Digging through more ’80s movies on Netflix, we found this gem. Because nothing says “masterpiece” like a comic-based musical starring actors not known for their singing abilities. Released at the beginning of the decade, Popeye features Robin Williams in his film debut (he’d been playing Mork on TV for two years, but this was his first feature film). It also stars Shelley Duvall as Olive Oyl, the dad from Sixteen Candles as Wimpy, and the director’s grandson as Swee’Pea.
Rumor has it Robin Williams was so unintelligible that they had to dub his lines afterward (and you still can’t understand what he’s saying). Also, the movie won Worst Picture at the Hastings Bad Cinema Society’s 3rd Stinkers Bad Movie Awards in 1980, whatever that is. And because Bomb_Voyage loves fake-looking octopi, it has that. Oh, and did we mention it’s a musical? Please join in the commentary!
Showtime is tonight, 9pm Central. Make yourself a cocktail, find a comfy spot on the couch, tune in to Popeye on Netflix, and pull up the livechat starting at 9pm CDT.
Tonight’s Host Bloggers
Bomb Voyage and Bomberella as The Bomb Squad: Dismantling bad movies one live-chat at a time.
- 2 oz. Sailor Jerry spiced rum
- 1 can Red Bull
Combine over ice in a highball glass.
Bomb_Voyage: Okay, n00bs, here's how this works. Shortly after 9pm Central, @Bomberella will give the ol' ready-set-go. When she says "go" or "push play" or something similar, start the video!
Bomberella: I meant to have spinach for dinner, but I forgot.
Bomb_Voyage: Here's the Popeye entry on Wikipedia if you are looking for something to read for the next ~18 minutes. https://en.wikipedia.org/wi…
Bomb_Voyage: @Bomberella Are you really drinking Red Bull and strong rum tonight?
Bomberella: No, this is the first time I'm not actually drinking the featured cocktail. I made a Green-eyed Lady. Because spinach.
Bomberella: But my old roommate loved Sailor Jerry; if we were watching this at my old apartment, there would definitely be some.
Bomberella: I just couldn't do Red Bull this evening. I have to go to bed at some point.
Bomb_Voyage: That's why I asked. Maybe you were going to PARTY ALL NIGHT!!!
Bomberella: I usually do. And it's usually in all caps. Or fedoras.
Bomb_Voyage: Ba-dump CHING!
Bomberella: "I yam what I yam what I yam. That's all that I yam." -Popeye the Potato Man
Bomberella: This Green-Eyed Lady has gone right to my head.
Bomberella: At any rate, is everyone ready?
Bomberella: Okay, PUSH PLAY!
Bomberella: Love the little cartoon in the beginning.
Bomb_Voyage: I loved the Popeye cartoons so much when I was a kid.
Bomberella: Me too.
TheQueenOfMpls: I don't remember the cartoon beginning.
Bomberella: Fun story: I made my friend Katelyn watch this movie a few years ago because I remembered it being soooo good.
Bomberella: It almost ended our friendship
TheQueenOfMpls: WALT DISNEY PRODUCTION?!?!?
Bomberella: Thank god for popcorn surprise.
Bomberella: Yes! Walt Disney!
Bomb_Voyage: I don't think I've seen this before, so maybe it will end our friendship.
Bomb_Voyage: You never know.
Bomberella: I hope not.
Bomberella: Just wait, @TheQueenOfMpls
Bomberella: It gets weirder.
Bomberella: Fun fact: they built this set on a bay in Malta and sunk a bunch of sea-worthy vessels in the harbor.
TheQueenOfMpls: What the…
Bomberella: What the is correct.
Bomberella: And it's almost two hours long.
TheQueenOfMpls: I don't remember all the singing when I was little and the whole "God must love us."
Bomberella: Yeah, it's funny how memory works.
Bomb_Voyage: So this was Robin Williams' debut.
Bomberella: Yep. Thank god it didn't ruin his career.
TheQueenOfMpls: No shit.
TheQueenOfMpls: And there's the man
Bomberella: You can tell they re-dubbed the audio because it doesn't match up well.
TheQueenOfMpls: and his forearms
Bomberella: "Exact change please, I'm an exact change man."
Bomb_Voyage: In fairness on the sound, Popeye is always mumbling things.
Bomberella: "I'm just disgusticated." I'm totally using that.
TheQueenOfMpls: I like that bike.
Bomberella: There's mumbling, and then there's what he's doing. I can only imagine what it sounded like before the re-dubbing.
Bomberella: Also, why would you make a musical of a character known for his mumbling?
Bomberella: That just seems stupid.
Bomb_Voyage: Wait, have you never seen the old cartoons?
Bomberella: Did they sing in the old cartoons?
Bomberella: I don't remember that.
Bomb_Voyage: Well they were pretty musical like most cartoons of the time.
TheQueenOfMpls: They didn't sing in the cartoons.
Bomb_Voyage: Olive Oyl was always singing.
Bomberella: "I pay what I feels like payin'." I am going to adopt that as well.
Bomberella: We'll see how long it lasts.
Bomb_Voyage: No, the cartoons were pretty much musicals. For example: https://youtu.be/3JNt3EpCJZU
Bomberella: I wish I had a picture of my parents dressed up as Popeye and Olive Oyl for Halloween.
Bomberella: It was awesome. My dad had the forearms down and everything. And my mom made them.
Bomb_Voyage: Well this really is starting slowly.
Bomberella: They have two hours to fill.
Bomberella: And only so much of it can we listen to Shelley Duvall sing.
Bomberella: Or talk.
TheQueenOfMpls: They are taking their sweet time.
Bomberella: I knew the "I'm Popeye the Sailor Man" song, but that's like a theme song, not really like a musical.
TheQueenOfMpls: Thre she is!
Bomberella: "What kind of name is Olive Oyl? Sounds like some kind of lubricant."
Bomb_Voyage: I think I might rather have seen this version of Popeye: [image]
TheQueenOfMpls: There's more Olive Oil on these carrots than Popeye's DICK! –Gordon Ramsey.
Bomberella: OMG I just did a spit take!
Bomberella: Look at how young Robin Williams is.
TheQueenOfMpls: (sad panda face)
Bomberella: I just looked: he was 29 in this! Wow. I thought he was a lot younger than that.
Bomberella: I'm already annoyed with Olive Oyl.
Bomb_Voyage: Pretty sure we're supposed to be annoyed with Olive Oyl.
Bomberella: "Four times engaged is three times much." Yep, Nana Oyl. You got that right.
Bomb_Voyage: Those forearms are creepy-looking.
TheQueenOfMpls: So's his blonde hair.
Bomberella: Yeah. They're a bit much.
Bomberella: It's like, "What are you doing, Popeye, that you only have giant muscles in your forearms?"
Bomb_Voyage: In fairness, I don't know how you'd make these look not creepy: [image]
Bomberella: Fun fact: Nana Oyl's name was a play on a phrase at the time "Aw, banana oil," which is an expression of disbelief like our "Yeah, right."
TheQueenOfMpls: There's Bluto
TheQueenOfMpls: In his underwear
Bomberella: Popeye's Poppa is named Poopdeck Pappy.
TheQueenOfMpls: daddy issues
Bomb_Voyage: I gotta say — it doesn't feel like the movie has even started yet.
Bomberella: It hasn't. This is all the build-up.
Bomberella: To octopus!
TheQueenOfMpls: Weird songs
Bomberella: There's a reason this didn't go to Broadway.
Bomb_Voyage: Am I hearing this right? "Everything is food food food"?
Bomberella: Yes. It's Tony-worthy.
Bomberella: This song would actually be really creepy in a minor key with someone singing it to you without blinking.
Bomb_Voyage: Popeye is so nice.
TheQueenOfMpls: The slapstick isn't funny. It's creepy.
Bomberella: Originally Dustin Hoffman was supposed to be cast opposite Lily Thomlin in this. Imagine what that would have been like.
TheQueenOfMpls: I can't imagine being any better.
Bomberella: I love how everything can just go into lockdown. Especially the cashier cage.
TheQueenOfMpls: Is that Bill Irwin?
Bomberella: Would you really pick on a guy who has forearms as visibly huge as his are?
Bomberella: @TheQueenOfMpls, yes it is Bill Irwin. His character's name is "Ham Gravy." No joke.
TheQueenOfMpls: Amazing character actor wasted.
Bomberella: "This is a smorgasbord of violence." Honestly, I don't know why this didn't win an Oscar?
TheQueenOfMpls: How did I watch this as a kid?
Bomberella: Because that's the age you have to be to enjoy it.
Bomb_Voyage: "Smorgasbord of violence" is a pretty great phrase, actually.
Bomberella: Although it feels like it's really slow for kids.
TheQueenOfMpls: I really appreciate how kids movies are made now.
Bomb_Voyage: It feels like all the dialog is in the background.
TheQueenOfMpls: Yeah and the people are scenery.
Bomberella: So scandalous to see Olive Oyl in her skivvies.
Bomb_Voyage: The part of me that loved Popeye as a kid is really trying hard to love this movie, but it's like the movie is fishing back and trying to make me dislike it.
Bomberella: What's really sad is there are a LOT of good actors in it. And Robert Altman at the helm.
Bomberella: I think this is my favorite. Or Olive Oyl's other song.
TheQueenOfMpls: It's really hard to make fun of this film.
Bomb_Voyage: It is.
TheQueenOfMpls: I just feel sad for everything.
Bomb_Voyage: It's doing such a good job making fun of itself.
Bomb_Voyage: I kind of feel bad for piling on.
TheQueenOfMpls: I remember this sond.
TheQueenOfMpls: He's large!
Bomberella: I don't think I've ever described a guy as "large" as a reason I like him.
Bomberella: She just said "He's virile."
Bomberella: Yikes. We missed so much watching this as kids.
Bomberella: Does anyone actually do that "S/he loves me, s/he loves me not" thing with daisies?
Bomberella: I mean, besides me.
Bomb_Voyage: I do.
Bomb_Voyage: I love daisies.
TheQueenOfMpls: I don't
Bomb_Voyage: Wait, is she packing to go home with Bluto or is she running away?
Bomberella: Running away. Because it's Bluto.
Bomberella: And I should have guessed you love daisies, @Bomb_Voyage.
TheQueenOfMpls: Oh sadly wasted Bill Irwin!
Bomb_Voyage: DO THESE GUYS KNOW HOW TO PARTY OR WHAT!!!
TheQueenOfMpls: Everyone's pants get to stay clean at the party!
Bomberella: As Popeye said, "I don't know that I've ever had this much fun and been conscious."
Bomberella: And Paul Dooley, and Richard Libertini, and Donald Moffat, and Ray Walston…all wasted.
Bomberella: So, do you think Miss Oyl is the town floozy?
Bomberella: Is that why no one has to pay taxes when they're with her? And she's been engaged four times?
Bomb_Voyage: I do like that her legs are just as rubbery as they are in the cartoon.
Bomberella: Yeah. She's pretty well cast. Except for the singing.
Bomb_Voyage: "One thing about my pappy. He'd just throw me up in the air … but he was never there when I came down."
Bomberella: "One thing about my pappy, he made me do pull ups all day long but he never had me run or anything or do some cardio."
TheQueenOfMpls: So sad, I don't think I can continue.
Bomb_Voyage: I'm enjoying it, but I'm also kind of sad for it.
TheQueenOfMpls: The baby!
Bomberella: Shelley Duvall really does play this well. Her freak out over the rattlesnake was pretty amazing.
Bomberella: The baby is Robert Altman's grandson. He's a teacher now.
Bomberella: So cute.
Bomberella: I forgot Bluto's song.
TheQueenOfMpls: Another song!
Bomberella: So the formula for these songs is just keep repeating the same phrase over and over while your back-up singers repeat another phrase in agreement.
TheQueenOfMpls: You'd think the songs would have been better written.
TheQueenOfMpls: a fricking disney/robert altman production!
Bomb_Voyage: What else was Disney making in 1980?
TheQueenOfMpls: The Black Cauldron.
TheQueenOfMpls: I think
Bomberella: Paramount lost the bid to Columbia for "Annie" so they made this instead.
Bomberella: I remember The Black Cauldron!
TheQueenOfMpls: Not CGI's
TheQueenOfMpls: All read clothing all red set.
TheQueenOfMpls: Not Robin Williams
TheQueenOfMpls: pretty sure that wasn't him doing the back flips.
Bomberella: Other movies that came out in 1980: Star Wars V: The Empire Strikes Back
TheQueenOfMpls: FAME!!!! I Love that movie!
Bomberella: Blue Lagoon
Friday the 13th
Bomberella: Flash Gordon
Bomberella: The Elephant Man
TheQueenOfMpls: UGH! made me want to try out for Interlochen Arts School.
Bomberella: I take it that didn't go very well.
TheQueenOfMpls: Elephant man is good.
Bomberella: I've never seen it.
Bomberella: I love that Popeye keeps calling himself a mother.
TheQueenOfMpls: No, I did their summer programs but I couldn't afford the school. Or my parents couldn't afford the school.
Bomberella: Oxblood Oxheart is a great name.
Bomb_Voyage: Yes it is.
TheQueenOfMpls: Ugh; this weird song again.
Bomberella: Other 1980 movies: Xanadu, Private Benjamin, Cruising (?), American Gigolo, Coal Miner's Daughter, Urban Cowboy, and Seems Like Old Times.
Bomberella: And The Final Countdown!
TheQueenOfMpls: Coal Miner's Daughter! What a great film. unlike this one.
TheQueenOfMpls: baby to a boxing event. good idea
TheQueenOfMpls: fluff himup a it.
Bomberella: Yes! I used to watch Coal Miner's Daughter when I babysat.
TheQueenOfMpls: fluff him up a bit.
TheQueenOfMpls: He's got moobs
Bomberella: The man in yellow reminds me of Georgie Porgy in the 1986 Babes in Toyland movie.
Bomberella: Moobs are the worst.
TheQueenOfMpls: they really are.
Bomb_Voyage: Wait, Popeye's calves match his forearms.
Bomberella: I forgot that Popeye had prosthetic calfs, too.
Bomberella: So weird.
Bomberella: It's the principal from Kindergarten Cop!
Bomberella: She's Oxblood's mom or something.
Bomb_Voyage: "Pleased to meet you ma'am, I'm a mudder meself."
Bomberella: My mudder was a mudder, and me fadder was a mudder.
TheQueenOfMpls: I just can't anymore. I just can't. Master of the Universe was more fun.
Bomberella: Masters of the Universe had some semblance of a plot. And more action. I can understand.
Bomb_Voyage: Plus Dolph Lundgren.
TheQueenOfMpls: And that weird troll guy
Bomberella: I'm a Dolph-an.
TheQueenOfMpls: He won.
Bomberella: The old "twist your fist for a greater wind-up" trick really works.
TheQueenOfMpls: No spinach.
Bomberella: This Popeye doesn't like spinach.
Bomb_Voyage: Yeah, does he have to figure out the spinach thing?
Bomb_Voyage: I guess.
Bomberella: The real star of this movie is Swee'Pea.
Bomberella: Do you think somewhere an opera singer is dying every time this duet is played?
TheQueenOfMpls: Finally. a song that isn't just all chorus being pete and repeat.
Bomberella: Is this the only movie in which Robin Williams sang?
TheQueenOfMpls: good night y'all.
Bomberella: Goodnight, @TheQueenOfMpls! Thanks for joining us!
Bomb_Voyage: @TheQueenOfMpls Good night!
Bomberella: I had an Uncle Wimp once. He didn't last long.
Bomberella: Fun fact: Robin Williams got vertigo from walking around with one eye closed.
Bomberella: (not a true statement)
Bomb_Voyage: Seriously, though, I bet that would feel weird as hell.
Bomberella: Save on contacts, though.
Bomb_Voyage: I'm going to try it some day.
Bomb_Voyage: Although maybe I'll switch eyes halfway through.
Bomberella: I'd need a patch or something.
Bomberella: I don't think I could do it just squinting.
Bomberella: I love that these are fake horses.
Bomberella: "What is this, a house if ill-repukes?"
Bomb_Voyage: "What is this, a house of ill repukes?"
Bomberella: The brother's name is Castor Oyl.
Bomb_Voyage: "Wrong is wrong, even if it helps you."
Bomb_Voyage: Popeye knows what's what.
Bomb_Voyage: "What am I, some kind of barnacle in the dinghy of life?"
Bomberella: "And I got a lot of muscle and I only gots one eye…"
Bomb_Voyage: Robin Williams has considerably more hair than cartoon Popeye. [image]
Bomberella: On his forearms and knuckles as well. I'm sure they shaved those and felt like that was enough.
Bomberella: This is my favorite.
Bomberella: "He needs me he needs me he needs me he needs me, he neeeeeeeds me."
Bomberella: If I ever get married I'm going to sing this at my reception.
Bomb_Voyage: I'll be honest. It seems like a bad reason to enter into a relationship.
Bomberella: With the spinning.
Bomb_Voyage: She really does have Olive Oyl nailed, though.
Bomb_Voyage: Of course Bluto sucks his thumb.
Bomberella: I don't know; I think it's also bad when someone doesn't need you. I mean, you should be able to get along without someone, but at the same time I want to be with someone who can't live without me, ya know?
Bomberella: And yes, Shelley Duvall IS Olive Oyl.
Bomberella: This was the first joint production between Walt Disney and Paramount.
Bomberella: It ruined their friendship. Much like mine with Katelyn.
Bomberella: Actually, Katelyn and I are still friends. I thought she was going to join us tonight.
Bomberella: They really need to fix that bridge.
Bomberella: Spoiler alert! The commodore is Popeye's Pappy.
Bomb_Voyage: Wow, totally.
Bomberella: The Commodores were a great band.
Bomberella: Don't turn around, The Commodore's in town.
Bomberella: They totally ripped off the Muppets. "It's Not Easy Being Me."
Bomberella: You know, they should really stop calling Bluto "large." For one, he's not that big. But also it's like when people in movies talk about Uma Thurman being beautiful. It's like, who are you trying to convince?
Bomberella: I love how two days ago Popeye was an outsider and now the whole town is behind him.
Bomberella: It's definitely not the Midwest.
Bomberella: Weirdest reunion moment.
Bomberella: Also, everyone says "Phooey" a lot.
Bomb_Voyage: "What squinty eye?"
Bomberella: "You idiot, you can't inherit a pipe!"
Bomberella: But you can inherit the wind.
Bomberella: This is quite a diatribe about Popeye not eating spinach.
Bomberella: Especially considering he left his two-year-old son on someone's doorstep…
Bomberella: But you didn't eat your spinach, so.
Bomberella: If they had only cast Gene Hackman.
Bomberella: We should have done this as a drinking game. Every time they repeated a line or song lyric, drink.
Bomberella: I wonder how many unique lines there are in this movie. 10? 20?
Bomb_Voyage: I sense another song coming on.
Bomb_Voyage: "Bulgey arms" somehow works as a way to describe the massive forearms of the Sailor Man family.
Bomberella: It's true. They reused this set for the end of Goonies.
Bomb_Voyage: Wouldn't surprise me.
Bomberella: No, they didn't.
Bomberella: But, look! Octopus!
Bomb_Voyage: Wait, there's an octopus in this one for real?
Bomberella: Yes. I told you that. Don't you read my posts??
Bomb_Voyage: Yeah, but I don't believe you.
Bomberella: Sniff. I see how it is.
Bomberella: I never pictured Popeye as a sword fighter.
Bomberella: That was an awesome dive on the part of Bluto, though.
Bomb_Voyage: Didn't his dad just tell him to leave the knives alone.
Bomberella: I feel like the director could only get away with putting that baby in peril because it was his grandson.
Bomberella: What I don't understand about Olive Oyl's predicament is that she should be able to just swim out the bottom of that…whatever that is she's in.
Bomb_Voyage: The treasure chest is just spinach and junk?
Bomb_Voyage: Let down.
Bomberella: Spinach is a treasure!
Bomb_Voyage: Olive Oyl is useless for everything.
Bomberella: And it's got Pappy's "picture" of Popeye, and Popeye's baby booties.
Bomberella: I mean, she's made out of rubber. So.
Bomb_Voyage: I didn't see the picture. Does it just say "ME SON"?
Bomberella: Yeah, something like that.
Bomberella: No one's concerned about Olive Oyl.
Bomberella: To be fair to Popeye, canned spinach is the grossest.
Bomb_Voyage: Yes it is. Although it totally worked on me.
Bomberella: Every parent is grateful to Popeye for that reason.
Bomb_Voyage: I ate a lot of spinach thanks to Popeye.
Bomb_Voyage: In fact I remember demanding that my Mom get spinach when we went to the grocery store.
Bomb_Voyage: Yep. I'm a sucker.
Bomberella: It took us all the way to the end to get to the Popeye theme song.
Bomberella: And all because they needed that joke about spinach.
Bomb_Voyage: And for him to eat spinach.
Bomberella: Well. That was something.
Bomb_Voyage: Ugh. Such a wasted opportunity.
Bomb_Voyage: I mean, part of me loved it because Popeye. But most of me was just disappointed.
Bomb_Voyage: I don't think I can give it more than 1 star in good conscience.
Bomberella: Yeah, part of me has and will always love it but man, it was bad.
Bomberella: I think I'm a 2. Because Shelley Duvall.
Bomberella: So 1.5. That sounds about right.
Bomb_Voyage: Well 1.5 seems about right.
Bomb_Voyage: Have we already decided on next week's movie?
Bomberella: So next week do we want to watch Outcast or the Rock's version of Hercules?
Bomb_Voyage: Er, Hercules!
Bomberella: I like Herculer better.
Bomberella: It sounds like an Agatha Christie character.
Bomberella: Well, Hercules it is! Hopefully more people will join in.
Bomb_Voyage: Hercules it is, then! Join us next week for the Rock in his he-sure-wishes defining role!