The Big Picture: Mystery Science Theater 3000

ImSkeletor

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Feb 6, 2010
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bricwall said:
This (and its spin-offs like riff-trax) and Cheap seats are the only ones to get the commentary jokes right.

Cheap seats if you've never seen it
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3MLFfVAu4d4&feature=related
I love Cheap Seats. It is probably my favorite show.

OT: MST3K is a really good show that I only learned about because I was curious about what Shamus(Spoiler Warning and a whole mess of stuff on the escapist) was talking about when he wrote Mst3k on one of the Spoiler Warning videos descriptions.
 

CrazyGirl17

I am a banana!
Sep 11, 2009
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Ah, good old MST3K. God I love that show. Unfortunetly, it got screwed over one too many times.

Executive assholes... >_<
 

Zer0Saber

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Aug 20, 2008
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Nightfalke said:
Blast Hardcheese!
Punch Rockgroin!
Slab Bulkhead!
Dirk Hardpeck!
Buff Hardback!
Crunch Busttsteak!
Big McLargehuge!
Roll Fizzlebeef!
We'll be reaching speeds of three!!!!
 

Redd the Sock

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I first got into MSTs through an odd source: fanfiction. Back when authors didn't have the world's thinnest skin, you could see bad fics getting riffed and some (I'm sure) wrote crap just to be riffed (never look up the Sailor Moon fanfic "Artimis' Lover" if you value your sanity). I just had to watch the show. The movies often didn't quite resonate, but the shorts are great, and Mr B Natural still haunts my nightmares.

A correction and addition though:

As of now and counting upcoming releases, around half of MST3K has hit DVD in one form or another. Not exactly a small number. Not perfect, but pretty good given what they have to deal with.

There's one more outlet I understand missing. There's a Canadian version called This Movie Sucks currently being aired on a few chanels. (It sadly seems to have been short lived, but re-runs are still on) Canada's smartassed puppet Ed the Sock (my avatar) riffs on the films with semi-professional cosplayer Liana K (wife to Ed's puppeteer and voice) and comedian Ron Sparks. The jokes are cruder and more mean spirited (Ed's the kind of guy to point out the first death in Killer Shrews was predictable due to the character being black) but it's been a good substitute. Still on and potentialy savable. Check your local Canadian listings or Movieola in Canada on Saturday nights around midnight.
 

Shjade

Chaos in Jeans
Feb 2, 2010
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MST3K had some good jokes, but I could never watch it. Why? Because you had to sit through a crap movie to hear the jokes, which were not constantly great and not in enough quantity to drown out the crap movie.

I get the appeal, but no thanks to the show.
 

Metal Brother

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Jan 4, 2010
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Great review!

I LOVED MST3K back in the day, and am a big RiffTrax fan now. For Christ's sake, RiffTrax even made the Twilight movies good - what can't it do?
 

C.S.Strowbridge

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Jul 22, 2010
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One of my favorite shows to review. Thank goodness Shout! took over, otherwise I wouldn't be getting screeners to regularly.
 

sarahvait

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Nov 6, 2008
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TL;DR version: Whoo, I love MST3K too! And I like both Joel and Mike. That being said...

YEA! MiSTies unite! Oh, thank you Bob, you've made me very happy. I actually cruising through The Human Duplicators when I saw this vid was up. This show was such an integral part of my childhood. I remember I was like 12 or so, and my dad called me upstairs because "something funny is on". That one episode was all it took (I finally found out it was Season 3, episode 306, Time of the Apes. "That door was locked for a reason!") to make me and my dad fans for life.

It was the show that I really bonded with my dad over; he'd let me stay up late to watch the show and we'd tape every single one we could and watch them again when nothing good was on. And it was fairly educational in some ways. When I was younger, a lot of the riffs went over my head, so dad would explain the references to me. As I got older, it was wonderful when I began to get on a more even keel with my dad, and a greater pleasure when HE wouldn't get a joke, and I would have to explain it to him! XD

Nowadays we watch Rifftrax and laugh our butts off, because even without the puppets, it's still good ol' Mike, Kevin (Tom Servo), and Bill (Crow) playing your navigators through the movie. But we've also go most of the MST3K boxsets available, so we pop those in and rewatch them too.

There's so many episodes I wish were on DVD, but almost all the episodes are up on youtube. And it's one of the few cases I'll watch a show on youtube like this. After all, it was the MST3K crew themselves who said to "keep circulating the tapes" at the end of every episode; I think in this case this is in the spirit of that. (Of course, I guess Viacom and whoever else still have the legal final say, so some of the eps get taken down. I want to watch The Magic Sword again!) But I'm always ready to give these guys money for anything they do, whether it's MST3K boxsets, Rifftrax MP3s, or going to see Rifftrax Live in theaters.

Plus, this is the one case on Youtube where the comments for the videos are actually fun discussions! If MST3K can gather Youtube commentators who don't act like the lowest common denominator of humanity, then it proves that MST3K is a beacon of justice and goodness in this world.

One thing I don't get is the Joel/Mike split. I can't really choose one over the other. I suppose I'm more of a Mike girl, but I like both in the end. And now when I'm watching, I have the luxury of going with whatever my preference happens to be. Joel was a bit dry and snarky with a bit of a hipster attitude who didn't seem to get fazed by much, while Mike was a naive, lovable goofhead. Mike tended to have a lot more energy and charisma, but Joel was the base, the original. To me, it's like arguing who was the better Crow, Trace Beaulieu or Bill Corbett. Both were great and brought their own twist to the character.

Plus, there's fact that Mike was the head writer, so most of what Joel said came from Mike anyway. And Mike had some great bit characters in some of the Joel episodes. I think most will say Torgo, but I think my personal favorite is from the Crash of the Moons episode, where Mike played the overly friendly character in the movie played by John Banner, a.k.a Sgt. Schultz from Hogan's Heroes. (Go to 2:40 in the vid)


Anyhow, to finish, here's my favorite episodes:

Joel Episodes

Pod People (Well, come on. Your breakfast is getting cold, and she ain't getting any warmer.)
Tormented (Tom Stewart killed me!)
Beatniks (I'm gonna Moon ya, see?!)
The Magic Sword (Must...get to...crappy...special effect!)
Hercules and the Captive Women (Today is dedicated to Uranus!)
Manos: The Hands of Fate (tHe MasTeR wANts yOu BUt hE caN'T HavE YoU!)

Mike Episodes

The Head that Wouldn't Die (Jane in a pan, are you still here?)
Teenage Strangler (Oh, Jimmy!)
The Thing that Couldn't Die (Here comes the bride, she's outta her friggin mind)
The Incredible Melting Man (Achgah!)
Night of the Blood Beast (Steve?)
Jack Frost (You moron, you're a worthless piece of crap, like something I scrap off my shoe! Duh huh duh hoi, here comes Jack Frost, you're
an idiot!)
Hamlet (What is it, Cold Water on the Groin-I mean, Polonius?)
Outlaw (Why did I come dressed as a cardinal?)
Space Mutiny (Sting, Debbie Reynolds, and God)
 

RedheadedKate

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Jul 12, 2010
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It wasn't shitting on other people's art, as much as it was "let's not take art so seriously for a little while and try to get some laughs." With Rifftrax, the guys have done Best Picture winners because sometimes, some people find silliness fun.

You didn't like it, and that's cool, but just because I don't like the taste of Indian food doesn't mean I have no respect for people who do.

P.S. Fraggle Rock was awesome!
 

RedheadedKate

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Jul 12, 2010
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Oh, and Bob. If I wasn't already married, this episode alone might make me hop on the commuter rail and propose to you!

How nerd was I...senior year, I hosted an after Prom party that was an MST3K marathon. How cool was I...SO many people came to it and had a blast!
 
Nov 18, 2010
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Oh hell yes! This show is seriously underappreciated, especially with all the terrible shows that keep coming out nowadays. I'm seriously glad I was able to find all the episodes online now that it's virtually impossible to find any hard versions anymore. And what the hell Comedy Central? You don't even acknowledge that it was even on your channel when it was undeniably one of your best shows?!
 

BrownGaijin

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Jan 31, 2009
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First thought: I'll see your MST3K good sir, and raise you an even more discrete Mel Brooks movie:



Second thoguht: Comedy Central denying the existence of MST3K is like the Los Angeles Lakers denying the existence of Kobe Bryant. The only way it could work is if half your audience is stoned.

Third thought: Whaa? Someone did this before "Unskipable"? /derp
 

ewhac

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sarahvait said:
Beatniks (I'm gonna Moon ya, see?!)
"These aren't beatniks! They aren't even boatniks!"

Hamlet (What is it, Cold Water on the Groin-I mean, Polonius?)
"Honey, what happened to all the ear poison?"

"Hail, Queen Dilbert's Boss."

Outlaw (Why did I come dressed as a cardinal?)
"And... now... if... you'll... ex-[em]cuse[/em]... me, I'm... going to... tear... my agent... a new..."
 

MFreak

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Jan 12, 2011
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MST3K! I still love this show to this day. Just yesterday I watched them rip apart Bride of The Monster by the well known cross dressing director Ed Wood, Jr.
Brilliant stuff that still remains funny to this day.

EDIT: I couldn't help but respect when Borderlands dropped a few MST3K references in their game, the most obvious being "Can't we get beyond thunderdome?" as an achievement!
 

BarbaricGoose

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May 25, 2010
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Ever since I heard you mention you were an MST3K fan, I was hoping you'd do an episode about it. Been a lifelong fan, myself. There's just nothing quite like MST3K.
 

blindthrall

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Oct 14, 2009
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They're not that hard to find. Youtube's probably got about 75% of them, thanks to some awesome people who really took that circulating the tapes thing to heart. But please don't mention Gamera's name in the comments. I've seen every episode at one point or another, except Hercules, which is impossible to find. The last one I hadn't seen on Youtube, Crash of the Moons, I just watched yesterday.

Think I'll watch Skydivers again. Francis Coleman is just such a unique brand of suck.