(Buffalo Bill jumps up and down, whooping and cheering excitedly)

Dukes of Hazzard got renewed!

  — Crow (as Buffalo Bill)

The Movie


Main article: Riding with Death (film)

Sam Casey, a government agent with the ability to turn invisible, must thwart the machinations of two different villains. He is aided by his fellow agents and an avuncular truck driver/stock car racer.

The Episode

Host Segments

The Camping Planet is under fire

  • Prologue Mike was once a teppanyaki chef. He tries to make an ornate meal for the Bots, in the process cutting off Crow's own hand to serve to him.
  • Segment 1 The Camping Planet is under fire! Pearl calls the Satellite crew for air support, and Mike proceeds to make the biggest baking soda bomb possible. He not only takes out the enemy army, but planet #3. Brain Guy makes a disturbing nurse.

    Crow as Turkey Volume Guessing Man!

  • Segment 2 Inspired by the movie, Tom writes and performs a song, "The Funky Seventies." He has completely misunderstood the premise, but still tries to save the sketch with with an even more inappropriate song about the Fifties.
  • Segment 3 Tom somehow acquires another new body. This time, it is that of a truck driver. His butt is flat, and he loves it.
  • Segment 4 Crow is now a new superhero...Turkey Volume Guessing Man! He can tell you how many turkeys it takes to fill up a space. Mike accidentally steals Crow's thunder.
  • Tom performs "The Funky Seventies"

    Final Segment The SOL crew tries to figure out what the movie was actually about. Pearl calls in to alert them to her medal ceremony for her actions on the planet below. She gets so many medals she can't hold her head up and ends up being unable to steer the Widowmaker.
  • Stinger Buffalo Bill expresses enthusiasm.

MST3K cast

Tom Servo with his trucker body


  • Jim Mallon's final listed credit as Gypsy (though the character does not appear in this episode).
  • Segment one reveals that Crow was made from molybdenum.
  • Camping Planet becomes the third and final planet Mike destroys, following Deep Ape and The Observers home planet.
  • During the final Host Segment, Crow says that he still has " idea just what the Heck-tor Elizondo that was supposed to be." This is a reference to the actor Hector Elizondo, who was well-known at the time as a cast member of the popular TV hospital drama Chicago Hope and the films of director Garry Marshall. A similar reference had been made by the Custodian during Earth vs the Spider.
  • The special The Making of Mystery Science Theater 3000 shot most of its behind-the-scenes footage during the filming of this episode.
  • Jimmy Stewart passed away during production of the episode. Best Brains paid him homage to him by having Crow shake Mike and demand, "What did you do with that planet, you silly stupid old man?! Someone's going to jail and it's not gonna be me!" The line was a reference to Stewart's famous line in It's A Wonderful Life.

Quotes & References

  • (After the title "Riding With Death" is revealed) "The Matthew Broderick Story!"
Matthew Broderick was involved in a 1987 car collision in Northern Ireland in which a car he was driving crossed into the wrong lane and struck another car head-on, killing both passengers in that car. Broderick, who suffered a concussion in the crash, claimed to have no recollection of what happened, and though he faced charges that could have given him prison time, he was only convicted of careless driving and fined $175.
A crime drama, starring David Janssen, that ran for 2 years on ABC in the early 1970s.
  • "Steven Bochco? Does this mean we have to see Dennis Franz's hairy butt cheeks?"
Steven Bochco created several TV series including NYPD Blue which was known for pushing the limits of network television in terms of adult language and nudity. An early episode featured a partial shot of actor Dennis Franz's naked backside.
  • "So everyone at NORAD called in sick today except this guy!"
NORAD is a binational organization between The United States and Canada that serves as North America’s aerospace defense command. The entire movie takes place at the fictional government agency Intersect and has no apparent connection to NORAD mentioned anywhere in the film.
  • "Christo started out with small projects like this."
Christo and his wife, Jeanne-Claude, are a pair of environmental conceptual artists from Europe.  Some of their most famous installations involve wrapping major landmarks (such as a bridge or a stretch of sea cliff) in fabric and giving them atmospheric lighting.
  • "Gavin MacLeod-mania. Not Gavin MacLeod, but an incredible simulation." "I'm also a freelance Murray Slaughter." "Oh, Murray.... sweet, homicidal Murray!"
Murray Slaughter is a character played by actor Gavin MacLeod on the popular 1970s TV sitcom The Mary Tyler Moore Show. He was addressed in this fashion by the sex-obsessed but outwardly wholesome cooking-show host Sue Ann Niven (Betty White). The first phrase also reflects the ads for 70's musical Beatlemania with their catchphrase "Not the Beatles but an Incredible Simulation!"
  • "I'll have a Poppa Burger with cheese... Fries..."
At an A&W burger stand, a Poppa Burger is a double-meat, double-cheese hamburger.
  • "Woo, my favorite number!"  "70?"
The counter read "69" when Tom first said that. "69" is a colloquial term for a certain sexual position.
  • "So they have thirteen hours to drive from Torrance to Long Beach?"
Those cities are approximately 10–15 miles apart from each other, and it would only take approximately twenty minutes to drive there (depending on traffic).
  • "And Mickey Mantle's new liver is transported across the country!"
Baseball legend Mickey Mantle suffered from alcohol-induced cirrhosis of the liver and received a liver transplant in 1995; there were accusations of favoritism due to the speed in which he was matched with an organ donor.
  • "Her code name: Muskrat Susie."
A reference to the song "Muskrat Love" (made famous by Captain & Tennille), which is about love between 2 muskrats named Susie and Sam.
  • "I'll be your candle on a pile of papers..."
Parody of the song "Candle on the Water" from the Disney film Pete's Dragon.
  • "It's Alan Smithee's number!"
Alan Smithee is a name used by directors who wish to distance themselves from a film. The fictional nature of the name matches the fictional phone number shown on screen (with the telltale 555 prefix).
  • "He's whistling Milton Babbitt."
Milton Babbitt was an American composer known for his serial compositions, as well as some of the earliest electronic music compositions. His work is known for its complexity, and often considered to be somewhat forbidding.
  • "Ah. Rhoda and Joe, I hope they get married."
A reference to the sitcom Rhoda, itself a spin-off of the aforementioned The Mary Tyler Moore Show.  A prominent plot-line in the show's first season was the title character's relationship with a divorced bachelor, Joe Gerard.  The marriage of the two characters was one of the highest-rated events in television history and a massive cultural event of the decade.
  • "Poor guys who own this gas station just rebuilt after Jonathan Winters' rampage."
A reference to a scene in the movie It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World
  • "It's a teletype from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police." "It says 'Nell!'"
A reference to the character Dudley Do-Right, from the animated TV series The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show. Dudley was a mounted policeman with a somewhat adenoidal voice who was enamored of Nell, the daughter of his commanding officer.
  • So what's Pete Duel like?"
Pete Duel co-starred with Ben Murphy on the western TV series Alias Smith and Jones. He died of suicide while the show was in production in 1971.
  • "It's one of those UN black helicopters, except painted orange and white."
Black helicopters figure prominently in conspiracy theories of various types, often suspected to be working for a secret United Nations military force intent on undermining the sovereignty of the US.
  • "Nice blue flame. Speaking of blue flame, I sure hope Craig Breedlove's record holds up."
Blue Flame was a rocket-powered car driven by Gary Gabelich, which broke the land speed record held by Craig Breedlove on October 23, 1970.
  • "Nice ADR."
Automated Dialogue Replacement, a process by which actors in a film or TV show re-record dialogue, usually because the recording made of the dialogue during the actual take is not of acceptable quality. However, since a completely new line of dialogue is being inserted into this scene (in an attempt to work a mention of the elusive Robert Denby into the first half of the movie, though he was not mentioned in the TV episode from which this is taken), this would be an example of an overdub, not ADR.
  • "Hello, Barn..."
Mike is mimicking the voice of Inspector Luger, a supporting character played by James Gregory on the TV comedy Barney Miller. The older, irascible Inspector would often greet Barney ("Barn" for short) in this way. The joke seems to be based on the idea that Driscoll's new moustache makes him look like Barney Miller (who was played by Hal Linden, inspiring another joke along this line later in the Experiment).
  • "He's from Barcelona."
A reference to the British sitcom Fawlty Towers, a line often used by Basil Fawlty (played by John Cleese) to explain the incompetence of his waiter Manuel.
  • "This goes out to my friends in the Posse Comitatus!"
Posse Comitatus is an American white supremacist group.
  • "I'll get that bird for ya." "Hey college boy!"
The bar patron with this line resembles the unstable Captain Quint from director Steven Spielberg's Jaws.
  • "They're at the Regal Beagle!"
The Regal Beagle was the name of Jack Tripper's restaurant on the TV comedy Three's Company.
  • "And Cupcake's doing her Ruth Buzzi..."
Ruth Buzzi is a comic actress who became well-known as a member of the cast of the TV sketch comedy show Laugh-In. One of her most recognizable characters was a frumpy, easily-offended woman who would hit men with her handbag if she believed they had made an off-color remark to her. She later appeared as this character on several installments of the Dean Martin Celebrity Roast.
  • (As a man who had been preparing to punch Buffalo Bill looks at his hand) "I thought I was Dale! Oh, well..."
A reference to this running joke.
  • "Hey, don't hit Marjoe Gortner!"
Marjoe Gortner is an actor and former evangelist, whose greatest fame as a public figure was during the 1970s. He had blonde curly hair like the bar patron in this scene. He co-starred in the Season 11 episode Starcrash.
  • "Kelly Flinn, on her way to another tryst!"
Kelly Flinn is a former (and first woman) B-52 pilot in the United States Air Force. She was discharged two months before this episode aired for violating the Military Code of Conduct by giving false statements on  an affair she had with a male civilian, who was married to a female officer within Flinn's chain of command.
  • (Bobo wailing on the bugle.) "Now...sure as the sun will cross the sky....the lie is over..."
Bobo is reciting lyrics from "Only Time will Tell" by 80's rock group Asia. This song was also referred to in an earlier experiment (Terror from the Year 5000) by Crow as "That one Asia song". Bobo also crooned another Asia song ("Heat of the Moment") in a later experiment (Overdrawn at the Memory Bank).
Fawcett, the breakout star of Charlie's Angels, had a wildly popular poster at the time, considered one of the most famous pin-ups of all time.
  • "Goodbye Sister Driscoll"
Parodies a line in "Sister Disco" from The Who's Who Are You album.
  • "I have become Death, destroyer of portable radios..."
A modification of the line from the Bhagavad Gita that J. Robert Oppenheimer quoted on viewing the first test of an atomic bomb: "Now I am become Death, the destroyer of worlds.

A few miscellaneous 70s references:

Memorable Quotes

[In the middle of a war, after Mrs. Forrester is hit.]
Mrs. Forrester(panting) Oh, great! Just what I need!
Bobo: Medic! Medic!
Observer[enters wearing nurse's outfit] Here I am!
Mrs. Forrester: Brain Guy? What the hell
Observer: My race is pacifist and does not believe in war. We only kill out of personal spite. We will, however, administer humanitarian aide. (begins attending to Forrester's wound)
Mrs. Forrester: ...what's that smell?!
Observer: Oh! Mustard gas!
Mrs. Forrester: Mustard Gas! Get the masks!
Bobo: Oh, no, that's just me; I ate a whole jar of Plochman's with my knishes for lunch.
Observer: Good god, ape...
Mrs. Forrester: That's it, we're pulling out!
[Clanking sound is heard]
Observer: Hand grenade!
Bobo: Grenade! I'll save you! [throws Observer to the ground; the grenade goes off right near him]
Mrs. Forrester: Bobo, Brain Guy, quit farting around and get in the van! Okay, Nelson, we need air support an we need it fast!
Observer[looks up] It's a good thing I don't have a body... [flops back down]
[Back on the SOL, Mike Nelson is pouring baking soda into a bomb casing while Crow and Tom Servo watch on]
Mike Nelson: Sure, no problem; I used to make these babies in junior high school, out of vinegar and baking soda...
Crow: I-is that too much baking soda, Mike, or—
Mike[ignoring Crow] ...and high school, now that I think of it. And college, too. expelled for that...
Tom Servo: D-definitely too much baking soda, Mike.
Crow: Just a little too much.
[Crow makes a small "Whoa..." as Mike pulls out a much larger box of baking soda and filling the bomb casing with it]
Mike: And for that temp job I worked on, too...until that one guy in receiving got me fired...
Crow: Heh, Mike, Mike, honey...the baking soda—
Mike[again ignoring Crow]It was just a little prank, but he had to rat out on me, didn't he? Oh, well, I guess some people are just like that...
Tom Servo: So! Bombs away, Mike!
Crow: Okay, Mike! Bombs away!
Mike: Oh! Right... [Mikes walks away with the bomb as Crow and Tom Servo cheer]
Crow: Bombs away, Mike!
Tom Servo: Bombs away! [to Crow] Hey, I heard you can make a bazooka out of PVC tubing and a used diaper.
Crow: Is that so?
[Mike reenters without the bomb]
Crow: Okay, okay! Hee-hee-hee...
Mike: There you go, Mrs. Forrester, a little distraction...
Crow: A little distraction!
[Mike and the bots laugh, and then a huge explosion goes off, knocking the bots off Mike's workstation.]
Crow[gets back up] Okay...few things, Mike. First, well, you blew up another planet, obviously; what's that, three for you now?
Tom Servo: Think so...
[As the gang enters the theater, the Universal Pictures logo appears.]
Servo[Imitates the theme to "The Jetsons", then a space car]
Mike: Universal, except for you, Ron.
Crow: You know, the Earth's thinks it's so great.
Servo: Oh yeah. It thinks the world revolves around itself.
[As the title appears]
Mike: Hey, the Matthew Broderick story.
Crow: And believe me, Death does not pony up for gas.
[During the opening credits]
Mike: Is there such a thing as starring Ben Murphy? Isn't it more honest to say that most of the time the camera is pointed at Ben Murphy?
. . .
Crow: Starring rejects from Harry-O.
. . .
Servo: If Clu Gulager isn't in this, it'll be very wrong.
Mike: Anthony Zerbe, come on! Please, please, please, please!
. . .
Servo: Ah, that's who's playing John Hiller this time.
. . .
Servo: Aw, Steven Bochco? Does this mean we have to see Denis Franz's hairy butt cheeks?
Crow: Ah, that gooey LA sky.
Mike: Birds? Nope. All dead.
[A computer monitor is flashing advanced forumlas.]
Mike: The world's most difficult math test.
[A character is spending the scene fiddling with his glasses]
Crow: Just between the three of us, my glasses are FILTHY!
[A nametag-wearing mechanic sabotages Sam's truck and watches him leave, wearing a vaguely menacing expression.]
Servo [as Mechanic][evilly] They don't call me "Karl" for nothing.
[Truckers Sam and "Buffalo Bill" attempt a dangerous tandem braking maneuver.]
Sam: Alrighty, I'm coming up on your mudflaps at 67.
Crow: "Coming up on your mudflaps." People have such cute names for sex.
Mike [as Sam]: Ma' well-oiled chassis is comin' up on yer backside, now.
Servo [as Sam]: My rigid grill structure is bearin' down on yer unprotected cargo door.
Crow [as Sam]: My oft-complimented Peterbilt is rhythmically nudging that sweet honey pot of yours—
Mike, Servo: Ugh— Crow!
. . .
[Sam and Buffalo Bill have completed the maneuver and are easing into a town.]
Mike [as Sam]: Drained and satisfied, I'm tracin' lazy circles on yer' supercab now.
Crow: You said I was bad.
Mike: You inspired me.
[Buffalo Bill jumps up and down, whooping and cheering excitedly.]
Crow [as Buffalo Bill]Dukes of Hazzard got renewed!
[As Denby and "Cupcake" Tina watch, Sam dumps unconscious Buffalo Bill out of the car and rejoins the race.]
Mike [as Denby]: Cupcake! Get Twinkie the Kid and Fruitpie the Magician!
[Buffalo Bill is singing on the CB]
Buffalo Bill: I'm on the air/I said I'm on the air...
Crow: Well, get off the air, ya cracker!
Computer Voice: (talking about Sam Casey) Received Juris Doctor degree, Harvard Law School, 1983.
Mike: Under Operation Admit The Dumb.

Video releases