The episode: “The Undead,” ep. 806
The riff: Observed by Mike as a rather frightening-looking medieval guard accosts a woman in prison accused of witchcraft.
The explanation: Ray Nitschke was a hall of fame linebacker for the Green Bay Packers in the 1960s. He was sometimes known as “Mr. Hyde” for the difference in his on-field and off-field personas. On field, he was a frightful presence, a brutal tackler and all-around tough guy. Off the field, however, he was known as a gentle person and a devoted family man. He received many accolades in his career, is generally considered one of the top 10 linebackers in pro history, and has one of the Packers’ practice fields named in his honor. Also, this guy looks like him.
Novelty factor: I’d be lucky to recognize modern football references, let alone Lombardi-era ones. This is, however, a good example of one of MST3k’s Midwest-centric jokes.