Because we like progress, and not just on Throwback/Flashback days!
I’m excited. Not just for the fact that it is Thursday, tomorrow is a work holiday, and that it is finally starting to feel like spring, but also because tonight is the first night of RiffTrax Live AND the new season of Mystery Science Theater 3000 premieres on Netflix tomorrow.
Such lofty priorities I have!
When it is a RiffTrax Live week, that means it is time to dip into the archives of MSTie/RiffTrax stuff (of which there is much to be seen), and look back on something from either of the two. Today, we are going to travel to the wonderfully exotic, yet welcoming, Progress Island, USA. Or as the locals call it, Puerto Rico.
Progress Island USA is a 1973 short subject film that aired during MST3K’s sixth season, and was the second short film to air before the “experiment,” The Beast of Yucca Flats. I’m convinced that movie is in a neck-and-neck death battle to outdo Manos The Hands of Fate (aka “That MST3K Movie My ENT is Obsessed With”) as one of the worst movies Mystery Science Theater 3000 ever screened. Either that, or it is in a neck-and-neck death battle to prove that incompetency is not exclusive to fertilizer salesmen who need to re-dub the entire soundtrack. This one is far worse…it is narrated. All narration.
Anyway, the short.
Progress Island USA discusses the advancements and offerings of the island at the time, including the rich history, economy, education, and diverseness of the population. Oh, and 360 days of sunshine. Those other five days (six in a leap year) must be cloudy. How dreadful! Or as the locals say…que barbaridad!
This short, on the other hand, not so bad. Cheesy yes, but visually, it is quite stunning. Is it unbelievably 1970s-esque? Oh my goodness, yes. The music (love the “wah wah pedals” reference) is funky. Is it long on propaganda to get people to live, work, and play in Puerto Rico? Yes, which means it has done its job.
Why not see for yourself how amazing and progressive Puerto Rico was in this 1973 world?
Thanks to You Tube user Bo Balderson for his upload!
Continuing on this theme week, we’ll be looking at another “educational”/”informative”/time filling short from the archives of Mystery Science Theater 3000.