A TRANSCRIPT is provided here:
Intro: Welcome to the first edition of Pearl River Flow’s audio offering. Join us from across time. From across space. Listen and marvel as Alain E. Ehtims, the long dead visionary filmmaker of the 60s and 70s explains the television genius of Garbage, MD, a show about a doctor who is a garbageman who has a cyborg car. A show that exists only in his head.
Also, we’ll have the trash themed song “You Can Throw Away the Things that You Use,” from Walter Young’s 2008 album floating world.
If you’re somehow not already, check us out online at pearl river flow dot com, at pearl river flow on twitter, instagram, and of course, Facebook: The Book of Faces.
If you’re wondering about catching me live and in person most Mondays at Hub City Comedy’s Open Mic nights in Hattiesburg, Mississippi, at nine o’clock, and most Tuesdays at Miketown Comedy Club in Jackson, Mississippi, at eight o’clock, and the last Tuesday of every month at Offbeat Comics at nine.
So let’s get into it, Pearl River Flow fans: An arcane oddity we uncovered in the muck of ages that is the Creosote Slough, buried in misplaced layers of sand and garbage - an audio tape with a rather unique history. A history I will explain after you have heard it.
I give you the review of Garbage, MD.
April 19th, 1979, the recording studio of Alain E. Ehtims.
To begin this review, I had to answer a simple question: What is Garbage, M.D? I had to reign in my joy at the novelty of a television show set in the distant future of THE YEAR 1990!
By day and night, Garbage (in the future, everyone only has one name) is a successful plastic surgeon to the stars, cavorting with the rich and famous in Beverly Hills. But every morning he does something far more important - he takes out the trash! Yes, that's the byline, and this isn't a cop show! "He takes out the trash!" How rich! This is impressive, cutting edge, avant garde television from ABC, who will reportedly be ditching the unpopular show Carter Country, which critics other than myself have recently trashed as "not racist enough."
But Garbage isn't just a city-ranging Sanitation Engineer, he's the elite commander of the massive Route King II, a truck he calls "KING!" - oh, say it! Say it again! - from behind the luxurious command and control center seated behind this futuristic plastic windshield.
In the rapturous pilot episode, we learn the complex and tragic reasons that Garbage must be both a doctor AND a garbageman. We meet his comedic-relief foil, the rascally Police Robot Bossotron, voiced in a career-topping role by master actor Sonny Shroyer, hot off his soul-wrenching run as Enos Strate on the hit show The Dukes of Hazzard.
May I ruin a surprise? I will! Bosstron hates horses - and there's a horse in every house that counts in 1990! But when the Soy-Mafia (every food is made of soy in this veganic paradise!) needs to fill some beds with heads in Beverly Hills, Bossotron the police robot joins forces with his least favorite garbage man to prevent the decapitations from being blamed on him! Guess where they're getting THAT mess dumped? Not with Garbage, M.D. - who also has to pick up the trash in a trendy neighborhood without any of his face-sculpted celebrity clients realizing that the man who sucks the fat out of their stomachs is the man who sucks the fat out of their grease traps!
These zany hijinks continue until Garbage gets KING in trouble with HIS boss - yes, rapt readers, you heard me right! In this future, even your car has a boss! And this is a boss that doesn't take any guff from a dump truck! Classic sitcom comedy continues as Garbage must run back and forth from a waiting operating room - stitching up wrinkles and lifting the face of an aging Hollywood beauty queen - and talking to the chain-smoking, laser-gun-packing Chief of Garbage, Ban Hotswood! During these wild surgeries everyone's smoking futuristic electronic cigarettes that cure cancer!
In these scintillating scenes the director makes artistic use of elaborate color schemes, bombarding the viewer with bombastic screen-filling hues of avocado and eggshell. In one scene, a scene that recalled to me the beautiful sensual landscapes of my adolescence, Garbage walks through the smoke-bombed streets of Hollywood in the guts of dead robotic animals, their visceral internal organs rendered in disgusting oily smears that give Garbage flashbacks from CyberMedical School where he was touched inappropriately by horses.
Horses show up a lot in Garbage, MD, as the writers masterfully interweave callbacks, internal references, and character flashbacks interspersed at random with lies, memories, and the psychic visions of Hollywood stars - in this future, all stars are psychics, and have a telephone network you can call to talk with them directly!
The scenes of futuristic warfare hinted at in the smash-cut credits reveal a lot in common with the Frank Herbert classic Dune, except with camels instead of sandworms. Towards the end of the show, characters are revealed to be robots, the flesh of their faces flayed away with finger-knives, one at a time, Garbage waiting and sweating to discover if he too is a soulless automaton or if he will have his face removed by robotic razors. It's television like this you just can't get anywhere.
Anywhere! I saw this Pilot, I promise, and the joys of the overreaching robotic arms hauling and catapulting the futuristic trash of celebrity culture and a world gone mad with the banality of horses - this is a world that calls to me! I hear the shrieking siren song of Garbage, M.D. at night, written on the ceiling of my home in dappled doubts and shadows of a world that could be our own, if we but submitted to the fever dream of a madman, the holographic flesh I found splayed across the scattered napkins of a dozen west coast diners with disillusioned waitresses and pristine restrooms.
Garbage M.D. is real! I promise! Hear my words, ye who doubt, and despair upon the falling of the eons!
Alain E. Ehtims
(long pause. Hissing static?)
When we first found this tape, we had doubts as to it’s authenticity. Several reluctant experts were… convinced to examine it, and all of them came to the same basic conclusion.
Garbage MD never existed. The mystery reviewer, Alain E. Ethtims, was a pseudonym of one of the most legendary directors of the second half of the twentieth century - Alan Smithee.
Smithee, while filming the tragically misunderstood masterpiece, Iron Gunfighter, in 1969, encountered a strange piece of paper covered in words he claimed only he could read. He retreated to a cabin on a mountaintop to record this, his final message to the world.
He was found dead, locked in the cabin, doors barred, windows boarded up. There was no sign of a struggle, nor was a weapon recovered. His face had been removed by thin razor blades and he had bled to death. No trace of his assailant was ever found, save for a cluster of horse hoof prints outside the cabin.
I hope you’ve enjoyed our introductory podcast. I’m FPJerome, and this has been Pearl River Flow. Let’s play ourselves out with You Can Throw Away the Things that You Use by Walter Young, from his 2008 album, Floating World.