December 7, 2016

Santa Claus Conquers The Martians

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Welcome to Week Two of Holiday Moviepalooza, where the guys settled in for another holiday classic, Santa Claus Conquers The Martians, starring John Call as Santa Claus, Leonard Hicks as Kimar, Leila Martin as Momar, Vincent Beck as Voldar, Bill McCutcheon as Dropo ("The Laziest Man on Mars"), Doris Rich as Mrs. Claus (or Ms. Claus, depending on your info source), Carl Don as Chochem, Victor Stiles as Billy, Donna Conforti as Betty, Chris Month as Bomar, and Pia Zadora as Girmar.

If you are like anybody here at Ugly Couchcast Industries, at best you recognize exactly one of those names, and even then, it's a pretty solid bet that you have no idea why, other than if you've seen this movie.

Kimar, a Martian who appears to holds some kind of status, and his wife, Momar, are worried about their children, Bomar and Girmar. They are quiet, well-behaved, industrious, and intelligent. Something is clearly wrong. The one thing they seem to have in common with "normal" kids like the ones here on Earth is that they spend hours staring blankly at television programs. And, in a Shyamalan Twist of epic proportions, the shows the Martian children are addicted to are the same ones kids on Earth watch!

After seeing what amounts to a 60 Minutes-style investigative piece on Santa's workshop, the Martian kids become infatuated with confusing things like toys, emotions, and why their father regularly roofies them so they will sleep.

Concerned for his children, Kimar consults with a sentient pile of dust bunnies named Chochem and decides there is only one thing to do: he must take a crew and kidnap Santa Claus so he can be forced to entertain these dull-eyed, creepy green children.

Please, God...Let me die...
Unfortunately, one of the crew, luxuriously mustachioed Voldar, is against the plan, believing that children are to be seen and not heard, and stuffed in a room somewhere until they are needed for whatever it is that they do with kids on Mars. Voldar is reluctantly forced to take part in the mission anyway, but he has a plan of his own. Another Martian with no plan whatsoever ends up on the ship because even the most hardened space traveler can use a laugh or two. Unfortunately, that comic relief is Dropo, and he is an utterly worthless and unfunny pile of talking garbage.

Turns out Dropo isn't lazy; he was having a stroke!
Upon reaching Earth, the Martians get confused when they see several Santas standing around on the streets, so they consult with two small Earth children whom they find hanging out and listening to a radio under a tree. Billy is smart, and he lets the Martians know that he's not keen on threats and guns pointed in his face, but he eventually caves in and reveals to the Martians that Santa lives at the North Pole. For her part, Betty asks a lot of stupid questions ("Are you a television set?") and hinders any and all efforts Billy makes to stop the Martians' plans like a dead albatross around his neck.

Try not to become lost in Voldar's mustache like the guys did.
Landing at the North Pole, Billy and Betty escape so they can warn Santa. Voldar tells Kimar about it, and they dispatch Torg the robot to find them before they get to Santa. Fortunately for the Martians, Betty the idiot gets herself and Billy trapped in a cave by a polar bear that must be seen to be fully appreciated, and Torg scares it away so it can take the kids captive again.

Next on Fox, When High School Mascots Attack!
Kimar's next move is to send Torg into Santa's workshop to drag Santa out, most likely kicking and screaming. The plan, like every other plan the Martians make, goes banana-shaped and Torg shuts down in the face of heartless, demeaning ridicule from Santa (or something like that), so the Martians run in, Wham-O Air Blasters a-blazin', and freeze almost everybody. They grab Santa and make for home.

Torg is made from nothing but the best discarded garbage from Goodwill.
On the return trip, Voldar is locked up for trying to kill the kids, but he escapes because Dropo is incompetent and should not be allowed any significant job, as it will always, always end in disaster. When the ship reaches Mars, Santa and the kids are taken to Kimar's home, where they can meet Bomar and Girmar. Voldar, meanwhile, goes and hides in a cave with a couple of his flunkies, trying to come up with another plan.

The kids have shut down the factory! They're demanding we pay them!
Santa almost immediately puts the kids to work in his toy sweatshop, and Dropo steals a suit and spare beard that Momar made for Santa. When Voldar and his cronies come looking for Santa, they accidentally grab Dropo instead, thinking they got the right guy, and then go off to find Kimar so they can demand he shut down the toy factory and kill Santa and the kids.

Will Kimar do what he can to save Dropo? Will Santa bring joy and lots of cheap toys to the kids of Mars? Will Shim ever learn how to properly pronounce "nuclear"? Will Betty ever manage a complete sentence from her dumb face-hole that makes any sense? (In order: Sorta, we think so, no, and abso-fucking-lutely not.) You'll have to tune in to get the whole story! But as a little teaser, here's the fight scene between Voldar and Kimar! It's awful!

Derek is upsettingly aggressive toward Betty, and nobody is really sure why. He also gets angry about Shim's inability to say a simple word correctly. However, whenever Voldar's mustache is onscreen, all is forgiven and forgotten. It is...transcendent.

Jake had not seen this before, so he went in cold. And came out the other end still cold, but also bitter and angry. However, he could hold no anger toward the hypnotic allure of Voldar's soft, downy mustache. It represents all that is good in the world.

Larry is angry at Derek for making him watch this movie unriffed, and he is sick, so that probably didn't help much. It must be said, though, that when lost in the comforting warmth of Voldar's lush, welcoming mustache, all is forgiven...Aaaaaalllll is forgiven....

So attach a (non-working) gas pipe to your head, take your food pills, and download this week's episode!