Ep. 018 - Stuck in the Middle Ages with You (Thread Commentary: April, 20 2012)

#1
Old episode commentary repost:

OK, going to do a running commentary for this classic episode.  For this commentary, I will be using the English version as presented on the second volume of the Goodtimes DVDs (of which only three were released).  This version is completely uncensored as opposed to the broadcast version which is sometimes edited for time and less often for content.  I'm watching this on my Oppo Blu-ray player, which is known for it's quality upscaling ability.

Running Commentary - April, 20 2012

The pyramid the Black Knight (I'll refer to him by this name since I don't think he actually has one in the episode and even though his costume is more of a really dark blue) stole from the "Secret Weapons Laboratory" seems vaguely familiar to me.  It's shaped like a pyramid.  Might be a reference to something else.

The Halloween themed title card with the bats and Jack O' Lanterns that never appeared on CN is pretty awesome.

The girls are in a HS science lab, which is a very common setting for the first two seasons.

Clover makes a random comment about the chemical mixture Alex made being a great shade for eye-shadow, and Sam gets pissed because they're supposed to be focusing on the lab project.  Vintage early TS.

Of course, Mandy is threatening to beat them in the school Halloween costume contest.

Mandy's voice seems a little restrained compared to Jenifer Hale's later performances of her.  Still sounds like my lovely Mandy though. 

Random short scene of Mandy and Clover playing some game show to represent Clover just trashing Mandy with a diss about her clothes already being a Halloween costume.  I really liked short moments in the earlier seasons.

Liking Dominique's outfit with the bare midriff and thigh high stockings.  Hubba

The experiment blowing up doubling as a WOOHPing was kind of obvious and not as over the top as in other episodes.  Still completely inexplicable logic wise.

Sam is also wearing some sexy thigh high stockings as well.  I also dig Alex's long boots.  Very nice.  Hubba

Clover's butterfly hairpin is cute in this episode.  This is one thing TS was ground breaking on.  The girls actually have different outfits every single episode (except for the few exceptions where they bring back a classic like Mandy's sexy tight black leather pants XD).

Jess Harnel's Jerry is a bit more suave and mysterious than Adrian Truss's.  Probably going to go with him as the better Jerry.

Wishing Sam would move her knees apart on that couch/landing pad.  Angel

Pogo-Bounce Sandals, Laser Heat Curling Irons, and Mighty Fine Expendable Mascara Brush.  The gadgets were certainly a lot girlier during the first two seasons.

The other gadgets are obvious references. "Head for Cover Hover Boards" are a reference to Back to the Future II, and "Cat Fight Gloves with Retractable Claws" certainly reference Wolverine (with three claws coming out in-between the fingers).

Great quasi-upskirt shot of Sam's juicy thighs before Jerry says, "Geronimo."  Hubba

They're WOOHPed out of Jerry's office in some kind of rocket powered UFO looking thing.  On the other hand, some of the earlier WOOHPings were a lot more complex.

The pyramid thing is called the END, short for "Electronic Nullification Device."  Pretty amusing name.

The video quality on these DVDs is really excellent.  I just wish Goodtimes made more of them.  x___X  The level of upscalling here proves to me an excellent looking HD version of the first two seasons is certainly very possible.

The Black Knight's warp tunnel the girls travel through looks sort of similar to a WOOHP tunnel.

Alex, "Oh no!  You don't think we're in the Valley?"  Lame but memorable joke.  lol

Clover trades her watch for some guy's horse as "collateral."  WTF?  lol

And before I forget, the title, "Stuck in the Middle Ages with You," is obviously a reference to the 70's chart topper, "Stuck in the Middle with You" by Stealers Wheel.

Clover falls off the horse, "Bad horsey!"  I thought she could straddle anything.  LOL.

They're now being accused of being witches.  lol

Some how Jerry is able to contact Clover on her Compowder from the present time.  I have no idea how this is even possible.  Jerry's GPS system though can apparently tell him she's in Midevil England.  This part I think is memorable for some of the most unplausibly stretched logic in any TS episode.  lol

Clover, "Of course, we're stuck in the middle ages!"  This is one of the few times the title of the episode is referenced in dialogue.

Dungeons and Dragons reference by Clover.  I'm surprised she even knows what that is. 

Nice design for the partially in ruins castle.  There also appears to be another castle in the background.

"Oozing and clumping?  Mighty fine, my butt!"  Clover in reference to the performance of the mascara gadget.  If the tone of her voice was different, she could be calling her butt "mighty fine."  XD

Sam and Alex are sure caught in a net rather easily.  lol

Love all the background music for TS.  I so wish I could have a CD collection of it or something.

Alex - "I've never stolen anything, except for maybe second base in co-ed baseball!"  This line is famous for its sexual innuendo.  xD  Remind me to play baseball with Alex sometime.  Devil 2  She can use my bat.  Whistle

Alex and Sam are apparently killed with boulders.  lol  Of course, some how all the rocks magically just avoided them and they are able to make an escape by using the laser curling irons on their chains (which were interestingly placed but not as fanservicey as other bondage situations).  I don't know why they didn't do that earlier unless they were being watched the whole time, which I guess they may have been since they talk to the guards.

Now that I think about it, this Black Knight traveling by horse through portals thing is a reference to something else.  I can't quite recall what though.  Also, the time travel device with the two diamonds rubbing together has a really interesting design.

Fetishistic bondage time is here.  Sam and Alex's bondage was rather tame, but Clover being chained by the neck with a dog collar type restraint to a chair is certainly more fetishistic.

The Black Knight is sort of handsome.  This may be one of the reasons why people remember this episode so well, because of the villain wanting to make Clover his queen.

His voice is also somewhat familiar.  Looking it up, I couldn't find any information on who he was played by.  I'll try to find it in the credits later.  Edit:  The credits list Steve Blum and John Kassir.  However, the don't say what parts they played.  I'm going with John Kassir as the Black Knight, who is most famous for doing the voice of the Crypt Keeper from Tales from the Crypt!  IMDB backs this up and lists him as Midevil Man/Madman in the episode.  It also says he does a voice in Aliens.

He actually mentions "coming back from the future."  lol

He tries to kiss her.  XD  Great scene.  Clover doesn't want any of it, which is kind of OOC.  She says he's starting to act "all kinds of creepy."  lol

The all weather umbrella gadget acting as a force-field shield is kind of interesting.  I'm pretty sure this is its only appearance.

The Black Knight may be spooning Clover's ass a bit as their riding together on his horse.  XD

Clover complains about him not having an SUV instead of a horse.  lol

The fire beam coming from the giant gyroscope tank thing the Black Knight has is pretty cool, especially when it's blasting the knights on horses and stuff.

Of course, Clover falls for the king, the good guy, who appears to certainly be older than her.  lol

Nice laser shoulder canon on the Black Knight's armor.  It's kind of reminiscent of Iron Man or Warm Machine.

"Just hand over the crown or I'll toast ya."

Clover - "If you're done with me, I'll be leaving now."  Did something happen earlier between them that wasn't on camera?  XD

Sam and Alex crawling up the castle with the Wolverine claws is cool looking.  Too bad there isn't an upskirt angle.  Angel

"That dress looks lovely on you."  The Black Knight in reference to Clover now being in a more Midevil type dress while being chained to a rock.  I wonder if he watched her change her clothes.  XD

"You're going to need to lose the attitude, babe.  My queen is all about obedience."  Hilarious.

He's going to rule the kingdom and the entire world.  What would a villain be if they didn't want to rule the world?  Of course, that doesn't include all the TS villains that just want to get revenge for some petty reason, which I'm sure constitutes more than half of them.

He says "back to the future" again.  lol

His plan involves accumulating wealth in the past so he's worth billions in the present.  Actually a not too bad plan.

Alex lays very spread eagle on her stomach after falling down some steps in the suit of armor she jacked.  Sam pulls her by her legs out of the way.  lol

Holy shit.  The next scene has Sam holding Alex on the ground with one hand over her mouth and the other hand over her left breast.  XD  Never noticed this one before!

Nice wink from Sam at Clover.

Clover - "This guy wants me to learn to play the harp, embroider silk tapestries, and eat peacock!  How gross is that!"  Definitely smell a double entendre.  XD  And it's not like you don't do that often Clover!  lol

Like the veil attached to the back of Clvoer's Sayla (from Gundam) hair-do. 

The biggest thing Clover is upset about in regards to the future possibly being changed so Beverly Hills no longer exists is not being able to beat Mandy in the Halloween contest.  Yeah, overt obsession much? XD  I'm sure she's never thought about Mandy during her private alone time at all.  Whistle

Wow he just torched an entire village.  Cool.  XD

Love the slight techno/electronica vibe to a lot of TS's background music.

Sam - "OK girls, time to hover!"  Another appearance of the "Sam is bad at one-liners" running gag.

The hover boards are definitely very cool!

And of course, the Black Knight accidentally destroys his own gyroscope-fire canon thing.

Clover - "We've got one more thing to do if we want to get back to the future."  This is the third or fourth time this phrase has been used in this episode.  Obviously, the writer really likes the film franchise.

Clover almost smooches the king after the Black Knight is defeated.  Unfortunately, she's interrupted by pissed off town's people, and then Sam sends them back to the future.  Long emotional good bye look before she's pulled into the portal.  Awwww. XD  I guess she didn't get laid this episode unless something happened with the Black Knight earlier off screen.  xd

Arnold's Periodic Table of Elements costume is awesome.  XD  I totally forgot about that part.

Sam, Clover, and Alex are sitting in some seats surrounded by other people in costumes.  I recognize Jason Vorhees, Freddy Kruger, Ghost Face (from Scream, not the Wu-Tang Clan),  the Fly, the Wolfman, a half-assed Frankenstein, a gray Alien with a really big head, and what could be Darth Vader (hard to tell).

Mandy wins as a "Beverly Hills Style Witch"!  Fucking awesome.  Her costume is super fucking sexy as well.  Love the really long gloves, boots, and the snake necklace thing!  Pretty dominatrix-esque.  The fangs and eye shadow are also great.  Caitlin and Dominique's witch costumes are sexy too!  They also have cool bat masks over their eyes.

As Clover walks by, I also notice Pinhead from the Hellraiser series in the crowd.

LOL at Caitlin and Dominique also being the judges!

Caitlin - "No one likes a sore loser, Clover!"  God, her voice is so cute here.  Squeaky and high pitched.  I love it!  XD 

Dominique - "And face it, your costumes just aren't authentic enough!"  Dominique's voice is way more valley girl than I remember it.  XD

Sam - "Forget it, Clover.  These two Mandy clones know nothing about authenticity."  Also forgot they were actually referred to as "Mandy clones" at some point in the show.

And Clover falls for another blonde guy dressed up as a king.  As is the nature of Clover, she goes through guys like candy.  XD

Alex - "Who knows Sammy, they say third times the charm."  In reference to Clover being with three kings in one episode.  lol

Interesting sparkly background of them all dancing with guys in Midevil costumes as it pans out into the credits.

Overall:

Another classic episode.  Perhaps not one of my all time favorites, but certainly very memorable.  The time travel and Clover romance, forced and unforced, certainly make this episode memorable and set it apart from other very early episodes.  I also really liked the subplot with Mandy and Clover facing off in a Halloween costume contest, although it was a bit short screen-time wise.
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#2
Fixed the spelling of Caitlin's name.  For some reason I was gaslit into spelling her name wrong by some incorrect source years ago.  A lot of the names are still spelled wrong by people.  lol
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