Deciding what is the oddest thing about the movie set for Space Pirates: The Stench at Galaxy’s Rear End is up for grabs. But be advised: It is the oddest thing up for grabs, not galaxy’s rear end. Grabbing that would be a grave mistake. For one thing, she doesn’t like it. But for another, the wise man never fails to heed a movie’s tagline, which in this case states in no uncertain terms: the junk in her trunk’s got all the wrong kinds of funk.

For some, the oddest thing about Space Pirates filming on campus at Notre Dame is the presence of Dak Q. Neutron’s pirate starship, known as the Buck Rogers’ Jollies. For when it comes to politics at Notre Dame, frankly anybody’s jollies are frowned upon, unless you’re a Catholic priest or football coach, which Buck Rogers is not. So while the presence of the Buck Rogers’ Jollies is quite unusual, it isn’t the oddest thing.

Some have said Gary Busey’s presence anywhere is odd. This is true enough, and it’s an opinion supported through peer review and evidence, namely his face, mouth, breath, nose, ears, eyes, hair, arms, legs, toes, fingers, knees and elbows, pores, crotch crickets, and otherwise cultivating what is better known as the Gary Busey Brand. Put simply: crazy is Gary Busey’s business…and business is good. Still, at this place, on this day, even a Gary Busey standing next to a Space Chicken David Hasselhoff isn’t the first odd thing people are noticing.

The first odd thing people are noticing is the swag.

The monkeys are just handing them out like candy.

It’s true, the monkeys themselves are odd. They’re not naked and spiraling into a deep depression in a zoo, as one might expect. These monkeys are roaming free, and wearing spandex onesies and blinking electronic caps with antennas on their heads. But the Notre Dame crowd is trained to notice one thing above all else: money. The monkey swag are heavy gold medallions featuring a Celtic knot design on the front and a switch on the back, suggesting they’re mechanical. Swag like that is expensive, even by Notre Dame standards, where money flows like the bladder on a drunken hobo. Already the rumor mill is beginning to churn, with everyone whispering suspicions on who could afford to literally throw gold at monkeys. What makes this the oddest thing is Notre Dame money tends to get spent on season football tickets, campus expansion projects, or private tropical islands. Until today, nobody has ever thought to spend it on parachuting swag monkeys.

Another odd thing worth mentioning is the two stoners who’ve snuck aboard the Buck Rogers’ Jollies to seize control of the set’s loudspeakers and preach to the crowd gathered below. Security has all but given up trying to control the set. For the average rent-a-cop pulling down eleven bucks an hour for the Security Solutions Guild, “swag monkeys” are practically an engraved invitation to pick up snorting glue. The two proselytizing stoners on the Buck Rogers’ Jollies are merely the final fuck-it in a long line of fuck-its. They had thought the final fuck-it had been explaining to Gary Busey why he can’t bring his AK-47 on set, but they were wrong. (Incidentally, the AK-47 remains an unresolved problem, as Busey snuck it aboard the Buck Rogers’ Jollies anyway and stashed it where he is sure no one will find it.[1]) At least security doesn’t have to deal with the monkeys perusing the Darwin section of the Notre Dame library. Those crazy monkeys don’t understand a word they’re reading. But not to worry, they’ll figure words out eventually, if given enough time. 

[1]Predictably, in the captain’s booty.

***

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“…delightfully silly…”

—Kirkus Reviews

“…undeniably entertaining.”

—Kirkus Reviews

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