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Mystery Science Theater 3000, one of my favorite shows of all time, I'm
serious. This is one of the best television shows ever created, why is
it such a cult classic? Ever see a really bad movie? I know you have,
we also know how much we love to make fun of a really bad movie, that's
exactly what the characters of Mystery Science Theater 3000 do, they
take the worst movies of all time and absolutely tear them a new one.
They are like the friends we want to have around when you feel like you
wasted your money at the movies, because at least you can get a good
laugh at just making fun of it. I saw this show for the first time in
1998 when my parents finally broke down and got cable, the first
channel that popped up when I turned on the TV was the sci fi channel
and what looked like a fun werewolf movie... then I noticed three
little figures in the corner. I didn't get it, why are they talking
through the mov... oh, because this is a really bad movie and they are
saying everything that I am thinking... I'm in love! At that point I
was hooked and tuned in every week to see a new episode.
The show first started off with Joel, a man who is stranded on the satellite of love space ship with several robots: Crow T. Robot, Tom Servo, Gypsy and Gambot. He is being tortured by our villain, Dr. Forrester with terrible movies. Eventually in the middle of season 5, we got a new host, Mike Nelson. He was a slave to Dr. Forrester, but is now sentenced to the same fate as Joel to see the most horrible movies of all time. We also later on got a different villain, Dr. Forrester's mother, Pearl Forrester who is trying to take over the world while presenting horrendous movies to Mike and the bots.
The great thing about this show is it didn't just make fun of horror movies, nope, any bad movie could face the hand smack of Mystery Science Theater 3000. I couldn't choose a favorite episode, but I stepped into the Mike era so most of my favorites come out of those seasons like: Prince of Space, The Final Sacrifice, Space Mutiny, Girl in Gold Boots, The Brain that wouldn't Die, Squirm and Soultaker. Not only do they make fun of movies, but "educational" shorts as well with the scary "A Date With Your Family" and "Spring Fever!" that are frankly the most disturbing thing on film. Like most shows, not every episode is a classic, but is always guaranteed a good laugh. There are some haters on this show saying that they hate seeing people talk through the film, if you really want to see films like the one's they make fun of, I pity you.
For those unfortunate few who have never seen an episode of Joel Hodgson's
MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 (referred to by fans as 'MST3K'), here is a
brief rundown on all the fun you've missed out on. Dr. Forrester is your
typical mad scientist. He sports big glasses, an oversized lab coat, crazy
hair, and an insatiable urge to take over the world. In an effort to kick
off his latest foolproof world-domination scheme, Dr. Forrester abducts a
dry-witted janitor named Joel Robinson from the research center they both
work at. Joel is blasted into space in an apparently escape-proof ship
called the Satellite of Love, forever doomed to orbit the planet Earth.
Forrester keeps contact with Joel via satellite transmission, and each week
sends hims an unbearably awful b-movie which he is forced to watch. The mad
doctor's idea is to keep sending movies that are so mind-numbingly terrible
that it will eventually drive Joel and his viewers to insanity, thus giving
him an easy outlet for conquering the world. To help preserve his sanity,
Joel uses parts from the ship to build four wise-cracking robot friends that
keep him company and help us to avoid cinema-induced lunacy by mercilessly
heckling the films.
The show aired weekly, and re-introduced old 1950s-70s era drive-in swill to a world that has long forgotten about it. The movies they chose--The Brain That Wouldn't Die, Time of the Apes, and (most notorious) Manos: The Hands of Fate, for example--were truly some of the most awful abominations in cinema history, and how they were able to find clear, working prints of these (mostly) obscure films is beyond me. Not only was it great to be able to witness some of these "masterpieces" first-hand, but the non-stop commentary by Joel, Tom, and Crow was absolutely hysterical. There was never a dull moment when those boys hit the SOL's onboard movie theater. On occasion, there would be a break from the movie to show a humorous sketch that would further the basic plot of the show. While many of these segments were admittedly not all that funny, they didn't last long, and Forrester would call for "MOVIE SIGN!" again in no time. Come to think of it, it may not even be that these primitive skits weren't funny, but that they simply paled in comparison to the sheer hilarity that took place in the ship's movie theater.
MYSTERY SCIENCE THEATER 3000 is one of the few television programs that seems to be loved by virtually everybody. Seriously--I know of not a single person who didn't like this show, nor have I ever read a single negative comment or review of it. That being said, why on Earth was such a brilliant show like MST3K canceled? It couldn't have been because of poor ratings, since the show had a huge cult following and a substantial amount of regular viewers. If anyone has any information regarding why this series was taken off the air, please contact me!
A lot of the movies on which I've commented on this website I've seen as
episodes of "Mystery Science Theater 3000." However, I find it difficult to
write about this show as a whole - not because I can't think of anything to
say, but because there is so much to say that I don't know where to begin or
I guess I'll start by saying I approached this show prepared to be unimpressed. A show about a janitor and two robots goofing on bad movies in space? That's about the dumbest idea for a TV show I've ever heard! And in lesser hands this could have been an idiotic show, not worth bothering with. But in the hands of the troupe of writers and performers who call themselves Best Brains it is a show of rare intelligence and wit. The writing is first rate and the performances (especially in the host segments, in which skits are performed which are more or less inspired by the movie) are sharp and enthusiastic. So good was the writing that show was able to remain fresh and entertaining despite several major cast changes (by the time the series ended after ten seasons none of the original cast members remained).
Best of all, this show helped broaden my appreciation for cheesy movies. I've always loved horror and sci-fi movies (horror especially), and some of the movies shown here were familiar, but there were others I would never have seen were it not for this show. Some laughably bad, others cheesy and surreal, others pretty darned interesting. (Still others were just plain bad.)
In short, this was one of the best shows ever shown on television.
Mystery Science Theater 3000 could quite possibly be one of the most
inventive and hilarious shows of all time. In a nutshell, an average
guy is rocketed into space by his evil boss and is forced to watch
terrible, cheesy, poorly acted, poorly written, poorly shot, B-grade
movies (sometimes even lower grade than that). The only way he keeps
his sanity is by mocking and riffing on the movie-of-the-week with his
robot friends, Tom Servo and Crow T. Robot. He is also kept company by
the robots Cambot and Gypsy, who do not watch the movie.
Each episode of MST3K delivers almost non-stop laughs and great one-liners that make watching these awful movies not only bearable, but also hilarious! There are fans (known as MSTies) of all ages, from adults who have been watching it from the first televised episode to teens just discovering it thanks to the release of the DVDs.
All in all, I am a huge fan of MST3K and have never been dissatisfied with it. I've never seen an episode that didn't make me laugh out loud.
It's difficult to describe it to those who haven't seen it before, so if you're not one of the legions of fans of MST3K yet, hurry out and rent or buy one of the DVD sets. You won't be disappointed! 10/10
MSTK 3K was never meant to be a quality show. It's simply a cheesy skit to
make fun of really, really bad movies. In a world, where everybody takes
things too seriously, this show produces a much needed boost of comedy.
Sitcoms tend to become the same, and humor anymore is few and far between.
There is just a finite number of plot lines that a sitcom can have. And many
sitcoms tend to outlast their usefullness (Friends and Fraiser). However,
MST3k, the humor is always refreshing. Joel (or Mike) and the robots never
run out of potshots during a movie. So many movies become untentionally
funny, because they are so poorly made. The robots are very clever, when
they can relate contemporary events with old movies. I'll never forget when
Croww T. Robot, said when he saw a wrecked T-bird "Teddy Kennedy are you
The shorts are very clever too. They make fun of the stupid short films that you had to watch in elementary school. (Posture, grooming, what to do on a date).
The only thing that one must watch out for, is that sometimes people don't get the jokes that the robots are pitching. As long as one is up on current events, he would find this show hilarious.
I remember watching the movie when it came out to theaters in 1996. I have never been in an audience that laughed so much.
MST3K is without a doubt one of the funniest shows ever made. It's hard to believe there could be anything that could make horrible movies like 'Hobgoblins' fun to watch. The show is clever and witty. It's hard to believe a show about a group of three making comments while watching a movie could spawn a ten year series and a movie. But it was done, and I'm sure we're all thankful for that. It's a shame the show has ended but the went out with a bang, making the series finale 'Danger: Diabolik' one of the best of the series; my personal favorite is 'Hobgoblins'. See the reruns and rent the movie whenever possible!
If there is ever a show greater than this, it'll be the day I die. This TV show is the greatest achievement of the human race, and a true classic. I'm talking of MST3K, of course! No other show on television can possibly hope to be as funny or as original as this all time legend. I was very sad when it went off the air in 1999. It actually hurt to record it, but it had to be done as a full time Mystie. Never will there ever be a show as great as this wonderful comedy.
Did you ever want to just knock a really bad movie, but you never could
because not only did you pay $8-10 for it, but well, you paid $8-10 for
it, you idiot! My God, there have been really, truly bad movie
candidates since this show ended, that could have wound up on this
wonderful comedy series.
I've always considered MST3K to be the best two hours of television each week, even though a large percentage of those two hours was horrible cinema. There aren't a whole lot of TV series that can be successful using that format. But MST3K did it for eleven straight seasons.
At first it was Joel Hodgson with two cute robots named Tom Servo and Crow stranded on a Satellite by two mad scientists. It was an experiment to see if the poor guy goes insane by watching the worst movies ever. It is strangely synonymous with what Hollywood often does to us.
In order for him to maintain sanity, he is helped by the robots to goof on scenes from the movies while they sit in the theater. The jokes are topical, self referential, nostalgic, spot-on and drop-dead hilarious. Just keep an ear open, remember you're listening to two tracks, but Joel and Co. are more crucial to the comedy. The movie is already bad.
Mike was good in the Satellite, and Joel even made a guest appearance during Mike's run. There are so many horrendous movies that these guys saw, but as every MSTy knows, the cream of the crap was "Manos, the Hands of Fate" AKA "Hands, the Hands of Fate." Bad is too simple an adjective for this film, and I felt very, very sorry for the residents of the Satellite of Love.
This show must come back, with the catchy theme song and everything. Every bad movie that comes out is a public cry for it to return to television.
Comedy Central gets credit when credit is due. "South Park", the "Chapelle's
Show", "Win Ben Stein's Money", "The Daily Show" and a few others -- were
breakthough series for a very hungry comedy generation. But this was their
very first hit, let no one tell ya differently.
At first, I thought Mystery Science Theater 3000 would bug me. A bunch of folks talking through a movie. I HATE that. But these guys have gone through and chosen a host of films that are bad to begin with. And you know as you're sitting in the comfort of your home, by yourself or with friends watching these same films, you are saying or thinking the same thing of what Joel and Mike and the 'bots are.
Yes, MST3K is "cheap", its stupid..but its a heck of alot of fun. There are a few movies they took that I didn't think deserved an MST3K "do-over" but at some points in the series, they did a unique thing and added in Cartoons, old Soap Operas and TV Series before showing the full feature. That was a laugh riot.
Comedy Central's MST3K went to the Sci-Fi Channel where they still show the series but I wish they would also show the ones with Joel and the 'bots along with the ones with Mike and the 'bots. In such a depressing time, it puts a smile on my face for two hours every Saturday Morning. It's simple and s-i-m-p-l-e.
Every year the Sci-Fi network does "Twilight Zone" Marathons which I love. I remember Comedy Central ONCE doing a "MST3K" Marathon, it's time to do another. This is the best comedy/sci-fi series to date, it deserves alot more than it got.
If not, maybe its time to pull the gang together and do another "Movie". The "MST3K" gang really blew it with doing "This Island Earth" when we all know "Manos, the Hands of Fate" would have gotten them Academy Award Nominations. Find another film like that, put these guys back into space (and hey, bring 'em back home!) and I bet it would surprise everyone in the film industry for how well it would do.
A mad scientist's plot to rule the world hurls an employee (and later a
temp worker replacement) into space on a fully furnished satellite
where, in the company of quick-witted robot friends, the captive is
forced to watch real movies from nearly every genre imaginable that
threaten to rob him completely of his sanity. That's all you really
need to know to start watching, but it can't begin to scratch the
surface of what you will encounter. Beneath the surface is a work of
comedic genius that has held a stronger-than-cult following for almost
In the Mystery Science Theater 3000 dictionary, you probably can find a picture of Joe Don Baker under the definition of "irony." He is quoted with having threatened physical violence on the creator of MST3K after how they treated him in the film "Mitchell," yet he played a trailer trash dad in "Mars Attacks" around the same time. It's these kinds of relationships between one movie and another, the throwbacks to our culture, and (most) performers' ability to be a good sport that makes MST3K such a brilliant program. It is only in the case of this series that too many writers don't spoil the ambiance; in fact, a large group of writers is essential to capture every flaw and possible remark that can be made about a single movie. If you grew up within the last 50 years, then you are bound to have seen most of the movies featured on MST3K. On the same token, you are bound to get most of the jokes the stars hurl at the screen, but don't be surprised if you catch something new every time.
Sci-fi and film purists have deemed MST3K detrimental to film genres in some arguments, and some viewers who saw the actual movies when they were released or were influenced heavily by a group of films might be taken aback by seeing their favorite movies torn to pieces for the sake of comedy. Nonetheless, MST3K has the ability to grow on virtually everyone who sees it... and has done so. The show is filmed with some of the most dated film technology while the robots and sets were literally sculpted from scraps of junk gotten from Goodwill, but the impact is lasting and any argument you may have over scientific mistakes are immediately addressed in the last line of the catchy theme song. Mexican wrestlers, Italian spies, Japanese giant monsters, 1960s-era juvenile delinquents, mad scientists, educational short films, rugged bikers, and even works of Shakespeare (well just one work but still) to name only a few types of the over-200 films featured in its 10-year run (many of which continue to hold high ranking on IMDb's worst films list), are the primary fodder of this brilliant undertaking, and you are hereby dared not to find the same amusement in every movie you see after experiencing MST3K for yourself and succumbing to its effects.
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