Everyone knows Siskel and Ebert, or better known as At the Movies. But there is a lost episode of that program that knocked off my socks. Which I guess is a good thing, seeing how I was wearing sandals at the time. Regardless: it was very, very scary. As for the show itself aired in 1975 under 'Sneak Previews for PBS', and it featured two movie critics, Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert, who would rate movies using a thumb-based metric. If they thought the movie was good, it would get a thumbs up, and if the movie was bad, it'd get a hearty thumbs down. They were notable for that system, and it inspired plenty of knock-offs, such as the "It stinks!" catchphrase of Jay Sherman from Fox's animated 'The Critic' program. Anyway, Gene and Roger's show was moved to ABC as 'Siskel and Ebert At the Movies', and when Gene died, he was replaced with Richard Roeper, and the program was remonickered 'Ebert and Roeper At the Movies'. Tragically, Roger Ebert's thyroid cancer re-emerged in 2006, and he was replaced with many critics, before the program was finally renamed to 'At the Movies.' Its run was discontinued in 2010, and Ebert passed away three years later. Well, that's the history of the show in a nutshell.
As for me, for those wondering, yes, I certainly love the movies. Classical films like, Transformers, The Purge, Saw, Unfriended, Resident Evil, Tomb Raider, Ferngully, Fifty Shades, Twilight, Adam Sandler, Tyler Perry, James Cameron's Avatar, and Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas, and I was sucking Matthew Davis' balls, until one day, I had enough and quit my job, because just like Davis himself, I saw the value in wearing diapers even if you're continent. My position was 'usher' at the local dollar cinema. I got to watch those movies specifically because I love having no taste in movies, or so my boss told me after making me clean the theaters' floors with my tongue and a Woody Woodpecker themed toothbrush. But enough of that shit: why the fuck am I telling you this? Because, as I was cleaning theatre 5, I found a VHS tape that said, "AT THE MOVIES WITH GENE AND ROGER" which, of course, is Siskel and Ebert, and not KISS's Gene Simmons and the alien from American Dad. Of course, the tape had a smiley face and said in tiny letters, "Get new taste." That really didn't make sense. But, as I was finished cleaning and no longer cared that I was risking losing my job, I grabbed the tape and rushed out of the cinema. I ran like there was a fire in my belly, as I sped home in my 1952 Volkswagen to my $900,000/month apartment. I put the tape inside of my VHS player, trying to figure out where the coax cables go. Believe me, it's been a long time since I actually used a VHS player. Technology is rising as much as immigration has, thanks to the Communistic laws of President Barack Hussein Obama. Or maybe it was 'The Donald'. Rafael 'Ted' Cruz? Hillary Clinton? Feel the Bern in your pants? Would that 'Make America Great Again'?
As the program began playing, I noticed that this episode was made in 2014, since it had the copyright date displayed in large, polka-dotted, neon pink, Comic Sans font. Strange, considering that both Siskel and Ebert died before this lost episode, and the show ended in 2010. But they somehow appear in this episode. Of course, Gene Siskel looked really disheveled. It looked like he had a bad hair day, if you know what I mean. And Roger Ebert seemed really nervous, as he had a noose wrapped around his neck. "Welcome to Siskel and Ebert at the movies, I am Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun Times and I am having a terrible case of who-gives-a-fuck!" He cursed! Never did he curse in the show! The camera then cut to Gene, who looked really sinister. "I'm Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune and I burnt half of my popcorn on purpose." They then talked about eating Doritos and drinking Mountain Dew, which had nothing to do with the episode at all. Finally, they talked about the first movie, which was entitled 'Nobody Likes Droopy Dog'. That's not even a movie! Droopy was a classic animated cartoon series from the legendary Tex Avery! And there isn't even a cartoon in the Tex Avery repertoire named 'Nobody Likes Droopy Dog'! Roger said, "What I like about this movie is that Droopy killed himself with a gun! Also, I have Gonorrhea." Strange--he never mentioned that in the television program. The next part froze my spine like an ice cream headache. Gene Siskel choked Roger Ebert and said, "I give this piece of shit a thumbs up! And I'm gonna penetrate my thumb up your ass Roger, and it's gonna be nice and zesty, like a breakfast burrito!" Gross! To add insult to injury, he shoved his entire thumb into Roger's ass! I didn't wanna see that! This was too gross for me, and it wasn't even over! I got ready to shut the tape off, but then--I just can't explain what happened next. Gene Siskel turned his gaze directly into my soul, and made a threatening command. "If you shut this tape off, I will thumb down your dick." Tapes talked now? Hachi Machi! And he was still choking Roger Ebert. I mean, for the Good Lord's sake!
Someway, somehow, Gene Siskel continued talking about the next movie, and believe me, the next movie was not a movie--it was a lost episode of a classic television program yet again. It was a lost episode of The Jetsons! I got to see clips, but with Siskel laughing so loudly offscreen, it was difficult to make anything out. Finally, the camera cut to Gene Siskel holding a baseball bat, as this episode somehow segwayed into an episode of COPS. Gene picked up the baseball bat and broke the balcony chairs, the screen... everything! BANG BANG BANG!
Richard Roeper, who actually appeared after Siskel's death, suddenly appeared out of nowhere, accusing Gene of something truly bizarre! "Gene. You must be a lizard." Gene Siskel responded, "And why the fuck do you think that is?, before Richard belted out "Because... we ARE the lizards!" The camera panned into Richard Roeper's eyes, as his pupils moved for the remainder of the episode. I raised my fist and slammed it down on the VCR, shutting the tape off once and for all. I mean... was this all some kind of joke?! HOW COULD THIS BE A FUCKING JOKE?! What was it? Trying to ease out the knots in my stomach and calm down my pulse, I went outside to check the mail. On good days I would sing to myself about the joys of getting the mail, but today was not one of those days.
My mailbox was stuffed to the brim with... VHS tapes. No packages, no return address. Just... VHS tapes, as if they appeared out of nowhere. Stuff like Nobody Likes Droopy Dog, The Lost Episode of the Jetsons, Seinfeld's 'The Warning', etc. I really wanna know who sent me the tapes, but... well, since Gene Siskel reviewed the first two, it had to have been me.