraphrasing a Karl Marx quote about religion.
  • "Why can't Johnny ride?"
An allusion to the book Why Johnny Can't Read.
  • "Bob Clampett!"
Warner Bros. animator Bob Clampett was a slender, mustachioed man.
  • "Wait 'till I finish my Saratoga!"
The advertising slogan for Saratoga 120 cigarettes.
  • "Meester Fawlty! Polly!"
An imitation of Andrew Sachs' character Manuel from the British TV comedy series Fawlty Towers, who spoke with a heavy Spanish accent.
  • "There's a Teddy Roosevelt costume and some graves down here!"
A reference to the play Arsenic and Old Lace, in which a pair of elderly sisters poison their male suitors and bury them in the cellar of their home. Their nephew Theodore believes himself to be U.S. President Teddy Roosevelt.
  • "Weasels ripped my flesh."
Weasels Ripped My Flesh is the name of a Frank Zappa - Mothers of Invention album released in 1970. The name is taken from the title of a short story that appeared in a men's adventure magazine.
  • "I thought you said your dog does not bite." "That's not my dog."
An exchange from the film The Pink Panther Strikes Again.
  • "I am sixteen, going on seventeen..."
From the song "Sixteen Going On Seventeen" from the musical The Sound of Music.
  • "I don't want you to let anyone open that door 'til I tell you, you understand?" "Okay, anyone can open the door when you tell me..."
A reference to a scene in the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail in which a dim-witted guard fails to understand some simple instructions.
  • "Tell me about your homework, Usul."
Chani asks Paul this in Dune, while she is trying to ingratiate herself with him.
  • "Well, we covered the waterfront."
A reference to the jazz standard "I Cover the Waterfront", but perhaps most famous as the way that Tennessee Williams answered when asked if he was gay.
  • "'What a dump!' Who said that, George?"
A reference to a question Martha asks in the play Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf (the answer being Bette Davis, first in the movie Beyond the Forest).
  • "Now Phyllis George is going to make them hug."
In 1985, Cathleen Webb admitted that the rape accusation she had made against Gary Dotson in 1977 was false. It became a national outrage, and Illinois Gov. Jim Thompson commuted the prison sentence that Dotson was serving. Webb and Dotson appeared together on the CBS Morning News, and hostess Phyllis George infamously invited them to hug, which both declined.

Video Release[]