Tonight on MeTV- it’s a movie that viewers have been requesting for a long time- returning to our show after a twenty-five year absence ! Yes, it’s a wild premise with wild hare everywhere- as Arizona must endure the “Night of the Lepus”!
Out on the range-when coyotes seem to be a thing of the past, their main food supply- rabbits- begin to multiply like- well-rabbits! One rancher whose livelihood is endangered by too many bunnies decides to ask for help from an old friend at the university to find a way to cut down on the rabbit population without using poison.
Two researchers, Roy and Gerry Bennett, have some ideas – and take a few of the rabbits, on which to experiment. They inject one rabbit with a special serum- but, unbeknownst to them, their daughter, who has grown fond of the bunny, switches the injected rabbit with one from the control group. That may have muddled the research, but it gets worse- her favorite rabbit escapes!
When the rancher and the researchers go out to inspect burrowing sites, they are confused to find some large animal tracks. Meanwhile, the bunny-switching daughter and the rancher’s son go to visit a friend at an old gold mine- where they discover – a huge rabbit with blood smeared on it!
Suddenly, mutilated bodies are being found in various nearby places –and it’s decided that the no-kill plan for handling the rabbits just isn’t feasible. The rancher, a couple of his ranch hands, his university pal and the Bennetts head to the mine with explosives in hopes of blowing up their burrow- and them with it.
Needless to say ( or we’d have a much shorter movie) it doesn’t work- and the giant rabbits begin a bunny hop of horror, invading a small town and infiltrating the surrounding areas! As they head for the main town, devouring citizens and destroying everything in their path, the National Guard is called in- for a showdown between man and the killer cottontails!
This 1972 movie with the absurd premise ( actually based on a novel “The Year of the Angry Rabbit”!) has long been a cult classic. We’ll introduce the cast, including big names like Janet Leigh, Rory Calhoun, Stuart Whitman, and Star Trek’s “Bones” himself, DeForest Kelley- and bring you a few segments from our original showing of this movie a quarter of a century ago- a look at the “special” effects- plus a new song! We have edited some of the more grisly shots- and hope you will be gratified to know that no rabbits were harmed in the production of this film- especially when we tell you what the “blood” you see on the bunnies actually is!
“Night of the Lepus” ( did we mention lepus is Latin for rabbit?) begins tonight at 8 pm eastern/pacific, 7 central time. MeTV invites you to join the many fans who live –Tweet on Twitter during the show, using the hashtag # svengoolie. Local Chicago viewers get a second look at “The Blob” at 11 am on the U- please keep in mind that next week, the Saturday morning show moves back to our main local channel, CW26- still on at the same time.
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A final note- we hope everyone took time yesterday to remember all those we lost on 9/11. Never forget.
Come watch the fur fly- and expand- tonight on MeTV!