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'Manos' the Hands of Fate 

This cult classic episode starts off with Joel experiencing what it would be like if the bots actually looked up to him and immediately realizing just how hollow it leaves him inside. The ... See full summary »



(creator), (head writer) | 9 more credits »


Episode cast overview:
Joel Hodgson ...
Jim Mallon ...
Frank Conniff ...


This cult classic episode starts off with Joel experiencing what it would be like if the bots actually looked up to him and immediately realizing just how hollow it leaves him inside. The Mads' Chocolate Bunny Guillatine goes up against Joel's Cartooner in the invention exchange. Joel and the bots endure the movie in any way they possibly can, ranging from debating whether or not Torgo is actually a monster to pantomiming a car drive through Texas (which only backfires on them). While Joel pretends to be the Master and the bots beat each other up in diaphanous robes, Torgo delivers a pizza to the Mads, who refuse to take the Crazy Bread for a very good reason. It gets worse when they realize how Torgo has kept the pizza warm. Written by Titus Yorick

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Sci-Fi





Release Date:

30 January 1993 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

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Did You Know?


Manos: The Hands of Fate (1966) was a film that was very obscure until its airing on this series. Since the film has gained something of a cult following and is now often counted among the worst films ever made. Thus far there has been an Entertainment Weekly article about the film, numerous screenings for cult fans, and a documentary made about the films legacy entitled 'Hotel Torgo'. See more »


(at around 1 min) Joel can be seen turning to Crow, revealing that he's wearing glasses. See more »


Margaret: Why don't we sing a song to help pass the time?
Margaret, Mike, Debbie: [singing] Row, row, row your boat, gently down the stream...
Tom Servo: Yes, sing, damn it, sing!
[MST3K gang join in]
See more »

Crazy Credits

Keep circulating the tapes See more »


References The Golden Girls (1985) See more »


Jim Dandy
(uncredited) (as "Jam Handy")
Written by Lincoln Chase
Portion sung by Joel Hodgson
See more »

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User Reviews

These hands will touch you in ways you cannot imagine (evil laugh)
23 February 2007 | by (El Paso!) – See all my reviews

This was the first MST3K episode I ever got the chance of seeing and I got hooked right away. Joel and the 'bots' laid-back sense of humour instantly struck a chord with me and having seen numerous (although certainly not the majority ) of the wicked show's episodes, I have to say that 'Manos' reigns above them all. This is unparalleled brilliance. Not only is this the funniest episode they ever put on air, it is absolutely essential viewing for any bad-movie-buff out there because of the subject of the team's ridicule: 'Manos' the Hands of Fate. The only movie ever made by a fertilizer salesman in the sixties. Well, the only one to have survived, anyway; god knows how many movies circulate out there of the "lost-family-runs-into-a-bunch-of-freaks-led-by-a-pedophilic- Frank-Zappa-look-a-like-and-a-guy-who-could-have-been- your-creepy-high-school-carpentry-teacher-shot- on-no-budget-with-a-filthy-camcorder-that-could- only-record-up-to-30-seconds- of-film-at-a-time" subgenre. I shudder at the thought.

Joel, Tom and Crow really seem to be enjoying themselves with this one (ok, maybe "enjoying" is the wrong word, more like "torturing") and the cast members (Hodgson, Beaulieu, Murphy, Mallon) are charming and hilarious. You really feel their pain being subjected to this film by Dr. Forrester, the goofy but incredibly evil scientist and his hapless sidekick, TV's Frank. The fact that the film is the worst ever made and the worst that could ever have been made is painfully obvious throughout, but the inclusion of a guy in a red jumpsuit and his two robot puppets making snide comments ("You know, this is the slowest carchase I've ever seen") somehow not only makes 'Manos' endurable, but watchable even on repeated viewings! (yes, I admit it, I'm a masochist. There, now you happy?!)

It's genius. It's masochistic. It's torturous. And it's hilarious.

It's the best episode that Mystery Science Theater 3000 ever did.

"Frankly, Joel, you blush in the most adorable way." Just see it!

21 of 24 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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